APRA AMCOS National Songwriting Postcode Rankings 2014

Thursday, 17 Dec 2015

Click here for the full 2014 and 2013 Reports and rankings.

Inner city and regional epicentres: honeypots for busy Australian songwriters

In its second Annual Songwriting Postcode Rankings, the country’s largest and oldest copyright collecting society, APRA AMCOS, identifies those suburbs compelling songwriters to set up home: from Sydney’s Darlinghurst to Queensland’s Darling Downs.

While the image of the struggling songwriter/composer living in a suburban share house is long-held, a large share of earning Australian songwriters prefer the coastal climes or the hub of inner city living. The Top 10 songwriter postcodes1 are predominantly in ALP seats2  and enjoy a younger demographic3

Andrew Harris, Principal Analyst at APRA AMCOS said, “Although Melbourne’s Inner North suburbs of Brunswick and Northcote have dominated the rankings again this year, Footscray’s nation-leading growth over the last year suggests Melbourne’s west is firmly establishing itself as a key national music hub.”

The Pop/Rock and Alternative genres dominate APRA membership4. This year, the top suburbs for these important genres were Brunswick (Vic), Northcote (Vic) and Newtown/Enmore (NSW). Nearby Camperdown (NSW) saw the biggest Sydney percentage growth of songwriters, 8th nationally.

Ranking as one of the World’s Most Musical Cities, Melbourne again dominated the top songwriter postcode rankings, claiming 15 berths in the APRA AMCOS Top 30 Postcodes. Top postcode was again Brunswick (Vic), followed by neighbouring Northcote (Vic), with Coburg (Vic) and Preston (Vic) moving into a top 5 berth. When adding in Brunswick East (Vic, ranked 19th, up from 28th last year) this 4km enclave appears a magnet for creative types.

Across the Maribyrnong River, Footscray/Seddon (Vic) was one to watch for its intense songwriter growth, number one nationally for the year. Reservoir (Vic) was also strong, climbing 19 places to rank 28. Croydon (Vic) near the Dandenong Ranges, showed strong attraction to songwriters looking for a place to settle, with the 3rd highest percentage growth nationally. Eltham (Vic) was also a growth hot spot.

As reflected nationally, NSW songwriters were largely based in their inner city capital, but only in this state did regional ‘hot spots’ emerge. The NSW Northern Rivers area proved the biggest honeypot for writers outside a major metropolitan city. Lismore (NSW) was in the middle of the Top 30 national rankings (at number 14) and still had 6 mentions in the Top-10-by-Genre lists. Byron Bay (NSW) stormed from 26th to 20th this year, powered by New Age (think yoga, massage, meditation) and World music genres.

Gosford (NSW) has come in 18th nationally and also took out the Number One Gospel spot from the home of Hillsong, Baulkham Hills (NSW).

Iconic Bondi (NSW) has slipped slightly in the national rankings to 6th, but is still home to the greatest number of Screen composers and Urban songwriters, as well as strong representation from Electronica and Dance/Techno songwriters (2nd in these two separate genres). It has also lost its number one NSW ranking, with Newtown/Enmore (NSW) taking the top spot for the year.

Although Tamworth (NSW) still featured in the Country genre Top 10, both Brunswick (Vic) and Preston (Vic) have leapfrogged it this year, seeing it drop from 2nd to 4th nationally. Northcote (Vic) maintains its number one position in the Country genre.

The Electronica genre has seen almost 50 per cent growth in the Australian marketplace5. Surry Hills/Darlinghurst (NSW) rode this wave, jumping from Number 3 to Number 1 ahead of Bondi (NSW) and Brunswick (Vic) in terms of the number of earning songwriters in the genre. 

Scoring the most non-Victorian and non-NSW entries in the Top 10-by-Genre lists was West End/South Brisbane/Highgate Hill in Queensland, also appearing in the national Top 30 as did Kelvin Grove/Red Hill. Toowoomba in the Darling Downs experienced solid growth, ranking 4th in the country’s biggest movers and one to watch.

Full rankings are available online.

1. Defined by number of earning APRA songwriter members during calendar year 2014; earnings are from all domestic and international sources.
2. ALP held Federal seats in at least 7 of the Top 10 postcode areas/suburbs. ALP held State seats in 6 of the Top 10 postcode areas.
3. Against the national median age reported in ABS: Population by Age and Sex, Australia, States and Territories 26 March, 2015 (37.3 years) and compared to suburb profiles in localstats.com.au/demographics (32-37).
4. Annual Year in Review statistics http://sustainability.apraamcos.com.au/our-community/music-creators/
5. 2013-2015, APRA AMCOS growth in number of Electronica and Dance/Techno members.


APRA AMCOS Communications
Anne Blair 0404 293 163 ablair@apra.com.au 
Jana Gibson 0407 400 292 jgibson@apra.com.au

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