Australian music producing titan Michael Gudinski has been farewelled by some of Australia’s best-known performers at a private service in Melbourne.
Kylie and Dannii Minogue, Jimmy Barnes, Paul Kelly, James Reyne and Molly Meldrum were among the musicians who gathered to pay tribute to the man who helped launch their careers.
Mr Gudinski’s death last week at the age of 68 sent shockwaves through the Australian music industry, with Cold Chisel singer Barnes saying the “heart of Australian music” had been “ripped out”.
After the private service, more than 160 roadies set up a guard of honour as Mr Gudinski’s hearse left the venue.
Mr Gudinski was just 20 when he set up his music company Mushroom Records, and went on to found Frontier Touring, bringing some of the biggest names in music to play in front of Australian fans.
Mushroom Records established itself in 1974 with the release of Skyhooks’ debut album, Living in the 70s, which by 1975 was the biggest-selling album by an Australian act in Australia.
The label also launched Kylie Minogue’s career with her first album, Kylie, in 1988.
Victoria will hold a state memorial service for Mr Gudinski on March 24 at Rod Laver Arena, to publicly honour and celebrate the music titan’s life.
International artists also paid tribute to Mr Gudinski last week, with US rocker Bruce Springsteen describing him as a friend who was “first, last, and always a music man”.
“I’ve toured the world for the last 50 years and never met a better promoter,” he said.
Gunditjmara and Bundjalung singer-songwriter Archie Roach also highlighted Mr Gudinski’s “staunch” support of First Nations artists, describing his passing as “probably the saddest day for Australian music”.