Down Under: Lockouts & Licensing, Fees, Rob Potts Exchange Program & More

Defqon. 1 Festival
– Defqon. 1 Festival

NSW Government Agrees To Inquiries On Lockouts, Festival Licensing
The New South Wales (NSW) government may have softened its stance on Sydney lockout laws and strict licensing of festivals. 
A May 29 order by premier Gladys Berejiklian for a cross-party review into the lockouts followed an upper house push from the Shooters, Farmers & Fishers and Greens parties to repeal laws. 
“After five years of operation, it makes sense for us to now take stock and examine whether any further changes should be made,” she said.
Berejiklian pointed violent assaults dipped in the CBD and Kings Cross precinct since their 2014 introduction, and laws were relaxed for low-risk venues. But the Shooters’ Robert Borsak said foot traffic fell by 84% since. 
A Sydney Morning Herald report, published June 1, found that through May, only 122 music events were staged in the CBD and 50 in Kings Cross. In comparison, there were 500 in a seven-kilometer radius from the CBD center. 
Jake Smyth, owner of The Lansdowne and Mary’s Underground, told the paper many musicians had moved to the more buoyant Melbourne.
The government also agreed to an inquiry called for by the Labor party for a review of the new festival licensing scheme introduced March 1. 
Shadow minister for music John Graham, initiated the referral to the Legislative Council’s regulation committee for public inquiry, to report by Aug. 6. 
He said the festival industry could put their case directly to MPs and propose a new approach. “We welcome the government’s change of heart on this ill-thought-out, heavy-handed approach.” 
Numerous festivals have shut down or moved to other states as a result of NSW’s regulations. In the latest instance, EDM festival Defqon.1, which prompted NSW’s tough stance after two fatal overdoses last September, announced May 30 it was “postponed indefinitely” as it could not find a venue after its home of ten years, Sydney International Regatta Centre, cut ties.
South Australia Government Under Fire Over Fee Hike
The South Australian government has heatedly rejected accusations by Adelaide venue operators that new licensing fee hikes were “lockout laws by stealth.”
Venues trading past 2 a.m. could see their fees jump from $1,600 to $6,000.
Simon Orders of Street Social and Craig Lock of Lion Arts Factory are mooting early closing. 
Treasurer Rob Lucas said: “The government doesn’t want to see lockout laws, the government doesn’t want to reduce the vibrancy of Adelaide’s nightlife and we’re positive — and all the advice we’ve received — is that that won’t occur.” 
The new rules also extend to festivals paying for police security, which could see higher ticket prices.
– Brisbane’s Suncorp Stadium

More Digital Delivery Technology Arrives Down Under For U2 Tour, Suncorp
In a first for Australia and New Zealand, all six of U2’s shows from Nov. 8-27 will have all floor tickets available will only be available in paperless form to take on scalpers. 
These will be delivered via mobile devices 72 hours before the show, with an eight-ticket cap for GA. 
Paper and print-at-home tickets are available in seated areas. 
Those in GA wanting to keep their stubs will have Souvenir Collector Tickets available to purchase when during the June 11 onsale.
Meanwhile, Brisbane’s Suncorp Stadium became the first sport and entertainment venue in Australia June 1 to offer contactless tickets on Apple devices. 
Patrons added them to Apple Wallet in a single touch and held them or their iPhone up near the turnstile’s reader. 
“This is the most personalised, frictionless and secure ticketing experience Ticketek has ever delivered,” the company’s COO and head of touring, Cameron Hoy said. 
Ticketek was first to launch mobile tickets in 2011. Over 70% of tickets in Australia now delivered electronically, and 41% of these directly to mobiles. 

Rob Potts
– Rob Potts

CMA Sets Up Rob Potts International Exchange Program
The Country Music Association is honoring late Australian promoter Rob Potts with an international exchange program. 
Full-time college/university students or emerging industry professionals between the ages of 18 and 25 in the U.S. and Australia/New Zealand will be provided an opportunity to gain work experience in many sectors including agencies, PR, management, marketing, live events, labels and publishing.  
One U.S. recipient will do a four-week industry focused program in Australia, and one recipient from Down Under will head to Nashville.
Potts spent much time in the U.S. cultivating contacts and was a CMA board member. 
CMA chief executive Sarah Trahern said, “Even though his home was miles away in Australia, he was a regular fixture here in Nashville. I still expect to see him in the crowd at CMA Fest. Rob was a tireless advocate for country music and we are delighted to engage a new generation of the industry in his honor.”

New Urban Festival To Drip
DRIP World is a new urban music festival to debut in August and September visiting four cities. 
Promoter Lui Spedaliere says it will be “a ten hour-plus party of rap, trap and hip hop” with the bill to feature “some of the best international Grammy award-winning acts and freshest home-grown talent”.
No More Monkee-ing Around?
Mike Nesmith announced on Facebook that upcoming Monkees four-date run  through Australia from June 12 will likely be his last with the veteran act. 
He posted: “The shows are fun, the songs are good and fun to play, but things are a bit long of tooth now – not that that is a bad thing, but it’s a bit like trying to learn new dance steps.” 
The tour by David Roy Williams wraps June 18 at the Sydney Opera House.