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Posted in Blog, Melbourne guitar Show News    //    Post Date - July 25, 2016

Last week we gave you 10 good reasons not to miss the Melbourne Guitar Show, August 6 & 7 at the Caulfield Racecourse, presented by Triple M and Australian Musician. Here’s 10 more!

The starting point might be a single note lick or a chunky chord. The destination could be anywhere but we can promise that this free-form improvisation trio will take you on an intriguing sonic journey. Witness this band’s debut performance, led by free-thinking guitarist, singer, songwriter, producer, session musician, one of the most respected blues and roots players in the country, Shannon Bourne. Joining Shannon are seasoned musicians Luke Hodgson (Andy Bull, Megan Washington) on bass and Leigh Fisher (Illy, Gosling, M-Phases, The Veronicas). Saturday August 6th at 11am AON Forecourt Stage


Bring the kids. Not only can you marvel at the amazing range of gear on display but the kids too will be inspired by the performances, entry-level gear on offer and the informative workshops. Take them for a Professor Guitar or Professor Bass lesson. The ukulele session on Sunday morning will have you and the kids playing a uke in just 20 minutes. Buy a family (4 people) weekend pass now online for just $45. Buy them a guitar show t-shirt, get them some autographs and make it a weekend they’ll never forget. Begin their life-long musical journey at the Melbourne Guitar Show.



Visitors to the Melbourne Guitar Show this year will have the opportunity to view Australian Guitar making history on the Maton Stand. A selection of incredibly rare Maton guitars will be on display including the very first Maton ever made in 1946 by Bill May, the founder of Maton Guitars. Chosen from the companies rich 70 year history, the instruments offer an insight into the constantly evolving craft of guitar making, and tell the story of an Australian company that went from a small backyard workshop in the suburbs of Melbourne to a globally recognised brand. Upstairs Acoustic Level. Stand A11


Tequila Mockingbyrd have already conquered the sweaty rock ‘n’ roll clubs of Melbourne. They’ve performed in the harsh desert of the Middle East for our troops and they’re about to rock the UK and Europe. Before they go, this all-female powerhouse rock trio will blow the main stage away with their punchy, high energy anthems. Catch them now before you need an arena-size venue ticket to see them. Sunday August 7th 2pm AON Forecourt Stage


With such a powerful lineup of electric guitar acts downstairs at this year’s Melbourne Guitar Show, take the time to give your ears a rest and head upstairs to the two dedicated Acoustic guitar stages. On the AON Mezzanine Stage and Exclusively Acoustic Stage, you’ll discover a wide range of acoustic guitar styles. From the delicate touch of internationally renowned performer Daniel Champagne, to Sergio Ercole’s European flavoured classical stylings and Lucas Michailidis’ fingerstyle magic. You can catch them all together along with Jon Delaney and Matthew Fagan in Nick Charles’ second Guitar Players Session for the weekend. If that’s not enough, there’s also Justin Bernasconi playing tunes from his wonderful new album Winterpick, as well as Jamie Pye’s alternate picking skills and the fierce licks and gut-wrenching vocals of gentle giant Mike Elrington.

Getting close to clocking up a thousand gigs, including 7 international tours, Dallas Frasca is fast becoming one of Australia’s most exciting and revered bands. Swagger, alt-pop, power and rock, two guitars, a beast behind the kit, and a mighty presence at the mic. Dallas Frasca is all of those things, and more. Sunday August 7th Midday AON Forecourt Stage


It’s one thing to walk around the aisles and marvel at the tons of guitar-related gear but you might want to know about it in a little more detail. Upstairs in the Winners Circle Workshop Room, you can experience a wide range of informative sessions from guitar experts. There’s Roland/Boss showcasing all of their latest multi-effects systems and WAZA craft pedals, the folks from Peavey running a history of rock n roll through Peavey products, Sherlock Amps demonstrating new amp and pedal product, and Jimi Hocking showing off the new Yamaha Revstar guitars and Vox amp gear. The Maton Custom Shop seminar is back with master luthier Andy Allen, Wireless Audio Pty Ltd extolling the virtues of their state of the art wireless products and Jon Beckx, product specialist for Line 6 with an in depth look at how iconic guitarists like Stevie Ray Vaughan, Hendrix, Eddie Van Halen, James Hetfield and John Petrucci created their signature sound.

Dean Ray personifies the romance of rock ‘n’ roll. On stage, he’s all about passion. Losing himself in the moment, his one and only goal is to put on a great rock ‘n’ roll show. Conjuring the spirit of rock icons from the past, the perception might be style but the substance lies in his fretboard prowess and ownership of the stage, where he leaves nothing behind.  If you haven’t seen Dean Ray perform before, come on down to the Melbourne Guitar Show, you’re in for a treat. Saturday August 6th 2pm AON Forecourt Stage.

If you’re a VCE/Tertiary guitar student, you need to be at the AMEB’s Sunday session, when Matthew Fagan and Emilio Kormanic take you through a valuable workshop on sitting exams. Plus in another session, Alyson Locke (lead examiner) and renowned guitarist Simon Gardner will tell you all about the AMEB’s new Rock School syllabus. Sunday August 7th Winners Circle Workshop Room from 11am


James Ryan and Rod Bustos in action

Last year James Ryan was part of the unforgettable high energy performance from Paul Gilbert cover band Racer Axe. James Ryan is back at the guitar show in 2016, this time taking on classic David Lee Roth tunes. Ably assisted by Rod Bustos, Marcus Ryan and the voice of Racer Axe Chris Stark, the James Ryan band will be ‘Goin’ Crazy’ covering the songs by the ‘Yankee Rose’. Sunday August 7th 11am AON Forecourt Stage

Melbourne Guitar Show
Saturday 6th and Sunday 7th August, 2016
Caulfield Racecourse
Plenty of parking or train station just over the road

Tickets at gate but cheaper if you buy online. Info here

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Posted in Blog, Melbourne guitar Show News    //    Post Date - July 22, 2016

AIMgraphicThe Australian Institute of Music (AIM) – Australia’s #1 Music School – will be opening its doors in Sydney and Melbourne to the general public. Here is your chance to experience the vibrant campus come to life with FREE workshops, masterclasses and live performances from special industry guests. Panels will run throughout the day giving parents and potential students the chance to ask any question about any area of the industry including business, management and performance.

SYDNEY – Saturday 6th August.
MELBOURNE – Saturday 13th August

SYDNEY – 1-55 Foveaux St, Surry Hills.
MELBOURNE – 120 King St, Melbourne

TIME: 10:00am to 3:00pm.

And … if you’re in Melbourne August 6 &7, come down to the AIM stand at the Melbourne Guitar Show, Caulfield Racecourse. AIM will feature some acoustic performances by our guitar and songwriting students, guest visits by AIM guitar teacher Simon Patterson and staff on hand to answer any questions about the course. There will also be a short promotional video of previous masterclass guests at AIM including Tommy Emmanuel, Jon Gomm and Sting’s guitarist, Dominic Miller.

Click here for the more open day information
Click here for more on their Melbourne Guitar Show stand

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Posted in Blog, Melbourne guitar Show News    //    Post Date - July 20, 2016


The 2016 Melbourne Guitar Show program is now online. Download a pdf, see what’s on and where, print it out and plan your weekend. Dozens of performers on 4 stages of fretted instrument fun. This year, we’ve separated the acoustic and electric instruments. The ground floor will be full of electric guitars, amps, pedals and accessories. Upstairs you can catch all of the acoustic guitar related product, as well as all of the acoustic-based performances.
What are you waiting for? Download the pdf here now!

Or click through to the site here







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Posted in Blog, Melbourne guitar Show News    //    Post Date - July 18, 2016

Those who attended last year’s Melbourne Guitar Show already know how inspiring the event can be. This year, we like to think we’ve turned it up a notch. With over 80 exhibitors showcasing their wares and just as many musicians performing on 4 stages over 2 action packed days, here’s just ten reasons to get down to the Melbourne Guitar Show August 6 & 7 at the Caulfield Racecourse, presented by Triple M and Australian Musician. In no particular order …

We’re honoured this year to present two of Australia’s most respected guitar players and living legends, Kevin Borich and Phil Manning.


Kevin Borich was a founding member and of The La De Das, the leader of Kevin Borich Express, and a member of The Party Boys, as well as a session musician for numerous acts. Australian rock music historian, Ian McFarlane has described Borich as “one of the most celebrated guitar players in the history of Australian rock. He also remains an underrated songwriter, as proved on his current album ‘Totem’.
KB performs on Saturday August 6 on the AON Courtyard Stage at 3pm

Phil Manning first came to our attention in pioneering Australian blues band Chain. As a solo performer in the acoustic sphere, Phil has also been ahead of the game, as one of the first electric gunslingers to begin working in both realms before ‘unplugged’ became a catch phrase. As well as headlining his own shows, he has toured with a remarkable number of artists including Muddy Waters, Sonny Terry and Brownie McGee, Albert Collins, Freddie King and dozens of others, both in the blues and rock genre.

Phil appears on the AON Mezzanine Stage on Saturday August 6th on the acoustic floor at 12.15pm. He’ll then immediately join the Nick Charles hosted acoustic session at 1.15pm, featuring Geoff Achison, Shannon Bourne, Jimi Hocking, and Sam See.

NickCharles_4377-220x147THE GUITAR PLAYERS SESSION – Acoustic Blues & Roots hosted by Nick Charles
With decades experience touring the world and more than a dozen albums of critically acclaimed acoustic roots music, Nick Charles is known internationally as “Australia’s virtuoso of acoustic roots and blues”. It’s fitting that Nick Charles hosts our special acoustic blues and roots session, which will feature Geoff Achison, Shannon Bourne, Jimi Hocking, Sam See, and Phil Manning. Each artist will perform a song or two each and there’ll be plenty of interplay between them all too.
A really unique acoustic event, not to be missed. 1.15pm AON Mezzanine Stage. Acoustic Floor.

This year’s Melbourne Guitar Show spotlights some of Melbourne’s finest new female singer, songwriter, guitarists. This session includes; Cat Canteri, Heloise, Leisha Jungalwalla, and Megan Bernard, showcasing their songs with guitar and chatting about the creative process.



Not one or two but 3 amazing progressive metal bands; Teramaze, I Built The Sky, and The Delusion, will grace the AON Courtyard stage at the Melbourne Guitar Show. They’re slick and melodic, playing complex, driving rhythms, yet will appeal to a broad range of music fans.
I Built The Sky 1pm Sat Aug 6 AON Courtyard Stage. Teramaze 4pm Sat Aug 6 AON Courtyard Stage. The Delusion 1pm Sun Aug 7 AON Courtyard Stage.

THE DEALS! (on guitars, amps, pedals and accessories)
If you have plans to buy a new guitar, amp, pedal or guitar related accessory, there’s no better place to do so than the Melbourne Guitar Show. Over 80 exhibitors will be showcasing more brands and models than you’ve ever seen before in one venue in Australia. The best part is that many of the exhibitors will be offering one-off special Melbourne Guitar Show deals. There will be a ton of stock on stands and the exhibitors would rather see it in the hands of happy customers than have to pack it all up and ship it back to the shop again. Check out the exhibitor list on the website, see what brands are where and do some planning.

Many of the participating exhibitors will have competitions running over the weekend. Plus from the show organisers, a chance to meet a true international guitar hero. By attending the Melbourne Guitar Show, you can enter the draw to win two tickets to American blues legend Joe Bonamassa’s Melbourne concert on October 5 at the Palais Theatre and also get to meet the great man.

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One of the most popular features of last year’s guitar show was the Professor Guitar and Professor Bass sessions. On the Ground Level at the Cafe Corner, a rotating roster of some of Australia’s most respected guitarists and bass players will offer FREE lessons. Come on down. Watch and learn and most importantly, it’s a great opportunity to ASK! Professor Guitar sessions include: Simon Patterson, Troy Male, Bob Spencer, Tim Gaze and Peter Hodgson. Professor Bass features: Robbie Little, Joe Fernand, and Wayne Jones.

Presented by Matt Fagan, and featuring AJ Leonard, Sarah Carroll, Dan McKeion, and Mike Jackson. Spend a relaxing Sunday morning (10.30am AON Mezzanine Stage) listening to some of Melbourne’s Maetros on the Ukulele.

THEN… Learn to play the UKE instantly – Jam along with our all-star line up. Led by education legend Mike Jackson and Dan McKeion. Sponsored by Kala Ukuleles and Music Sales


As well as the shredders, the blues pickers and full on rockers, we also bring you the exotic. Don’t miss the 7 string acoustic guitar duo Beija Flor, when they play original compositions inspired by the music of Brazil and Argentina, along with a range of fingerstyle and traditional South American repertoire.  After years performing extensively in Australia and internationally, from playing on radio, TV, theatre and cruise ships, Melbourne based guitarists Jeremy Bourke and Lachie Robertson now collaborate on this new exciting project Beija Flor. Acoustic Stage 1.30pm Sunday August 7

It’s Sunday afternoon, you’ve spent the weekend watching some of Australia’s finest guitar talent, you’ve picked up your dream guitar bargain, seen a cool demo or two and thinking life couldn’t get any better… BUT … we’ve saved the best until last! Some of Australia’s slickest pickers will come together on one stage for the Triple M Finale Jam. The line up includes: Bob Spencer, Brett Kingman, Phil Ceberano, James Ryan, Simon Hosford, Shannon Bourne, plus Tim Gaze … and you never know who else might join them!
Triple M Finale Jam. Sunday 3pm- AON Courtyard Stage

Triple M and Australian Musician present the Melbourne Guitar Show Aug 6&7 Caulfield Racecourse. Ticket info  here

Here’s a highlight reel from last year’s show

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Posted in Blog, Melbourne guitar Show News    //    Post Date - July 18, 2016


It’s all happening for Melbourne-based, internationally acclaimed classical/flamenco guitar identity Matthew Fagan. Not only is he one of the featured acts at the Melbourne Guitar Show but Matthew has also been busy with other projects including the recording of several new videos for his solo album Virtuoso.

A project Matthew is particularly excited about is his proposed crowd funded album A Song For Billy, inspired by Billy Connolly, with funds being targeted for Parkinson’s disease awareness.

“It’s an album starring the liberty banjo … once Billy Connolly’s travelling companion for 20 years,” explains Matthew. “Then Billy gifted the banjo to me after I toured with him for 53 nights in Australia 1999. I catch up with Billy every time he returns to Australia.”

“I have been inspired to launch this crowd funding project since I saw how bravely Billy keeps living his life to the fullest, by touring and making new TV shows right up to the present day. My making this album “A Song for Billy”, is my way of saying thank you to Billy for his friendship and to also give back by raising funds for Parkinson’s awareness, support and research.”

Find the link to the A Song For Billy campaign here.

Catch Matthew Fagan at the Melbourne Guitar Show at Caulfield Racecourse:
Saturday Aug 6th 12.30pm Exclusively Acoustic Stage
Sunday Aug 7th 10.30am Hosting the Kala Instant Uke Orchestra and then at 2pm as part of Nick Charles’ Guitar Player’s Session.

Here’s Matthew performing The Tale of Tsar Saltan, Op. 57: The Flight of the Bumblebee by Nikolai Rimsky -Korsakov, off his album Virtuoso

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Posted in Blog, Melbourne guitar Show News    //    Post Date - July 18, 2016

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After a blistering performance at Blues Fest in Byron Bay over Easter, blues-rock guitarist extraordinaire Joe Bonamassa is pleased to be returning to Australia for a national headline tour this September, including a very special evening that will see Joe play his debut performance at the Sydney Opera House. The September tour will be the first chance for Australian fans to experience tracks from Joe’s new album, Blues of Desperation, live.

Anyone attending the Melbourne Guitar Show on August 6&7 at Caulfield Racecourse can enter a draw to win tickets to Joe Bonamassa’s Melbourne concert at the Palais Theatre on October 5th…. and … the lucky winner will get to meet Joe at the show. But you have to attend the Melbourne Guitar Show for a chance to win!

Joe Bonamassa Australian tour dates
Sep 25 Perth     Australia     Perth Concert Hall
Sep 28 Brisbane    Australia     QPAC
Sep 30 Sydney     Australia     Sydney Opera House
Oct 2 Adelaide     Australia     Thebarton Theatre
Oct 5 Melbourne  Australia     Palais Theatre

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Posted in Blog, Melbourne guitar Show News    //    Post Date - July 18, 2016

In this two part video, James Ryan (Fender clinician, Kate Ceberano, Racer Axe guitarist) discusses hybrid picking. See James at the Melbourne Guitar Show Aug 6 & 7, 2016 Caulfield Racecourse, presented by Triple M and Australian Musician

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Posted in Blog, Melbourne guitar Show News    //    Post Date - July 14, 2016

I Built The Sky’s Rohan Stevenson discusses the importance of learning scales and offers some examples. Triple M and Australian Musician present the Melbourne Guitar Show Aug 6 & 7 Caulfield Racecourse. Ticket info here

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Posted in Blog    //    Post Date - July 14, 2016
Alex & Nilusha on Cuban TV

Alex & Nilusha on Cuban TV

Acclaimed Australian world music duo Alex & Nilusha have been kinda busy lately! On June 10th this year they released a wonderful new album called Afterglow but haven’t been able to slot in an Australian launch for it until August 30, when they play Melbourne jazz club Birds Basement. First they had to attend to many international commitments including a performance at the prestigious Cubadisco Festival in Havana, Cuba, as well as dates in Mexico City. While in Havana, the pair appeared on several popular Cuban radio and TV programs, plus played a couple of shows as guests of local artists such as Jorge Gomez and Grupo Moncada, and Cesar Lopez and his Habana Ensemble. They also found time to record new works with William Roblejo on violin and Pedro Trujillo from the legendary Grupo Moncada on flute and quena, engineered by Alfonso Peña.

alexnilushaNot that any further confirmation was required but the pair’s 3rd album Afterglow is even more evidence that Alex & Nilusha are a world class act, capable of producing complex and sophisticated rhythms wrapped in an easily digestible (and slow-danceable) package. From the opening track, Estelle, listeners will rapidly surrender to the swirling melody and the lure of Nilusha’s exotic vocalisations. On the surface it all seems so effortless but dig deeper and you’ll discover her amazing control and technique, as she hovers over Pertout’s intricate and contagious Latin-flavoured percussion arrangements. Meanwhile in the background, guest guitarist and jazz legend Mike Stern meanders sublimely over his fretboard. Autumn Green, is a masterclass in vocal control. The combination of tasteful Grapelliesque violin, and accompanying Fender Rhodes piano result in a warm, contemplative vibe. The track Early Black Velvety Sky should have come with a warning sticker, as its tidal pull may easily induce involuntary samba steps. Percussionist extraordinaire Alex Pertout brings his considerable collection of toys and rhythmic magic to Ominira, featuring Evripides Evripidou on electric bass, who makes the trip particularly scenic. Australian jazz dignitary Paul Grabowsky lends his piano elegance to the title track Afterglow, yet another enchanting piece, possessing a reflective spirit, buoyed by its oscillating rhythms. The Moon and Me completes the album journey. It’s apt that the percussive pulse which permeates the entire album, emerges from the mix to take a bow in an extended percussive outro.

afterglowIn addition to their own cultural backgrounds, Chilean-born percussionist Alex Pertout and Sri Lankan–born vocalist Nilusha Dassenaike travel the world experiencing and devouring the arts of many different nations, infusing it into their own projects, presenting us with a fascinating, sonic slide show of their many musical expeditions. Mention also must be made of core band members Frank Di Sario (bass), Geoff Hughes (guitar), Phil Turcio (keys) and other international guests Cuban violinist William Roblejo and Argentinian guitarist Alan Plachta, whose collective input adds immense flavour to the recording.

Alex & Nilusha officially launch the album on Tuesday August 30 at Birds Basement in Melbourne. Tickets available here

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Posted in Blog    //    Post Date - July 14, 2016
Pictured (LtoR) Andy Mooney, Bud Cole, Margaret O'Loughlin, David O'Loughlin, and Mark Van Vleet.

Pictured (LtoR) Andy Mooney, Bud Cole, Margaret O’Loughlin, David O’Loughlin, and Mark Van Vleet.

Fender Musical Instruments Corporation (FMIC) announced on July 12 that its recently established subsidiary, Fender Music Australia Pty Ltd. (“Fender Music Australia”), will launch on August 1, 2016 and begin direct-to-dealer operations in an effort to streamline growth and strategic direction within the market. Fender Music Australia will manage all aspects of FMIC’s brands directly in Australia and will ultimately report to Edward “Bud” Cole, Fender President, Asia.

Margaret & David O'Loughlin

Margaret & David O’Loughlin

Fender Australia’s Margaret and David O’Loughlin will retire from their current roles. O’Loughlin has been a name associated with Fender Musical Instruments since the 60’s when Peter O’Loughlin acquired the distribution rights from CBS. After his untimely passing, his wife, Margaret and their Son David have built and maintained the iconic brand’s market position for over 35 years. Peter O’Loughlin was a founding member of the Australian Music Association back in 1977. Margaret, also a past-president of the AMA, will enjoy a well earned retirement. Australian Musician wishes Margaret, David and the family well for the future, and we thank them for what they have done for music and the industry. The O’Loughlin family will say goodbye to their Botany office on July 31.

Last night, at it’s Melbourne dealer meeting to announce the change in business, Fender CEO, Andy Mooney, promised business as usual in Australia, with an increased commitment to marketing the Fender brand, including common global release dates of new product and a significant investment in and focus on social media and online marketing. He maintained the guitar business had a bright future with demand for quality and innovative products stronger over the last year. Mooney also acknowledged the loyal service Margaret and David have given to Fender.
“On behalf of Fender, I want to express my personal gratitude and thanks to Margaret and David,” he said last night. “They have both been unparalleled champions of Fender’s brand in Australia over three decades and we are very much committed to carrying on the legacy they have built here.”

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