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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Before Ross Laird further highlights the efforts to lay the ground for an Australian music industry, he outlines the general atmosphere, in which music was produced and distributed in the first half of the 1920s. On the basis of extended citations of newspaper articles and internal company’s reports the author highlights the negative attitude of public opinion leader’s and music critics on so-called ‘machine music’ in general and especially‘inferior jazz noise’ despite the fact that jazz records accounted for the vast majority of all sales.