APRA AMCOS' annual pre-BIGSOUND SongHubs sessions featured two of Country music's most influential names with Milly Olykan, Country Music Association of America' (CMA) Vice President, International Relations and Development, and top hitmaker Shy Carter making the journey from Nashville to Australia to collaborate with locals.
From 1-4 September at Brisbane's recently opened 4000 Studios, songwriters and producers were hard at work to write and produce commercial hits, with Olykan as curator and Carter in the studio with the selected Australian and New Zealand music creators. On the SongHubs Country BIGSOUND roster were APRA Professional Development Award recipient Melanie Dyer, The Voice AU standout and New Zealander Kaylee Bell, rising stars Sinead Burgess, Chloe Styler and Blake O'Connor and more.
Warner Music Nashville solo artist Carter has been instrumental as a songwriter and producer on a number of hits including Kane Brown’s 'Heaven', Charlie Puth’s 'One Call Away', Billy Currington's 'It Don't Hurt Like It Used To' and Rob Thomas’ 'Someday'.
Olykan, originally from New Zealand, is leading the prestigious CMA's international ventures.
"Country Music at its core is anchored in collaboration, community and great songs – which are all the things that SongHubs represents. I am thrilled to have had the opportunity to bring Shy Carter to Australia to write with these talented writers and producers and to further the special connection between the Australia and Nashville songwriting communities.
"CMA’s mission is to grow Country Music around the world – and while that starts with a song, it is also reliant on passionate individuals like these songwriters who are championing Country music in Australia and New Zealand. I was blown away by what everyone produced this week."
Milly Petriella, APRA AMCOS' Director Member Relations & Partnerships, said, "After the last two years of limited travel and Zoom sessions, we are thrilled to have Milly and Shy come to Australia for BIGSOUND and to have them in the studio with standout Australian and New Zealand talent.
"SongHubs is about the songs and the connections, so we are grateful to be fostering international collaboration again in the incredible workspaces at 4000 Studios."
BIGSOUND delegates can hear direct from Olykan in an 'In Conversation' with ARIA Chair /ABC Music's Natalie Waller, which will highlight the growth and potential of Country Music within Australia’s mainstream music culture. The session takes place 7 September, 11-11:30am at Cloudland, and is directly followed by SongHubs in the Round, a quintessentially-Nashville songwriters round featuring Carter with Fanny Lumsden and SongHubs participants James Johnston and Loren Ryan.
Since SongHubs launched in 2013, across more than 80 events worldwide, over A$4m in performance royalties for the initiative's collaborators has been earned. SongHubs has produced commercial releases for the likes of Briggs, Troye Sivan, Tayla Parx, Morgan Evans, Peking Duk, Tkay Maidza, Ainslie Wills, The Chainsmokers, Guy Sebastian, Ecca Vandal, Chaii and many more.