Why Victoria Is Leading The Way For Australia's Live Music Industry

11 March 2016 | 1:07 pm | Neil Griffiths

"We want New South Wales and Queensland to be absolutely thriving as well."

After it was reported last month that Sydney's live music scene has taken a beating thanks to the city's lockout laws, Patrick Donovan, CEO of music industry peak body Music Victoria, believes Victoria is currently leading the country in protecting the live music industry, as well as working with government to ensure the scene remains healthy.

Speaking to theMusic, Donovan says that the lockouts, which will also affect Queensland from July this year, have "absolutely" impacted New South Wales' live music industry. 

"There are five easy steps as to what New South Wales need to do and they've done one of them, which is get 15,000 people to a march and make a real statement," Donovan said, referencing the recent Keep Sydney Open rally

Donovan suggests that ever since Melbourne's famous 2010 SLAM rally, which protested liquor licensing laws on live music venues, the city has avoided any type of crisis in relation to the live music industry. 

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"Ever since the SLAM rally we've done a series of thing that’s lead to the protection of the live music industry," Donovan says. 

"Music is treated completely different to any other licensed premise."

Among the positive changes that did occur was the introduction of the Agent Of Change law, which protects existing live music venues from noise complaints by new developments. 

"We want New South Wales and Queensland to be absolutely thriving as well," he explains.

"We’re working quite closely with those other states and peak bodies like the National Live Music office…to give them the steps and advice to put in place to protect music all around the country."

Donovan says it is vital that people join their respective peak bodies as they are one of the most important groups to liase with government and also give advice. 

"If the live circuit is damaged in any way, we’re going to see a lot of bands splitting up and less young people joining bands."

The Music Victoria drive commences next week. Head to the official website for more details.