Newcastle Live Music Census Findings Released

Today the Newcastle Live Music Taskforce release the findings of the 2018 Live Music Census, which offers a snapshot of live music activity in June 2018 across the City.

Undertaken in partnership with venues, artists, music industry representatives and the Live Music Office, the census project mapped live music in Newcastle across June 2018 through monitoring available programs, gig guides, social media, connecting with industry participants across the hospitality industry as well as through word of mouth.

State Member for Newcastle, Tim Crakanthorp MP said:

 As I had worked previously on a ‘Newcastle Entertainment Gig Guide’, it was a great and informative experience to compile the census of live music gigs across the Newcastle LGA recording the bands/artists that performed over the four week period of the census. It is great to see stakeholders from across the industry working to ensure the live music scene thrives in Newcastle.”


  • 471 gigs were presented across August 2017 featuring 699 separate acts.
  • 82 venues hosted live music
  • Hotels presented the most live music, with 42 events, Clubs presented 17 gigs and small bars 11 performances.
  • Lizottes and Battlesticks bar presented the most gigs, with 19 events each
  • The Hamilton Station Hotel presented 54 separate acts, there were 41 individual performances at the Cambridge Hotel, and 36 artists showcased at the Lass O'Gowrie Hotel
  • Newcastle city centre has the most live music venues (25), with Hamilton (7), Merewether (6) and Wickham (4).
  • Carrington, Cooks Hill, Lambton, Mayfield, New Lambton, Wallsend and Adamstown all have 3 venues each.

Alongside the independent venues, restaurants, churches and the university, many of the events were presented by the hospitality industry.

Taskforce member and Newcastle Australian Hotels Association representative Nikki Taylor said:

“Newcastle was built on a foundation of live music. There was a time when our hotels, pubs and clubs were home to hundreds of live acts each and every week and it’s so important that we continue to honour and respect the soundtrack of our city.

“Despite exponential residential development and an expanding culture within our city, it is imperative that we support and protect not only our existing live music venues, places like The Stag, The Cambridge, The Lass and The Wicko, but the plethora of long-serving artists and young, talented individuals who continue to call Newcastle home.”

Whilst every effort was made to identify as many gigs as possible through this process, we do understand that not every event may have been captured, however we look forward to hearing from venues who may not be reflected in this year’s census.

John Wardle, Live Music Office said:

“Doing this sort of mapping exercise to identify where the venues are and who’s playing there is incredibly insightful into what’s happening in the music scene in Newcastle right now. The Hotel sector are making a very strong contribution (51%), Clubs (20%) and Small Bars (13%), and well done to Lizottes and Battlesticks Bar for presenting the most gigs through the June 2018, with 19 events each.

“Programming is also very diverse, featuring major touring acts, strong support for grass roots local bands, and a wide range of genres across rock, jazz, electronic, country, classical, blues, many of whom are presenting original music.”

Authorised by Tim Crakanthorp MP, Australian Labor Party (NSW Branch) 414 Hunter Street, Newcastle, NSW, 2300. Parliamentary entitlements are not used to fund this website.

© 2021, Tim Crakanthorp, All Rights Reserved