The current pandemic has thrown up some challenges for society as a whole, but one of the things we take for granted is going out and experiencing live music. In an instant, the entire live music industry was shut down. It was not just the artists who suffered. Venues, designers, promoters, staging technicians and sound engineers all lost work as the connection to fans and punters was cut off. As creatives, however, artists saw this as an opportunity, and after a very short while live music began to flourish again. Across all social media platforms there are now live streamed events, classes, forums, social get-togethers, virtual pubs, and virtual festivals.
On the Mornington Peninsula, artists have taken to online performances and they’ve done it with the help of some great organisations, including Soundbar in Capel Sound and Balnarring Musos. From here, artists such as Marty Williams, Tim Stout, Heidi Louise, Brad Kennedy, Ross McMahon and many more began hosting regular live stream performances. Mornington Peninsula Music Network has also jumped on board with its Thursday Night Live series.
“Being the local music network, we wanted to give artists another outlet to perform,” says MPMN president Heidi Luckhurst. “We saw that Oskar Proy had put this huge amount of work into recording and releasing a single, but he had nowhere to perform it and have a ‘proper’ single launch, so we gave him that avenue and it was a huge success. We now think of Oskar as a trailblazer; he was our guinea pig and now he leads a pretty spectacular line-up of Peninsula talent on Thursday Night Live.”
Included in the line-ups are Sunday Lemonade, TULLLIAH, MAXON, Sam O’Connell, The Chris Commerford Band, Marty Nelson-Williams, Jack The Fox, and the Peninsula’s answer to Mark Ronson, Spud Thompson (aka Brendon Mellere).
MPMN has also planned a series of projects for the coming months. “We need to keep our creative community connected and informed,” Heidi says. “With the entertainment industry’s recent changes related to the current COVID-19 climate, many artists will require the support; therefore that’s what the MPMN’s main focus will be.
“Projects will include paying musicians to perform, promoting local music industry events, online mentoring and education, and music industry health checks via their online Let’s Chat program.”
Heidi, Robin Griffiths and vice-president Jess Southurst are attending weekly music industry training and webinars hosted by Music Victoria, APRA Amcos and the Victorian Music Development office to continue providing the Peninsula community with up-to-date information and news.
If you’re an artist or a venue that wants to get involved, find MPMN on Facebook and Instagram, visit www.mpmusic.com.au, or email firstname.lastname@example.org
MPMN thanks the community for donating to and supporting our musicians by watching their live concerts and performances every Thursday from 7.30pm at facebook.com/mpmusicnetwork