Sydney band The Ruckus is the latest act to put their talents towards mental health initiatives in support of Mental Health Month. Their latest single “Steady Hands” is a melodic slice of hard rock with a wonderful message of empowerment that should resonate whether you’re dealing with mental health issues or not.

The cause is close to The Ruckus’ heart, as the band has personally faced the challenges that depression and other mental health concerns can bring.

All proceeds from the sale and streaming of “Steady Hands” will benefit the HeadSpace initiative, which provides early intervention mental health services to young people in need. So if you like what you hear, please head over to iTunes and download it to support this great cause.

I generally have a bit of an aversion to songs with title containing profanity. Call me old-fashioned, but I generally feel like it’s unwarranted and uncreative, just there to shock rather than really making any clever point. So any song with bad language in the title has a hard time convincing me it deserves a place on this blog. The Smith Street Band’s latest single “Wipe That Shit-Eating Grin Off Your Punchable Face” did just that.

This is just the sort of thought-provoking music I love to hear. The true spirit of punk music runs through the lyrics which criticise Tony Abbott and his policies on asylum seekers. It all needed to be said. And it’s not just paying lip service to the issue either. All of the digital sales until the end of February and a large part of the physical sales will benefit the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre, the country’s leading organisation for asylum seekers.

Digital copies are available now, and you can pre-order the 7” single through the Poison City Records store. This is one song worth supporting.

Now that those New Year shenanigans are behind us, we can start looking forward to the next big public holiday, right? Melbournians have their plans sorted with the fifth annual Australia Day weekend fundraiser concerts.

The first show, on January 25, will see Frenzal Rhomb, Saskwatch, Hoodlum Shouts, Hawaiian Islands, Rob Muinos, Have/Hold, Outright, and heaps more take the stage at Footscray’s Reverence Hotel. Then on January 26 The Smith Street Band, The Bennies, MC Joeslistics, Curse Ov Dialect, Fear Like Us, and others will play The Corner Hotel. These events look to fight ignorance, celebrate diversity, and rage against the negative attitudes so often exhibited on our national day.

The annual Australia Day weekend fundraisers have so far raised more than $25,000 for worthy charities. This year all profits will be shared amongst The Asylum Seeker Resource Centre, The Refugee Council, and Oxfam.

Image source: The Global Panorama @ Flickr

Enjoy a night of great music for a good cause at Altitude. Kate Ceberano, jazz chanteuse Ali Bodycoat, soulful Stratosfunk, and rock-pop string quartet ISQ will provide the entertainment at the swanky event to raise money for the Royal Flying Doctor Service of WA.

Altitude 2014 promises to be the highlight of Perth’s social calendar, with an innovative audio visual display, a recreated airport runway stage, and custom Altitude bar. VIP tables of 10 will also receive premium seating luxury accommodation at Crown Metropol, valet parket, CIP gift bags, priority check-in, and access to pre=show drinks at La Vie Champagne Lounge and the after-party at NOBU.

This glamorous even has a serious purpose though. Your support will ensure every person living, working, or travelling in Western Australia can stay connected to first-class health services at all times.

Altitude will hit the Grand Ballroom at Crown Perth in August 23.

Image source: The Harbour Agency

What if the albums you download could do more than just filling up your MP3 player and making you happy? What if they could fill the bellies of people in need and put smiles on their faces? They could if the album you buy is OH from Sydney songstress Appleonia.

Appleonia’s teamed up with Vittoria Coffee, who’s promised to donate the value of every copy downloaded to Oz Harvest. That’s the equivalent of three meals for hungry Aussies. And do you know the best part? The downloads are actually free, so you can support this cause and enjoy some great new local music without putting your hand in your pocket!

Click here to own the album and spread the word! And if you love what you hear, make sure you show your support when Appleonia launches at the album at the FBi Social Club on February 20.

Image used with permission from Umbrella Artist Management & PR

Mama Kin has taken on many musical challenges in her life, but in October she’s planning to push herself physically as an ambassador for the Perth Oxfam Trailwalker event.

“I think there might be something pathologically wrong with me!” Mama Kin says. “Just as a small break opened up in my touring and recording schedule I signed up for my biggest physical challenge to date: to walk 100km through gorgeous bushland in WA. Continuously. Without any sleep. In an effort to raise money for Oxfam through their annual international event The Oxfam Trailwalker.”

No doubt her blisters and exhaustion will all be worth it though when she sees how much she’s raised to help people living in poverty.

Mama Kin and her walking buddies, dubbed the Sole Mamas, will take on the walk from 100 kay walk Kalamunda to Chidlow between the 18th and 20th of October. You can support them with your donations by clicking this link.

Image used with permission from Two Fish Out of Water

Last year 60, 000 people joined big-name musicians Neil Young, The Black Keys, and Foo Fighters in New York’s Central Park to promote the Global Citizen Festival. This year Australia will get to be part of it, with a live stream from the New York event hitting the Palais Theatre alongside homegrown performances from Evermore and other local acts. Visit the Global Citizen Festival website to earn the points you need to score tickets.

Evermore’s song “One Love” has been doing the rounds for a while, but they’re launching it officially to promote the Global Citizen Festival. All profits raised from the single’s sales will benefit the Gloval Poverty Project and the Cotton On Foundation, which works hard to spearhead education projects in Uganda. Even if you’re not in Melbourne and unable to attend the event, you can support the initiative by picking up a copy of Evermore’s charity EP at your local Cotton On store.

Today is Blog Action Day, a day when bloggers all around the world join forces to spread the word about social activism and global initiatves. As this year’s theme is The Power of We, I figured it was the perfect time to chat about the latest Key of Sea album. In 2010 we saw the release of the first Key of Sea album, a project which saw established Aussie artists paired with lesser known musicians that come from diverse cultural backgrounds but proudly call Australia home. This Friday, October 19, we’ll finally hear the second installment.

In The Key of Sea Volume 2 we see acts like Paul Kelly, Lanie Lane, Chet Faker, and David Bridie joining the just discovered talents. The lead single “Silence of the Guns”, which sees Jinja Safari collaborating with East African asylum seeker Kinfe and members of the Sudanese Australian Integrated Learning Program,  gives you an idea what’s in store.

This is an album of great music, but it’s about much more than that. So it’s only fitting that it’s not simply a money-making exercise. All profits from The Key of Sea Volume 2 will be distributed amongst the Asylum Seeker Resource Center, Human Rights Arts and Film Festival, and Sudanese Australian Integrated Learning. Talk about the power of we! With the might of some great performers and the music-loving public, we can truly make a difference!

If you’re going to go out and party next month, why not do it for a good cause? Major Raiser will host Partying with a Purpose at Bondi’s Beach Road Hotel on May 5.

The event, the fourth of its kind, will raise funds for the Music Outback Foundation. This group donates musical instruments to outback schools to ensure our indigenous kids have the same opportunities for culture expression as those in the city.

Ticket holders will be entertained by Brisbane dance act Mitzi, Triple J darlings Glass Towers, as well as Toucan, Colour Coding, Conics, and Lancelot. If you can’t make it to the event you can also download Let’s Band Together, a compilation which features tracks from all contributing artists. You’ll find it at Major Raiser’s Bandcamp page. All proceeds from the digital release will also help the Music Outback Foundation.

If you can get along and support the event though, I suggest getting them early from Moshtix. Coopers Beer will give complementary ale to everyone who buys a pre-sale ticket, and Moshtix will donate a dollar for every pre-sale ticket to the cause.

Image used with permission from Positive Feedback

Sir Bob Geldof will join locals Danielle Spencer and Jon Stevens for the Rock & Rebuild charity concert at Star City’s Lyric Theatre on May 1.

The event comes in the wake of recent disasters around the world. All monies raised by ticket sales and donations made on the night will benefit the Queensland Premier’s Disaster Relief Fund and the Australian Red Cross’ Victoria Floods Appeal, New Zealand Earthquake Appeal, and Japan and Pacific Disaster Appeal.

Tickets are on sale now through Ticketmaster.

Image source: International Monetary Fund Photograph/Stephen Jaffe/Wikipedia Commons