The place of Go-Set in rock and pop music culture in Australia,1966 to 1974

  • David Martin Kent

    Student thesis: Master's Thesis


    This is the first academic examination of the place and history of works produced by Go-Set Publications in studies of contemporary Australian teenage culture. Go-Set (Go-Set Publications, Melbourne) is perhaps the single most significant music-based newspaper in the history of Australian teenage popular culture. Go-Set reflected the teenage culture of the period 1966 to 1974,helping create a dynamic independently thriving Australian rock music scene from 1969. It was independently owned and operated, set its own agendas and defined its own place in Australian teenage society. Go-Set's history is given as a biography (following van Zuilen (1977) in distinct stages from birth till death, highlighting the important landmarks of its life. In particular Go-Set led culturally by developing the first National Top-40 song chart. It provided musicians and non-musicians with weekly updates on the nature of the Australia's teenage music-based societal culture. It led in the development of a teenage counter-culture by keeping readers informed about alternative thinking and ideologies through the views of pop/rock stars, and later, more editorially directly, through its radical sister publication Revolution. Go-Set survived because readers continued to support it. It both entertained and informed. It gave young Australians the necessary knowledge, instruction, and advice to keep them up-to-date in a changing social scene To explain why Go-Set was so important to its readers, this thesis postulates a series of six speculative models describing how readers might have used the newspaper. These models suggest a process of usage relevant to teenage socialisation, by defining the criteria for acceptance of Go-Set's content as sets of instructions, or codes, of particular social relevance, namely the codes of personal life, music, fashion, and alternative lifestyle. The models postulate some sociological and psychological reasons for reading Go-Set, and suggest why the magazine was so successful during a period when other, similar, magazines failed.
    Date of Award2002
    Original languageEnglish
    SupervisorRuth Shrensky (Supervisor)

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