Australian News 4/5

Panic, Eve, Satriani Announced

Frontier Touring Company locked in Panic At The Disco for six arena shows August 20-30, teaming the band with The Academy Is… .

Panic’s last tour sold out in minutes, with tickets to one show disappearing in 12 seconds.

Grammy-winning rapper Eve will follow her April 26 appearance at the MTV Australia awards with a five-stop arena/theatre run for BigBoyz Entertainment.

Michael Coppel Presents confirmed guitarist Joe Satriani for five theatre dates July 8-17.

Zambezi Promotions booked Zimbabwean world music icon Thomas Mapfumo and his 10-piece band, The Blacks Unlimited, for four club shows April 17-25.

The Dillinger Escape Plan and Relapse Records label mates Coliseum are booked for five club shows for Alliance Touring May 13-19.

U.K. duo Winnebago Deal will be downunder for seven club stops May 2-10.

KMW Productions announced Goldfinger for the act’s first tour here in three years, May 16-18.

The Bravery will return for its second tour, June 5-10 for Civil Society.

Two Canadian acts are heading here: NEeMA has four shows in early May for

Apollo Bay Music Festival Inc. and Maverick Arts Management, and Kimya Dawson is confirmed for three June shows through Popfrenzy.


Branson Flashes V Sign

In Australia to announce his Virgin Blue airline’s new route between Sydney and Los Angeles, Richard Branson attended the Sydney and Gold Coast stops of his V Festival Australia, which he operates downunder with Michael Coppel Presents.

Between playing Frisbee with the Sydney crowd, Branson told journalists that V Fest Australia has "lost a packet" since it launched 2007.

"But in a number of years, I suspect it will break even and maybe make a bit of money. But it’s really a good thing for Virgin to do."

This year’s figures were up on last year: Sydney drew 35,000 and the mud-soaked Gold Coast attracted 20,000.


Destroy All Lines Expands Roster

Melbourne-based Destroy All Lines added four new acts to its booking agency roster.

Added were metal band Mourning Tide, pop punkists Rex Banner, ambient group Closure In Moscow and House Vs Hurricane.

After seven years of independently booking bands and tours, Cameron Chambers takes on the role of booking agent at DAL. He can be reached at 61-3-9428 7000 and [email protected].

Dr. Cave, We Presume

Alt-rock cultural icon Nick Cave received an honorary law doctorate from Monash University, Melbourne, for "substantial achievements in the creative arts," vice-chancellor Professor Richard Larkins announced.

Cave attended the college in the mid-1970s to study painting but dropped out in the second year to pursue music.

After making his name with The Birthday Party and The Bad Seeds, Cave also became a novelist, actor, film score composer and screenwriter.

Cave attended the ceremony with his wife, mother and young twin sons.

"I’m eternally grateful I failed because it pushed me in a completely different area," he admitted.


Powderfinger Tries Theatres

After The Great Divide tour with Silverchair, which played to 220,000 people, Powderfinger’s Upstairs at the Downstairs tour sees the big-drawing band return to theatres in Australia.

The six shows are between June 6 and 19.

The band is experimenting with two concepts. It is splitting the show into acoustic and rock sets, and allowing fans to choose the setlist online.

"We’re at their mercy," guitarist Darren Middleton said. Meanwhile, the DVD from The Great Divide, released December 2007, has been certified triple platinum.


Short Notes

A roundtable on how to grow indigenous jobs and businesses in the music industry was scheduled for April 9 at the Darwin Entertainment Centre. It was organized by the Northern Territory government with the Yothu Yindi Foundation, the Music NT association and the Australasian Performing Right Association.Wyclef Jean will host this year’s MTV Australia awards, joining a list of

performers and presenters including 50 Cent, Juliette Lewis, Eve and ex-pat Lyndsey Rodrigues. The awards will be broadcast on MTV April 26.

Rose Tattoo’s singer Angry Anderson is about to visit the Middle East for the third time to entertain Australian troops stationed there. Also on the visit are country acts The Wolverines, Brielle Davis and Ami Williamson, who last year played for troops in the Solomon Islands, and TV personality Tania Zaetta.

Tim Sharman, licensee of Byron Bay’s Cheeky Monkeys nightclub, is expected to plead not guilty when he faces a Sydney court April 7. He is charged with permitting drunken behaviour last December and trading after 10 p.m. without regular security guard patrols.

Veteran promoter Michael Chugg, profiled on ABC-TV’s "Australian Story," recounted that one of his most memorable artists was Billy Idol, who locked himself in a nightclub dressing room with nine hookers and refused to come out.

Chugg revealed that a low point was in 2002 when tours by Red Hot Chili Peppers and Carlos Santana left him $4 million in the red. He bounced back when a Robbie Williams tour sold five times more tickets than he expected.

Aspiring Queensland rapper Lace Italiano, aka Jade Michael Lacey, 24, and his brother were committed to stand trial over the shooting death of Gold Coast man Kevin Palmer.

Popular Adelaide live music venue The Austral is for sale for $10 million.

Changing the name of the Australian Gospel Music Festival to Easterfest worked, said CEO Isaac Moody. Over the Easter holiday it drew 30,000 to Toowomba, Queensland. The three headliners were from the U.S.: expatriates Newsboys, MXPX and Jars of Clay.

Due to budget restraints, the Melbourne Jazz Festival had to drop three of its international acts – American trumpeter Roy Hargrove, Italian singer Roberta Gambarini and Dr. Bobby Jones – four weeks from the event, its artistic director Albert Dadon revealed.