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Putting on the hits: Gold Coast 'factory' designed to create a chart-topper


Australian hit songwriters and international songwriting heavyweights will join forces on the Gold Coast for an intensive four-day ‘hit factory’ session aimed at turning out a host of cross-genre chart-toppers by the end of the year.

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Showing COVID can’t stop the music, Queensland’s top songwriters George and Amy Sheppard of indie-pop favourites Sheppard will join international composers and lyricists who will beam in to Burleigh for the intensive, commercially-focused song writing session to pump out new works for local and international markets.

The hit factory session from 16-19 October will be the first to be held at the Gold Coast and is the latest SongHub designed to establish Australia as one of the world’s music creating centres of excellence.

The SongHub, supported by the Australasian Performing Rights Association and Australasian Mechanical Copyright Owners Society, which jointly represent more than 100,000 songwriters, composers and music publishers in Australia and New Zealand, will be held at Bignote Productions studio at Burleigh on the Gold Coast.

Gold Coast-based musician and songwriter Ray Burton, who co-wrote ‘I am Woman’ with Helen Reddy and has worked with music giants including Billy Joel, Queen, and America as well as being lead singer in the 1970s pop band The Executives, said it was a fantastic opportunity for the local industry.

“I’m hoping that I’ll be chosen as a mentor there for up and coming songwriters,” Burton said.

“I’m still working away.”

Grammy-nominated songwriter and SongHub curator Jennifer Decilveo, whose most recent hit was co-writing and producing Andra Day’s Rise Up, will select the Australian and international songwriters and producers, along with “a few special guests,” to collaborate with Gold Coast songwriters across the four days.

The SongHub initiative coincides with a new program of incentives for Gold Coast live music venues to help get live music pumping again throughout the city.

The Gold Coast’s Music Advisory Group chair Dean Gould said live music was one of the business sectors hardest hit by the pandemic.

“Venues were initially forced to close and now are operating under tight conditions, and this comes only after so many artists and musicians have lost their casual and freelance gigs, often without the support of JobKeeper,” he said.

The FeedBack program will be a collection of performances at Gold Coast live music venues in December, with the band and musicians’ appearances subsidised by grants of up to $8000 per gig to directly cover musician fees and venue costs.

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