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PowerMouth Entertainment presents

Issue 4 July 2013

Monkiblood Brisbane locals wield the cattleprod Ask Abby – In search new column of a label

Adoring the Starting in ukelele MouthZoff digital audio JULY 2013 1


h t n o m s i h t e sid 4 MESSAGE FROM THE EDITOR Randy G


Folk Redlands Ukelele Convention


Abby Skye’s interactive column


Who’s been playing where


The art of the song

14 cover story

Monkiblood spill their guts

Managing Editor Randy G Art Direction & Layout Charcoal Mark Graphics Sub-Editor Mike Roberts Writers T-Jay Boss Hugh Brown Harmonie Downes Randy G Luke Monsour Mike Roberts Abby Skye Photographers Gary Howard Brett Linsley Steve Barrett Mike Roberts Geoff Norris Powermouth Hugh Brown Web:


On the Fan/Artist relationship


Advertising and general enquiries

The wash-up

20 IN SEARCH OF A LABEL Harmonie Downes

22 sound advice

Taking the first steps in digital audio

23 whatzon

Your free monthly gig guide

JAZZ VOCALISTS WORKSHOP An exciting double vocal workshop on Wednesday evening 7th August with wonderful visiting artists from Sydney –

DAN BARNETT & TRICIA EVY Dan Barnett was born into music being the son of the legendary Sydney bassist, Cliff Barnett. He has worked and recorded with some of the greats in Australian and world music such as James Morrison, INXS, Jack Johnson, Paul kelly, Don Burrows and many more. He is performing in Brisbane in August. He tours with the equally talented Tricia Evy, Frenchborn who grew up on the Caribbean Island of Guadeloupe. Tricia draws her biggest influences from Ella, Billie, Louis Armstrong, Nat King Cole and Mel Torme. Together Dan and Tricia will focus on all aspects of Jazz Vocals in this unique Workshop.

On the cover Pic supplied by Monkiblood

FEATURING • Warm ups • Breathing technique • Voice maintenance • Working with the band (i.e. getting book together, lugging, charts, etc.,) • Intros, codas, advice before and during concerts • Bandleading as a singer • Sitting in • Scatting/Improv (application on the blues and songs presented) • Interpretation • Application techniques with jazz standards

Date: Wed 7th Aug Time: 6.30 to 9.30pm Where: STAGE SPACE, Unit 2, 671 Sherwood Road, Sherwood MouthZoff JULY 2013 3 Cost: $70/$60 (students) Includes tea/coffee Bookings & enquiries:

Message from the Editor Hey there, what a blast this month has been. After wrapping up Blues on Broadbeach we barely had time to catch our breath. Musos all around are very busy, there’s a string of album, ep and single releases to come over the next few months. Also some more festivals and hopefully you’ll be out in full support! On a more internal note: The MouthZoff team has been evolving just as it needs to, in order to develop this ezine to its full potential. So there will continue to be changes till we reach perfection :) A sad farewell to Lisa J Aston who has for personal reasons, handed her column on to Abby Skye - who is super-keen and raring to go! Lisa, one of my dearest friends and trusted mentors will continue to assist and share her knowledge with us all, no doubt about that. The magazine also welcomes three new writers to the team - meaning over the coming months we will be able to cover much more! Overall, the outlook is positive and your support for local talent is wonderful, appreciated and so vital to the future growth of our local music scene. It is our hope that MouthZoff ezine will enable you to discover new talents in both an exciting and informative way. Thank you for your support!

Randy G

X Pic: Steve Barrett


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Meet the Writers Randy G

Founder of both MouthZoff and PowerMouth Entertainment, Randy has been a one-woman hive of activity in the local music scene since her relocation from Victoria. She was a budding musician, lyricist, composer and songwriter before taking the plunge into Marketing, Promotion, Artist Representation and now magazine production! When she arrived in Queensland she became increasingly aware of the positive contribution she could make to local artists and industry, and as a result, PowerMouth Entertainment was born. In setting up MouthZoff, she hopes that it will become a valuable tool for focussing on and expanding interest in the Queensland music scene, both for music-lovers and and music-makers. It provides advertising, awareness, free publicity opportunities, exposure, and support for local musicians as well as local businesses and services.

Abby Skye If anyone is qualified sufficiently to comment on the music and performance of our local artists and bands, it’s Abby Skye. After exploding onto the Brisbane music scene a few years ago with a gamut of solo gigs, some extraordinarily creative events and founding her successful rock band Mission X, Abby has established herself firmly in the music community as a singer, songwriter and entrepreneur to be taken seriously. Bearing an incredible singing voice and a deadly creative flair, Abby lives and breathes art of all kinds, so writing for MouthZoff Magazine was inevitable. When this chick puts pen to paper, sit up and listen.

Dr Huge

Dr Huge started out as a singing Christmas tree in kindergarten in a small country town. He went on to learn piano, guitar and trumpet before falling in love with drums at 15. His high school music teacher nicknamed him ‘Huge’ and he took it for a stage name. Growing up in amateur theatre and playing in school jazz, rock and concert bands, Huge played drums and percussion in originals and covers bands around south-east Qld. Soon he started taking his own compositions seriously, and fronted original bands as a singer/ guitarist in the mid-90s before joining Celtic folk band Bun’ Ber E in 1997. With experience straddling the creative, business and academic worlds, Dr Huge is passionate about helping Independent musicians develop their craft to its full potential. In each edition, he will write about the latest music industry developments – especially reviewing the latest services that can help Independent Musos make the most of their music business.

Harmonie Downes Harmonie Downes is a broadly talented, semi-professional musician who is well connected with the Brisbane music scene. She’s worked as a children’s performer singing Christmas songs and playing ukulele to small children. From going to Woodford playing handmade instruments in an orchestra to singing originals of her own as well as other people’s originals (which she prefers ) - except entertaining kids which is far easier. Especially if you can do funny voices too. Harmonie is very passionate about accessibility in the industry for all walks of life and varying skill levels and believes that everyone should and can play music.

Luke Monsour Luke Monsour, having responsibly been in his share of aspiring bands that never quite left the ground, has spent a fair amount of time as an actor, writer, lecturer, filmmaker and photographer, but is now finally living the dream as a rock journo.

T-Jay Boss Not only is T-Jay a session Bass Player, he is now a Producer and engineer for a busy recording studio, Crystal Rhythm Music based on the North side of Brisbane. Originally from Sydney, T-Jay began his music career influenced by his grandmother, learning guitar at the age of 10. Throughout high school T-Jay changed to bass guitar as his preferred instrument winning many awards along the way, e.g. the 24hr Rock-A-Thon to play on the Sydney Entertainment Centre stage. These days T-Jay produces music for radio/t.v commercials, film, animation, bands, solo artist’s, poets and story tellers… Really anything to do with audio! T-Jay is also a Logic Studio Trainer, specialising in set up to music production in your own home or TJ’s studio.

Mike Roberts Mike Roberts began his career as a music journalist in Sydney, writing for the now-defunct On The Street, Juke, Countdown and RAM magazines. Additionally he worked as a collaborator for various PR firms, knocking up press releases and bios for local and overseas artists. Also a bass player, he played in bands for a few years while juggling a full-time career in newspapers, where he quickly swapped the typewriter (...ok, computer) for the paintbrush (...again, ok, computer!) and has spent the last few decades designing all sorts of bits and pieces. He’s now putting together his own business, tutoring part-time, and is thrilled to be a part of the MouthZoff team.

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Adoring the ukelele Folk Redlands Ukulele Convention An event celebrating the worlds most popular instrumentThe ukulele! - is about to hit the Brisbane hinterland in the Redlands. Folk Redlands Ukulele Convention (F.R.U.C.) will be held over two nights and two days from the 19th to the 21st July at two venues – Friday night, Saturday and Sunday night at The Artist Tree, Metro Arcade Bloomfield St Cleveland, and the Indigiscapes Centre, Runnymede Road Capalaba. Ukuleles are inexpensive in comparison to some instruments, small, portable and easy to play- you can be strumming a chord and playing a song in one lesson. There will be workshops, jams and open Uke (open mic sessions) and community groups and ukulele musicians in concert. Tickets are available at, The Soundshed Music Shop Capalaba or at the door if not already sold out.

program Opening night – Friday 19th @ 6.30pm The Artist Tree Cleveland - $15/$10 cons: Renee Searles (Ukulele songstress from Byron Bay ) + The Whiskey Archive (smokey original indie folk & harmonies) + Bigger Than Ben Hur (positivity, a wicked smile, and a gorgeous voice. Has headlined Cairns, Blue Mountains and Newcastle Uke Fests) Saturday 20th @ 6.30pm The Artist Tree Cleveland - $15/$10 cons: Mike & Thom Jackson workshop - Learn to play ukulele, teaching help for teachers and tips for intermediate players from Thom. @ Noon till 2pm The Artist Tree Cleveland - Free Jam session @ 7pm The Artist Tree Cleveland - $25/ $20 cons: Mama Juju (Jazz, blues and attitude) + Thom Jackson (ukeologist from Melbourne, playing many styles) + Lil Fi and The Candy Apples (Direct from Uki– land of the ukes! All gal band- combination of punk, blues, cowgirls, ukuleles and divine harmonies ) Sunday 21st @ 2pm Indigiscapes Capalaba - Free open mic followed by The Bumsteaders Spots are available at the Open Uke (Open Mic sessions) at The Artist Tree on Saturday the 20th from 3 till 5.30 and at Indigiscapes on Sunday the 21st 2 till 3.30pm. Please contact us if you would are interested. For more info phone Patrick on 0415 645 206 or Julie on 0401 617 915

Ben Hur, and clockwise from top: Renee Searles, The Whiskey Archive and Lil Fi & the Candy Apples Pics: Supplied

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y b b a sa k with ABBY SKYE

This column is intended for people, namely musicians, to write in and ask advice about any questions they may have about the industry – whether about how to get gigs, increase their fan base, or how to get their music to a record company or promote a single under an independent label. I don’t promise to have answers to all of the questions you might ask, but I do have many years under my belt now of managing thousands of performances, running a recording studio and label, handling countless record executives and contracts (complete with the typical, horrendous scenarios you’d be inclined to write memoirs about) and numerous self-funded, risky (to say the least) events and projects I’ve organised.

in the face (metaphorically) that were pretty hard to deal with. Life’s not always perfect, but it is pretty awesome and completely what you make of it.

I heard you were unhappy with, even a little upset about your performance. I’m not sure what you thought was so terrible about it, I’m assuming the fact that you got distracted and forgot where you were in the song was the main reason. I promise you, that happens to everyone, even me, to this day. Now I just laugh it off and keep going, just like you did (well done!), but it doesn’t upset me as much, because my performances are usually of about 20 or more songs at a time, not just one, so I have many more chances to do better.

Hi Alex,

There’s a whole lot more pressure doing just one song and I think you were fantastic!! You have a really, really lovely voice, it’s super strong with a great tone, your pitch is very good and there’s this gorgeous little vibrato that comes in at just the right spots. Like with most singers though, you seem to do best when you’re not thinking about it too much. Sometimes we’re so worried about how it’s sounding to other people, what they’ll think or that they might see how nervous we are is enough to make your voice wobble or make high notes that are usually effortless seem unreachable. Then it’s really easy to start feeling bad about it and sometimes people can even convince themselves that they’re doing such a bad job that they end up ruining the rest of their own performance! But you didn’t do that - and that’s what separates the professionals from the rest. Everyone gave you a big clap when you joined back in because you inspired them! You sang the rest of it with confidence and I heard you even brought a few people to tears! That’s what a real singer does. :-)

I’m sorry it’s taken me so long to write to you about your performance. I wanted to send something straight away but had a few things smack me

I’m so glad you’ve decided to give it another go! I know a lot of people would be devastated if you were to stop singing, I know I would be. Remember,


For my debut column, I was debating what to write this first article about, when the answer came quite quickly. I was asked recently to scribble a note to a young fan, who shares my love of singing and had just done her first solo performance, but felt it was a disaster. It was certainly far from that, but knowing the feeling all too well, I wrote her a letter to encourage her to ‘get back on the horse’, so to speak. I asked Alex and her mum if they would mind if I shared her story, as I think there are lots of people who would love and relate to it. Thankfully, they were delighted. And so, this is my letter to 10 year old Alex;


Pic: Brett Hoch kins


reetings, fellow music lovers! It is my great privilege to pay respects to the former lady of this column – the greatly respected Lisa J Aston, for whom I have not only a sincere, personal fondness, but also an admiration for her passion, efforts and impressive credentials in our challenging industry.

watching people make music makes people so happy because they feel the same joy you’re feeling. It’s magical! That’s why the little mistakes don’t matter - the audience absolutely loved what you shared and watching you do what you love. When you’re performing, think about how much you love to sing and how it makes you feel, because that’s when you’ll sing your best and people will enjoy it the most. The more we can forget about being nervous or what people are thinking and just feel what the song is describing, as though it had just happened to us in real life, the better we’re able to perform it for people by portraying our feelings through the song. Remember, the melody, words and chords are like a map for you to follow, but they’re just a tool for you to deliver what’s inside your heart - that’s what people want to see. People would much rather hear a song that is full of emotion and flaws than one that is pitch perfect and soulless any day, guaranteed! To my delight, Alex has not only agreed to give it another go, but has asked if she can sing my song ‘Remember’ for her next performance in October. I couldn’t be prouder or more honoured! If you’d like to see Alex’s performance (it really is gorgeous!), you can watch it at If you feel like posting some words of encouragement of your own, jump on and we’ll make sure Alex sees them. I know it would make her day. :-) Love,


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Tamara O’Callaghan and Leo McFadden have te do a range of elegant restaurant and club conce town, and this month we caught them at The Li Pizza Restaurant in Racecourse Rd. which featu musical entertainment every Friday and Saturd

... Where a picture is worth a thousand words

Pic: Geoff Norris The Pressure play The Press Club every Wednesday and are the most soulful harmony band you could ever hope to hear, thanks to the voices of Jo Doyle, Robbie Flay, Chris Palmer (also on guitar) and Chris Thorpe. It is a special bonus that they are supported by the powerhouse funk fusion combo of Ross Comerford (truckload of keyboards), Jeremy O’Connor (bass) and Mark Henman (drums). It’s a treat for public and musos alike, and although they are already overflowing with talent, they are often joined by top line special guests.

Pic: Geoff Norris

Smoking Martha at Tempo., playing hard rock just the way it should be ... in all its furious glory. Left to right: Az, Chris, Mick, Pablo and Tasha


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eamed up to erts around ido Woodfired ures tasteful day.

The Lauren Lucille and Toby Wren duo have been entertaining audiences around Brisbane for more than six years and this month showcased their stylish interpretations of originals and standards at the Powerhouse Turbine Platform to a large and appreciative audience. Pic: Geoff Norris

RAMJET farewell their long-standing drummer Iain Wilson (above) at another special night at The Elephant Arms in Fortitude Valley. They can be seen both here and other venues around town, in various guises and personel. Also pictured: guitarist Mark Spillane Pics: Steve Barrett

Pics: Mike Roberts

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F G the round: M N ART OF THE SONG T U

by mike roberts

HE concept is simple enough. Take three singer-songwriters and let them take turns showcasing their material, including a cover version. This is The Round. But here the focus is almost exclusively on the art of the song itself, and this approach is what sets this monthly gathering apart from ordinary singer/songwriter shows.


Held every third Wednesday, The Round takes place at the Dowse Bar, snuggled beneath the trendy Iceworks Bar in Paddington. The atmosphere is relaxed, casual and intimate. It almost resembles a church - a large twinkling orb behind the stage blesses the proceedings, and candles, couches and cushions are the order for the day as the congregation slowly file in. There’s a colour-drenched bar at the back, and light snacks can be ordered. Make no mistake, though ... this is no ordinary gig. Audience members are politely asked to mute their phones and keep conversation to a minimum. So as the performers are introduced a hush descends, and the prerequisite for the audience is TO LISTEN. The night I attend features three incredibly talented performers - Tim Sladden, Chris Southern and Harii Bandhu. Sladden is the first to perform and as he sings you could hear a pin drop. Southern and Bandhu then follow. The scene is set perfectly between performer and audience... and the intimacy is immediately electric. According to organiser and co-founder DANIEL McGAHAN, The Round was set up to foster a community of songwriters, where each could mix with others, discuss their work, and how they work. “We knew there were amazingly talented songwriters in south-east Queensland, but people tend to work in isolation. So noone would even know [about them]. We [Daniel and co-founder CLARE REYNOLDS] decided to do something within the Brisbane music scene – create a community and nurture songwriting. As a result, we get together some of the best songwriters for The Round, together every month, and we’ll create a great show – something with really great sound and strong production values, and a room where people don’t talk. It’s an active listening room.”

Top: Chris Southern and Tim Sladden Above: Multi-coloured bar Right: HARII BANDHU Pics: Mike Roberts

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y r o t s r e ov by RANDY G

s if the name ‘Monkiblood’ isn’t out there enough, you should actually meet these guys. Monkiblood is a Brisbane Funk/Rock band comprising of four local lads: Paul Dunne aka ‘Pavi’, whose vocals are described as punchy, funky or otherwise rapped. Lead guitarist Sean Dunne aka ‘Hooky good Looky’, bass guitarist Marc Gregory, Sam Cusworth on keys and decks, and drummer Matt Gregory. Forming in early 2003, the band started out with a regular jam at the foothills of Mt Tambourine. Initially, the Gregory brothers Marc and Matt teamed up with ol’ time mate and keys player Sam Cusworth and soon after, lead singer Paul (‘Pavi’) Dunne was introduced to the group – while former “Eel” guitarist Sean Dunne (Pavi’s bother) often tagged along to gigs and when Eel decided to call it a day, Sean slotted in just perfectly and finally completing the band that is Monkiblood. So, with a double dose of brotherhood and mateship in the mix, you get an absurdly united band. Another commonality of the group is their love to jam, party and as Pavi puts it, ‘pay out on each other’. (If you get the chance, just ask them what the story about Vegemite is.) Now, if you are processing all this information in the hope of working out ‘why’ they call themselves ‘Monkiblood’, STOP! Cos I’m about to tell you.

Once upon a time, when Marc and Matt were having drinks with a miner from WA, they got to discussing his love for red wine (as you do) or as he put it ‘Monkiblood.’ It was then that the boys first heard the term and almost immediately the boys realized they had discovered their band name.

When asked what genre the boys classify their music as, they laughed. And, I have to say, this is not an uncommon reaction. Many artists find they quite comfortably enjoy dabbling in many genres and styles and coming under one category may seem to be restrictive on first thought. Having read about this band earlier, I noted them as being described variously as pop, rock, punk, jazz, blues and soul (... now I am laughing out loud!). However, at my request, Pavi took a crack at it and told me though efforts had been made to narrow it down, the best they could do was to label it “funkin’, punkin’, rock ‘n’ roll”. I’m also told that if James Brown was to couple with Rage Against the Machine, the result would be somewhat akin to Monkiblood.


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With two EPs under their belt, the band has just released a new single, ‘Man’s been crazy’ wich also features a video clip – and they tell me that they aren’t far from hitting the studios again to record their latest new track. For the moment though, they are content to keep all focus on the current tour which kicked off on Friday 28th of June in Sydney, then on Queensland soil at the Loft on Chevron Island ... and finishing at the Beetle Bar in Brisbane on Saturday 6th July.

The show at the Beetle Bar is particularly special, seeing as it’s a fundraiser in support of Epilepsy Queensland, a topic particularly close to the band, as Marc’s son was recently diagnosed with the disorder. When the band were directly asked “Why would I want to go to a Monkiblood gig?,” Pavi answered with this: “Because you’ll never forget it!! We pride ourselves on delivering shows centered on positive thought, contagious energy and the encouragement for everyday people to break free. A Monkiblood gig is

Pics: Supplied nothing but a party baby! It’s a 20,000 volt cattle prod in a place that shouldn’t be prodded (and that’s something you wouldn’t forget!) Our live show was once described as an instense aerobic class and we’ve stepped it up a few more notches!” Asked where they see themselves in twelve months time, the boys responded with: “Definitely jamming, writing, recording, gigging, partying, laughing, loving our friends and family. We’d love to get on some festivals and really spread our word, but anything else and on whatever scale is a decision for the rock gods!” Their Queensland tour dates are as follows:

Fri 5 July - The Loft, Gold Coast + Suicide Swans + Jackson Dunn + Just Monday Sat 6 July - Beetle Bar, Brisbane (Epilepsy QLD fundraiser) + Suicide Swans + Jackson Dunn

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e g u H r D

ast edition’s column was about fan funding and how it can help propel a career. It finished with the note that you can’t get funds from fans if you don’t have fans. Duh! This time, let’s take a closer look at fans and what the fan-artist relationship is all about. To be honest, no-one really knows a whole lot about this kind of relationship. Fans are not friends, though they can behave like friends. They’re a lot like customers, but an artist’s work invites them into the artist’s life, so they’re closer than customers. An artist’s peers and collaborators should be fans, but not all fans can be peers, colleagues nor collaborators.

See? It’s complicated. The artist-fan relationship is a new kind of beast that often looks like other relationships but has to be treated differently. The key to a successful independent music careers is a group of people we’ll call True Fans. A true fan is a person who will spend $100 a year on an artist. That means buying a CD (or equivalent), a show ticket and T-shirt. Maybe 2 of each, depending on the act. But apart from the cash, the great thing about true fans is that they will do all sorts of things to help out in non-monetary ways. They might help sell tickets, spread the word about

their favourite, or purchase merchandise, or put up posters or edit video footage from a show. They do this because they believe in the artist and want to support the art. They might relate to the artist’s perspective on life. They might have locked onto a song that rang true about a broken heart or classic moment in life. They might just aspire the attitude the artist shows to the world. There’s no single reason for the fandom – it just is.

Kevin Kelly wrote about the need for 1000 true fans. He reasoned that if a band has 1000 people who will give them $100 each, then they have enough income to build a business on. Of course, if there’s 1000 who will spend $100 a year, then there’s probably another 2000 who might spend $50. And another 5000 who might spend $20. NOW there’s an income to build on. There’s not a lot of musicians out there who can count on 8000 fans, so it’s important to get out there and make fans. This is NOT as simple as creating a Facebook page and spamming people until you get that many likes. Wracking up those sorts of numbers is easy – machines do that for you – but actually building a fan base

by HUGH BROWN means that you have to touch that many lives through your art. The best way to do that is to actually meet people and the best time to meet people who like your art is right after you’ve put in a kick-ass show. They are inspired, energized and keen to get to know more about you. So when you’ve turned the amps off and packed up the gear – that’s when the real work begins! You’ve had your fun, now it’s time to earn the right to do it again. Your main goal is to get out into the crowd and sign autographs, sell merch, and collect email addresses but many people find that fake and uncomfortable. So if it doesn’t don’t do it! Just talk to everyone. Some of them will ask you where they can get more of you and your stuff – and that’s your opportunity to convert them into fans. Just make sure you have everything you need to answer their questions nearby, or it might get awkward. The lesson? Making your music career sustainable requires that you win lots of fans, who will support you in all sorts of ways. Just get out there and meet people and give them what they ask for. Of course, once you’ve won lots of fans, you need a system in place for managing to stay in touch with them. But that’s a topic for another column.

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n o s e u l B adbeach o r B


I know this may seem like old news – but last month’s festival was truly something worth seeing and it wasn’t possible to say all that needed to be said in the one issue. You would have noticed the wonderful photo collage, which was the handiwork of Brett and Grant Linsley (Hi NRG Studios). Then there was the feature article on Vanessa Amarosi, whose stunning performance captivated everyone from beginning to end.

Indeed, the pictures of the festival don’t require a lot of explanation.This year’s Blues on Broadbeach kicked off from May 23- 26, during this time the Broadbeach precinct, a popular holiday destination, which transformed into a festival wonderland with


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five huge outdoor stages and numerous venues pumping with live blues. Immediately on arrival it was apparent that I wasn’t going to be sitting still for too long this weekend. Together with my trusty photographers I scrutinized the festival pocket guide, chose a string of acts and off we went. Festival acts began performing as early as 8am and the final acts finished around 10pm. During this time, everyone everywhere is smiling, laughing, dancing, eating, drinking … I think you get the picture. Or if you’re a bit like me, you’re just determined to catch the best parts of as many performances as possible - strategising! With artists from all over Queensland and the whole country, the variety and

calibre of each and every performance was exceptional and not even a bit of rain could dampen the fun. I observed the unique relationships between artists really promoting a sense of unity throughout the whole of Broadbeach. Along with showcasing some of the finest talents and professional acts, Blues on Broadbeach provided a great opportunity for emerging artists and also served as an invaluable networking and collaborative event. Also particularly worth mentioning was the buskers, and the stage enabling young and aspiring blues artists the chance to perform to a large and appreciative audience. Once again I have to say, hats off to the organizers on this highly successful event.

Pics by Brett Linsley

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search for a label by HARMONIE DOWNES Did you know there are 21 Independent record labels in Brisbane? The major labels leaving Brisbane in the late 90s and 2000s gave rise to a slew of smaller record companies. QMusic hosted a four part professional development series as part of a State Library Queensland program called “Live! Queensland Music Band Culture” which runs till September with topics on all things related to the industry. John Mullen (Dew Process) Deb Suckling (Sugar Rush, Sounds Like Brisbane) and Robert Lee (Turkey Neck Records) were invited to share their experience of running their independent labels and what it takes to sign up a band and what they look for. I thought it was interesting to note that most labels started their musical journeys playing in bands around the scene. So, having a general understanding of musicianship and knowledge of local acts and just knowing that Brisbane is a small drop in the music market, here are a few key themes that came across for aspiring bands and solo acts to take note of: Search for a label that you like the music of and send them a CD, even better still, go in and drop it in yourself. Can you pack out a destination venue? Are you collecting a fan base that regularly go to your gigs, comment on your Facebook page and wear your t-shirts loud and proud? Does your band have a catchy name? Does your band have good cohesion and good communication skills? Labels don’t want to work with self-absorbed prima donnas no matter how good a song writer they are – unless they have amazing redeeming qualities. Do you have a manager that’s realistic about your presence in the industry? Labels will call a bad manager’s bluff, or maybe even refuse to work with them completely. Do you write catchy songs that, after a night out on the town, people remember your chorus? Are you making any money?

Things to think about The market has changed a lot – is your band a big live show that fans will buy the associated merchandise, or are you a composer looking for TV royalties? Digital, physical release or both: What happens


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if you commit to buying a large amount of units that end up being crunched due to poor sales? Think realistically whether uploading tracks on Band Camp, or Itunes may be a better way to market your music. Touring Is your band big enough that you pack out live shows? Maybe work on the idea that many single launches may be the go before you have an official EP launch. Some labels will sign you for 5 deals or work with a bigger label in Sydney for the end few. Do you have a clear goal and are you dedicated enough to follow through? Some people’s music is well formed, sometimes labels will look to help form your music because they can see potential for growth. Labels will do different deals. Some will do one release with you which includes a repress and a split of the profit. Do you want a label to do all your pressing and artwork? Some labels are picky about what goes on CDs, as it’s an incredibly competitive market. Does your cover artwork look slick enough to make the grade? A publicist will cost you anywhere between $3,000 to $8,000 and a pressing can cost $2,000 including artwork. Do you expect your label to put the funds up or perhaps would you be willing to make a deal to buy the CDs direct from your label? Licensing your music to be used in TV commercials or shows is good, but if you have been ethically against a product – for example, if you are a hardcore left wing punk guy whose song gets used to promote chemical garden sprays may not be such a good idea. If you haven’t been political and go under the radar, then your fans won’t diss you as much. Hopefully. These are just some things to think about! Always research your decisions carefully. Good luck on your musical journey!

RESOURCES Live! at State Library of QLD (SLQ) http://www. QMusic – Professional development series guide tID=614&articleID=10107 ARIA

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Q R S T U X Y Z Taking the first steps in Digital Audio C D E F G J K L M N Q R S T U X Y Z C D E F G J K L M N Q R S T U X Y Z by T-JAY BOSS

t’s ok to be an inexperienced newbie to home computer recording. We all have to start somewhere. But for the purpose of this guide we’re going to assume you’re not a complete novice when it comes to computers. Like, you know how they work… roughly, and you understand what the various hardware components do and the role that software drivers play.

for a DAW that, if you don’t allow for them, will come back and bite you on the Aahh…. (you know what I am talking about). Your computer will continuously malfunction, freeze, lock up and crash, and you’ll invent a whole bunch of swear words until eventually returning to the computer store and buying the superior gear you should have spec’d in the first place.

Let’s face it, if you’ve got a nice gleaming new machine sitting on a table and you’ve got no idea how it works, it’s going to be tricky getting your head around how any DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) software does its stuff.

So the obvious place to buy a DAW computer is actually in a music store or a professional audio hi-tech music equipment outlet that have a community of musicians, producers and engineers who are passionate about the industry as you are.

What Sort of Computer Do You Need?

The truth is that if we could provide you right here, right now, the most upto-date advice on computers it would still be useless by the time you’ve walked down the street to try it and buy it. Computer technology moves so fast these days. When it comes to a basic computer set-up, the best option is going to be a little more expensive than any discount machines that are advertised. But the idea is to save you a lot of stress, time and disappointment. Because that’s what you’ll go through trying to get any old machine to run DAW software properly. First things first: Where do you go to buy a computer for your DAW? Who are the real experts? For starters, my advice from experience is not to go direct to a computer store – not to buy a music computer anyway. The chances of finding someone in a ‘Big Retail Outlet’ who will understand what you’re after aren’t good. No offense to the legions of sales people who do know their RAM from their ROM, but there are some pretty specific and important needs


MouthZoff JULY 2013

Mac or PC?

Either. Best to make up your own mind, based on a couple facts. Let’s first briefly touch on the PC. In the past PCs did have the best operating system which gave more power in the hardware department. But Mac computers were always better at multimedia applications but seemed to be lacking in a lot of other software. The software you get with a Mac keeps on going, but there is no right or wrong way as long as you are aware that what ever you choose, it’s the beginning of a different journey. Your choices of hardware, software and technical support will be forever a world apart. Some rules with PC users: For anyone who is using ASIO drivers (and these days this includes almost every PC musician), this is one of the most essential rule of all because ASIO drivers run as background services in Windows, and you will most likely be able to run your audio interface at a lower latency. Rules for Mac users: Always get the fastest Mac you can afford, and

upgrade regularly (every three to five years), or – rule of thumb – when the processing speed of the newer model reaches triple that of the Mac you’re running. To aid your plug-in samplers (along with overall system performance), install as much RAM as possible. Start with at least 4GB – 16GB. And make sure you have plenty of gigs on your internal hard drive. Speaking of which: Hard drives are very important, and you should have three - that’s right, three. Have at least 500GB to 3TB on your internal hard drive, 500GB on the external hard drive (work data) and 1TB-4TB on the external hard drive (master backup). Okay, so you have got plenty of RAM and multiple hard drives with a good CPU (Central Processing Unit), which handles all the complex formulas (the brain in your computer). What else? Make sure you have plenty of USB ports both on your computer and externally. Good computers should have a minimum of 3-4 ports on board. Also it’s a good idea is to invest in an external port bay, because these little suckers get used up very quickly.


Your computer is the most important and most complex piece of equipment in your studio, so it’s vitally important to get the right one.

I recommend two alternatives: A ‘made for music’ PC or an Apple computer. Ask your music store/professional audio outlet to recommend one that suits your budget. Apple can be bought off the shelf. Just to reiterate, an off the shelf ‘package’ computer won’t cut it. Always get expert advise on CPUs and RAM. And remember, a basic requirement will be plenty of USB ports on hand. Stay tuned for next month’s column on sound cards, monitors, keyboards etc.

July 2013 DATE ARTIST CITY VENUE 02/07/13

Lauren Lucille

New Farm


The Who Flighters

Time7:30pm. 969 Brunswick Street



Stone Cold

Murrumba Dowms


Murrumba Downs Tavern Dohles Rocks Road

Nundah, Queensland, 4012 Prince of Wales Hotel


The Lido Cafe/Restaurant Cnr Racecourse Road and Beatrice Street


The Bug – New Farm Bowls Club

Lauren Lucille

1154 Sandgate Rd.

West End, QLD

Lock n Load

142 Boundary Street.


Steve Sedergreen + Lauren Lucille and band Bowen Hills

Turnaround Club


Kat Kellalea Trio

St Lucy

St Lucia


Stone Cold

Exhibition St

Blair Drive, The University of Queensland


Kedron-Wavell RSL

375 Hamilton Road, Chermside South


Room 60

Lauren Lucille and Mark Moroney Kelvin Grove

22 Carraway St


The Round

Lauren Lucille and Mark Moroney Paddington

Dowse Bar, 157 Given Terrace


Brisbane Jazz Club

Cleon Barraclough trio with guest Kangaroo Point Lauren Lucille

1 Annie St

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MouthZoff July 2013  

MouthZoff Mag- an exciting new digital mag on the QLD music scene. With reviews, interviews, goss, informative articles, special events and...

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