About GTM

We are a social enterprise working to support and promote musicians from First Nations communities and culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds.

8 People from Grow the Music whilst at a Remote Music Program

Grow the Music (GTM) has been developing music communities around Australia since 2012.

We believe anyone can create music, and our approach is inclusive, intergenerational and participant-led.

We take a community approach, encouraging and supporting musicians and performing artists to develop their networks.

Our partners and volunteers play a valuable part in our ability to impact positively on the wellbeing of individuals, families and whole communities through the medium of music.

The GTM recording studio in Coffs Harbour supports our mission to provide high quality audio production to a growing network of musicians and artists from CALD communities.

In the beginning...

In 2011, working as a primary music teacher in the remote community of Wyndham, in the East Kimberley, Emily witnessed a dramatic change in the lives of young people who participated in her school music program.

At the end of the first year, the entire school presented their very first school concert.

Working with these Aboriginal students showed that there was a tremendous need for music-learning opportunities, and most importantly, a responsive method to engage with music where students drive creative ideas and actions, and are encouraged and empowered to perform and collaborate with their peers.

Liz from GTM playing the drums with two young boys

At the same time, Lizzy was using a community drum kit to connect with young people in the nearby community of Warmun in the East Kimberley, creating positive relationships with kids who needed dental care.

After-school activities were limited, and drumming provided a fun and inclusive way of getting to know the kids and their wider families.

In 2012, together, they answered a call to the remote community of Balgo, WA, for a 5-week music program for students from preschool to age 16.

Over 5-weeks, the school attendance rates for secondary students aged 12-16yrs increased by 200%.

This impact was achieved through the simple methods of using found sounds and real instruments, in a participant-led environment that inspired creativity and confidence in students.

and Grow the Music was born!

Young girl from Balgo playing the drums in her remote community.

Meet our team

Lizzy Rutten
Co-founder & Project Manager
Emily White
Co-founder & Program Director
Damien Atwood
CFO / COO
Mick Mooney
Artist Support / Producer
Dave Walker
Remote Recording Engineer / Producer
David Moneymoon and Kimberley Taylor
Music Leaders - Mutitjulu NT
Jeromy Allom
Master Engineer / Producer
Marko Kisose
Music Leader - Coffs Harbour NSW
Roy Jugadai
Music Leader - Docker River NT
Gabadoo Campbell
Music Leader - Bermagui South Coast NSW
Warren Foster Jnr
Music Leader - Wallaga Lake South Coast
Team Gunbalanaya
NT Remote Production Team

GTM have built very real and deep connections with First Nations communities and the mutual respect and trust that exists is a key indicator of success.

Dave Walker

Green South Records

Yes, we have our own studio!

Our boutique audio production studio is nestled in Toormina - between Coffs Harbour and Sawtell on the NSW East Coast.

Featuring high quality production software, a range of microphones, instruments, engineers and music producers; our clients can enjoy a full service studio, including a live recording room, voice-over booth, isolated drum room and a separate kitchen/dining area.

Aboriginal man in the GTM studios vocal booth.

Festivals & Events

We work in partnership with festival and event managers to deliver a seamless and successful live showcase of First Nations music.

Giiyong Festival
NSW

Saltwater Freshwater Festival
NSW

Garma Festival
NT

Bush Bands Bash Festival
NT

Voyagers Uluru
NT

Grow the Music Blue Logo