There is one music event that can’t be canceled on the music calendar and that’s Aus Music T-shirt Day, SO HA!
Ah yes, November 19, a sweet spot in the already sweet Australian Music Month. AusMusic T-Shirt Day is the celebration of music fashion, comradeship and industry awareness. Yes, this ultimate merch item has not only funded the ride home at the final leg of a band tour but for many of our artists has been their saving grace during a frightful 2 years of navigating the COVID live music landscape.
Whether you’ve spent months contemplating THE ultimate band shirt, doing a best-of tour for the week leading up to, or a full-on Katie Perry circa music awards affair of band shirt changes – we’re here for it #ausmusictshirtday.
So let’s rock this national Music Month by getting into what this day is all about, how you can support it, and alluding to some of the coolest alternative merch ideas we’ve come across… just in case your t-shirt wardrobe is busy.
AusMusic T-Shirt Day is brought to you by none other than:
literally the biggest live music supporters in Australia.
Support Act has been your homegirl/boy for a forever minute. Not only are they responsible for teaming up with ARIA and Triple j to bring us this great annual tradition, but they’re changing with the times to take the cause a little deeper this year. Yes – this day is generally a celebration of Aussie music and everything it means to the fans and industry workers, but over the past 18 months, Support Act has walked the walk by allocating almost 23 million through 10,000 crisis relief grants to the arts and live music industry when it was needed most. aIt is also one of the only charities in Australia that offers mental health and wellbeing support to artists, crew and industry workers.
This one’s dedicated to the one we love most! And raising awareness for the ongoing battle that is GETTING BACK TO LIVE MUSIC. “While there is some light at the end of the COVID tunnel, thanks to the massive uptake of vaccinations across Australia,” Support Act CEO, Clive Miller says, “there is still a long way to go before the music industry is operating at pre-pandemic levels.
Right, put us to work then!
Did you get your official AusMusic Tee?
This year, the official tee mascot stars as a hella cute non-binary echidna, who loves to express himself by thrashing it out on the drums. The tees are designed exclusively by First Nations artist “Little Butten” a.k.a Bree Buttenshaw. You might recall her design from last year’s tee, which was inspired by good bloke Ibis, donning his own statement t-shirt advocating ‘The Binz’ and recycling.
Support Act is bringing in the big drums (not guns), and they’ve all got t-shirts
A record number of musicians have stepped up as the ambassadors for this Ausmusic T-Shirt Day, with acts including 5 Seconds of Summer, Amy Shark, Lime Cordiale, Peking Duk, The Amity Affliction, Jessica Mauboy, and more. On the state of the industry crisis, Mauboy comments. “We’ve lost work and livelihoods due to the pandemic, and for many this is our hour of need. Ausmusic T-Shirt Day is a simple and fun way you can help raise funds to get our beloved Aussie artists and music workers back on their feet.”
But wait, there’s more than music cheerleading! This year the dream team has gone all out in the insane lineup of limited edition t-shirts, that are mostly sold out (Jon Stevens is still available)! The shirts are designed exclusively by G-lip, Keith Urban, Genesis Owusu, Tones & I, King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard, Lime Cordiale, Paul Kelly, Powderfinger, Spacey Jane, Tame Impala, and Ed Sheeran the adopted Aussie, as well as one by CrewCare, to represent our backline legends.
Don’t forget our affiliate merch gangs
And fear not, because if those did not call out to you, then here are a few of the ace merch gang who are getting on board with the Australian music spirit by offering discounts and donating additional proceeds to the Support Act cause.
Love Police ATM
The Thread Shop
The Araca Group
Tag(everyone) and bag(that shirt) and give that bag(donate)
ARIA, triple j, and Support Act all urge you to share some of that local music pride with ya social fam and call them out so they can join the action with you. And obviously, this is a great time to shout out to your peers, share their albums, and nominate your fans to get on board by donating directly to Support Act, or buying merch from one of its affiliate merch sellers.
Even if you get lost in the lead-up, you can still add another band shirt to your collection on the day and have it arrive just in time for Christmas! It’s the participation that counts the most 🙂 Or maybe this isn’t your first rodeo, and you’ve been spearheading up a team fundraiser for years now – we bow to you, Obi-Wan, and we see you on the official AusMusic Tee website fundraiser board!
Playlists are merch (wow), so drop them all day!
Spotify streams are basically like buying merch, right? Well regardless, it’s the next best free alternative for supporting your favourite artists, after buying merch. Check out the official AusMusic T-Shirt Day playlist for featured music from the artists leading the campaign or head to the Muso App Spotify playlist to support all of our fabulous local artists across Australia. Who else would be better to educate the fans about local bands than their fave local artists? Venues can make like triple J and program ‘the best of’, or a themed tour of every band that’s inspired their venue roots and graced their doorstep.
If your t-shirt game is already strong then let me tempt you
Tash Sultana’s ‘Goddess’ Varsity Jacket may have been voted alongside Chance The Rapper’s AcidRap hoodie as some of the coolest merch for 2020 but her whole Goddess collection featuring the gorgeous illustration is worth the investment. Young Franco has a disposable camera that probably takes some trés 90s chic Kodak shots and Lime Cordiale is into camping gear and Kazoos. There are embroidered bumbags, pop sockets, and a Cub Sport-suit for your perusal- enough said. Plus G Flip PJs, Ngaiire’s coffee collab (pretty sure we mentioned this merch idea in another article which she obviously must have read), lighters and papers all around – courtesy of The Reubens and Ocean Alley.
And at the end of the day, you’ve never needed an excuse to add another vinyl record to your collection, we see you out there, adding to crate and contributing to vinyl sales being at an all-time high! Those shrines that were constructed in dedication to the music gods won’t build themselves, and the elevated sleeve and wax game is winning us in the aesthetics department. Sorry RiRi but we already knew vinyl wasn’t dead before your Insta-proclamation.
Catch the live stream of the SEASON
After Rüfüs Du Sol’s performance earlier this month, TikTok has a few more remaining AusMusic Month live streams for the DMA’s and Inoxia still to come. They didn’t forget to add a special AusMusic T-Shirt Day performance from our goth-pop dream gal Ashwarya, Spacey Jane, Carla Wehbe, and Eurovision rep/Xfactor champ Isiah Firebrace to mark the occasion, sending it. That’s it, just sending it! TikTok has teamed up with the Australia Council for the Arts and virtual festival Isol-Aid to put together the Livestream, with all funds heading straight to Support Act.
Last But not least, keep celebrating AusMusic Month, then to infinity and beyond
There’s MTV’s rebrand to AusTV takeover for the whole month of November, a Rollingstone Magazine, Australia and Tiktok partnership for an editorial series highlighting the best of the Aussie landscape, including its venues, artists, and upcoming events. The anticipated triple J hurrah to get your ears around. Then of course, the hoopla that is hopefully making its way back into the streets of your neighbourhood! I mean, we’re all out here supporting local music with a vengeance, and that means making sure that we head out to see our friends play too, embarrassingly decked out as fangirls from tee to toe.
AND ABOVE ALL, to our industry – YOU’RE ALL STARS.
It could just be our proximity to the Christmas spirit, but we’re feeling thankful that we made it this far! The spirit of participating for the ultimate cause is close to our hearts at all times and it’s something we’ve been keen to advocate and embrace over the past few years. Music fans keep so much to keep the dream alive, but a lot of the support has been unfathomable as we’ve witnessed our live music scene take such a creative approach in stepping up collaboratively. To all the performers, venue owners, promoters, backline and crew, journos, support teams, and the sky and earth between, you really are one badass village!
Take care of each other, and we will see you on November 19 for the fashion show. Is there a Meanies shirt in the house??