Australia/NZ: BIGSOUND, Wonderland Assault, NZ Music Manager Awards

Global Industry Names For BIGSOUND 

Bigsound 2017
– Bigsound 2017
in Brisbane, Australia

Almost a dozen executives from the global live music industry were named in the first round of 32 speakers for Australia’s BIGSOUND conference and showcase Sept. 5-8 in Brisbane. The event is regarded as a place to find and sign new music for global exposure From the United States are Paul Adams of New Community Management / Roc Nation, Jenn Yacoubian of Goldenvoice, Mazin Tappuni of Communion Music and Andrew Jervis of Bandcamp along with reps from Sub Pop, Trouble In Mind, 4AD, Domino Recording Co., Saturday Music, Sullivan, Adhoc and Third Side Music.

The UK contingent includes Lucy Wood of Festival Republic, Mazin Tappuni of Communion Music and Isla Angus of ATC Live. Also on the list are Bob Van Heur of Le Guess Who? Festival / Belmont Bookings (Netherlands), Ivy Yuen of Magnetic Asia (Hong Kong), Sylvie Piccolotto of Rock City (Argentina) and Adel Hattem of D Music Marketing (Brazil).

Keynote speeches confirmed so far are from Australian acts Tina Arena and Archie Roach, with Alison Wenham from Worldwide Independent Network (WIN) delivering an update on independent music around the world.

Some international delegates will join the judging panel for the inaugural Levi’s Music Prize pool of A$100,000 ($74,459) for most export-ready acts.

A recent report by organiser QMusic found that the 2016 BIGSOUND was its biggest yet, with a record level of sponsorship, a 30 percent growth of festival ticket sales and 10 percent rise in conference delegates. Some 60 acts showcased, 92 of which held meetings with international delegates.

Aussie Festival Site Manager Crowd-Funding To Sue Over Assault

Australian festival site manager Aaron Gill, 43, who was hospitalised after being attacked by a crowd of fence-jumpers at the December 2015 Wonderland festival in Perth, has begun a crowd-funding campaign to raise A$40,000 ($29,760) to file civil action against 19-year-old Jamie David Foster.

Gill accused Foster of being responsible for a kick in the head that sent him to the hospital for surgery to reconstruct his face, and which kept him unemployed for nine months.

But a jury found Foster not guilty, agreeing with his version that he was not part of the fence-jumpers and lashed out at Gill only after he feared for his safety after being aggressively confronted.

In other court news, Melbourne nightclub promoters Raymond Lach and An Ken Vi were jailed for a minimum of nine years each for their involvement in an international drug syndicate that allegedly smuggled a quarter of a tonne of drugs – worth almost A$60 million ($44.6 million) – into Australia in shipping containers full of udon noodles.

Scott Wyatt, charged with setting off fireworks in two Canberra nightclubs Feb. 13, 2011, told Canberra Supreme Court he turned himself in to police January 2017 because he had “met God” after the incidents.

“My future is to do the will of God,” said Wyatt, who returns to court May 23 on two counts of arson at the Meche and ICBM nightclubs.

Alastair Burns Named NZ Manager Of The Year

Julia Jacklin – Julia Jacklin

Alastair Burns was named manager of the year at New Zealand’s 13th Music Managers Awards, organised by the local chapter of the Music Managers Forum May 11 at the  club in Auckland.

Burns, now based in Melbourne, Australia, won for the international profile of alt-country singer Marlon Williams and Sydney-based Julia Jacklin.

Burns told Pollstar, “I’m really proud to be a part of the community of music managers, both in New Zealand, Australia and globally. It is a special group of passionate and talented people, and it means a lot to me to receive a tip of the hat for my efforts.” Last year, Williams toured the world behind a self-titled album, and made his U.S. TV debut on Conan O’Brien’s show.

Over the northern summer, he plays festivals including Newport Folk, Pickathon, Best Kept Secret and Edmonton Folk and tours the U.S. with City and Colour. He returns to the northern hemisphere in autumn behind his sophomore release.

Jacklin has in the past 12 months toured through Europe and North America, secured UK radio airplay for her debut album Don’t Let the Kids Win, and scored a global record deal after showcasing at SXSW.

After an extensive European run this spring, she plays 20 festivals during summer including Glastonbury, Primavera, Splendour In The Grass, Roskilde, Latitude, Newport Folk Festival, FYF and Pickathon.

In the fall, she follows up a new single behind another global run. This year’s international achievement award went to Julie Foa’I after she successfully pitched 13 of Pacifica-fusion act Te Vaka’s tracks for Disney movie “Moana.”

The Oscar-nominated soundtrack reached No. 2 in the U.S. and the band performed three songs at the Hollywood premiere. 

The inaugural emerging manager gong went to Nicole Thomas and Paula Yeoman after securing a deal for Theia with Warner Music Australasia.

The act’s debut single “Roam” amassed 6.5 million Spotify streams and topped the NZ airplay charts for seven weeks.

Breakthrough manager Matt Headland reaped the rewards of steering the career of solo act KINGs.

He broke Lorde’s record for most weeks at No. 1 with the Warner Music NZ single “Don’t Worry Bout It,” which also received 1 million YouTube views and led to three global deals with major labels.

Canadian-born Tami Neilson took best self-managed artist for a second year in a row, following a North American tour with an Americanafest stop-over and a feature spot in Prime Rocks documentary “The New Sound of Country.”

Rodney Hewson took best independent tour for singer-songwriter Anika Moa’s Songs For Bubba’s 2 Tour, which reached 15,000 in two weeks, playing two cities a day with entry by gold donation.

Best small venue was named  in Wellington, and Auckland’s  was best large venue.