"The thought of cancelling shows makes me feel ill - I've never done it in my career - so this is not something I'm taking lightly."
Tim Levinson, who makes music as Urthboy, isn’t just beloved for his music but because we feel like we know him. He feels honest and real. And in recent times, he’s been remarkably candid about touring in Australia post-Covid restrictions.
It’s a different world out there, and audiences can be “hot and cold” in the current market. The cost of living crisis, rental increases, and inflation all add up to a problem where your favourite artists won’t be able to tour and make money without tickets sold.
In a Facebook post shared yesterday, Levinson gets blunt. “While some gigs have been big and unforgettable, others have been strangely quiet and I'm looking at a hefty financial loss,” he wrote, remarking that he’s unable to make sense of why it’s so hot and cold in different spots.
“Normally I've had 400-600 at each gig I've done in Margaret River. On sat [Saturday, 1 April] we had 50 (and I appreciated every single person!) But it was 50 ppl and you can imagine the loss we make as a touring party over the other side of the country,” he continued.
By comparison, Melbourne was “really busy,” while Ballarat was “super quiet.” The Long Loud Hours MC added that he’s losing tens of thousands of dollars touring in this market and it’s “not even close to viable.”
“It's tough for most of all of us at the moment - interest rates, petrol costs, electricity bills, rent etc. We're experiencing all this in our personal lives, but it's doubly felt by how it's impacting our professional lives,” Levinson explained.
“Live music is therapy, it's a reminder that we're really living! It's also one of the first things people abandon when money is tight. We set our ticket prices to make it as cheap as possible for this reason.”
These experiences have led to some difficult decisions: “Later this week I'll be making tough decisions on whether we cancel shows,” he wrote.
“Wollongong, Canberra, Sunny Coast, Gold Coast, Hobart and Forth are the ones that are struggling. The thought of cancelling shows makes me feel ill - I've never done it in my career - so this is not something I'm taking lightly, especially for the legends who've bought tix. I just wanted to level with you and explain. We'll see how things go in the next 72 hours.
“To anyone who was thinking about buying em, **now is the time**. I need your help so I'd love you to get involved.”
Don't miss a beat with our FREE daily newsletter