Thursday Feb 23rd is SLAM (Save Live Australian Music) Day across 100 live venues nationwide. Celebrating the small venue scene in Australia this is one hell of an important event to get behind as pretty much every band you love or hate has started playing corner bars, local pubs and bowling clubs. The day aims to both celebrate and raise awareness of the vibrancy of these venues and the absolutely vital contribution they make to Australian culture.
SLAM started in 2010 in response to crippling Victorian liquor licensing laws which inappropriately linked live music to violence, leading to the closure of the iconic Tote Hotel and threatening other small venues. The subsequent SLAM Rally, on the back of a flatbed truck through Melbourne on February 23, 2010, was the largest cultural protest in Australia’s history.
According to the 2011 report Life’s Better with Live, live music contributes $1.2 billion to the economy and supports nearly 15,000 jobs nationally. An estimated 42 million patrons attended 328,000 venue-based gigs at 3,900 venues in 2009/10. Yet the report revealed that Australian musicians earn a mean average of just $12,200 from live performance. You can support musicians by attending their shows and buying their music and merchandise and joining your local peak music bodies.
Head over to the SLAM website for a full rundown of the events and hosting venues in your state and get out, enjoy some fantastic music and support an essential cause!