News From Downunder 10/18

Bluesfest Buyout

Peter Noble, co-owner of Byron Bay’s East Coast Blues & Roots festival, has bought out Michael Chugg’s stake in the event.

Chugg came in four years ago after original founder Keven Oxford left.

This leaves the festival with a solo boss for the first time since it began in 1990.


Mollison Scores At Australian Open

Tennis Australia granted New York-based Aussie theatre impresario Ross Mollison the rights for live entertainment during the Australian Open in Melbourne (Jan. 19 to Feb. 1).
About 40 acts will play to a total audience of 600,000.


Short Notes

Eric Clapton will return for three shows in March for Michael Coppel Presents. One of these is at the Hope Estate Winery in New South Wales’ Hunter Valley. It recently built a 19,000-seat amphitheatre.

Frontier Touring company has Crowded House back for a three-date run Nov. 29 to Dec. 4. Two are in theatres in Sydney and Melbourne, with another at an outdoor show in a Tasmanian park.

Sydney manager Gregg Donovan and Wonderlick Entertainment signed 17-year-old singer-songwriter Jackson McLaren to a 360-degree deal.

Adelaide police want metal detectors installed in nightclubs following three shootings on the Gouger Street entertainment strip in the past five months.

Entertainment lawyer Michael Brereton was banned from legal practice for five years by the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal, which ruled he used clients’ trust fund money as his own.

He is barred from handling trust fund money until July 1, 2018.

Brereton’s clients included Frontier Touring Company head Michael Gudinski and singer Kylie Minogue.


New Zealand


Opshop, Conchords Dominate Awards

Opshop and comedy duo Flight of the Conchords dominated the New Zealand Music Awards, bagging four Tuis each at Auckland’s Vector Arena.

Opshop’s “One Day” took single of the year, highest-selling single, radio airplay record of the year as well as the highest-selling New Zealand album for Second Hand Planet, its album inspired by global warming.

The Conchords took the best group, breakthrough artist of the year and album of the year for their self-titled debut. They shared the international achievement award category with rapper Savage, whose “Swing” single is a hit in America and certified gold there.

Anika Moa took best female artist, and Liam Finn the male equivalent.

Straitjacket Fits were inducted into the NZ music hall of fame.