Posts Tagged ‘Australian music business


Book Review: Music Business and the Experience Economy. The Australasian Case

Cover Music Business and the Experience Economy“Music Business and the Experience Economy” is the first book on the music business in Australasia from an academic perspective. In a cross-disciplinary approach, the authors deal with a wide-range of topics concerning the production, distribution and consumption in the digital age. The interrelationship of legal, aesthetic and economic aspects in the production of music in Australasia is also highlighted as well as the emergence of new business models, the role of music file sharing, and the live music sector. In addition, the impact of the digital revolution on music experience and valuation, the role of music for sports and branding, and last but not least the developments of tertiary music education, are discussed from different perspectives.

Peter Tschmuck, Philip L. Pearce and Steven Campbell (eds.), 2013, Music Business and the Experience Economy. The Australasian Case. Heidelberg & New York: Springer, ISBN: 978-3-642-27897-6.

For a more detailed book review please click here for further reading.

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The Early Record Industry in Australia – Part 6

For several years the Australian music industry was dominated by a few players who enjoyed a more or less monopolistic position. In the infant period of the industry Edison Co. dominated the record business with its cylinders and from 1931 on EMI had the monopoly of record distribution in Australia, which was not challenged until the end of World War II. Therefore, the period with a considerable level of competition in the Australian music industry lasted from 1924 to 1931.

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The Early Record Industry in Australia – Part 5

When acoustic recording was replaced by the superior technology of electrical recording, the record companies around the world had more or less unsaleable mechanical recordings in stock. It was estimated that alone in the U.S. approximately two hundred million acoustic discs were on the market. To get rid of the obsolete recordings the record companies sold them at cost price or less through jobbers to specific outlets, which normally did not offer records for sale. In Australia, importers made a profit by selling the outdated recordings with a new label to department stores and other outlets such as drapers and petrol stations. However, the profit margins soon attracted firms which have never previously been in the phonograh business before. Thus, the Australian market was flooded with cheap records by several importers which alarmed those record companies still manufacturing records in Australia. They feared that the cheap imports would cannabilize their regular domestic sales and started an ‘anti-dumping’ campaign.

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The Early Record Industry in Australia – Part 4

The main competitors on the world record market, The Gramophone Company and the Columbia Graphophone Company, originally hesitated to enter the Australian market and it took several years before they etablished record pressing plants in Australia. Whereas the Columbia Graphophone also ran a recording studio from the beginning, the Gramophone Company could not bring itself to operate recording facilities in Australia in order to produce local acts. The Great Depression forced the rivals to amalgamate to EMI also in Australia in 1931.

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The Early Record Industry in Australia – Part 3

Not only efforts to establish a genuine Australian music industry failed, but also foreign record companies were faced by severe financial problems after initial economic success. Especially “medium-majors” such as the Brunswick-Balke-Collender and Vocalion did not have sufficient financial resources to establish themselves on the Australian music market in the long run. They became also victims of the great depression like their Australian counterparts. Their story will be told in the following.

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The Early Record Industry in Australia – Part 1

„Sound Beginnings. The early record industry in Australia by Ross Laird seems to be the first and only book on the early Australian music industry. Laird did not only tell the story of technological progress in phonographic industry, but highlights the history of the main players of the Australian music business in great detail from 1877 until 1935. “Sound Beginnings” is therefore a seminal work on this topic. In the following I would like to start a series of 6 blog contributions based on this book in order to retell the early history of the Australian music industry.

Continue reading ‘The Early Record Industry in Australia – Part 1’

March 2023




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