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Could Some Freebies or Foreigners Tempt You?

2 Oct

Another great idea inspired by discussion: offering freebies for attendance to live performances. Usually an offering of free food is quite enticing for students. What do you suggest would be a good affordable freebie for venues to offer patrons?

On a less costly note for venues, encouraging young backpackers to visit regularly could also help out the scene. While casually talking with some friends about particular venues, it was mentioned by one and agreed upon by the rest that “when the backpackers stopped coming, that’s when I lost interest”. It seems that the opportunity for short-term intimacy is also a highly tempting reason to visit particular venues. What are your thoughts and experiences?


Creating a Live Music Hub for Sydney

29 Sep

It has come to my attention through a discussion with fellow live music scene campaigners Nightfusion that based on the statistics I mentioned in an earlier post, Sydney doesn’t yet have a large enough hub for live music. It could be possible to focus on popular areas for live music as a starting point in forming this major hub. So, with this in mind, I set out to find what Sydney’s top ten live music venues currently are. However, the most recent list I found came from a post by Trish Roberts of Concrete Playground, written in 2011, which named their top ten live music venues that year as:

  1. The Enmore (Enmore)
  2. The Red Rattler (Marrickville)
  3. The Annandale Hotel (Annandale)
  4. Goodgod (Sydney)
  5. 505 (Surry Hills)
  6. The Vanguard (Newtown)
  7. The Factory Theatre (Marrickville)
  8. The Lansdowne (Sydney)
  9. Black Wire Records (Annandale)
  10. Oxford Art Factory (Darlinghurst)

What do you guys think? Do you agree with this or are there other venues that you believe were perhaps more popular last year? What venues would you suggest have made the top ten this year?

Yet Another Benefit of Live Music…

28 Sep

We’ve already established some of the ways live music benefits our society, but did you know it also benefits our economy? A study commissioned by APRA|AMCOS in conjunction with the Australia Council for the Arts, Arts Victoria, Arts NSW and Live Performance Australia in 2011 found that in 2009/10, the Australian live music industry contributed $1.21 billion into the national economy. The findings were based on surveys completed by live music venues including hotels, bars, clubs, restaurants, cafes and nightclubs.

The study also raised some interesting points that outlined just how much of an impact your regular attendance to live music can be. For example, the $1.21 billion that was generated during the 2009/10 financial year was “driven by patron expenditure on live music performances which included ticket sales to live performances as well as food and drink.” (APRA|AMCOS, 2011).

Some other key points of the study included that “the venue-based live music industry supports employment of over 14, 800 full time equivalent positions” (APRA|AMCOS, 2011)and that New South Wales was the largest contributor to the venue-based live music industry at 32% of the industry’s output. With statistics like these, imagine the impact Sydney alone could have on the Australian economy through higher patronage towards the live music scene!

Just another reason why live music matters.

Thanks, MusicNSW!

27 Sep

Source: MusicNSW (

While traversing through the internet in search of information that would help Project Bottle-Top, I discovered a campaign run by MusicNSW from 2006-2009 titled ‘Protecting Live Music’. The campaign focused on live music venues and managed to influence a number of changes to relevant NSW Government regulations, which from October 2009 were:

  • Place of Public Entertainment (POPE) licences are no longer needed – venues can have live entertainment as part of their main business without the need for separate approval
  • Entertainment is now defined as part of normal activities at pubs, restaurants and clubs during the week and on weekends.
  • For new venues, live entertainment matters will be considered as part of the development application
  • There will be a range of measures to protect neighbourhood amenity, which are administered by the police, councils and the NSW Office of Liquor, Gaming and Racing.

These are incredible achievements for one campaign and is a true inspiration for GIGS while in the dawn of our first phase ‘Project Bottle-Top’. Thanks, MusicNSW, for helping to further facilitate and improve Sydney’s Live Music Scene. We can only hope ‘Project Bottle-Top’ is this successful in discovering and understanding current trends amongst Sydney venues’ patrons.

We’d like to know…

18 Sep

By C.T.

Project Bottle-top

18 Sep

Project Bottle-top is GIGS first act upon their endeavour to increase Sydney’s interest in the live music scene. It is about discovering what form of social entertainment Sydney’s youth enjoy and why. One step within this project involves the venue event survey mentioned in the previous blogpost, as well conducting as one or two related surveys and polls and studying surveys conducted by other organisations. So without further ado, GIGS gives you the first finding for Project Bottle-top:

survey of 137 members within the live music scene, conducted between February 2011-July 2011 by Unashamedly Creative, discovered a number of interesting statistics that could explain part of the current problem.

  • The top two highest age-groups within the live music scene are 25 to 29 years and 30 to 34 years (a total of 52.9%).
  • 65% are male.
  • The live music hub is rather scattered with the most popular location to reside in being Darlinghurst/Surry Hills at 12%. This makes it hard to form a tight-knit community with strong ties.
  • While members of the live music scene are scattered, very few seem to be interested in local music and focus more on popular locations such as Newtown and Surry Hills – literally adding up to 137% of those surveyed. This doesn’t give much hope for live music venues in other locations.
  • 43% of the live music scene are loyal and dedicated members, involved with live music at least once or twice a week.
  • 93% are there for the rock, while 46% are there to enjoy some acoustic sessions. This implies live music venues are less party and more chilled-out, as well as limited in their genres.
  • 51% are actually musicians themselves.
  • 62% claim not knowing whether a venue or act is good as the main reason to not watch more live music.
  • 59% watch live music for the music, while 29% are there to have drinks with their mates.

This is useful in building an understanding of the live music scene, and points out a few areas of improvement such as age groups, gender, social benefits, and hubs.

By C.T.

Here’s An Idea: You Decide!

10 Sep

I’ve been racking my brain all this week about how GIGS can possibly begin to build Sydney’s interest in the live music scene. Then I realised that GIGS first needs to know what type of music Sydney likes.

I have a plan (that is still in the works) to organise an event with a nightclub in Sydney where original bands, cover bands and DJs all play on the same night in different sections of the venue. This night will be a competition between genres, where you vote for the section of the venue you like the most.

The results will  not only discover whether this amalgamation of bands and DJs on a single night within a single venue is viable, it will also help you compare and contrast your musical experiences so that you can decide what you prefer to be entertained by on your weekend night.

Source: Turnerburns on Flika

By C.T