PLACES WE LOVE: The Stag & Hunter Hotel by Kian West


Stag 2Every suburb seems to have that local pub (or two) that has been around for what feels like forever because it knows what it is and serves the community the way they want. The Stag & Hunter Hotel is that venue for Mayfield, but at the same time as the #2304 postcode is evolving so is this magnificent venue, where the meals are still great and the beer is still cold but the music is live & often local, plus the Trivia is next level quirky awesome in this industrial cryptic dark way: for fans of cult TV, melancholic styles of music and sex jokes. Place: The Stag & Hunter Hotel Address: 187 Maitland Road, Mayfield NSW 2304 Hours: 7 Days a week Stag 1

Why We Love it: The Stag are big supporters of the local community, booking a heap of local talent constantly and they support Mirage so what's not to love right? We love it there because they make a real effort to make people feel welcome and provide a real service. We recommend checking out Tuesday night trivia (starts about 630pm) and stop by for some music over the weekend!

Just Another Tuesday 260814 #Blogtribe by Kian West

For those of you playing at home, I write the "Intro" section every month for Newcastle Mirage and have always tried to emulate the Editor sections of other magazines I really enjoy. An inspiring piece that also somehow connects with the articles inside. A sort of cohesive glue to the rest of the zine... Inside the August Intro I mentioned I'd write every week for the month and if people liked it I'd continue. Well, I failed.

I failed miserably and didn't write all month. In my defence, after I wrote that I realised I hadn't really planned any further than that. It seems simple enough at face value, write something every week. But What? And When? So it has taken me a month to work out the When part and oddly enough that seemed more important than the What because without consistency it really doesn't matter what it is about. So in light of all this, inspiration grabbed me this week. I have been following The Blog Society for a few months now and trying to get a feel for what other Bloggers are writing about. Most are women that I could find, a lot are themed around cooking, fashion, decorating or craft, entertaining children and similar. But that doesn't help me. We write a monthly Art & Culture Zine that is focused on the WHO of Newcastle...

But then, you suddenly think, maybe people want to hear what is going on behind the scenes? Every week we meet with people as the project of Mirage develops, contacts are formed and events are happening and so I am really asking...

Does this sound interesting?


  1. Like for instance, I met with Jon from the Hunter Business Chamber last week about becoming a member and also to start gaining some business insight, maybe a mentor, to help assist the growth of us as well as myself.... Would you like to hear about that?
  2. I also visited a Poetry Slam. I've never visited a Slam before and was completely blown away... What about that?
  3. At the same time I've had Ryan on the case to develop layers of our logo and cutting out a stencil for some limited Edition Tote Bags... Would you enjoy hearing/seeing this project?

So, I'm asking you to pick 1, 2 or 3 and I'll elaborate on this before the weekend... But in future I'm planning to write something for every Tuesday and if I don't get any feedback I'll just keep on writing random stories... it is much more fun together though.



HMPC - February 2014 by Kian West


ON LAST WEEKEND, AN AMAZING EVENT. DON'T MISS THE NEXT ONE, LIKE THE HMPC PAGE TODAY. 2014 is shaping up nicely with the first HMPC production event to be held February 22 at King Street Hotel (from 2pm till 5pm). For just $10 you will get to hear from some leaders in the community including: Alex Preston (Preston Recordings) and Matt Meler, plus more to be announced! In the afternoon there will also be an opportunity for the community to network and show off their ideas. If you have a track you want to play to the group for critical evaluation (or just praise) hit up the facebook page: Expect to hear about skills people have learnt, insight into the industry and ideas around Electronic music creativity. Last year saw many of the groups participants later working together on collaborations so it is really an incredible opportunity to meet one another outside of the normal club/festival locations most often otherwise used. On top of that, at the time of writing we are in the process of negotiation on some new music nights, so keep your eyes peeled. What would you like to learn about making Electronic Music? From the basics to advanced skills the HMPC community is here to help one another.. So hit ‘em up!

Hunter Music Production Collective - December by Kian West


Did you catch the third Bing Bang Bong?

Some incredible sets from CRZN, Gillies and JWell.


It is festival season and this year has seen some major highs with gigantic artist line-ups, as well as some major lows with several festivals disappearing or re-inventing themselves as “boutique” versions of themselves. What does this do to the club circuit and the normal Weekend out? Are people still making the same effort to get to shows mid-week or even Friday and Saturday nights, or are we saving every penny to see half a dozen huge names in festival locations?

This is something that has been going around discussion tables with HMPC for some time, and it is interesting to witness the new generations who are accustomed to this way of life and how they deal with a shift in how music is a part of socialising. It has an on-flow effect on emerging talent because it is harder to get bodies inside venues to support their creativity and for talent to emerge. So much harder to become “discovered” if there is no one there to discover you. But this crisis isn’t happening for the first time, maybe just for the first time in the dance scene - bands have been dealing with this for a while now.

So if you aren’t discovering new music live, where is it coming from? The Internet is the obvious answer, but how do you source new “good” music with so many options but no way to sift through to all the greatest tunes. Following your favourite artists on soundcloud, blogs, maybe hypemachine, itunes or aria charts, there are a multitude of options, but then how often are you the tastemaker the tune selector that people go to for inspiration. Do you hold a group of fans attention as they await your next selection, who asks you regularly what you are listening to or enjoying? If you are a DJ it is often your job to take this role, but there is also a balance there of selecting what you like and also what the crowd will like. These two things do not have to both happen to be an excellent DJ, often being able to hear a popular tune and add it into the playlist is a talent greater than the ear that just hears what it likes.

So it is with this we reach the point, the summary of this article, and in tandem, the end of the year. Have a think about your top 10 songs for 2013, as well as maybe the 10 songs that stand out for the year, maybe not your favorites personally but what songs made an impact on the year. They could have been used as tv commercials or at a pivotal moment in a movie, or a radio tune playing when something personal happened. These are not necessarily in your top 10 favorites but they stand out for their memorability.