Last year I co-authored a book with a friend and colleague from my venue management days.
Oriental Rock is a collection of band flyers, photographs, anecdotes and more, relating to Brisbane’s Orient Hotel and its crucial role in the Queensland original live music scene of the late 80s and early 90s.
That has lead to us running a series of ‘Oriental Rock’ gigs that have made me realise why I love working in music.
- Queensland has some fantastic world class artists and bands. I think sometimes we forget how lucky we are to have so many great acts here. I get to hear a lot of new acts regularly through my manager friends, going out to gigs and working in local venues and I am always amazed at the quality. We can really be proud that we produce such consistent, excellent acts here in Queensland.
- I love the excitement of planning a gig. Working out the lineup, negotiating with the acts, designing the posters and other marketing collateral. Negotiating with a venue and seeing their enthusiasm and excitement abut the lineup (thanks Paul Robinson at The New Globe Theatre for being so thoroughly invested in our project).
- I love it how the audience responds when you have first published the lineup. How excited they are at the acts you have chosen and the conversations they have with you and others about the upcoming gig.
- I love gig day itself. Even though you are incredibly busy you can still notice things. The social aspects of the gig – how happy your audience members are to see each other – and perhaps catch up with people they haven’t seen for weeks or months, or perhaps at your last gig.
- I love it how the audience react to the lineup, how invested they are in the gig and the acts and the excitement that builds as each act comes onto the stage for the first song. And how that intensity builds throughout the gig.
- I love the aftermath – how people are so excited and happy that they stick around after the gig, wanting to share the experience of being there. I love how they will talk about it for days afterward.
- But most of all I love the community. I love the fact that people have met their life partners at my gigs. Have decided to forge their own career in music after being at one of my gigs. That they encourage and support all the musicians and each other.
That’s what makes working in music special. And why I love teaching new entrants to the music industry all about music business.
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