First Break Finalists – First Look

Revamped NA2R shows off fresh talent

Five finalists have been announced for the commercial radio industry’s exciting new Australian Music initiative – First Break.

The final five are:

Adam Katz: fusion of pop, R&B and hip-hop

Burning Brooklyn: an alternative rock band, formed in 2008

Fairchild Republic: rock band from the Gold Coast

Kelsie Rimmer: a 20 year old singer, songwriter from the Sunshine Coast

The Vanns: Indie band originally from Kiama

The five finalists were chosen from 162 entries Judging is three phased and in Phases 1 and 2 involved music and program directors from all major commercial radio networks, Mushroom executives and music journalists.

Judging in Phase 3 will see the final five performing live for Mushroom executives and network music directors with the winner announced at the end of the month.

granttothill_178Judge, Grant Tothill (left) from Southern Cross Austereo said: “There is no doubt local music is in good shape judging by the passion shown by those who have entered First Break. The entries were varied and creative. It is going to be great to see the final five perform live.” 

Judge, Brett Nossiter from DMG Radio said: “I was really impressed by the quality and depth of great artists that entered First Break and in such a wide range of genres and styles. Culling to a Top 5 was a tough process. I can’t wait to see them play live, and ultimately help an artist take their career to the next level.”

Chief executive of Commercial Radio Australia, Joan Warner said First Break was open to unsigned artists who have not charted in the top 100 Australian national airplay chart.

“The industry, which will provide airtime across major metropolitan and regional networks to promote the new artist, has also joined forces with the Mushroom Group to financially support the winner for the release of two singles and touring and marketing – which is very exciting.”

firstbreak_169Ms Warner said First Break is a revamp and expansion of the New Artists 2 Radio (NA2R) program which the industry ran for the past ten years.

First Break benefits include:

  • airplay support for two single releases and commercial radio airtime support for touring and marketing over 12 months, conservatively valued at $1.9 million;
  • joint financing by commercial radio and the Mushroom Group for creating video clips social media activation and on-road support to build a long term partnership with the chosen artist or band over twelve months;
  • performing at the Australian Commercial Radio Awards (ACRAs) in Sydney on October 12 in front of around 1200 of the commercial radio and music industry’s elite.

“Collaboration with Australia’s number one independent music group, the Mushroom Group, headed by Michael Gudinski, adds another strong element to the new initiative which will ensure a richer, deeper relationship between commercial radio and the artist,” Ms Warner said.

michael150x150_110Michael Gudinski (left) said: “I’m excited to see what talent we can uncover from the length and breadth of Australia and utilise this amazing opportunity”.

To listen to the final five go to and follow the instructions.

From CRA Media Release