Australian books, the census, the Art Music Awards, and more

Greetings for the new week.  Welcome to my (now) occasional blog – which is number 22!  So, if you are new to this blog, there are a few for you to catch up on.

Protection of Australian authors has been in the recent news, with last Saturday, 13 August 2016, proclaimed National Bookshop Day, marked by a series of events including a panel discussion on plans recommended by the Productivity Commission to abolish the parallel importation rules.

 A couple of useful links to find out more are:


Why do we always seem to have to fight for Australian creativity, to fight for the arts to have  a rightful place in our society?  We have already demonstrated that Australian artists – across all the artistic genres – can play equally on the world stage.  Why do governments often feel the need to change something that is working?  Answers on a postcard are welcome.

Other recent arts news include the following:

The Census -  and how it fails artists:  Notwithstanding the debacle of trying to complete the census online last Tuesday, 9 August (did you have fun trying to do so?  I certainly did so, before I realised I just had to give up...), Arts Hub writer Emma Clark Gratton makes an interesting point:  the census fails to acknowledge artists whose day job is something else – and that means a large number of talented and qualified people who continue with their creative endeavours of high professional standing.  Click on the following link to find out more:

And then there is the fabulous news we have been hearing recently about music and memory – but what about the role music therapy has been playing in this area of arts and health for yonks?  This is not a new discovery!  While I am delighted that attention is now gaining public momentum on the way music can help people living with dementia, I am curious as to why the track record of an accredited allied health intervention, that is music therapy, has never made such similar press.  Nonetheless, this is good news for the arts/health interface, and you can read more at Music Australia’s news item at the following link:

The winners of the annual Art Music Awards, an initiative of APRA AMCOS and the Australian Music Centre, are being announced tomorrow night, Tuesday 16 August, in Melbourne. It has been a real privilege for me to have been invited to be on the judging panel on some of the award categories over the last few years, including this year’s Awards, and I am invariably impressed by the range and standard of music-making in this country, both in terms of creation, performance and education.  You can see the list of finalists here:

And on a more personal note, my dear friend and creative collaborator, the Australian writer and playwright Peta Murray, is being nominated for a playwriting award for her most recent extravaganza, ‘Things That Fall Over’ and its coda ‘Swansong!!! The Musical!!! – an oratorio for Late Bloomers, for which yours truly was the composer (and occasional piano player), and which premiered in Melbourne in March 2014.  A number of you were also financial supporters through the crowd-funding campaign, for which Peta Murray and I will be forever grateful.  So, fingers crossed!

So, what would you like to listen to this week?

My feeling is something from my most recent CD, ‘Places with high levels of natural beauty’ and for this week it is ‘Lullaby for Alina’, a ‘theme and variations’, which I don’t think has featured much in this series of blogs before.  And remember, grown-ups can enjoy lullabys, too.

As always, for more details go to .

Until next time,




PS (1) Scroll down to the bottom of this web page to play the featured music.


PS (2)  While I am still exploring what is possible through my new website, including developing my database and mailing out such emails as this, if that doesn’t fit for you, please feel free to ‘unsubscribe’ (we all receive too many emails).  I will miss you, but will understand.