Author Archives: Rob Walker

Aussie Gear Fundraiser for the Fireys

A small group of Australian Guitar makers, Amp and Pedal Builders is donating the country´s best hand-made gear to support the Fireys. Every $10 AU donated gets a virtual raffle ticket to a number of prize pools that are evolving. The Raffles will be drawn shortly after the fundraiser closes. This effort has been initiated by Tim Lovell of Lovell Amps and Mark Quarrel of Kink Guitar Pedals with donations from many others. All funds raised will go to The Trustee for COUNTRY FIRE AUTHORITY & BRIGADES DONATIONS FUND. Support it if you can! The fundraiser deadline has been extended to February 14. DONATE HERE

AMEB Offers to Replace Music Lost in the Bushfires

In a magnanimous gesture, our friends at AMEB have offered support for musicians affected by the 2019/2020 Australian bushfires
The AMEB would like to help those teachers and students affected to rebuild their musical lives by replacing any AMEB publications lost due to the recent bushfires.
“Our thoughts are with everyone affected by Australia’s bushfire emergency and all those working tirelessly to protect our communities”.

The AMEB is calling for people affected get in touch and let them know which books are needed and where these books books should be sent. Please refer to the AMEB Online Shop for the full selection of AMEB publications available.

To make a claim please contact the AMEB Federal Office on 1300 725 709 or send an email to


Strong Australian Attendance at the NAMM Show

The NAMM Show had a large antipodean attendance in 2020 attending what was, as has been the case annually for a while now, the biggest show yet. NAMM’s importance as an international event is really reaching a zenith and the additional training aspects added for the broader music, sound and production industries has given the show a large dose of extra grunt in content and attendances. The professional development aspects grow in quality, with the Ideas Centre sharing great industry ideas and achievements to full houses. Logistically the show keeps improving with traffic in and out of exhibits with the creation of a an exhibits precinct, a big improvement.
A credit to the organising team, the NAMM Show is an amazing showcase to the music, sound and production industries.
The show highlights the advocacy efforts the NAMM Foundation as well as the international network that has developed. The AMA was represented at the ICC Meeting of countries by Anthony Ursino and Rob Walker, where the panel discussed issues such as sustainability, how to better engage in Make Music Day,
We also attended meetings with NAMM International and Government Affairs directors as well as president, Joe Lamond. The AMA also assisted in the development of the NAMM Oral History Library. Greg Phillips was all over the show shooting content for members too, and bringing the new release news first to Australia.
The Annual AMA reception was at capacity and enjoyed by all at the end of a long Friday.
Adelaide retailer Cecere’s Music was presented with a NAMM Milestone Award at a gala breakfast event, to highlight a year when Australia was very well represented.

Left: Andrew Collyer, Managing Director of Hal Leonard Australia at his first NAMM Show on the impressive Hal stand. Right: NAMM CEO Joe Lamond with Claudio and Joe Cecere after presenting a NAMM Milestone Award for the 50th Anniversary of Cecere’s Music in South Australia

Left:Anthony Ursino, Graham Hoskins & Michael Jago at the NAMM Reception Right: Neville and Linda Kitchen with Nashville based Aussie, Joe Robinson, whose signature Maton was released at NAMM

Left: NAMM CEO, Joe Lamond welcomes Andre Hine and Chris Green of Mannys, with Roger Clapton and Michael Jago to the now annual NAMM reception.
Right: Greg Aitken of Brass Music Specialists with colleague Bodhi Scott-Jones

Left: Glenn Haworth presents to a packed house at the NAMM Ideas Centre.
Right: Australis’ Adam Goglis with Chris Herring of Yamaha Music at the show reception

Left: AMA President, Yamaha’s Michael Shade with now Seattle based Brendan Callinan, CEO of Roland Cloud
Right: Nick Middleton Roland & Miles Jackson Cole Clark Guitars

Left: Nathan Biggin and Michael Sher Right:Kristjan Snorrason of Music Junction with Tim Fogarty and Yamaha’s Michael Gonthier








Mannys to open in Perth – Store DJ to move in too

Mannys will open in Perth in 2020. “As with other Mannys locations, Store DJ will be housed in the same building – a setup that has been working really well for us, and for our customers”, said CEO Andrew Muller.  The desire was to be close to the city to recreate what has been created in Richmond, Fitzroy, Alexandria & Fortitude Valley locations and West Leederville fitted the bill.
The current location of Store DJ in Cannington will close when the lease expires on that property in June.

Andrew concluded that the store would be open before June 2020.

How Can We Help After the Bushfire Tragedy?

The Australian Music Association is deeply saddened and concerned by the bushfires that have devastated our country.  The impact on the environment, the wildlife and community is overwhelming.

Based on my own personal experience living through Black Saturday and now with the current situation, we have all been affected by fires in various ways. Even if you have not been directly impacted by the current fire season, the constant news of the loss of wilderness, homes and lives can make you feel overwhelmed and powerless.

Many of us have want to do something to help in this time of crisis.  But it is also important we acknowledge the impact this traumatic event may have on our emotional and mental health. As such, here is a simple and useful resource created by ABC News that explores the impact the news of the catastrophic fires can have on us as adults, on our children, and provides some practical strategies for coping –

If your company has an EAP service agreement or contract with a provider, please remind your staff that they should access this service if they need further coping strategies.

No doubt we have all been moved by the terrible devastation of the bushfire crisis throughout Australia in recent weeks, and we know that it will be a struggle for many as towns and businesses rebuild their trades and services, let alone homes and property that have been lost.

There will be many aspects of support that will help rebuild local economies, not the least of which will be customers returning to buy goods and services they did before the fires came through their communities.

As we have seen in the media, fund raising has been rapid and broad with celebrities and others in the music industry raising millions for the NSW RFS and to a lesser degree other states’ CFA’s, The Salvos, Red Cross and other disaster relief agencies. Many individuals and businesses have already been part of the giant fundraising efforts and made generous contributions. The AMA knows of a couple of fundraising efforts currently underway in our industry and we will do our best to support those efforts.

The AMA Executive thinks the most appropriate way for the Australian Music Association to be involved is to make available our communication channels to support these fundraising efforts. As usual the entertainment industry is putting its hand up to run numerous fundraising gigs and events – we will support spreading the word through Australian Musician and our social media channels.

By way of example a group of local luthiers and electronic builders are running a fundraising ‘big raffle’ for Australian made MI gear on social media. And we are sure other ideas will be presented in the coming weeks and months.

Timely insurance settlements, restoration of power and stock replacement in stores will all be critical to getting towns impacted moving again. We hope any MI stores that may have been affected by current events get back on their feet as quickly as possible and that we do our best as an industry to minimise their current challenges.

In terms of actions, if you do not know what or who to give monetary donations too, can I suggest donating to the Red Cross Bushfire Appeal –

It’s not hard to get involved in charity events … see following example:

My name is Adrian Tamburini (Pure Harmony Music & Events) and I am producing a Charity Gala Concert at the Athenaeum Theatre, Melbourne on February 7th to raise funds for victims of the bushfires through the Red Cross Disaster Fund. 100% of proceeds will go directly the Red Cross. 

This concert will feature over 50 singers and musicians from Melbourne’s opera community who are all donating their time and talent to this cause. The management and staff at the Athenaeum Theatre have also offered the venue and volunteered their time for this concert. 

Tickets went on sale yesterday through Ticketek. We have already sold nearly 800 tickets with the hope of selling all 1200 seats. 

Tickets and more information about this event can be found at

A well-known piano distributor is supplying the concert grand piano and 1200 people will be making sizable donations. It’s not that hard to get involved.

I trust this communication encourages you and your businesses by participating in efforts to help rebuild lives and communities, as many AMA members have already.


Be Safe,


Michael Shade

AMA President

Rosewood restrictions on finished instruments lifted on schedule

Members have been advised of the new regulations applying from November 29th regarding the trade in finished musical instruments containing rosewood. As announced earlier (full details here), after three years of industry lobbying the CITES meeting in Geneva in August voted in favour of allowing exemptions for trade and movement of finished musical instruments containing rosewood. Imports and exports of finished musical instruments, finished parts and finished accessories will no longer need a CITES permit. The exception applies to all species of dalbergia except Brazilian rosewood, which remains on CITES Appendix I.

Permits are not be required after 26 November, 2019. The Department of Energy and Environment have sent advice to stakeholders, and advised it has implemented the new processes.


Piano & Keyboards Sales Position at Better Music, Canberra

With the upcoming promotion of Rudi Zarka to Roland Australia as their as Piano Product Manager, we are looking for a piano & keyboard expert to join our team in Canberra! We are one of the largest musical instrument stores in Australia, established for over 40 years. We’re looking for a piano & keyboard expert to sell the world’s leading brands including Yamaha, Roland, Kawai, Korg, Nord, Kurzweil & Casio. Salary is very competitive dependent on experience. This is a Canberra based position, Better Music may provide assistance with relocation expenses if required. More details here: