Australian News Briefs 3/2

Check out the latest bunch of news from downunder.


INXS Brothers Inducted

INXS brothers Andrew, Tim and Jon Farriss were inducted into the West Australian Music (WAM) association’s Hall of Fame in Perth as The Farriss Brothers.

This was their original name when they started out in Perth, changing their name when they moved to Sydney.

The event was part of the weeklong WAMis, which included conferences, showcases and the WAM awards.

Hard rock band Karnivool dominated the awards, winning popular act, live act and hard rock act while its members took out the singer and guitarist categories.

The Amplifier Bar was voted most popular venue, Big Day Out as most popular event, while the WA music industry voted Heath Bradby as best manager.


Staging Connections Buys Bytecraft

Event and exhibition services group Staging Connections has bought Bytecraft Entertainment from Tattersall’s Limited for A$42.5 million.

Bytecraft is a specialist large-scale event lighting, Superscreen and vision services company. The acquisition does not include Bytecraft Systems, which continues to be owned by Tattersall’s.

Staging Connections CEO Michael Gardner called the buy "part of our ongoing expansion into new market segments as well as new geographic areas."

Stephen Found, who established the Bytecraft Group in 1984, will remain as Managing Director.

So will the Bytecraft Entertainment senior management team and 70-strong workforce.


Red Bull AMPs Up

Red Bull Australia has come on board the Australian Music Prize (AMP) by offering an award "in recognition of outstanding potential."

It will consist of $15,000 worth of support for whatever Red Bull and AMP reckon the recipient needs, be it tour support or a video.

Red Bull emphasizes it’s not a "runners-up" prize and that it could also go to the AMP winner who is announced on March 7.

"Red Bull has been searching for an opportunity to offer its support to Australian music for quite some time," said Tom Sigelski, its cultural marketing manager.


More Shows For Pink, Paul Stanley

The Australian leg of Pink’s "I’m Not Dead" tour for May swelled to 30 shows, with Michael Coppel Presents adding a sixth arena show in Melbourne and a fifth in Perth.

Tour sponsors Ocean Spray report that sales jumped up from pre-tour excitement.

Part of the Ocean Spray sponsorship includes a four-week consumer promotion in 758 Coles & Bi-Lo supermarkets around Australia, and which went out in catalog to 7 million households. Winner of the promo gets a backstage tour, dinner with Pink and VIP seats at the mixing desk at the first show.

Second shows were added in Melbourne and Sydney for KISS frontman Paul Stanley’s first solo Australian tour for Andrew McManus Presents.

As this is Stanley’s first solo tour outside of the U.S., KISS Army members are travelling from Japan, Greece, New Caledonia and New Zealand to attend.

British band Kaiser Chiefs’ two Australian shows – in Melbourne and Sydney – sold out in 10 minutes, reported Frontier Touring.


Adam Harvey Awarded

Country singer Adam Harvey won the 2007 CMA (Country Music Association, America) Global Country Artist Award.

He was honoured for his contribution to spreading country music’s popularity in his home country of Australia.

He will travel to Nashville in June to accept the award and perform during this year’s CMA Music Festival. He is the fourth Australian to win the kudos, following Lee Kernaghan (2003), Kasey Chambers and, posthumously, Slim Dusty (2004).


Agnostics, Buanne Return

New York hardcore band Agnostic Front will return after 10 years for six club dates for Resist April 21-27.

Dainty Consolidated Entertainment is bringing crooner Patrizio Buanne back in May after the runaway success of his first tour last year. He is set for five theatre stops May 13-25.

Swedish prog-metallists Evergrey are scheduled for two club shows mid-May.

30 Seconds To Mars makes its first Australian visit in the first week of May with three stops for Frontier Touring.

In-Tense Touring announced an initial five dates for California’s Secret Chiefs 3. The band returns after nine years, with two other unspecified members of Mr. Bungle expected to join SC3 leader Trey Spruance (a former Mr. Bungle member himself) onstage.


Short Notes

German music trade fair Popkomm has officially forged an alliance with Adelaide’s Fuse Festival.

It is sending a rep to check out Australia’s "next big things," and take part in the conference program. Australia has long had a presence at each Popkomm.

Keith Urban is set for a promo tour March 20-23 ahead of his May arena tour for Michael Chugg Entertainment.

British soul singer Joss Stone will head downunder to talk up her third album in the first week of April.

Albert Productions, the Sydney label and production house that gave the world hard-hitting acts like AC/DC, Rose Tattoo, the Easybeats, and Angel City, has signed a worldwide recording and publishing deal with Melbourne four-piece the Skybombers, which is described as a cross between The Jam and the Arctic Monkeys. The Skybombers will release an EP in the coming months and perform at Musexpo in LA, before beginning work on their debut album.

Eskimo Joe is about to sign its U.S. deal any day now but are keeping mum so they don’t jinx it.

Country pop singer Shannon Noll, who launched his career as the runner-up of the first "Australian Idol," has been in the U.S. writing with the likes of Jon Bon Jovi and Richard Marx.

Following support from Apple iTunes stores promoting the Loss of Signal album into the U.S. digital charts, Melbourne’s Borne was approached by U.S. record labels, a Hollywood movie director wants to use a song on his next blockbuster, and two clothing chains are eyeing other songs for summer campaigns.

The March 10 opening ceremony of the inaugural Golden Plains will involve a plastic bottle (no glass allowed) of fine French champagne smashed against the stage to mark the festival’s maiden voyage. A radio presenter will read out a Golden Plains blessing, and 10,000 earthworms will be released into the compost from the composting toilets as the Golden Plains flag is raised.