Friday, 4 January 2013

Established 1996 - This is My Story

Blue Tongue Management - Established 1996
I am Darrel Baird, the creator of Australian Music Business Manual and proprietor of Blue Tongue Management and Lungata Records Eighteen years of sustained music business, Blue Tongue Management works with start-up bands through to highly successful musical performers.

This is not a resume. This is my story. A short version anyway because there is too much to tell. It is written so you get an understanding of how I gained enough knowledge and experience in the music industry to create Australian Music Business Manual and give you confidence that the content within is the real deal and will help your career.

At 17 I was employed at one of Australia's premier 2000pax music venues working and enjoying the best Australian, US, and UK touring acts on the planet for over two years. And the concerts raged week after week Thursday to Sunday with music fans of all styles and backgrounds gladly paying to support the bands they loved and filling the joint. This was when the music industry was booming, and where my real passion for music began. Thereafter, I spent a decade traveling and frequenting major music festivals and cultural events, stadium and pub concerts and live gigs across Australia.

Ian Moss

In 1996, I launched what was then called 'Blue Tongue Promotions' and created and coordinated a multicultural, three day, multi-stage music and arts festival. I contracted 35 bands of all different genre and cultural backgrounds specifically including indigenous bands. The line-up included the cream of Australian rock and blues artists as the headline entourage. I flew them in on old DC-3 plane. The event also included dance groups, food stalls and an array of circus performers. It was streamed live on the web (circa 1996) and broadcast via Com Rad Sat to hundreds of community radio stations world wide. I met an artist manger called Ray Smith at this event. He later became a great mentor and taught me the importance of integrity while working with artists, amongst other skills.

Not long after, I managed two more very successful music events before moving towards artist management where I spent countless months driving in tour vans with bands that had asked me to help manage their careers. I booked, promoted, toured and lugged heavy black bins with these bands. What a great time as we lived the dream. But living expenses and rent costs money, so bands have to make money to pay those bills or just become weekend warriors. The hardships along the way lead me to work on the financial and business aspects harder and realising how many artists did not have management, I began looking at artist management as a profession.

So from 1996 to 2000, that is how I cut my teeth in this industry, building extensive experience in music business operations, artist and event management, tour management, logistics, marketing, promotion, and artist, and media liaison. And my business grew-up with the online revolution.

The Angels Band
In 2000, an eight year business relationship began with legendary rockers John and Rick Brewster of The Angels (Angels City) and soon after Chris Bailey and Buzz Bidstrup, the rhythm section of The Angels and Ganggajang. Blue Tongue Management was pinnacle in building The Brewster Brothers semi acoustic incarnation on a national basis and in steering the reformation of The Angels (Brewster Bailey Bidstrup Brewster, billed as The Original Angels Band) to national success which in-turn lead to their eventual reformation with Doc Neeson in 2008 (The bands original singer prior to 2000). Chris Bailey (R.I.P.), whom I can never thank enough, had managed Ganggajang since 1995 on an international level, and was a tower of knowledge and understanding. An amazing mentor, Chris shared his vast experience with me over the years, vastly broadening my strengths and strengthening my weaknesses in music business.

Although this line-up performed the same songs they wrote, and that ignited their career, we were told by the majority of our peers (Agents/Managers/Media and Rock Stars) along with hard core fans that 'This band will not succeed without Doc". So, it was on our shoulders to develop a new brand, build belief in that brand, create our own success and prove them wrong. I had to deliver the band across Australia, and the band had to deliver world class shows or the fans would walk. This was a time of immense pressure and it tested our resolve and self-belief. And we succeeded on all fronts. So if anyone says it can't be done, pass them by doing it!

Working with this band, Blue Tongue Management implemented all business decisions from meetings, managed the business office, created a healthy income flow by booking and contracting financially viable shows and national tours, and handled tour budgets, and engaged top level booking agents once the band and I gained credibility. Blue Tongue Management handled all media, publicity and promotional campaigns in the early years until we built consistently strong audience attendance to pay a high level publicist. Blue Tongue Management organised all travel logistics, production and crew and personally tour managed four hundred shows with this band alone. Blue Tongue Management designed merchandise, engaged manufacturing companies and sold that merchandise world wide. And built and managed the bands Website and social media until 2008. Blue Tongue Management also booked approximately three hundred performances for Brewster Brothers duo show and countless shows for many many other bands.

In many cases successful artists have a separate manager, tour manager, publicist and a label. The office of Blue Tongue Management worked with the four original members of The Angels and delivered quality management service, label service, tour management service and promotional service from grass roots to success. And everything else in between. There where plenty of stumbling blocks but we worked around them, become the wiser and moved forward. One of our last shows together was in front of 10,000 in W.A.

Harmonic Generator
During these years Blue Tongue Management continued working with other established artists, booking and promoting their tours and events, and worked in the development of up and coming bands, and booked various music venues, promoted youth concerts and continued to develop strong online social media and networking skills. In 2013 the journey continues with band management, new music releases and in music business consultancy.

Profile Australian and international artists, youth acts and events I have worked with, booked, represented or toured with include but are not limited to The Original Angels Band[The Angels](Aus), Dave Tice and Mark Evans(Aus), Ian Moss(Aus), Kevin Borich(Aus), The Poor(Aus), Adrian Belew(USA), Don Walker and the SF's(Aus), The Screaming Jets(Aus), Mark Evans (ex ACDC)(Aus),  The Radiators(Aus), The Deep End(Aus), Harmonic Generator(France), Darren Jack(Aus), Ray Beadle(Aus), Jenny Marie Lang(Aus), Chris E Thomas(Aus), Lil Fi(Aus), Kara Grainger(Aus), Koomurri(Aus), Sam Joole & Alien Zoo(Aus/UK), Brewster Brothers(Aus), The Backsliders(Aus), Shadow Thieves(Aus), The Bondi Cigars(Aus), Wayne Cornell Jnr(Aus), Raise The Flag(Aus), GangAwry(Aus) and The Brown Brothers(Aus). There are many many more artists, too many to list. You know who you are.

Event contracts include The Blues Shack(NSW), Bon Scott Celebration Concert Series (WA), Carlton United Brewery (Sydney 2000 Olympiad)(NSW), Brisbane Bicycle Grand Prix (QLD), Marburgh Oktoberfest (QLD), Carnivale '96 (NSW),  Newman Bike Show (WA), The Australian Comedy Gala(NSW/QLD), St George RLFC Events(NSW), Thredbo New Years Eve Concerts(NSW) The Snowy Run(NSW) and Bushfire Blues Concerts 2003 (NSW & SA)

Lungata Records 

is the independent record label arm of Blue Tongue Management. Lungata Records primary aim is to shop and release independent artists signed that work with Blue Tongue Management.
Current releases through Lungata Records include
Shadow Thieves - Between Days (EP) - 2010
Harmonic Generator - Dead On The Ground (Single) - 2011
Dave Tice and Mark Evans - Brothers In Arms (EP) - 2011 Through MGM Distribution
Harmonic Generator - Nobody Dies (Video Single) 2012

Released by Blue Tongue Management independently together with the below artists
Brewster Brothers - Any Day (EP) - 2004 (Blue Tongue Records) Through MGM Distribution
The Angels Band - Live At The Basement (Album) - 2006 Through MGM Distribution
The Angels - Ivory Stairs (EP) - 2007
GangAwry - Politics (Album) - 2007 Through MGM Distribution
Darren Jack - Better Place (Album) 2011 (consultant)

Releases penned for 2013 include Harmonic Generators new album 'When The Sun Goes Down' recorded with Mark Opitz and Colin Wynne

 Kevin Borich 5 CD's and two DVD's back catalogue.

1 comment:

  1. This is great Dange, it tells the whole story! Love Cath.