Music heals all wounds, right? Labor’s Seven Step Plan is showcasing how live music may resurrect Sydney’s night life

The Sydney live music scene, in the wake of a seven step plan put forward by the Mike Baird’s Labor government, may be resurrected from a death caused by lockout law legislation.

Lockout Laws have evidently closed doors on more than just club goers who show up a little too late to the party. They have closed doors on aspiring bands and musicians.


In March 2014, deep disappointment shrouded the state as Premier Baird’s government announced the laws that have led to Sydney’s night life being referred to as an “international joke”.

A very lame, poorly timed joke. An Adam Sandler level joke. .

Jo Haylen, Member for Summer Hill, and Darcy Byrne, former Mayor of Leichhardt have spoken out about the damage done to Sydney’s live music scene.

Mike Baird doesn’t understand what the lock-out laws have done to Sydney’s live music scene,” Haylen says. “We’ve lost venues, jobs and many of the things we love about Sydney.”

Labor’s Seven Step Plan was announced this week, which calls for all-night public transport on weekends, a night time economy commissioner and a greater support for small bars, all in the hopes to create more opportunities for artists making a start in the industry.

Creating a new category of licensed live music venues can give the sector a shot in the arm and lead to the proliferation of a new kind of venue…across metropolitan Sydney.” Byrne says. “Because people consume alcohol differently when it’s combined with cultural activity, live music venues can be the antidote to the the plague of beer barn violence.

It breaks our hearts to think about all the new tunes that aren’t getting any stage time, so Labor’s plan to lift up these musicians is giving us some much needed hope.

Labor’s Seven-Step plan:

  1. Deliver all-night public transport on weekends through a trial of late-night trains, buses and light rail.
  2. Create a new class of liquor licenses for live music venues which allow later trading for venues across Sydney which focus on live music, such as Oxford Art Factory.
  3. Appoint a night time economy commissioner to work with stakeholders, local government and police to facilitate the growth of Sydney’s late night economy.
  4. Build a strategic plan for contemporary music which will identify short, medium and long-term actions to support the growth of live music and other small live cultural events.
  5. Establish a permanent night time economy roundtable that will support live music and jobs.
  6. Review regulation.
  7. Support small bars, including increasing venue capacities from 60 to 120 people.