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Liberal Minister Holds Melbourne Live Music Crisis Talks

Written by Nastassia Baroni on July 24, 2014

The Victorian Liberal State Government and music industry lobby group Music Victoria have held talks today to discuss vital reforms to the city’s live music scene. The talks were pushed forward a day after Planning Minister Matthew Guy was criticised yesterday for dragging his feet.

Reports theMusic.com.au, Labor Shadow Minister for The Arts Martin Foley has also accused the State Government of “a series of broken promises” over live music reforms. “The Liberals don’t support live music – they never have and they never will,” he said.

“The Palace is gone, Cherry Bar may be next and Denis Napthine is doing nothing. The Liberals have made it harder for acts to thrive and harder for venues to survive.” Music Victoria have issued a statement saying they had a “very productive meeting with Government Ministers this morning” and were “very close to great result”.

“There are some complex issues around Agent of Change and planning reform, and Music Victoria has been working with the Government through the Live Music Roundtable to bring about live music reform over the last three years,” reads the statement.

“We are getting calls every few days from venues such as the Reverence, Tago Mago and the Gasometer wondering when the Agent of Change will be delivered by the Government, as yellow notices announcing new developments keep popping up all over Melbourne.

“While unfortunately new reform packages won’t save venues like Cherry…which has new residents moving in a few weeks, it will save our incredible 500+ venues from future developments,” in concludes.

Yesterday tensions were sparked when music lobby group Save Live Australia’s Music (SLAM) said they had “lost faith” in Minister Matthew Guy due to his inaction on implementing the promised Agent of Change Principle, which would help protect live music venues against noise complaints.

At the same time, Melbourne venue Cherry Bar started a crowdfunding campaign asking the live music loving public to help raise the necessary funds for costly soundproofing works after a 12-storey apartment block moved in next door. The venue reached its target in just one day.

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