All posts tagged movement

  • The Vine column: ‘Group Therapy’ #1 – ‘What is the value of recorded music?’, April 2011

    A new column for The Vine. Excerpt below.

    Group Therapy #1 – ‘What is the value of recorded music?’

    This week we here at TheVine are positing a new column. The idea is that Group Therapy will operate as a semi-random music industry related Q&A, a missive we send out to a great many artists in order to gauge their feedback on any particular issue.

    This maiden edition is a good way to start: back in October last year, journalist Andrew McMillen was intimately involved in the One Movement festival in Perth (a festival which, incidentally, has just been deferred pending a review of the event). McMillen was well placed to engage with a wide array of artists attending the five-day event. Whilst there, he saw fit to ask them all this question:

    “Your recorded music is an advertisement for your live show. You should not expect that people will buy your music. Agree/disagree?”

    Responses below.


    The Jezabels [pictured above, left]

    “I guess so. You can’t stop downloads, and I’d rather people have the music than not. Also I think it’s a pretty healthy thing for a band to view touring as their livelihood. It’s when you contact most of the people who might become real fans.”

    The Great Spy Experiment (Singapore)

    “Do you mean it the other way? That is, if our live show – as an advertisement for our recorded music – sucks then we should not expect people to buy our music? Either way, I probably agree. The best thing about our live sets is our dancing. And you can’t get that on our records. So we understand if you don’t want to buy our CD.”

    Big Scary (Melbourne)

    “I agree. I started realising this switch in the industry a few years back. For most musicians – I don’t think this necessarily applies to super famous and successful artists like Lady Gaga etc – firstly, the live stuff is usually band’s bread and butter. Secondly, people can get their hands on so much free music from downloading and blogs and all the streaming on Myspace that it’s not easy to encourage them to spend on what they can easily get for free. We’ve been giving away our singles all year because we know it’s better to get people to our shows.”

    Richard In Your Mind (Sydney)

    “I agree that recorded music is an advertisement, but it’s a product too. That’s the great thing about music: it comes in different forms to be enjoyed in different ways. Some people don’t like going out to shows, they prefer to sit in their lounge room listening with a cup of tea. Less people are actually buying music because of the internet, I guess, but there will always be those who still pay for it.”

    For the full column – which includes artists who disagree with the statement, as well as a few fence-sitters – visit The Vine.

  • Collapse Board story: ‘An Open Letter To Stonefield’, March 2011

    A story for Collapse Board. Excerpt below.

    An Open Letter To Stonefield

    Dear Stonefield,

    I recently interviewed you for the Australian music website Mess+Noise. I prepared for the interview just as I’ve done for many others: by listening to your music, by studying your past published interviews, and by dipping into online comments made about you. Having seen you play live, at the One Movement For Music festival in Perth last October, I had an inkling of how people would respond to the published interview. As a band of young girls, your image is naïve and innocent. I don’t believe that this is an act, Stonefield: I think this is just who you are.

    In Perth, you got up on stage before a crowd of hundreds, under a tent in the middle of the day, and performed well. You stayed strong throughout your allotted half-hour. There was a fair amount of shoe-gazing going on among your younger members, but I chalked that up to nerves more than anything else. In that moment, you were an ambitious group of young women playing a game controlled by men. The vast majority of guest speakers at the music industry conference that had taken place in nearby hotels were male. The festival line-up was stacked in favour of men, too. In that environment, you were outsiders, in every sense of the word. Yet you played as if you belonged. That sense of self-confidence won you a spot on the line-up of this year’s Glastonbury Festival, in the UK, as a direct result of your strong performance at One Movement.

    As I watched you play, Stonefield, I took in the crowd around me. Toward the front – up against the barrier – were groups of males in their 20s and 30s, beers in hand, cheering and leering at you. You probably noticed them. The men in attendance outnumbered females by a considerable margin. You probably noticed this, too. This was disconcerting, Stonefield. Over those five days in Perth, I saw dozens of male bands play, and few of them provoked more than appreciative applause between songs. But when you played, the crowd reception went far beyond respect for your musical talent. All around me, men were undressing you with their eyes.

    Herein lies the rub of your band and bands like you, Stonefield. No amount of musical talent, studious networking and careerist determination can compare to the sudden rush of blood that occurs when humans are placed in the presence of attractive members of the opposite sex (or the same sex, if you’re that way inclined). So while we can pretend until the cows come home that you are hot property among the Australian music industry in 2011 purely because you’re talented, we’re fooling ourselves if we don’t admit that your gender and your looks weigh heavily on the minds of the people who make these decisions. Festival bookers, publicists, A&R reps; they each have one thing on their mind, and it’s not your musical chops. You have those, of course, but you’re also blessed with rarer, more distinctive traits: sisterhood, and beauty. With a story like yours, Stonefield, the press releases practically write themselves.

    For the full article, visit Collapse Board. For more Stonefield, visit their Myspace. The music video for their song ‘Through The Clover‘ is embedded below.

  • Native Digital blog project: One Movement For Music 2010

    A couple of months ago I undertook a blog project for One Movement For Music 2010, a Perth-based event whose five days (Oct 6-10) consisted of daily MUSEXPO panel discussions, nightly industry showcases at live music venues throughout Perth’s inner city, as well as a three-day music festival. I first blogged for One Movement during its first year, in 2009.

    On behalf of my employer, Native Digital, I coordinated blog content on One Movement Word and operated the event’s social media accounts – Facebook and Twitter – from the beginning of August. On the ground in Perth, I live-tweeted it and blogged daily highlights of the conference, as well covering the festival and showcase acts in photo form – links included at the bottom of this post.

    The difference between last year’s traffic and 2010 was significant. Whereas in 2009 we were starting from a literal blank slate – zero Twitter or Facebook followers, and thus no traction – this time around, we had 300 followers on Twitter and 600 Facebook fans, which meant that our blog content instantly had an audience. These numbers grew as the blog campaign continued: as of 1 November, we have 945 Twitter followers, and nearly 2,500 on Facebook.

    The growth in overall blog traffic speaks for itself – compare 2010 (top image, 17,000+ visits) to 2009 (bottom image, 6,700+ visits).

    August – October 2010:

    July – October 2009:

    This year, One Movement Word’s blog content was split into the following categories – click for further info:

    Posts in the latter category included:

    I want to give a special mention to the ‘State Of Global Independence’ panel, moderated by Nick O’Byrne of AIR, as it was an incredibly inspiring discussion, and by far the best music industry panel I’ve witnessed. Which doesn’t sound that impressive, really, but trust me: Nick and his panelists touched on some brilliant, universally-understood topics, like pursuing your passion, the nature of independence, and being kind to others without expectation of repayment. I’ll say no more; you’ll have to read my transcript of the panel at One Movement Word. It’s totally worth it. I promise.

    Thanks to Sunset Events and Native Digital for again allowing me to be a part of the One Movement online campaign.