15 November 2012

Sunrise - "the home of live music". Really?!

Today I heard a claim that signified the end of the world.

It was an ad for Sunrise, the morning TV show, a Coldplay song in the background, with the tagline "the home of live music".

Wait! What?

A three minute slot on a breakfast TV show is greater than a night out at a stadium or pub or concert hall watching the magic of live music? I can't support Sunrise's claim.

Sunrise is not a grungy pub, an opera house, or a bookstore. It's not a historical cinema-turned-concert-venue or a botanical garden filled with an orchestra. It's not a school concert or a garage band. It's not 5000 people at Rod Laver Arena or a venue so intimate the lead singer can hold your hand through a song. And it's not
a knowledgeable music show. It's not the home of live music.

I understand that TV makes music more accessible. It can promote bands to new and wide audiences - shows like Sunrise get HUGE ratings. And it's great to hear your favourite artist being interviewed after they've sung. Hell, I've spent many hours rewinding and replaying the live television performances and interviews with Savage Garden on video tape. And Hey Hey It's Saturday brought great bands to light, back in the day. Last week I was happy watching Bob Evans play on the late night news.

We need to see more music on Australian TV. Bands and musicians need greater exposure. But I don't think a show like Sunrise should be the "home of live music". It's a breakfast TV show, focused on dumbed down current affairs, watched on the run between mouthfuls of cereal and trying to find your car keys.

As my friend said, "wow and to think I've spent years wasting my hard earned money by supporting artists by going to see their live gigs, when I could have been sitting on the couch and supporting Channel 7's advertising budget. Silly me!"

We need more TV shows dedicated to music. More live concert series like JJJ Live At The Wireless, Live at the Chapel and VH1 Storytellers. More variety chat shows like Hey Hey, The Panel and Rove - often giving musicians their commercial break. And remember Recovery? We need that back! More dedication to talent and less manufacturing of music. But we still need to support live music.

In the past 15 years, I've seen more live shows than I can count, and every one has enriched my life somehow. Except Snow Patrol. They bored me. And that awful support act before Baby Animals were just horrible. Nothing compares to the adrenaline, joy and memories created by seeing a band or musician play live, before your eyes, outside of a TV screen. For a much longer time than three minutes too. The people you meet at gigs - the friendships and excitement shared, the way the music makes you feel alive, the way the singer looks at you from the stage - these feelings are amazing. And the live music at that show will never be recreated the same way. That's something special.

Please, I urge you to get out there, off the couch and get out to see some live music. I know it can be hard, I have heard the excuses. Sadly it seems easier to watch a TV talent show or a
breakfast show to get your music culture fix. Sadly. But seeing live music
doesn't have to involve a stadium show, or cost over $100. You can often take your kids. And the 'inconvenience' you may experience for a couple of hours of live music will be well worth it. Check your local newspaper or council website for gig guides - the next best thing may be playing at your local park or pub! And I hope that if you did enjoy seeing a band live on Sunrise, you went out and saw them live in the flesh.


  1. All great TV shows mentioned here Carly, but you left out Recovery. *sadface*

  2. Thanks Anon
    - the best constructive criticism from an anon commenter ever! Have edited and included Recovery!

  3. Loved this Carly!

    My late brother Joe was a muso and avid gig goer. He went to pub shows, big name acts and festivals as often as he could, even memorably sleeping out for all of his mates to see Pearl Jam in 94. I used to go to see live music a lot when I was at Uni, but once work and kids came along, I stopped.

    After Joe died last year, I decided to stop saying no to things because it was all a bit hard to organise, or I didn't want to "waste" money. Since then we have been to see bands, comedy shows, festivals and sports events - with and without the kids. I think Joe would be happy, and we're having an absolute ball. Life is too short to let breakfast TV be the pinnacle of entertainment.

    1. Oh I love this post Meredith. So sorry to read about your late brother, but I love that you have now got the inclination to see more live performances. :) thank you for reading and sharing your story.

  4. Glad to say I am taking your advice, Carly, and am making the trip south to finally see some real LIVE music this weekend. Living in a capital city where not many artists stop on their "national" tours, earlier this year I bit the bullet and promised myself a music trip, no matter the cost. Believe me, I was beaming with excitement to see Coldplay "live" on Sunrise this morning, but something tells me this Saturday's concert experience will be somewhat more exhilarating ;)


  5. Nothing could ever beat the atmosphere at a live gig!

  6. When I saw you tweet this I knew I had to comment!! I make a counter claim to yours....very tongue in cheek....Sunrise appeared NEXT DOOR to our house this year & Had INXS play LIVE!!!!!! The band that's now gone bye byes...and I truly must source those pics I took... They are a part of history!
    PS hope you got the best room for the best rest! D

  7. This is really worth reading, it has too much details in it and yet it is so simple to understand.

    Accredited High School Diploma Online

  8. Carly, a well written article as usual, the only live music you'll see on Sunrise is either Guy Sebastian (remember he has a seven figure long term contract with Channel Seven to be the hanging judge on the X Factor, his songs are used on Seven's show promos exclusively, his video clips are seen exclusively free to air on Seven, etc) an X Factor or Australia's Got (NO) Talent contestant, or anyone else whose music is on high rotation on Mix FM. Yes I remember the days of Hey Hey It's Saturday, Rove Live, Recovery, The Factory, Sounds, Nightmoves, Countdown etc. when credible live bands played live on the television for Australians to see. But nowadays you only have Channel [V] and MAX if you're lucky enough to have cable, as well as Rove (ditto). If a free to air network does a music show it'll be crap top 40 pop that is flogged all over Fox FM and Nova, bookended with lots of advertising. Mainstream music these days is there not to be enjoyed, but to flog products such as mobile phones, just so the stakeholders can make as much money as possible.

  9. Wow, this post is fastidious, my sister is analyzing these
    things, so I am going to convey her.
    Also visit my homepage play slots for money

  10. Hi, I do believe your website may be having web browser compatibility issues.
    When I look at your site in Safari, it looks fine however when opening in IE,
    it has some overlapping issues. I merely wanted to provide
    you with a quick heads up! Other than that, great blog!

    Feel free to surf to my website - cctv power supplies (draco.nism.ru)


Thank you for reading my blog. I love receiving comments :)
I really appreciate the time you've taken to write to me, and to share something about yourself.


Related Posts with Thumbnails