Newcastle Music Directory

Archive for November, 2007

Paper Champion

Wednesday, November 14th, 2007

Please note: Paper Champion are no longer active and are not available for bookings. This article was written in November 2007 and is preserved on this website as part of our news archive.


On the brink of embarking on a tour to promote their debut self-titled EP, it is clear that Paper Champion’s star is on the rise.

After many months of constant touring around the Sydney live music scene, the Sydney four-piece is playing a series of dates to promote their independently-released EP, taking in west Sydney and the Central Coast, culminating in a show at the Cambridge Hotel supporting Grandvue on 22nd November.

Founded by Dave Clark (drums), Denis Giasli (bass) and Dom Alessio (guitar) the lineup was completed after 18 months in 2006 with the addition of singer Grant Spencer.

Following a swathe of energetic gigs around the Sydney circuit Paper Champion’s profile has risen quickly, supporting big names like the Birds of Tokyo, Dead Letter Circus and Bushido. On the back of this stage success their debut EP was recorded in August at Modern Music Studios in Brisbane which has been graced by the likes of the Butterfly Effect, Dead Letter Circus and Small Mercies. Produced by Rick Hollis, who has worked with Shihad and Sunk Loto, the five-track EP is a solid recording, with a polished sound reflecting many months of collaboration, hard work and dedication from a hard-touring band. This effort has not gone unnoticed, and in recent weeks the band has had airtime from Fasterlouder.com.au and FBI and has a performance and interview on the Lock Up Garage on Central Coast FM scheduled for 19th November.

Heavily influenced by the Butterfly Effect, Decoder Ring and Karnivool, Paper Champion’s music provides a fusion of prog rock and melodious ballads, their music infused with ambient and aggressive elements with undertones of political and social commentary.

Discussing the band’s progression, lead singer and lyricist Grant is ambivalent when asked if he prefers performing live to recording, saying that the key part of the music process is to “tell a story… Recording is like painting, playing live is the showing, both are important”. And when you see them live you understand why. Their live shows are an infusion of brooding energy, angsty vocals and potent guitar work. From the ambient harmonies of Undone to the darker Arithmetic, Paper Champion has a diverse repertoire under their belt, describing their music as “hard rock with a progressive edge”.

Paper Champion pride themselves on telling a story and there is no doubt of the band’s song-writing prowess. Grant is enthused by the feature vocals provided by Shadow Treasurer Wayne Swan’s daughter on the EP, including Undone and some surreal vocal gymnastics on Arithmetic. However he is quick to point out their music is only influenced by politics to the extent that “the political influences the personal”, with tracks like This Mute Tide exploring the superficiality of consumer culture.

After building up a respectable fan base in Sydney, their energised and well-publicised EP launch at the Agincourt Hotel in Sydney was supported by The Hotel Charlie and Walking Zero. Their performance was punctuated by a much darker harder atmosphere than their EP lets on, featuring guest performances from local musos. Grant joined Dave on the drums as part of an extended drum score on Teeth adding to the intense quality of the set. The band veers seamlessly between melodious ballads and darker punk-rock, especially on Arithmetic which is reminiscent of the Butterfly Effect, with restrained melodies and angsty vocals seeming into thumping guitar riffs and an angry rocking chorus.

Grant has some advice for upcoming local bands: “The live scene is only as active as you are in it. If you’re going to see live bands they’ll come to see you… The best, most supportive crowd is the one that saw your best show”.

Their music achieves a strange juxtapositioning of melodic ambience and pounding rhythms that highlight the band’s versatility and a burgeoning potential to create the punk anthems that have marked the rise of bands like the Butterfly Effect. Paper Champion is developing a solid fan base as a result of continued touring. This band is on the up, this is not the last we’ll hear from this focused foursome.

Paper Champion can be found at the Cambridge Hotel on 22th November supporting Grandvue with local band Stone Harlet.

The band will be performing live and interviewed on the Lock Up Garage with Lindsay Joel from 7pm on 19th November on 2CCC 96.3 FM on Central Coast or online at www.2ccc.net.

Live photograph by Chantel Bann, group shot by Tim Levy. Article by Rebecca Warren.


Dallas Frasca and her Gentlemen

Wednesday, November 14th, 2007

dallas FrascaAfter months of touring around the country and playing at many of the major music festivals including The Falls, Point Nepean, Queenscliff and the East Coast Blues and Roots Festival (where she was the second highest cd seller at the festival, not bad for an independent act!).

Dallas Frasca is on the road again…

The foot stomping, ball wrenching, double dueling slide guitar extravaganza that is Dallas Frasca And Her Gentleman have secured themselves a place in the top five finalists list in the Blues/Roots category for 2007! Whilst spreading their infectious rootsy rhythms all across Australia, Dallas Frasca and Her Gentlemen will make a pit stop in Maitland and Newcastle:

Musicoz Awards Finalists – Dallas Frasca And Her Gentleman

For more information visit myspace.com/dallasfrascamusic or www.dallasfrasca.com.


The Date Brothers

Tuesday, November 13th, 2007

Brothers Ian and Nigel Date are two extraordinary musicians who will be returning to perform at The Royal Exchange, 34 Bolton St Newcastle, Wednesday 21st November.

Last year the gig was a highlight in their international tour. The Royal Exchange is a fantastic intimate venue with a vibrant funky patronage.

Ian, now based in Ireland, is touring Australia in November performing at the Wangaratta Jazz Festival and the Manouche Gypsy Guitar Festival in Brisbane.The Date Brothers

Ian is one of the greatest guitarists to have emerged from Australia. For many years he was associated with the best jazz musicians in the country including Don Burrows, James Morrison, George Washingmachine and Tom Baker. He has collaborated with some of the best guitarists in the world, recording and performing with Martin Taylor, Robin Nolan and renowned gypsy guitar legend Fapy Lafertin.

Guitarist Nigel Date is based in Sydney and has visited Newcastle before with the band The Straight Back Fellows.

In 2006 the Brothers were joined by local sax/clarinet legend Andrew Firth. Expect some special guests this time around also.

For lovers of fine music and fantastic guitar playing, be sure not to miss this rare opportunity and special musical event.

  • Who: The Date Brothers
  • Where: Royal Exchange 34 Bolton St Newcastle
  • When 7PM Wednesday 21st November 2007

For more information visit www.iandate.com or www.nigeldate.com or contact Dean at The Royal Exchange 0249294969


MySpace Friends

Tuesday, November 13th, 2007

Popular social networking website MySpace currently has almost 270 million accounts, with over 50 million of those added in the last 4 months. This means that nearly half a million new accounts are being added each day. If this rate of growth is maintained MySpace could be boasting over half a billion accounts by the middle of 2008. Many of those profiles are maintained by bands and musicians listed on this website.

One of the features of the MySpace website is the ability to add so called friends. The image below shows a portion of a screen grab from the Newcastle Music Directory MySpace profile at myspace.com/newcastlemusic showing that at the time it had 680 “friends”.

Another piece of information contained on artists profiles is the date the band established its MySPace profile. For example, the image below shows a portion of the Silverchair profile at myspace.com/silverchair showing that they had signed up on the 5th of April 2006.

Using these two pieces of information, ie the number of friends and the signup date, it is possible to calculate how many friends per day have been added for that account.

The profiles of a large sample of artists from this website were surveyed on two occasions, the 11th of September and the 8th of November 2007, with the analysis of 1490 and 1526 profiles respectively on each occasion.

The following table shows the artists with the highest average number of friends added per day since they joined MySpace.

  September 11 2007 November 8 2007
Artist MySpace Name Member Since Num Friends Friends/Day Num Friends Friends/Day
Silverchair silverchair 5-Apr-06 88977 169.2 96869 166.4
Jeriko jerikoband 25-Aug-07 839 44.8 1696 22.6
Laura Jane theusernamelaurajaneisalreadyinuse 29-Mar-07 5974 35.6 6216 27.8
Zero Soul zer0s0ul 17-Jan-07 6764 28.3 7375 25.0
G Fresh gfreshtodeath 19-Jan-07 6193 26.2 6088 20.8
Powerage powerageband 20-Feb-07 5257 25.7 8257 31.6
Short Stack shortstackband 8-Oct-05 16908 24 17733 23.3
Kindred kindred4 27-Mar-06 10655 19.9 12107 20.5
Falling For Beloved fallingforbeloved 18-Oct-06 6332 19.2 6666 17.3
Chris Watson chriswatsonmusic 8-Jul-07 1215 18.2 1213 9.9
Coma Lies comaliesnc 31-Jan-07 4079 18.2 4109 14.6
Birds From Paradise birdsfromparadise 22-Jun-07 1498 18.1 1729 12.4
Shunsthelight shunsthelight 30-Aug-06 6616 17.5 6320 14.5
Kasey Chambers kaseychambers 29-May-06 8158 17.3 7908 15.0
Catherine Britt catherinebritt 24-Feb-06 9553 16.9 9680 15.6
End Of Days endofdaysband2006 16-Jul-07 967 16.5 1073 9.3
Last Year’s News lastyearsnewsmusic 10-Jun-07 1529 16.1 1408 9.3
Will Osland willoslandmusic 24-May-07 1689 15.1 1818 10.8
Same Old Story sameoldstoryaustralia 15-Jun-07 1314 14.6 2652 18.2
Waterview waterview 24-Apr-05 12078 13.9 14351 15.5
Thoughts Of A Dream thoughtsofadream 26-Jul-05 8575 11.0 12225 14.6
A December Truth adecembertruth 24-Dec-06 2612 10.0 5052 15.8
Limbo Land limbolandmusic 8-Sep-07 n/a n/a 1784 29.3
Pergamum pergamumtheband 10-Jan-06 n/a n/a 17927 26.9
Indiana Pheonix indianaphoenix 14-Feb-07 n/a n/a 3916 14.7

This is an interesting measure of how each artist uses the MySpace website. The number of friends added per day as calculated in the table is represented in the chart below. Several bands were not included in the first survey but had been included in the analysis by the time of the second. The vertical scale of the chart was truncated to 50 friends/day so that detail could be seen for the lower values.

Number of MySpace friends added per day

Basically there are two mechanisms by which a friend may be added, an incoming request or an outgoing request.

In the case of Silverchair, an internationally well known band, one would assume that most of the friend requests would be incoming. That is to say that other MySpace users arrive at the Silverchair profile and click the “Add Friend” icon so that they may receive bulletins etc in order to keep up to date with what Siverchair are doing. There must be someone very dedicated who operates that profile on behalf of the band, checking and authorising almost 170 profiles per day. Lets assume that it takes about 20 seconds to check a profile, and approve it as a friend then this represents approximately 1 hour per day just approving profiles. Then there would be the other tasks such as moderating comments and maintaining the information on the profile.

The high numbers of friends per day for both Kasey Chambers and Catherine Britt are also largely due to fans providing incoming friend requests.

In the case of the other artists listed in the table above, one would assume that a large proportion of their friends were gained by outgoing requests, ie, the band themselves finds suitable profiles and adds them to their list of “friends” in order to promote themselves. The table above provides quite an insight as to which local bands are the most active in this regard on MySpace.

If we take the example of Jeriko, a Newcastle based band who joined MySpace on the 25th of August 2007. The band was found to be adding friends at the rate of approximately 45 per day in the first survey, but this had dropped off dramatically by the time of the second survey. This is most probably because the band members have extensive experience performing in local bands that have existing MySPace profiles. The band members could easily go through the friend lists of their previous bands and readd them to the Jeriko profile one by one. Once heir existing friends lists had been exhausted the process of adding additional friends would become much slower, or perhaps stop entirely.

Short Stack stand out in the above analysis for another reason. They have been members of the MySpace website since the 8th of October 2005. They have been adding friends at the rate of approximately 24 per day for over 2 years, amassing a list of friends that is now approaching 18,000 in number. If we assume that the time takes to find a suitable profile, wait for it to load, and add that person as a friend might take approximately 30 seconds, and that 80% of Short Stack’s friends were added by Short Stack themselves, this amounts to a total of 150 hours of friend adding. Granted, this was occurred over 2 years, but still an impressive feat.

Another interesting example is Thoughts Of A Dream, who, after signing up to MySpace in July 2005 had amassed over 12000 friends at the time of writing. This equates to a rate of 14.6 per day on average throughout that entire period. Interestingly though, 3650 of those friends were added in the time between the two surveys, a period of 58 days. Therefore, during the period between the two surveys, Thoughts Of A Dream were adding friends at a rate of almost 63 per day, a rate that eclipses every other band analysed except for Silverchair.

While some of these calculations were made using some rough assumptions, other aspects, such as the signup date of each of the bands and the number of friends at the time of each survey, are very accurate.

So … how many friends per day have YOU added?


Bay Hotel Open Mic Night

Sunday, November 11th, 2007

Bay Hotel Open Mic NightAre you a musician without a gig? Are you a singer/songwriter wanting to get your music out there? Do you just wanna jam with like minded people?

Come and check out the Bay Hotel Open Mic Night every Thursday Night from 9pm. This event is hosted by former Australian Fingerstyle Champion and Folk/Roots artist Dale Willis, who recently just returned to Australia after a year spent living and touring in Canada.

This is your chance to perform to a friendly crowd and get some good stage experience. This is a stress free environment to come and get your music heard! Contact Dale if you are wanting to secure a spot on the blackboard or just show up and put your name down on the night.

  • What:The Bay Hotel Open Mic Night
  • When: Every Thursday Night from 9pm starting Nov 15th, 2007
  • Where:330 Fishery Point Road, Morisset East, NSW 2264

For more information visit myspace.com/bayhotelopenmic or www.dalewillis.com.

(Edit 12/01/2012) Please note, this event is no longer running.


Ramble Rose Video Production

Friday, November 9th, 2007

Ramble RoseRamble Rose is an independent video production company based in Newcastle, Australia.

“We feel that the music video is an art form”, they explain, “and as with all art, money doesn’t make for a better result.”

Ramble Rose work with bands across all genres, and can work closely to your idea (or you can just let us run wild) Either way, you supply the sound, they’ll supply the vision.

“The best videoclips come from ideas and innovation, not from bloated budgets and pretentious filmmakers. Our clips are of a high quality, yet because we spend money on important things, it won’t cost you two years worth of royalties in order to get your tunes on television.”

Ramble Rose are asking for local bands and musicians to take part in their survey which can be found online at MySpace (You will need to log in to MySpace read this link) or for those readers without a myspace account the survey has been included below this article.


Survey For Bands/Musicians

  1. Have you ever consider having a film clip made for your music?
  2. How would you go about getting a film clip made/played?
  3. How much would you be prepared to pay for a film clip?
  4. Would you be interested in a service like that?
  5. Have you ever approached record labels? How did you go about this?
  6. Do you have any recordings that you feel are of a releasable quality?
  7. How often do you record?
  8. Would one of your bands goals be to progress from gigs/demos to having a film clip on television?
  9. What of the following services would appeal more to your band?
    • Film Clip
    • Gigs Filmed
    • Promotional Photos
    • Band Website
    • Biography/Editorial
    • Documentary
  10. What is your favourite filmclip ever? (just off the top of your head)
  11. May we put your bands name/details on our contacts list, so we can let you know once we get started?

If you care to complete this survey, email your answers to the guys at the email address below.

For more information about Ramble Rose visit www.myspace.com/ramblerose or email rambleramblerose@hotmail.com.


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