February, 2018

Artists »


Posted in Artists, Interviews    //    Post Date - February 14, 2018

Although Henry Diltz was making a reasonable living for himself playing banjo in the Modern Folk Quartet in the 60s, recording albums for Warner Brothers, which were produced by Phil Spector and Jack Nitzsche, it was the spontaneous acquisition of a camera which changed his life forever. Hanging out with…

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Posted in Artists, Interviews    //    Post Date - February 13, 2018

Based on previous tours, there’s an expectation upon attending a Roger Waters concert that you’re going to witness something very special but surely nothing could come close to topping his triumphant 2012 The Wall tour of Australia? Yet somehow with his current Us + Them tour making the rounds of…

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Posted in Accessories, Gear, Pedals    //    Post Date - February 13, 2018

Bryan Wickmann shows us some innovative and oh so handy products from Rockboard and RockGear this year at the 2018 NAMM Show. Distributed in Australia by Amber Technology

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Posted in Accessories, Gear    //    Post Date - February 13, 2018

Tony Hosking from K&M’s Australian distributor The Resource Corporation shows us some new product on the K&M booth at the 2018 NAMM Show

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Posted in Blog    //    Post Date - February 13, 2018

The 2018 Bluesfest line up has been rounded out with the last-minute addition of celebrated Soul singer Leon Bridges and a handful of other gifted artists.

Since arriving on the scene with his Grammy nominated album ‘Coming Home’ in 2015, Bridges has become one of the most beloved and critically acclaimed singers of his generation. With two sold out Australian tours under his belt, there is no doubt audiences here are hungry for more of his incredible talent.

He’s an up and coming rock star with the voice of an angel, who counts Ed Sheeran among his biggest fans, so it’s with great excitement that Bluesfest welcomes Ryan McMullan to the festival in 2018.

The huge voice of Clarence Bekker is heading back to Bluesfest in 2018! Bekker is a singer and songwriter of Soul and Reggae music; and a vocalist in Playing for Change. From 2009, he had toured the world with a message of peace through music in more than 300 concerts, including many celebrated performances at Bluesfest.

Tay Oskee won the Byron Bay Busking comp in 2017, so organisers are delighted to welcome him back with a spot on their line up in 2018. Tay is a multi-instrumentalist playing a variety of guitars, banjo, harmonica and percussion.  With a musical style that is wide and varied Tay can take you on a journey from chilled beach tunes to punchy riff driven roots music with distinctive multicultural influences.

She wowed everyone who saw her Busking Comp sets and went on to take the Grommet Busking Prize home in 2017, there is no doubt Molly Millington is a force to be reckoned with! Molly fuses country and folk with a little quirky pop to create dark, yet playful tunes

Music lovers from across Australia will visit the beautiful Tyagarah Tea Tree Farm, just outside Byron Bay over the Easter long weekend (Thursday 29th March to Monday 2nd April 2018) for the 29th Annual Bluesfest. During the Festival they will enjoy 12 hours of music each day on multiple stages, incredible food and market stalls and on site camping in a range of accommodation options.


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Posted in Blog    //    Post Date - February 13, 2018

Wild Fearless and Free

Proudly produced and presented by Moreland City Council, Brunswick Music Festival has unveiled further shows, celebrations, collaborations and much more for their 30th Anniversary program spanning 4-18 March.

Here’s a couple of great sessions our readership are certain to be interested in:

Music Victoria Presents: Got Music? What Next? – March 5
Brunswick is the number one suburb for songwriters in Australia. So what do you do with all the songs you’ve written and rehearsed? Join Music Victoria and connect with key people from the local scene to find out. Hear from Brunswick-based music industry experts and get practical advice on how to get airplay, how to pitch for support slots, how to book gigs in local venues, how to get your records pressed and more. Gain behind the scenes insights from the folks who are making music happen in your neighbourhood!

Justin Rudge Venue Booker, The Spotted Mallard
Kate Duncan Creative Director, The Push
Paul Rigby Director, Zenith Records Pressing Plant
Simon Winkler Music Coordinator, Triple R
Tristan Ludowyk Label Director, HopeStreet Recordings
Vanessa Bassili Venue Booker, Howler

APRA AMCOS Presents: Songwriter Speaks – March 6
APRA AMCOS and Brunswick Music Festival invite you to join us for a very special Songwriter Speaks. In celebration of International Women’s Day, Ella Hooper (Killing Heidi/solo) and Mojo Juju will be discussing what it takes to write music that inspires, connects and endures.  Hosted by and celebrating these two uncompromising talents will be Triple R’s music coordinator and presenter Simon Winkler.

And ….

Brunswick Music Festival will celebrate International Women’s Day on Thursday 8 March with a specially commissioned concert, Wild Fearless and Free (pictured above). With the assistance of the enigmatic and powerful voices of Australia’s most evocative singers, songwriters and musicians, Stella Angelico, Sophie Koh, Jessica Hitchcock, The Black Sistaz and Kathleen Halloran, the show brings thought-provoking lyrics, storytelling and the sheer beauty of song in its purest form to the Brunswick Mechanics Institute.

Songs of 3056, Brunswick Music Festival’s first ever retrospective, celebrates the sounds of Brunswick with special concert on Friday 16 March. Directed by Xani Kolac (The Twoks), the show will feature Thando, Joshua Tavares, Simon Burke, Kylie Auldist, Sal Kimber and Kavisha Mazzella performing a mix of songs written by local artists and repertoire performed at Brunswick Music Festival over the past 30 years. See why Brunswick is the number one home of songwriters in Australia.

For the two weeks of the festival, the Brunswick Mechanics Institute will be transformed into the Festival Hub and a key festival venue. Head down to catch free performances from Audrey Powne (The Do Yo Thangs), Lisa Crawley, Adam Rudegeair or to just soak up the atmosphere in the Brunswick Bitter Hub Bar.

An array of professional development panels, events and workshops to compliment the live program will be taking place at the Festival Hub. The program includes panels with a local focus hosted by Music Victoria and APRA AMCOS, a brass workshop with members of the Hypnotic Brass Ensemble, a songwriter’s masterclass with members of Mondo Rock and Cookin’ on 3 Burners, an in-conversation with Masta Ace hosted by Melbourne DJ Mz Rizk and more!

Adding to the already packed program of international artists, a bevy of local support acts have been announced. Masta Ace (USA) will be joined by N’fa Jones, Mistress OC, P-Unique, Belle Bangard, Will Scullin and an all-star band of Melbourne musicians. DJ Emma Peel will set the scene ahead of Daymé Arocena (Cuba). DJ Simon Winkler will evoke good vibrations before Noura Mint Seymali (Mauritania). Zillavona and DJ Lyndelle Wilkinson will light up the stage before the brothers of the Hypnotic Brass Ensemble. Allysha Joy and Lady Banton will be spinning scorchers and sweet neo-soul before Jojo Abot and Alárìíyá! and DJ Mike Gurrieri will get the party started before Grace Barbé.

Other features of this announcement include special intimate shows by Masta Ace (USA) and Hypnotic Brass Ensemble (USA) at The Jazzlab – these are ones for the fans. Along with Blak Kabaret Klub at Blak Dot Gallery, an eight-night sonic mashup of awesome vibes, words and beats. Multi Futurism, which melds masters of little heard diverse music with contemporary artists to spark unusual inter-cultural collaborations, and Live at the Library, which includes an exhibition of Brunswick Music Festival ephemera.

Opening the festival, Sydney Road Street Party on Sunday 4 March will once more bring one of Melbourne’s most highly trafficked arterials to a standstill, to make way for a heaving extravaganza of sounds, smells, sights. With six stages along the street, the line-up includes The Cactus Channel, Kutcha Edwards, Jazz Party, The Meltdown, The Do Yo Thangs and more! Plus music all day at Brunswick’s legendary local venues including The Spotted Mallard and The Retreat.

The first ever High Tide Pool Party features a day of music with soul duo Silver Linings, DJ Shio Otani and synchronised swimming performances by The Eastern Sirens. Family-friendly fun and more than a couple of banana lounges are guaranteed at Brunswick Baths for one sunny afternoon. Finally Music for the People boasts headliners Saskwatch plus Mighty Duke and the Lords and more, promising good vibes to round out the program in the lush surrounds of Shore Reserve on Sunday 18 March.

For further information, visit

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Posted in Blog    //    Post Date - February 13, 2018

In a world exclusive, Prince’s sister Tyka Nelson has announced she is coming to Australia to appear on stage in Sydney and Melbourne in NOTHING COMPARES 2 PRINCE, a celebration of the music of Prince performed by musicians and singers that performed alongside him at various times of his career.  NOTHING COMPARES 2 PRINCE will premiere in Australia a week after the anniversary of Prince’s passing (April 21st, 2016) – playing at the Sydney Opera House on the 27th April and then play in Melbourne at Hamer Hall on the 29th April 2018.

“I am very excited about coming to Australia to celebrate the life of my Brother with you.  Prince loved your country and enjoyed playing there! I look forward to joining the other wonderful singers and musicians on stage for NOTHING COMPARES 2 PRINCE, and I hope to see and hug as many of Prince’s fans as I can off stage! See you in April,” said Tyka Nelson.

Tyka Nelson joins this unique celebration of a remarkable musical life which covers four decades of hits.  Expect to hear such iconic songs such as ‘Purple Rain’, ‘1999’, ‘Little Red Corvette’, ‘Raspberry Beret’, ‘When Doves Cry’, ‘Kiss’, ‘Diamonds and Pearls’ and ‘Let’s Go Crazy’. Classics he wrote for other artists will also be showcased including ‘Manic Monday’ (The Bangles), ‘The Glamorous Life’ (Sheila E.), and, of course, ‘Nothing Compares 2 U’.  It will also feature a special, never heard before tribute by Tyka to her late brother that cannot be missed.

Directly following on from Celebration 2018 at Paisley Park (April 19-22)  NOTHING COMPARES 2 PRINCE features twelve performers, musicians, singers, producers and composers who, at various times, were directly involved in Prince’s incredible career – all co-conspirators in the creation of the music that changed the world.  The line-up includes St. Paul Peterson, who was chosen by Prince to appear in Purple Rain and was later the original voice of ‘Nothing Compares 2 U’; Cassandra O’Neal, keyboard player for Prince and The New Power Generation from 2009 to 2016, Tori Ruffin, lead guitarist with Morris Day & The Time , SHELBY J. (as named by Prince) who spent the last 10 years at his side as a lead vocalist in The New Power Generation, notably featured with him at Superbowl XLI, Collaborator, Stokley Williams of Mint Condition and Minneapolis All-Star, Jellybean Johnson of The Time, a high school friend, and along with Prince, one of the architects of The Minneapolis Sound; Ricky Peterson, who co-produced Prince’s ‘The Most Beautiful Girl In The World’, a number one hit in Australia in 1994; The list continues with Andy Allo, collaborator Nik West plus members of The NPG Hornz.

“I am so excited to be coming back to Australia this April, heading up an All Star line up of singers and musicians to honour the incredible life and music of Prince. The entire band were fortunate to work with him, and we are honoured to keep his memory and music alive at the world premiere of NOTHING COMPARES 2 PRINCE,” said St Paul Peterson, the show’s musical director and keyboard player.

“To say that I am excited to return to Australia to honor my friend, Prince, is an understatement. I was there with him for his Piano and a Microphone tour in 2016 and the memories are enormous. For me, this will be an emotional occasion and one of the hardest performances I will have done. I am HONORED and HUMBLED to work with these wonderful artists and musicians for this world premiere of NOTHING COMPARES 2 PRINCE,”said Nik West.

NOTHING COMPARES 2 PRINCE takes place a week after the anniversary of Prince’s passing and a special event at Paisley Park to mark this date.  Celebration 2018 will take place between April 19-22, 2018 at Prince’s iconic home and creative sanctuary and will feature four days of live music and special events where many of the artists appearing in Australia will be playing too.


Tyka Nelson:
Like her older brother, Music Legend Prince, Tyka Nelson grew up surrounded by music. The Minneapolis based artist is the daughter of Jazz singer Mattie Shaw and accomplished musician John L. Nelson. Growing up Tyka listened to Mahalia Jackson records and began singing at the age of 2. She wrote her first song at the ripe old age of 10. Tyka has a 4 octave range and plays 4 different instruments, piano, guitar, bass and clarinet but admits “I don’t consider myself a musician, I play, just well enough to put down my own musical ideas.”

Tyka has had people tell her that she often sounds like her older Brother, her reply is simply, “It is not my intent to sound like anyone else and I have strived to be original in everything I do. Even though my brother is someone I greatly love and respect, there can and will be only, one Prince.”   With 4 CD’s under her belt Tyka wanted to honor the memory of the late musician with the release of a music video for her song “End of the Road” that takes fans on a journey through her and her brother’s early life together. “After Prince passed I wanted to give him one final birthday present and I decided to fulfill his wish, and record this song at Paisley Park,” she says.  “This song poses the question ‘is this the End of The Road?’ and my answer is I don’t think so! I will see all three of my beautiful family members someday again.”

St Paul Peterson: Discovered at 17 by Prince, St Paul was hand picked to appear in the 1984 Grammy Award winning film Purple Rain as the new keyboard player in the acclaimed funk group The Time. He shortly thereafter contributed his keyboard and bass skills to the group’s platinum album Ice Cream Castle (#24 pop), the infectious singles Jungle Love (#6 R& B/#20 pop) and The Bird (#36 pop).  Prince later recruited him to front The Family, now known as fDeluxe, whose self-titled debut was released to critical acclaim in September 1985, generating the popular singles The Screams Of Passion (#9 R&B), High Fashion, (#34 R&B) and the original, and arguably, the finest version of the worldwide hit Nothing Compares 2 U, later popularised by Sinead O’Connor.

A mainstay of the Minneapolis music scene St. Paul has scored R&B and Pop hits as a solo artist, contributed to a number of albums for Paisley Park (Jevetta Steele, Mavis Staples, Nona Gaye, Rosie Gaines) and written for acts as varied as The Corrs, Paula Abdul, The Veronicas, George Benson and David Sanborn.

Cassandra O’Neal: Cassandra was Prince’s musical director and keyboardist from 2009 to 2016.  She joined The New Power Generation and played at Grand Palais and La Cigale concerts in France, Prince’s 20Ten Tour, Welcome 2 America, 2011 Montreal Jazz festival, Welcome 2 America Euro 2011 tour and the 2016 Official Prince Tribute Concert in Minneapolis.  Other artists she has performed with include Macy Gray, Mary J Bligh, Pink and Leann Rimes.

Tori Ruffin:  Guitarist/composer/arranger/producer/performer, For the past 23 years Tori Ruffin has been the lead guitarist for Morris Day & The Time, appearing with the band on tour, TV (The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Late Show with David Letterman, Arsenio Hall Show and more) and in the studio.  In 2004 he toured with the band as opening act for Prince’s Musicology Tour and appeared on Prince’s DVD ‘Rave Un2 The Joy Fantastic’. In 2016 he performed with the band at the ‘Official Prince Tribute – A Celebration of Life and Music” and in April 2017 as part of the official Paisley Park Celebration.

He was lead guitarist with Fishbone from 2000-2011 and for Michael Franti & Spearhead in 2002/3, touring Australia on a number of occasions. Tori has performed with acclaimed names such as Michael Jackson, Mick Jagger, Lenny Kravitz, American Idol’s Randy Jackson and Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis of Flyte Tyme Productions. In the studio he has performed with, written with/for the likes of Mariah Carey, Smokey Robinson, Me’Shell NdegeOcello and Dru Hill amongst others.

Jellybean Johnson: Jellybean Johnson was friends with Prince since high school and was a member of The Time. The group would go on to score four gold and/or platinum selling albums: The Time (1981), What Time Is It (1982), Ice Cream Castle (1984) and Pandemonium (1990). The band was featured prominently in Prince’s Grammy & Oscar winning film ‘Purple Rain’. Jellybean was recruited to play drums for The Family, before joining Jam & Lewis’ Flyte Tyme where he produced hits for Janet Jackson, New Edition, Alexander O’Neal and Mint Condition.

Shelby J: Shelby was a member of Prince’s New Power Generation for 10 years.  Shelby performed beside Prince at the historic 2007 Super Bowl Half-time show and the sold-out 21 nights in London concert series.  In 2012 Prince and Shelby collaborated on an ode to her home State ‘North Carolina’ which topped the New-Soul/R&B Amazon charts.

Andy Allo: Cameroon born Andy Allo joined The New Power Generation in 2011 as singer/guitarist.  Prince and Andy worked on the album Superconductor which he co-produced and Andy arranged.  Prince and Andy also wrote 2 songs together at that time. “You’re in presence of someone who has so much experience and so much knowledge,” Allo said of working with Prince. “At the same time he gave me that space to blossom and grow.”

Nik West: Nik is an accomplished bass player. She sports a colorful mohawk shaped like a bass clef. Explosive stage presence isn’t enough to describe the way Nik West moves, wows, and shocks crowds everywhere. Nik first jammed with Prince at Paisley in 2012 and then famously turned down the opportunity to play in his band as she wanted to continue as an artist in her own right but remained a good friend and collaborator with Prince. Nik completed 4 studio recordings with Prince at Paisley Park late in his career. ­­

Stokley Williams (Mint Condition): Stokley William’s band Mint Condition toured with Prince during the 2010 Welcome 2 America tour.  Being from Minneapolis, both bands crossed paths several times in their history. Since 2017 he has been performing with The Revolution alongside other long time Prince collaborators – Wendy Melvoin, Lisa Coleman, Bobby Z, Matt Fink and Mark Brown.

Ricky Peterson: A life long Minnesotan whose sound has always focused on a characteristically “Minneapolis” sound, Ricky Peterson is known for having produced, written and played keyboards for Prince on and off in studio while a staff producer at Paisley Park since his early days on the Twin Cities scene, perhaps most notably producing and arranging the song “The Most Beautiful Girl in the World” and working on “Gold”, “Emancipation”, and “Crystal Ball”. Ricky has also played with some of the biggest names in music including Stevie Nicks, Bonnie Raitt, Billy Joel, Anita Baker, James Taylor, Sting, Rodger Waters, Rick Braun, Jimmy Buffet and more.


Adrian Crutchfield (sax):   Adrian Crutchfield has taken the world by storm in recent years, not only as the last sax player to perform and record with Prince, touring the world and being featured on Prince’s last three albums, but also touring domestically and internationally with acts such as Lionel Ritchie, Bette Midler, and Cee Lo Green — all the while writing and building his 2017 release titled ‘Leap’.

BK Jackson (sax):  Bernard “BK” Jackson is an international-performing saxophonist, electrifying audiences across the globe with his unique playing style, energetic stage presence and unparalleled passion for music that touches the soul. A native of Tampa, Florida, he goes by the stage name “BK Jackson” and has crossed musical paths with industry giants such as B.B King, Bruno Mars, Brian McKnight, Hunter Hayes, Chaka Khan, Fantasia, Zac Brown Band and more. Most notably, BK spent three years touring domestically and abroad with musical icon Prince, performing timeless hits for sold out arenas night after night as a member of his 11-piece horn section, known as New Power Generation (NPG) Hornz.

Lynn Grissett: A formally educated professional musician, Lynn J. Grissett Jr. is a truly dedicated artist. A member of the NPG Hornz, the horn section of the band New Power Generation (NPG) once led by the late great musical genius Prince, Lynn has performed around the world as both a solo artist and as part of elite level ensembles. His trumpet can be heard on the following recordings: Prince: Hit N Run Phase One & Two (2015) Liv Warfield: The Unexpected (2014) Judith Hill: Back In Time (2015) Grammy Nominated: (Mint Condition: Healing Season (2015).

NOTHING COMPARES 2 PRINCE – tickets on sale now.

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Posted in Artist Profiles, Artists    //    Post Date - February 13, 2018

Captivating and unique, Mary Webb has recently released a new single Gecko Fingers, a stirring ode to the relationship shared between sisters. Accompanied by an eerie video, directed by Aaron Schuppan (West Thebarton, Nakatomi), Gecko Fingers is the first taste of Mary’s new album Love Like Planets, a spectacular body…

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Posted in Gear, Publishing    //    Post Date - February 13, 2018

Hal Leonard Australia’s Richard Snape gives us a preview of some wonderful new music books heading to Australia this year, including titles for Taylor Swift, Katy Perry, Tommy Emmanuel and more.

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Posted in Gear, Other Fretted    //    Post Date - February 13, 2018

Greg Cooper from Australian wholesaler Jacaranda Music showed us around his brands at NAMM Show 2018. We hear from Kala ukuleles’ Mike Upton, look at the Ohana range of ukes and watch the LogJam Stomper in action, all distributed in Australia by

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