Newcastle could become the first designated “music community” in the state, following the launch of Labor’s $35 million live music plan.
Newcastle MP Tim Crakanthorp was joined by the Shadow Minister for Music and the Night Time Economy John Graham, Newcastle Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes, Federal Member for Newcastle Sharon Claydon, members of the Newcastle Live Music Taskforce and industry stakeholders at the Lass O’Gowrie on Wednesday, to pledge the party’s support for live music in the region.
Under Labor’s plan, $1.6 million would be invested in supporting music communities across the State, with Newcastle identified as one seven ‘hot spots’ of live music.
Mr Crakanthorp said that while the region faced competition from the Sydney CBD and inner west, Western and South Western Sydney, the Illawarra, North Coast and Tamworth he was hopeful that Newcastle would be the first region given the designation.
“I am committed to re-building our music industry,” he said. “The Live Music Taskforce has worked hard over the last 12 months getting the Live Music Inquiry here and seeing the results of that input through the industry recommendations.
“Based on that work, we want Newcastle to be the first community in NSW to be designated a “music community” under this plan.”
It is expected the designation would recognise a region’s musical heritage, communities that value live music and the importance of venues, institutions in the local music scene.
It would also see the government working with councils and stakeholders to remove bans and restrictions on entertainment; establish frameworks to protect and promote music venues, support all-ages events, and apply for funding from state and federal programs.
NSW Labor has pledged a total of $35 million to support live music in the state including $11.5 million to support working musicians, up to $10million to create a music development hub in Sydney, $3 million to keep live venues open, $1.3 million to rebuild touring circuits, $4 million to support festivals and events, $1 million to support community radio, and 1.6 million for music communities.