Today is a special edition of Ausmusic T-Shirt Day to support struggling artists during the COVID-19 crisis. On The Record’s biggest Australian music enthusiasts are letting you into their wardrobes to see what they’ll be wearing. (Image sources: Nikita Skuse, Gabby Torpey & Lara Pacillo)
By Nikita Skuse | @nikita_skuse
Triple J and Support Act’s ‘Ausmusic T-Shirt Day’ has come early this year to get people out of their pyjamas and raise some much-needed funds for Australia musicians.
The event that is usually celebrated during November’s Ausmusic Month has been brought forward for a special edition to support struggling artists affected by COVID-19.
Because of social distancing restrictions currently in place in Australia, all music gigs and festivals have either been postponed or cancelled, creating a $330 million loss so far for the Australian arts industry.
Ausmusic T-Shirt Day encourages music fans to buy merch from the acts they love, which is especially significant in a time when these artists are losing a huge portion of their income.
Although it’s too late to have a t-shirt delivered to your door in time for the big event today, band shirts never go out of style. If you still want to support the Australian music industry Support Act has collated a whole list of artist’s online stores where you can get your hands on a sweet tee.
So, without further ado, the music fans at On The Record will each tell you a bit about the Ausmusic t-shirts we’re donning today as inspiration for your next purchase and to pay homage to the Australian artists we couldn’t do without:
I’m wearing G Flip
It was a hard choice on what to wear for Ausmusic T-Shirt Day this year but I was in the mood to revert to my first ever purchase.
I bought this tee the first time I saw G Flip play at Spin Off Festival. I got stuck in the coat check line before her set and was so stressed I wouldn’t get a prime position. I walked in just as she was starting and surprisingly didn’t even have to struggle to get pretty darn close to the barrier. Barely anyone in Adelaide really knew who she was back then. It’s crazy to think how far she’s come now.
After her 2018 gig at Jive, she stuck around and was up for a chat with everyone. She’s also probably one of the very few artists that will reply to (or at least acknowledge) every single Instagram DM she receives. If you don’t believe me, try it. Mention Crocs for extra cred.
While being in isolation she’s recorded a heap of demos of unreleased songs that you can catch on her YouTube channel. Because of the pandemic she has also postponed her tour in May and has urged people to hold onto their tickets if they can, promising on Instagram that once the gigs go ahead they’ll be “slamming”.
Gabby Torpey (sub-editor) is wearing Paul Kelly and Neil Finn
Gabby: I picked this shirt because it is one of my oldest and most loved concert shirts. I went to Day on The Green in 2013 with my family to see Paul Kelly and Neil Finn perform together. We waited in line to get this shirt signed but we were in the line for Mark Seymore and he told me off because, and I quote, “this isn’t my shirt.” But he signed it anyway and I have been horrified by the experience for most of my life.
I’ve seen Paul Kelly live maybe five or six times throughout my life. I remember one time at a concert it started to rain and the wind was pushing people where they stood but absolutely no one moved and the crowd was completely silent while he performed. And because we were surrounded by these massive white gum trees all these leaves were flying in the air and it was like everything was paused.
I’ve grown up listening to Paul Kelly all my life, mostly through CDs in long car trips. My mum is a massive fan and claims she used to go to small pub gigs in Melbourne and that’s when she first discovered him. A lot of the passion and knowledge of his music came from my mum.
Nahum Gale (journalist) is wearing DZ Deathrays
Nahum: In these times of quarantine and lockdown, I picked DZ Deathray’s top in memoriam of all the blast night outs I had with my close mates, pre-coronavirus.
Listening to Like People while smashing down a few drinks at a party or chilling out on a mate’s couch just chatting about life whilst The Mess Up plays in the background, all supply reason for why DZs were my choice this year.
Although I have yet to see them live (unless you count in my dreams to which I see them live probably every night), DZ’s have been a staple band for experiencing good times with my friends. One specific memory I recall of the band was my friend sitting me down one night and making me watch their music video for The Mess Up which featured the band members taking shot after shot in a never-ending take for an entire three-minute song. It’s more the fact DZs music acts like an anthem to misdeeds and misadventures I have had over the past few years.
If coronavirus has taught me anything, it is to not take your favourite bands for granted; buy that ticket, see them perform and experience the blessing that is live music.
Lara Pacillo (journalist) is wearing Good Morning
Lara: I’m wearing my Good Morning top for Ausmusic T-Shirt Day to support my favourite Australian band.
I found the band on YouTube when I was trying (and failing) to teach myself guitar a few years ago. I loved how their music is so sweet and always puts me in a calm mood.
I saw Good Morning live when they played at the Crown and Anchor for Swirl Fest this year. It was an intimate little show which is so different from a lot of big festivals I often go to. The band are not super well-known, so to be in a room full of so many people who shared an appreciation for their music was an incredible experience. I met singer and guitarist, Stefan, from the band after too who was very down-to-earth and kind.
If I’m ever feeling a little overwhelmed, playing their music makes me feel more comfortable in the chaos.
My favourite song is You off an EP they released in 2015 and I also love their album, Shawcross. It’s perfect to listen to while flicking through a magazine and sipping a hot drink on a sunny afternoon.
They have had to postpone their USA and Europe Tour because of COVID-19 unfortunately. Good Morning have still been able to treat their fans to live music however through a live stream on Instagram in March as part of Isol-Aid Festival.
Alexandra Bull (journalist) is wearing Lime Cordiale
Alexandra: The night I bought this t-shirt holds some pretty good memories with some good friends and it was the first night I saw Lime Cordiale live too. It was actually one of my friends who got me into them! He wanted to go to one of their shows and didn’t have anybody to go with so I gave them a listen and I was instantly hooked. I liked the fact that they all seem like pretty easy-going guys and their songs all have good vibes about them.
I saw them live twice last year (I was also supposed to see them at Falls last year). Both times were equally incredible and I was super impressed [with] how good they are live. The vibes were immaculate at both shows and both shows are two of my favourite shows I have ever attended.
My favourite song by Lime Cordiale is ‘Is He Your Man?’. It’s probably one of my favourite songs to hear live. I love the chorus and that it’s a little bit different from most of their other songs.
They haven’t had much luck with any Australian shows since the end of last year when Falls Festival in Lorne got cancelled. They were also supposed to be playing at Splendour in July which has been postponed and I’m fairly sure they have had festivals and gigs overseas cancelled too.
Chelsea Shepherd (journalist) is wearing Cub Sport (in spirit)
Chelsea: Cub Sport caught my attention with their incredible voices. The first time I listened to their music was on Triple J when I was driving in the car. Their music is extremely captivating.
I always associate Cub Sport’s music to good times. Even though some of their songs are quite mellow and gloomy, their music always seems to put a smile on my face. I have memories of listening to their music around a campfire with my friends and a few beverages and looking back on that makes me feel very grateful.
Their song I’m On Fire from their 2016 album This is our Vice has to be my favourite because it’s a great song to dance to. They also do an amazing cover of when the party’s over by Billie Eilish which I personally think is better than the original.
I was very excited to see them perform this year at Splendour in the Grass in July, however, due to the festival being postponed, I may not get to see them. Cub Sport seems as if they’ve struggled due to the effects of COVID-19 and have pushed back their album release to July 24. They also had festival appearances and an American tour lined up for the coming months, which have now had to be cancelled or postponed. However, they have blessed their Instagram followers with covers and performances on their page.