Kia ora koutou

With the rapidly evolving situation around Covid-19, I wanted to make contact to update you on the initial steps we are taking at Recorded Music NZ to support our recording artists, record labels and the wider industry. Supporting one another will be key in navigating through the next few months and the team at Recorded Music NZ will continue to be working hard for our local artists and our NZ music businesses.

One of our first priorities is working on a swift royalty distribution and we will keep you updated as we work through what might be possible. We are also focussing on resourcing and supporting our charity Music Helps, and there is more on the services available through MusicHelps below.

At the same time we are evaluating the short to long term impacts on licensing income, costs and other activities. We will make decisions as to some of our activities over the coming weeks, taking into consideration the government’s advice and industry developments, and will update you as soon as we can over the coming weeks.

Below is some detail on the resources and support available to you as an artist or music practitioner, and we encourage you to access any of the options that are available. If you have questions or want to share information that may be useful for our community and wider music industry, please just get in touch.

Government Support

The government announced their stimulus package yesterday and wage subsidy grants for NZ Music Business, contractors and sole traders is available:

  • NZ music businessesif you face laying off staff or reducing their hours because of COVID-19, from today may be able to get a Wage Subsidy Grant. More information is available here.
  • NZ music contractors & sole tradersif you have lost wages because of COVID-19, from today you may be able to get a Wage Subsidy Grant too. More information is available here.

We are continuing to support the work of our charity MusicHelps and will work closely with them as to resourcing and supporting the wellbeing service, the benevolent fund and other initiatives that may launch in response to the current situation. MusicHelps can currently assist via its Wellbeing Service and the Benevolent Fund and these services are available to anyone working within the NZ Music industry:

  • The MusicHelps Wellbeing Service is a 24 hour helpline and free professional counselling service for kiwi music people experiencing emotional distress. Call 0508MUSICHELP or email
  • The MusicHelps Benevolent Fund provides tailored emergency financial assistance packages to kiwi music people experiencing crisis situations as a result of illness, injury and misfortune. Call 09 623 4728 or email

MusicHelps has also put together this very useful page for sources of information and Advice from the NZ Government and other organisations here. 

I lost my Gig Aotearoa

Together with our industry colleagues, we have set up the website ‘I lost my gig Aotearoa’. If you’ve lost work because of COVID-19 including event cancellations and postponements, etc. please tell us how that has impacted you. Getting accurate figures is vital to get a greater understanding of how the current situation is affecting the different parts of the NZ music industry, and the New Zealand music sector as whole and ultimately help those in our industry who need it most.

Other ways we can help each other

We encourage all to listen to as much NZ music as you can through your preferred choice of platform, either through creating your own playlist or through a few we can recommend here, and there will of course be many more.

We are very happy to publish links to your online merch stores, which we can promote on our website and feature on our Recorded Music socials. Please send any links here.

Finally, I wanted to let you know we continue to be “open for business” and probably the best way to contact us is via email or phone, as many of us will be working remotely over the coming weeks. While we are generally not holding physical meetings in the office, we are available as usual to meet with you in other ways. The financial, emotional and physical pressures at this time are unprecedented and we will be working hard to do all we can to support.

Noho ora mai,

Damian Vaughan
Chief Executive Officer | Recorded Music NZ

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