Plan 9 from Outer Utopia
by Chris Quinlan


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PLAN 9 FROM OUTER UTOPIA

Poppa Chris, Listen to this!!

How many times have musicians asked the following questions?

When do we get a gig?
I want to get paid!
Where are the chicks?
Do we have any beer left on the band-rider?

Could the following be a plan for the future and an answer to the distressing questions listed above? ...........

Poppa Chris writes on a possible future utopian existence for starving musicians everywhere .........

"...... Avid readers of this rancid little column will have noticed that in the last couple of months, I have been formulating ideas and possible scenarios to get musicians once and for all out of the quagmire of an industry based on rejection and clique-based cronyism ....."

"The following essay is an introductory attempt to start a dialogue and a possible lobby group with anyone who can talk and play a pentatonic scale at the same time on the possible musical future of a society that has industrialised an art-form by using unpaid skilled labour i.e. door-take musicians ....... to their own financial and exploitive ends ....."

PLAN 9 FROM OUTER UTOPIA

..... The formulation of ........

"The United Musicians Party of Australia"

What the United Musicians Party will stand for:

Making all current door-take gigs in Australia part of the work-for-the-dole scheme.

Eventually, all dole payments to out-of-work or playing-for-free musicians will be changed into arts council grants; this has the two- fold effect of immediately slashing the unemployment rate and taking Australia's most talented people out of the welfare system once and for all.

People who play music and wish to be called a professional musician and do it as full-time employment, register themselves into a series of musical examinations currently available through the TAFE Course System

.... the Grades the aspiring professional musician recieves from their exam or exams will determine the amount of the annual arts grant (to be paid as a weekly wage) .... each of the ten grades will have a designated annual arts grant subsidy.

The now professional musician will then be free to write and play whatever he sees fit, in a supportive, non-welfare environment, the results to be recorded at a studio chosen by that musician from a list of allocated studios and aired by allocated radio stations that formerly played 60-70's retreads.

The musician will be free to join forces with other like minded musicians to form bands and collectively write and co-exist peacefully ..... each registered band will be allocated ......

....... one Volkswagon Combi Van ...... one three-bedroom house in an outer western suburb of their relevant city, complete with one lawn-mower and enough egg-cartons to sound-proof the living room.

As soon as 15 tunes are ready, these bands will be put into a gig allocation system; simply put, all bands will register into the ....

Australian Pub-Gig League... (The A.P.L.)

... the A.P.L. will have bands choose a home pub, then the APL will set up a home and away season for all bands to compete in!

At each pub there will be a member of ......

The Door-Bitch Association of Australia

..... duties of the door-bitch will be to count the number of punters coming through the door, the results counted and sent to the APL for premiership point scoring and finding the relevant pub-band's standing on the APL league ladder.

(As a sideline benefit; the job of the door-bitch is made easier because entry to all APL pub-gigs will be free, therefore she will not have to put up with any bull-shit from so-called "friends of bands" wanting to get in without paying saying that their name was left off the door list.)

....... At the end of the APL Home and Away season, there will be a finals series culminating in an awards night taking over from the phased out impotent ARIA's, this award night will be called ........

The Venue Industry Arts Grant Recognition Awards

Yep ..... The VIAGRA's

As premiership points are awarded from the amount of punters bands get to gigs, (scrutinized of course by the girls from "The Door Bitch Association Tally-Room") ....

....... and all bands having been given an equal opportunity paid pub- gig tour, free-of-the-former "industry clique-based, not what you know, who you know bullshit routine." ...........

....... The VIAGRA's will be a true representation of who are the most popular musicians and bands in the country.

At the end of every season, there will also be .....

The National APL Muso Draft .......

New and up-and-coming musos as well as de-listed musicians can be picked up by bands who need to add to their current line-up or image at the end of each season, the decision to go with wide-eyed arrogant youth or the older cynical shit-bag will be left to the band's coaching staff.

Pubs

.... will be selected according to the size of the PA, how much accumulated gunge is on the stage and the psychiatric evaluation of the Publican.

Each pub will be given a "dollar-for-dollar-paid-to-musicians" subsidy by the board formerly known as the dole office.

.... for example, the basic $100 per gig rate for each musician will be made up by the pub paying the $100 to each musician and then that pub receiving a $50 rebate for each musician gainfully employed ...... a 50/50 deal.

The pub then uses the subsidy to upgrade their PA system, re-furbish performance areas by putting Guiness on tap and doing more in advertising than just sticking something in a free gig guide, so as to increase potential "puntericity"

.... all of which will be annually reviewed and monitored by the APL Musical Health Board in association with the Australian Liquor Commission, utilising the Publican Mental Health Initiative sponsored by the Hotels Association of Australia.

Band Riders

.... will be given to all bands on a need and dependency basis (usually 3 cans per member), special consideration will be given to outfits with horn sections or if Jimmy Barnes makes a guest appearance.

Roadies and Mixers

.... will register themselves into a stubbie exchange program; then be sent on a special training course on giving bands decent fold-back and how to score a shag from the barmaid.

Punters

.... will be able to buy membership tickets giving them cheap piss at home gigs and preferential seating nearest the P.A. system at away gigs.

Corporate boxes will be available to punters who like to spruik shit inbetween songs.

Band Moles

.... will be given details on how to apply for their relative groupie status by attending ....

The National Head-Job Summit

.... to be held at Parliament House early in the New Year.

Obstacle courses will be set up to ascertain each band mole's relevant status, with special consideration given to originality and flair in the following .........

Some of the obstacle courses will include:

..... The "Go the Grope" time trials .......

... the "Keep your pants on in the Combi Van for an hour" survival test

.... and the "Lap around the lead-guitarist's ego" sprint challenge .......

...... these tests are all weight-for-age and open to all comers.

Funding

In the current cultural desert of small minded economic rationalism; true believers of a possible, but until now, undiscovered formula for a beneficial system of artistic government, that is, a government that is not being hamstrung by a continual doling out of welfare benefits, but by one that is nurturing possible talents awaiting discovery ....

.... one must always ask the question ...... "how do we pay for it?"

Given that the scenario of the starving artist has been with us since the stone-age .... and given that most OECD countries have a third- world banana-republic enclave made up of starving musicians and artists within their own territorial boundaries, we can deduce that if we were to divert all welfare payments given to out-of-work artists, and divert all arts grants currently lobbied for by chardonnay quaffing Toorak art-nazi lackies, whilst at the same time, diverting the tax write-off chemical company donations to the coffers of some crony-esque corpulent arts clique run by the idiot bastard son of some South Yarra gallery or bistro owner....... we can fund the budget of The Australian Pub-Gig League .......

.... therein lays the beauty of this platform .... it is so simple to do ...

...... the money is aleady there, no new money need be found, as out- of-work musicians are now gainfully employed with the money they were aleady receiving from the dole ......

........ everybody gets a gig
....... everybody gets to go on tour
....... everybody gets in for free ......
....... everybody gets to put out a CD
....... everybody gets their song on radio
....... everybody gets a free beer

....... and everybody gets a root!

PLAN 9 FROM OUTER UTOPIA can work!!!!!!






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