This year was the first time I’ve ever had a chance to hit up BIGSOUND - Australia’s biggest music conference and one hectically good time.
I was extremely lucky to be the recipient of the Tapped By Otherside Emerging Manager’s grant, which paid my way to BIGSOUND. Otherside are a rad brewery based in Perth who are extremely supportive of the local music scene. Their grants are helping so many WA bands and industry get out on the road - what a bunch of legends! Go swing by for a beer and give them a high five while you’re there.
As part of the grant they asked me to write a tour diary. Here it is.
My BIGSOUND adventure kicked off on the Sunday night, with Great Gable's sold out show at Heya Bar on Brunswick St. It was pretty sweet seeing a room full of people singing along to every song - what a start to a massive week. Brisbane is amazing.
After registration we headed down to the BIGSOUND Social Hub for the Women in Music party. It was a chance to catch up with friends from around the country and meet new people - and have a few cheeky mimosas to start the day.
Valley Drive In was up next for the Official Welcoming Party. Despite the rain it was still a great vibe. The Merinda's (Australia's first Indigenous Motown Tribute Act) were a huge highlight, they absolutely killed it.
I spent the afternoon hanging out at Ric's and catching up with a heap of people - some much needed down time before the showcases really kicked off. The next 5 hours were packed with music. We caught Kaitlin Keegan, Demon Days (phenomenal), CLYPSO, Charlie Collins, Psychedelic Porn Crumpets and Butterfingers. Such a great vibe all night.
Wednesday morning was a bit of a blur of work and meetings - we're currently working on another tour for Great Gable so the emails were flying. Being in Brisbane was also an amazing opportunity to check out all the venues in person to see what is going to work for the band.
Things got started again at the 123 Agency/Beehive party at Holey Moley in the afternoon - best vegan party pies in the game! We headed up to the Eventbrite Rooftop Party at Eleven which was absolutely spectacular, not only did it have the most incredible view but there was also free massages. Outstanding. I spent some time with everyone from WAM chatting about our various projects and what's coming up in music in WA.
Not long after, while watching Ro at Heya Bar, our friend received a text saying that Paul Kelly was playing a surprise show at The Zoo at midnight. Needless to say we jetted over to The Zoo quick smart and were lucky enough to be at the front of a line that apparently ended up over 2000 people long. And then...Paul. There's a reason he is still one of the most respected and loved musicians of all time. His set was absolutely flawless and there was an amazing energy in the room with everyone sharing this unbelievable experience.
I had more meetings Thursday morning, then caught the Radio Hook Ups at the Social Hub. It was an amazing chance to hear from people like Dorothy Markek, Dave Ruby Howe, Nick Findlay, Liz Ansley and Andrew Khedoori about how best to get songs on radio.
We took a much needed break for Pho at District 1 before heading over to the Oztix party. Then it was bands bands bands. Surprise fave was the James Wright Trio at Press Club, as well as Oh! Pep, Riley Pearce (who is headlining my first festival in November), G Flip & Ella Hooper.
Friday was a pretty quiet day, with a couple of killer panels including Guy Morrow, Author of Artist Management: Agility in the Creative and Cultural Industries in conversation with Association of Australian Artist Managers Executive Director Leanne DeSouza.
The afternoon was spent having a final catch-up with those people who were still in Brisbane, as well as sorting out some final details for Great Gable's sold out show back at The Sewing Room in Perth which was happening that night. By all accounts it was an insane show and I had a lot of fun checking out the videos on Saturday morning…
My first ever BIGSOUND was the most incredible experience, and one I won't forget in a hurry. Being based over in WA we can often feel so removed from what's happening in the industry, so being over there with everyone for the week was amazing. There were so many WA musicians, managers, agents, promotors and all-round music legends there, it made me proud to be from such a fantastic state.
The most massive thanks are due to Otherside for helping me get over there. So many new and exciting things came out of the week for myself and for Great Gable, and I’m pretty excited about what's coming up over the next little while.