Held every Monday until Homebake at The Hopetoun Hotel in Surry Hills, the Homebake Incentive showcases some of Australia’s finest up-and-coming musical talent. Mark Smithers, one of the brains behind the Incentive, spoke to Music Feeds about why the program was started and what he hopes the musicians will achieve by competing in it.
Why was the ‘Homebake Incentive’ created?
The Homebake Incentive Program has been running for many years now. Band comps are great for up-and-coming bands who may or may not be using it as their first gig ever. Having the name Homebake attached to the night helps attract great bands who are already established and looking to launch their career by landing a spot on the Homebake bill.
What are you looking for in the winning band or musician? How is the winning group chosen?
The Hopetoun is looking for a band that’s going to be able to use the prize [opening the Homebake Festival and recording an EP at Studios 301] to its fullest. By using it as a launching pad for world domination. We’re looking for a band who may not perform the best on the night but has the most potential to use the publicity of the competition and the festival. A band with songs, image, an already established following and a good attitude.
The competition runs from February to November every year and is broken up into three rounds made up of three months each. At the end of each round there is a final where the best four bands of the round compete. The two best from each round progress to November’s grand final where the best band is chosen to play Homebake by IMC music [Homebake Festival booking agency].
How did you choose the bands to compete?
I get a lot of emails from new bands and sometimes from a more established band. But it’s hard to convince a lot of bands that it’s a great idea to participate in the competition as they don’t like the idea of band comps and Monday night. So I have to pursue them like a hawk and attempt to win them over. I try to find a balance of good bands but also let new bands play at The Hoey for the first time.
What other acts can we expect to hear from for the rest of the program?
Melanie Horsnell, The Maple Trail, Des Miller & The Magnetic Heads, Deep Sea Arcade, Megastick Fanfare, We Say Bomboulee, and more. All great bands!
Out of the acts you’ve already seen, what are the stand outs?
Jordy Lane, Papa vs Pretty, Seekae, Sui Zhen and Songs For Surgery are all pretty awesome.
Good Luck to all the bands competing! And may the best band win!