Gotye Writes Minister of Communications, Calls for Radio Funding

Gotye Writes Minister of Communications, Calls for Radio Funding

Recording artist Gotye wrote a letter to Stephen Conroy, the Minister for Communications, calling for him to find room in next week’s budget, currently $1.4 million dollars in the hole, for the continued funding of community radio services.

Gotye cites community radio as indispensable to his own rise to a successful music career. As he stated in his letter;

Minister Conroy,

My name is Wally De Backer and I make music under the name Gotye.

Recently my music has enjoyed a great amount of success both locally and internationally, garnering hundreds of millions of views on YouTube, selling 10+ million records worldwide and receiving a number of awards (my album Making Mirrors won a Grammy for Best Alternative Album and my song Somebody That I Used To Know was awarded the Record of the Year Grammy).

Australian community radio has been instrumental in my recent international success. Without the support and encouragement of community stations when I started self- releasing my music in 2001 I would not have been able to develop my career. Larger capital city-based stations like RRR and FBi were instrumental, but opportunities for interviews, connection with fellow music lovers, and new musicians from diverse backgrounds through smaller community stations like KCR in Kalamunda, WA, or student radio station SYN FM in Melbourne supported me for many years as I developed my music and started finding an international audience.

Like millions of Australians I am also a listener to community radio and I love it. We are fortunate to have one of the most diverse and vibrant community radio landscapes in the world, something that has become clearer to me since traveling the world for the last two years and tuning in to radio in many countries. I value very highly the opportunity to connect with communities and cultures not regularly represented in mainstream Australian media through this network of volunteer-based, not-for-profit organizations.

It has come to my attention that there is a shortfall of $1.4 million per annum for the community radio sectorʼs transition to a digital broadcasting future in the upcoming May budget, a shortfall that may result in many community stations being switched off.

I urge you Minister, rectify this budget shortfall.

It will ensure that young musicians starting to develop a unique sound and vision can find an audience and connect with a diverse community of supporters before hopefully moving onto significant endeavors on the world stage. It will ensure that millions of Australians can discover cultures and communities that are rarely represented in other media, promoting diversity and engagement between people from many different backgrounds. It will be a commitment to a vibrant, interesting and intelligent Australia.

Wally De Backer

Gotye has been identified by The Australian as one of the top 50 most influential Australians in the arts, and has three album releases; Boardface (2003), Like Drawing Blood (2006) and Making Mirrors (2011).

View Gotye’s smash hit ‘Somebody That I Used To Know’ from Making Mirrors:

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