Sound NSW Pledges $3 Million For New Touring & Recording Grants

20 March 2024 | 12:42 pm | Ellie Robinson

“Recording, releasing and performing new music is essential to the contemporary music industry.”

Trophy Eyes

Trophy Eyes (Credit: Joshua Braybrook)

Artists in New South Wales will benefit from a huge new funding push by the Labor Government’s Sound NSW initiative, with $3 million in funding pledged for a new grant program to get them on the road and in the studio.

According to a press release, the move comes as Labor plots a focus on “rebuilding the NSW touring circuit”. The funding will be split into two sectors – $2 million for a touring and travel fund, and the remaining $1 million for a batch of recording and promotion grants – with an aim to “[foster] growth and sustainability for the contemporary music industry” by “support[ing] NSW artists to be globally competitive, develop industry networks and connect with new audiences locally and internationally”.

Sound NSW are taking a unique approach to its new touring and travel fund, offering quick-response grants of up to $2,500 per person for domestic endeavours, and $7,500 per person for international opportunities. The fund, it’s said, is “designed to address the time-sensitive nature of venue availability and performance opportunities”, meaning artists won’t have to pause their other touring plans while they wait for a response. Applications for these grants opened today (March 20), and will close on Monday May 20.

As for the recording and promotion grants, these are fairly self-explanatory: they’ll allow contemporary artists based in NSW to “record and release new, original creative projects”, with funds covering their production and rollout campaigns. Independent artists can apply for grants of up to $25,000 for short-form releases (like singles and EPs) or $50,000 for long-form releases (like studio albums), while artists signed to major labels can apply for grants of up to $25,000 in matched funding. Applications for these grants also opened today, but will close earlier on Wednesday April 17.

Head here for more info on how to apply for both grant programs.

In a formal statement, Sound NSW head Emily Collins said of the board’s new endeavour: “Recording, releasing and performing new music is essential to the contemporary music industry and the growth and sustainability of artists’ careers, but the upfront costs are often greater than the income generated for many musicians. Sound NSW is excited to help bridge this gap by providing this vital funding, removing these prohibitive barriers and supporting NSW artists to do what they do best – making great music.”

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Adding to the sentiment was John Graham – NSW’s Minister for Music and the Night-Time Economy – who said in a statement of his own: “We are determined to rebuild the touring circuit, up and down the NSW coast, through our inland tours and suburbs. This fund will do just that. We’re delivering on our commitment to bring music back in NSW with this much-needed investment. These fast-response grants will support more new and original music from our musicians, enable tours across Australia and the world, and move NSW a step closer to being a global powerhouse for contemporary music.”