APRA AMCOS has confirmed details of its first female-focused SongHub event, which will be curated by Chelsea Jade.
As first revealed in NZ Music Business, SongHub Sphere will be aimed specifically at women songwriters and producers, and will feature a starry line-up of international guests. Applications are now open for local artists wishing to take part in the event, which will run August 6-11 at Auckland’s Roundhead Studios.
As well as celebrating the 125th anniversary of New Zealand becoming the first country in the world to give women the right to vote, SongHub Sphere is also intended to address gender inequality within the music industry: just over 20 percent of APRA AMCOS’s members –songwriters and composers – identify as female, while less than 4 percent of producers and sound engineers are women.
Victoria Kelly (pictured), director of member services at APRA AMCOS, told NZ Music Business: “SongHub Sphere is a one-off event to celebrate women’s suffrage, but is also particularly pertinent to the gender equality conversation we are having in the music industry at the moment.”
As well as the previously announced Susan Rogers and Ebonie Smith, the other international guests so far confirmed are Wendy Wang, a US songwriter producer who plays with Bird and The Bee and recently signed a publishing deal with hitmaker Greg Kurstin, and UK artist Laura Bettinson (pictured below), who performs as FEMME and also fronted Ultraista, which featured Radiohead producer Nigel Godrich and drummer Joey Waronker (Crowded House, Beck, REM). Further guests will be announced shortly.
The event will be curated by Chelsea Jade, pictured at the top taking part in last year’s SongHubs and who recently co-wrote ‘You Owe Me’ with the Chainsmokers. It is hoped that another leading NZ songwriter will also be among the mentors.
As well as the daily writing sessions we hold, APRA AMOS will be presenting a seminar series to the wider music community, giving the guests the chance to share their experiences with others in the NZ music industry.
The most recent SongHub was held in April was focused on country music writing, with guests flying from Nashville for the event.
Kelly says the latter event was a big success, with one of the participants Kaylee Bell on her way to Nashville to collaborate further with one of the SongHub guests Marc Beeson.