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Newsletter Issue #537: 07 Mar 2021

Our newsletters are sent out once a fortnight and are displayed here for archival purposes only. Some of the content will be outdated and some layout issues may be present in the translation from email to the web. We recommend that you subscribe to our newsletter for the best results!

Stay Together for the Fans...

Kia ora guys, 

I’m not sure what it is, maybe it’s having just returned to university, or the crisp southerly of a late Wellington summer, but I'm feeling sentimental. 

I’d like to dedicate this issue to all of the bands that never really were. The bands that never went on world tours, or even tours of New Zealand. The high school bands and the garage bands that never left the garage. The bands that broke up due to members moving away, ‘artistic differences’ and everything in between.  

To all those bands I say – take comfort in the fact that someone, somewhere was your biggest fan (if you were in Wellington it was probably me). Someone, somewhere probably wishes that you hadn’t taken all your music off Spotify or Bandcamp. Someone, somewhere would be very keen on a boogie/mosh/salsa dance at your one-off reunion gig for your mate's birthday 20 years down the track.  

And to all the fans of those bands I say – that’s just what you get for having niche musical interests. We wouldn’t want anyone to stay in an unhappy (band) relationship for us, would we? Is it not better to burn out than to fade away anyway, as Neil Young said! Uneducated 90’s baby that I am, I actually thought that was a Kurt Cobain quote until I was corrected very recently (sorry, Neil).

There are some incredible artists and bands that never make it past a debut album, or even to that point at all. Polyester's self-titled first album is still in my top ten. I will always remember when Mishap dressed up in little Sailor Moon dresses for one of their shows. Some of the best gigs I've been to have been artists/bands that I'd never heard of before and never heard from since. We saw you! We heard you! Stay elusive. You keep things interesting.


P.S. please feel free to send me your favourite band-that-never-really-was at [email protected]. I’d love to check them out if they have been so kind as to not remove their music from the internet. 

Aotearoa Music Industry Collective (A-MIC)

The Aotearoa Music Industry Collective (A-MIC to their friends) have just launched a brand-new website – and it’s well worth checking out.  

The collective started humbly as a simple Facebook group, as another branch for Muzic.net.nz, and it's ethos is to support New Zealand bands and musicians by working together to achieve common goals. Four year on and the collective has grown to include people knowledgeable in every aspect of the industry. If you have a music related question, chances are there will be someone there who can answer it. 

On the A-MIC website you'll find a wide range of comprehensive articles that cover everything from writing press releases and biographies through to recording studio etiquette and running a merch desk, as well as all the important music industry dates for 2021. On top of all that, there's also a huge list of local bands and musicians who are willing to perform as support acts for live events.

Photo by Beth Mountford

A-MIC Contributors include:

Paula Yeoman  
Paula owns and operates local music company NicNak Media with Nicole Thomas. Together Paula and Nicole manage a successful roster of talent, including Theia, Chores, Paige, Abby Wolfe and NEKO.

Paul Harvey  
Paul is the Manager for Splitrock Media Productions.  

Ryan Kershaw  
Originally from New Zealand, though now based in Ireland, Ryan Kershaw is a musician and music educator. He is the founder of the New Zealand Underground Festival, which provided New Zealand underground musicians with a platform to connect with the industry.  

Carwyn Henigan  
Carwyn is the founder of KAOS FM NZ, which specialises in reaching wide audiences with 50% independent music using its own streaming technology. Carwyn is also an accomplished Audio Engineer, songwriter member of APRA, and a panel member of Recorded Music NZ responsible for weekly input to NZ chart compilations.  

Jann McMichael  
An internationally trained teacher, Jann helps singers and vocalists realise their desires for powerful, energetic voice through Natural Vocal Freedom.  

Tiny Triumph Recordings  
Tiny Triumph Recordings is a recording studio run by Wellington based Music Producer Toby Lloyd. 

JP Carroll
JP Carroll is a musician/singer/songwriter whose projects include Armed In Advance, Swerve City and Arrays. As well as being a compulsive producer of music, JP is fascinated with the workings of the music industry and a student of music marketing.

You can check it out the new website here: https://amic.muzic.nz/ 

Many thanks to Harry Platt for designing the A-MIC logo.

Interview Series - A/Muse by Ben Ruegg

Ben Ruegg is the HOD of music at Waiuku College, a two-years-strong contributor to Muzic.net.nz and member of rock band Channeled. As an ever-involved member of the Aotearoa music community, Ben Ruegg has now created his own interview series A/Muse, in order to continue passing on knowledge to the next generation of musicians. We caught up with him about his own background, inspiration and future interview plans. 

What sparked your interest in starting an interview series? 

I’ve been fascinated song writing since I first listened to music. As a kid growing up, I would pick up my guitar and strum chords, melodies flooding into my head while at the same time I would hear the instrumentation like a real band. Then I would be thrown back into the reality that I only knew how to strum chords and sing.  

By going through my dad’s record collection with headphones on, I could hear all these different song writing approaches from the artists. I wanted to find out how these musicians I was listening to were able to capture these ideas, like clouds in the open sky, and create a reality from them. 

As I went through school and was able to get access to other instruments and other musicians, I was able to try out ideas that were once only in my head. I studied song writing at university and quickly found out that theory was something I was naive about. In the end, I was able to see it as a way of communicating ideas quickly with other musicians and it gave me so much more to work with when writing music. I would go as far as saying that learning from all the song writers around me really helped me further in what I do. And for that I’m grateful.  

After my degree, I went into teaching and now I see this video series as an opportunity for our local musicians to share their own insight into music, song writing and performance to our students. Learning and listening to those who have come before you is so incredible and rewarding that I figured I need to finally get my idea underway.  

Tell us a little about your background... 

Well, I’m 100% a music nerd. I studied at Papakura High where my music teacher really pushed me. Because of those experiences, I eventually listened to my soul and quit my job at Telecom after 5 years to study Music at the University of Auckland in order to become a teacher so I could get to work with the next generation of musicians. Music changes lives and I wanted to give back what I had received. 

I also play guitar and sing in a rock band called Channeled, which is made up of 2 other music teachers and an ex-student of mine. We love getting together and feeling that energy you get when you all write and perform music together.  

Ben (centre-left) and his band Channeled

Do you have a schedule/ plan of who you're going to interview next? 

Right now, I have organised interviews with people who I approached about my idea. I’ve been grateful to have all of them want to do it. They have all come back to me to tell me how much they enjoyed the experience. Moving forward, I want to offer this opportunity so that people can contact me about being part of the series.

Each interview is about an hour long although I only film our Zoom conversation for about 10 to 15 minutes during that time.  Coming up, I have White Noise Mafia, Swerve City, City Of Souls and Domes. I have reached out to Alien Weaponry as well as people who I feel could teach students how they could listen to music in a new way.  

I’m calling out now that I would love to speak to Devilskin, BENEE, Six60 and other bands that our students already know of, although I enjoy introducing them to new artists they may not have come across already. My students have fallen in love with Coridian and Arrays already. I’m excited for them to hear Josh from Fire For Glory in Episode 3.  

You can watch the first few episodes of A/Muse on YouTube here, or listen on Spotify here.

On episode #111 we spoke to Drummer and promotor Jason Peters. In the 1990's Christchurch based drummer Jason Peters and his band Pumpkinhead became a popular touring act with a loyal following and more than their fair share of Rock n Roll stories. In more recent times Jason has been making music with Hunt The Witch and Kong Fooey and recently organised a series of tribute shows for the late, great Aaron Tokona.

On episode #112 we spoke to Barnaby Weir. Barnaby leads two of New Zealand’s most popular bands (The Black Seeds and Fly My Pretties) and we had a great chat about life/work balance, his childhood, his creative process and the rise of The Black Seeds and the Wellington Reggae / Dub scene.

Listen to our episodes on our website, iTunes, Stitcher, Spotify, iHeart Radio, Player.FM, TuneIn and all other good podcast apps!



New Artist Pages

The following new artist pages have been added to Muzic.net.nz during the past month:

The Harmonic Resonators The Black Quartet
Star Control The May Project
Revulva Sidewinder
Indie Soull JAN
Evan Rhys Ezra Phoenix
MCK Keeley Shade
End Boss Captured Kings
Ayamvoid Valentina
MARY. Capital Theatre
Fruit Juice Parade Howard Morrison Quartet
Oaky Vital Sign
Benny's Videos Soul Circle
Aidan Fine

New Reviews and Interviews

Check out our latest reviews and interviews at the below links:


New Photos

Have a look at our latest photo galleries at the below links:

Artist Galleries
Feature Galleries


View all our previous features here

Our next issue is going out on Monday 5 April!

If you are a NZ musician and you would like to promote your music,
we would love to feature you in one of our 2021 newsletters.
You can choose the date which suits you.

We can also feature record labels, venues, music stores, music websites...
anything that has something to do with NZ music

Email [email protected] for more info.

Muzic.net.nz newsletters are currently sent out to over 8920 members!
With this number growing every day, featuring in our newsletter is an excellent promotional tool.

Access our newsletter archives here

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