Miss going to the pub for some live music? You're not alone.
As COVID continues to make gigs and concerts something of a distant memory, it's proving harder and harder for artists to learn their craft and potentially even make the big time.
Well, not if Highland FM have anything to say about it.
The Bowral-based radio station has just launched an Artist of the Month them on their 100% Home-grown show.
Hosted by Lea Steed, the program aims to amplify the voices of some of the best up and coming talent across the Highlands and Tablelands regions.
Highland FM Manager Adam Stokeld said the station was looking to support local artists after a painful 18 months.
"The wealth of talent we have here, not only in the Southern Highlands but in the Southern Tablelands as well, is quite remarkable," he told the Post.
"90 percent of us engage with the arts in some way. Since the beginning of July this year there's been over 25,000 gigs or events cancelled which works out to be about $16 million per week in lost revenue.
"The sad thing too is the industry hasn't been able to operate to the levels it was pre-COVID. Touring has been cancelled. If you look at the arts, especially in our community, it affects every business."
The inaugural Artist of the Month is a particularly special talent in the form of Goulburn's Isy Cappo.
At only 16 years of age, Isy has already notched up over 100,000 streams on Spotify and had been lauded for her ability to seamlessly transition between genres.
With five singles to her name already, Isy has been making music for a number of years, as she told 100% Home-grown earlier this month.
"When I was around 11 I taught myself piano and guitar," she said.
"Having pub gigs at the ripe old age of 12, you kind of needed to play all your solo acts!
"When it comes to the strings, I do play different samples. For my first song Spark, went into the recording studio and took two hours to lay down every single instrument and harmony line and he [studio recorder] just looked at me and said 'you're a freak.'
"He was just blown away by this little 14 year old girl coming into the studio and smashing out a song in two hours...I'll always remember that."
Stokeld said supporting creators like Isy was vital to Australia's cultural wealth and welcomed the eventual easing of restrictions to help the music scene recover.
"Australian arts and creativity are an essential part of our cultural fabric and amongst our nation's most powerful assets," he said.
"Investing in the arts is also investing in our social, economic and cultural success. Cultural and creative activity already provides $112 billion a year to Australia's GDP. So whatever we can do to support the arts, particularly the live music sector and these young musicians coming out of COVID [we will].
"Our studio is purpose-built for live performances so it will be wonderful once we have lockdown behind us to have these featured artists live in studio to perform live on air."
100% Home-grown airs every Saturday between 5-7pm. For more information head to Highland FM's website.
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