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Roger Grierson (born June 1957) is a New Zealand born musician and music industry executive.
The music industry consists of the companies and individuals that earn money by creating new songs and pieces and selling live concerts and shows, audio and video recordings, compositions and sheet music, and the organizations and associations that aid and represent music creators. Among the many individuals and organizations that operate in the industry are: the songwriters and composers who create new songs and musical pieces; the singers, musicians, conductors and bandleaders who perform the music; the companies and professionals who create and sell recorded music and/or sheet music ; and those that help organize and present live music performances.
In 1975 Grierson headed to London and Egypt to live but found himself lured back to Sydney in 1976 to work at White Light Records. Soon afterwards he formed the punk band The Thought Criminals.
The Thought Criminals were an influential and enterprising Australian punk band based in Sydney. They formed in late 1977 and disbanded in late 1981. The "angular, fast and quirky punk rock" of the Thought Criminals "was a fixture in the burgeoning Sydney underground scene." The band’s name was derived from the concept of ‘thoughtcrimes’ from George Orwell’s book, Nineteen Eighty-Four. The Thought Criminals exemplified the do-it-yourself punk ethos of the late 1970s, with which they combined considerable business acumen. The band members formed the Doublethink record label and agency which provided recording and live performance opportunities for other new bands.
In 1978, Grierson started Doublethink Records to record local Australian bands including Singles, Rejex, and Suicide Squad. In 1980 he started GREEN Recordswith Stuart Coupe and Warren Fahey, and together they released records by Tactics, Allniters, Lime Spiders, Spy V Spy, Do-Re-Mi, Dropbears, Beasts of Bourbon, New Christs and The Johnnys, Grierson producing the first Beasts of Bourbon record The Axemans Jazz.
Stuart Coupe is an Australian music journalist, promoter, band manager and writer. Coupe has managed acts including Hoodoo Gurus and Paul Kelly.
Warren John Fahey AM is a folklore collector, cultural historian, author, actor, broadcaster, record and concert producer, visual artist, songwriter and a performer of Australian traditional and related historical music. He is the founder of Folkways Music (1973), Larrikin Records (1974) and a folk music ensemble, the Larrikins (1975).
Tactics are a post-punk group which formed in Canberra in 1977. The line-up changed periodically, with songwriter and vocalist, David Studdert, as the mainstay. They released four studio albums, My Houdini, Glebe, Blue and White Future Whale (1986) and The Great Gusto (1990). Which were critically acclaimed and they were respected for the quality of their live performances. However, they did not achieve wider commercial success and remained largely unacknowledged outside of the alternative independent music scene. Their reputation for running against the grain musically, lyrically, and stylistically was described by Bob Blunt as "frenetic, discordant, [and] full of unusual rhythms." Tactics disbanded late in 1989 and Studdert relocated to London.
Grierson managed The Allniters, Tactics and Spy v Spy in 1981. During this period he was the distribution manager for Larrikin Records; in 1983 he took on The Johnnys, and in 1985 The Wreckery: a "junk rock" group formed by ex members of Nick Cave'sbacking band The Bad Seeds. In 1985, he teamed up with Rick Tanaka, radio presenter / producer of Tokyo Hit Beat and the award-winning Nippi Rock Shop on JJJ, and they started 135 Music (135 being the line that joins Aust and Japan on the map) to encourage cross cultural promotion. This partnership has lasted over 30 years, and they now run escorted tours of oddball Japan, as LobrowJapan.com
Larrikin Records is a record company founded in 1974 by Warren Fahey. Larrikin started as an independent label and was sold in 1995 to Festival Records.
The Johnnys are an Australian pub rock band from Sydney forming in 1982 and still active today that combines country and punk musical styles. Members are Graham Hood, Billy Pommer Jr and Slim Doherty and have included founder, Roddy Ray'da and Spencer P. Jones.
The Wreckery were an Australian rock and blues band. Their sound is best described as alt rock, bastard blues or southern gothic. The band formed from the debris of the awe-inspiring but well-before-their-time band: Plays With Marionettes. The famous Australian musicologist Ian McFarlane described the group as “inner-city angst kings which proffered a lurching brand of gutbucket St Kilda blues by way of the Mississippi delta. It was a fiery sound totally unique in Australia at the time”. Race was described as “enigmatic, petulant … whose bleak visions stabbed at the heart of the human condition”.
In 1987 Grierson started promoting Australian tours for acts signed to the New Zealand label, Flying Nun Records. These acts include The Bats, The Chills, Straitjacket Fits and JPS Experience. In 1988 he started managing The Go Betweens and Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. In 1989 he toured Tackhead, Public Image Ltd, Pop Will Eat Itself and began managing bands such as The Hummingbirds and Tall Tales and True. At this time he also formed Lost in Music publishing and signed Tex Perkins, Rebecca's Empire, Caligula, Dave Graney, Clouds, Falling Joys, Crystal Set and Kim Salmon to name but a few.
Flying Nun Records is an independent record label formed in Christchurch, New Zealand, in 1981 by music-store manager Roger Shepherd.
Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds are an Australian rock band formed in Melbourne in 1983 by vocalist Nick Cave, multi-instrumentalist Mick Harvey and guitarist Blixa Bargeld. The band has featured international personnel throughout its career and presently consists of Cave, violinist and multi-instrumentalist Warren Ellis, bassist Martyn P. Casey, guitarist George Vjestica, keyboardist/percussionist Toby Dammit and drummers Thomas Wydler (Switzerland) and Jim Sclavunos. With their "brutal blues and gothic nightmares" songs, Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds have been considered "one of the most original and celebrated bands of the post-punk and alternative rock eras in the '80s and onward", They have released sixteen studio albums and completed numerous international tours.
Pop Will Eat Itself are an English alternative rock band formed in Stourbridge in 1986 with members from Birmingham, Coventry and the Black Country. Initially known as a grebo act, they changed style to incorporate sample-driven indie and industrial rock. Their highest-charting single was the 1993 top-ten hit "Get The Girl! Kill The Baddies!". After initially disbanding in 1996, and having a brief reformation in 2005, they issued their first release in more than five years in 2010.
In 1990 he promoted tours by Pop Will Eat Itself, Buzzcocks, Jesus Jones, the Fall, Norman Cook/ Beats International. 1991 saw more touring with PWEI, Jesus Jones, Ned's Atomic Dustbin, The Godfathers, Dread Zeppelin, and Mojo Nixon. In 1983 Grierson was involved in the Dead Kennedys tour in 1986, with The Gun Club and in 1989 with Sonic Youth and Dinosaur Jr. In the 1990s, he also started and organized The Big Backyard Concert.
Buzzcocks are an English punk rock band formed in Bolton, England in 1976 by singer-songwriter-guitarist Pete Shelley and singer-songwriter Howard Devoto. They are regarded as a seminal influence on the Manchester music scene, the independent record label movement, punk rock, power pop, and pop punk. They achieved commercial success with singles that fused pop craftsmanship with rapid-fire punk energy. These singles were collected on Singles Going Steady, described by critic Ned Raggett as a "punk masterpiece".
Jesus Jones are a British alternative rock band from Bradford-on-Avon in Wiltshire, formed in late 1988, who recorded and performed into the 2000s. Their track "Right Here, Right Now" was an international hit, and was subsequently globally licensed for promotional and advertising campaigns. They also achieved chart success with the songs "Real Real Real", "International Bright Young Thing" and "Info Freako".
Dead Kennedys are an American punk rock band that formed in San Francisco, California, in 1978. The band was one of the defining hardcore punk bands during its initial eight-year run.
In 1992 Grierson moved the Lost in Music catalogue to Polygram Music Publishing and became managing director of the now defunct Polygram Music Australia, a position he retained until 1997. During his time at the helm of Polygram Music, he signed Pauly Fuemana, The Cruel Sea, David Hirschfelder, the LennOno catalogue, Leonard Cohen, Died Pretty, Nick Cave, Powderfinger, The Fauves and The Go Betweens.
In 1998 Grierson replaced the long-serving Alan Hely as Chairman of Festival Recordsand Festival Music publishing, working closely with James Murdoch. Under Griersons' stewardship, Festival Records acquired Michael Gudinski's 51% share of Mushroom Records to become Festival Mushroom Records in 1999.
In 2001, Grierson was promoted to Senior Vice President for Newscorp Music, continuing his existing roles but now also supervising Mushroom UK and Rawkus and he oversaw the Festival 50th anniversary in 2002.
In 2005 Grierson left Festival and retired from the music business.A year later, FMR sold to the Warner Music group, and its lucrative publishing assets were subsequently acquired by Michael Gudinski
In 2006 he proceeded to reform The Thought Criminals,released an EP "Peace Love and Under surveillance" and in 2007 formed the UnTh!nkables with Phillip Judd from Split Enz, releasing an album "UNTitled"
In 2010 he became a director of Moshcam.com, the world's leading online streaming live music concert platform.
In 2015, he commenced lecturing on music publishing and music industry related issues at the Australian Institute of Music, while commencing his escorted tours of Oddball Japan, Lobrow Japan, with Rick Tanaka
Skyhooks were an Australian rock band formed in Melbourne in March 1973 by mainstays Greg Macainsh on bass guitar and backing vocals, and Imants "Freddie" Strauks on drums. They were soon joined by Bob "Bongo" Starkie on guitar and backing vocals, and Red Symons on guitar, vocals and keyboards; Graeme "Shirley" Strachan became lead vocalist in March 1974. Described as a glam rock band, because of flamboyant costumes and make-up, Skyhooks addressed teenage issues including buying drugs "Carlton ", suburban sex "Balwyn Calling", the gay scene "Toorak Cowboy" and loss of girlfriends "Somewhere in Sydney" by namechecking Australian locales. According to music historian, Ian McFarlane "[Skyhooks] made an enormous impact on Australian social life".
Mushroom Records was an Australian flagship record label, founded in 1972 in Melbourne. It published and distributed many successful Australian artists and expanded internationally, until it was merged with Festival Records in 1998. Festival Mushroom Records was later acquired by Warner Bros. Records, which operated the label from 2005 to 2010 until it folded to Warner Bros. Records. Founder Michael Gudinski is now the leader of the Mushroom Group, the largest independent music and entertainment company in Australia.
Michael Solomon Gudinski, AM is an Australian entrepreneur and businessman currently based in Melbourne who is a leading figure in the Australian music industry. Gudinski is mostly known for forming the highly successful Australian record company Mushroom Records in 1972 through whom he signed several generations of Australian musicians and performers ranging from MacKenzie Theory, the Skyhooks, The Choirboys, Kylie Minogue, and New Zealand's Split Enz to newer artists such as Eskimo Joe, Evermore and others forging a string of successful releases by local talent. He is the father of singer Kate Alexa, who has been signed to his record label Liberation Music since mid-2004.
A&E Records is a United Kingdom-based record label imprint, owned by Warner Music Group (WMG). It operates under the WEA International group of labels at WMG.
Festival Records was an Australian recording and publishing company founded in Sydney, Australia, in 1952 and operated until 2005.
"Where the Wild Roses Grow" is a duet by Australian rock band Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds and pop singer Kylie Minogue. It is the fifth song and lead single from the band's ninth studio album, Murder Ballads (1996), released on Mute Records. It was written by the band's frontman Nick Cave and produced by Tony Cohen and Victor Van Vugt.
Martyn Paul Casey is an English-born Australian rock bass guitarist. He has been a member of the Triffids, Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds and Grinderman. Casey plays either his Fender Precision Bass or Fender Jazz Bass.
David Henry Wray, who performs as Frank Bennett, is an Australian jazz singer, musician and songwriter. His vocal style is influenced by those two singers and the music of the 1940s and 1950s. He has provided big band cover versions of rock and pop singles, "Creep", "Better Man", and "Under the Bridge". His version of "Creep" was listed in the Triple J Hottest 100, 1996. He has received nominations at the ARIA Music Awards.
Hee Haw is the second release and first EP by the Australian post-punk band The Boys Next Door. The Hee Haw EP was released in 1979 by the independent label, Missing Link Records.
The Allniters were an Australian ska pop band based in Sydney during 1980–1987. Original line-up was Ted Ayers on sax, Dave Bebb on drums, Stuart Crysell on guitar, Martin Fabok on guitar, Peter Hill-Travis on vocals, Graham Hood on bass guitar, Brett Pattinson on vocals and Mark Taylor on keyboards. Numerous changes occurred in band members with Fabok, Hill-Travis and Pattinson common to almost all line-ups.
Liberation Music is an Australian record company and label, started in 1999 by Michael Gudinski and Warren Costello, based in Melbourne. Its stated aim is to find, nurture and then to develop new talent for a world market while remaining independent in the process.
Jeremy Saxon Oxley is an Australian songwriter, singer and guitarist. He fronted the 1980s pop-rock band Sunnyboys.
Ted Gardner is an Australian-born artist manager, entrepreneur and company owner. Gardner began his career in Melbourne in 1977, then relocated to Sydney in 1980 and on to United States from 1982. There he managed Jane's Addiction from 1989 and was co-founder of the original Lollapalooza festival in 1991 with its band members and booking agency.
Madder Lake are an Australian progressive rock band formed in Melbourne in 1968 as San Sebastian. They were one of the first bands signed to the Michael Gudinski co-owned Mushroom Records which released their debut single, "Goodbye Lollipop" in February 1973, followed by the album Stillpoint in August. This contained their most recognisable single, "12lb Toothbrush". Their second album Butterfly Farm was released in April 1974, they left Mushroom after their last single, "I Get High" appeared in July 1976. A compilation album The Best of Madder Lake was released by Mushroom Records in 1978.
"Shivers" is a song by the Australian post-punk band the Boys Next Door, who would later become the Birthday Party. It is the tenth and final track from the band's debut studio album Door, Door, released in 1979 on Mushroom Records. It was released as the album's only single in May 1979, backed with the B-side "Dive Position".
Dirty Three is an Australian instrumental rock band, consisting of Warren Ellis, Mick Turner and Jim White (drums), which formed in 1992. Their 1996 album Horse Stories was voted by Rolling Stone as one of the top three albums of the year. Two of their albums have peaked into the top 50 on the ARIA Albums Chart, Ocean Songs (1998) and Toward the Low Sun (2012). During their career they have spent much of their time overseas when not performing together. Turner is based in Melbourne, White lives in New York, and Ellis in Paris. Australian rock music historian Ian McFarlane described them as providing a "rumbling, dynamic sound incorporated open-ended, improvisational, electric rock ... minus the jazz-rock histrionics". In October 2010, Ocean Songs was listed in the book 100 Best Australian Albums.
The Frontier Touring Company is one of Australia and New Zealand's largest concert promoters. The company was formed in November 1979 by Michael Gudinski as one of the first Mushroom Group ventures, with eight music industry partners; Gudinski has stayed at the helm since. The company's first tour was in 1980 and in the decades since has toured over five hundred acts. In 2013 according to Pollstar, the industry's trade publication, the company was listed as No. 1 Australasian Concert Promoter and at No. 20, internationally.
Mushroom Group is the largest independent music and entertainment company in Australia. It comprises almost two dozen companies. It has offices in Melbourne, Sydney, and Auckland with over 200 employees.
Michael Glenn Chugg, AM is an Australian entrepreneur, businessman and concert tour promoter. As a promoter and manager he was a founder of Frontier Touring Company (1979–99) and Michael Chugg Entertainment (2000–present). On 8 June 1998 he was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia with the citation "for service to music and the performing arts, particularly in relation to the promotion of Australian artists and to fundraising for youth and children's charities". In 2010 he co-authored his autobiography, Hey, You in the Black T-Shirt: The Real Story of Touring the World's Biggest Acts, with journalist, Iain Shedden. In March 2014 on the 50th anniversary of his start as a promoter, Denis Handlin opined "Chuggy is noisy, wild, cantankerous, the oldest teenager I know and very often a nightmare to deal with. But somehow we all love him because he lives and sweats the business with 100 per cent persistence and passion".