JIMMY Little’s legacy will live on with the announcement of the Jimmy Little Grant to help indigenous musical managers get the start they need.
Jimmy’s music and contribution to the Australian music industry remains at the core of who he was – a proud indigenous artist who was always the first to give something back to the industry that helped him become a household name.
To continue this great legacy and the notion of giving back, Warner Music Australia managing director Tony Harlow has announced the annual grant in Tamworth yesterday will be used to support managers of Indigenous artists with the aim to improve opportunities for Indigenous artists and their managers within the Australian music industry.
The grant will be run in partnership with the Association Artist Managers (AAM), who already have a successful management mentoring program in place, but with emphasis on those managers of Indigenous bands and artists.
“Jimmy Little was one of Australia’s greatest artists and his loss has left behind a huge hole in both indigenous and country music,” Tony said.
“To honour his incredible recording legacy with Festival Records, Warner Music Australia is proud to be involved in a unique collaboration with the Jimmy Little Foundation to help develop Indigenous management talent and therefore the Jimmy Littles of tomorrow. In his lifetime Jimmy’s contribution to the music of Australia and to its Aboriginal communities cannot be captured in words alone. Jimmy stood as an inspiration of what was possible and a standard to aspire towards. The people he touched, directly or indirectly, through his music and the Jimmy Little Foundation would stretch from one end of this vast land to the other.”
Tony said Warner wanted to give back just the way Jimmy did, to honour this musical legend.
The grant was warmly welcomed by Jimmy Little Foundation CEO Graham “Buzz” Bidstrup.
“The music business is renowned for being a very difficult industry to navigate through and young emerging artists need all the help they can get,” he said.
“The hurdles for Indigenous artists in regional and remote communities can seem even more insurmountable so now with the help of Warner Music and the Association of Artist Managers the Jimmy Little Foundation can developing a mentorship program for Indigenous music managers and managers of Indigenous artists.”
The program will begin by getting experienced managers to regional areas and holding workshops.
“It’s about us getting expertise to communities,” Buss said.
“As we build the program, we might start bringing people out of communities.”
Artist Kevin Bennet said managers were invaluable to an artist’s career.
“Managers are such an important part of what we do so to have a manager who understands you, where you’re going and where you come from is so important,” he said.
“You need a manager who knows their stuff. If you’re an indigenous artist working in the middle of nowhere, the chance of finding a manager is slim. It’s terrific to have a start like this.”