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The Weekend Australian - Review - - Music Reviews - Iain Shed­den spin­doc@

MOST peo­ple agree play­ing mu­sic brings the fam­ily to­gether. Aus­tralians agree that play­ing an in­stru­ment is fun, a good way of ex­press­ing your­self and gives a sense of ac­com­plish­ment. In gen­eral, how­ever, as­pir­ing mu­si­cians face small cre­ative in­comes and chal­leng­ing ca­reer prospects. These fairly ob­vi­ous pro­nounce­ments are listed among thou­sands of facts just re­leased on a new on­line re­source from the Aus­tralia Coun­cil for the Arts called Art­facts: Mu­sic. This is the first cab off the rank in the Art­facts project, which aims to bring to­gether sta­tis­tics and in­for­ma­tion on all sec­tions of the arts into one easy-to-ne­go­ti­ate web­site. It’s a use­ful, one-stop shop for jour­nal­ists, students, mu­si­cians and in­deed any­body with any in­ter­est in the mu­sic busi­ness. Did you know, for in­stance, that 80 per cent of song­writ­ers are men and 70 per cent of mu­sic teach­ers are women? One draw­back is that a lot of the in­for­ma­tion in Art­facts: Mu­sic, some of it gleaned from the Aus­tralian Bureau of Sta­tis­tics, is a few years old, but the AC as­sures SD the site will be updated reg­u­larly as new in­for­ma­tion is made avail­able. You can check out the site here: http://art­facts.aus­trali­a­coun­cil.gov.au. SPEAK­ING of one-stop shops, one prob­lem fac­ing students with am­bi­tions to work in the mu­sic in­dus­try is de­cid­ing what branch of it to spe­cialise in. They could do worse than up sticks to At­lanta, Ge­or­gia, for a few years. The Clark At­lanta Univer­sity this week an­nounced a spe­cial new de­gree course within its walls that it claims will arm mu­sic nerds with ev­ery­thing they need to make a go of a mu­sic biz ca­reer. Rad­i­cally, the course is called Michael Jack­son: The Busi­ness of Mu­sic and is based on the life of one of the world’s great­est en­ter­tain­ers. The course was de­vel­oped by Amer­i­can en­ter­tain­ment lawyer James Walker. I HEARD the news to­day. Oh Boy. One of the tracks on Bob Dy­lan’s new al­bum is a blues ode to John Len­non called Early re­views of His Bob­ness’s new work, to be re­leased on Septem­ber 11, sug­gest it is the bee’s knees, with mag­a­zine de­scrib­ing it as ‘‘as­ton­ish­ing’’. The al­bum, Dy­lan’s 35th in a ca­reer span­ning more than 50 years, also fea­tures the sprightly which has more than a hint of Louis Arm­strong about it. The ti­tle track, con­versely, is a 14-minute epic cen­tred on the sink­ing of the Ti­tanic and has 45 verses. He’s wordy. AN­GUS Stone, the male half of si­b­ling duo An­gus and Ju­lia Stone, is an­other artist en­joy­ing favourable re­views lately, in his case for his de­but solo al­bum Now the singer has joined forces with that great pa­tron of the rock world, Arthur Guin­ness (1725-1803), to com­mem­o­rate the Ir­ish brewer’s an­nual Arthur’s Day on Septem­ber 28. Stone has recorded cover ver­sions of two songs by Ir­ish artists, the Cran­ber­ries’ and

by Damien Rice. Stone fans can vote for the one they think is best by go­ing to Guin­ness’s Face­book page from Mon­day. The win­ning song will be­come the Arthur’s Day An­them, avail­able through iTunes on Septem­ber 28, with all pro­ceeds go­ing to Stone’s char­ity of choice, SurfAid In­ter­na­tional. Pic­tures of Match­stick Men’s de­odor­ant $4.99. Roll Over Lay Down fab­ric soft­ener $5.99 Again and Again body scrub $6.99 In the Army Now Aus­tralian zuc­chini just $2.90kg.

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