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Mushroom Records

From Academic Kids

Mushroom Records is an Australian record company. It was formed by Michael Gudinksi in 1972.

The label's inaugural release was an ambitious triple LP recording of the 1973 Sunbury Festival, and over the next few years they signed a number of important Australian acts of the period including Madder Lake and Mackenzie Theory. Mushroom struggled to survive for its first two years and reportedly came close to folding on several occasions, but the label was dramatically pushed to the forefront of the Australian music scene in early 1975 following the massive success of Skyhooks, whose debut album became the biggest-selling Australian LP ever released up to that time. Around the same time, Gudinksi was convinced to sign expatriate New Zealand band Split Enz, who had recently relocated to Australia. Although they had only moderate success for the first few years, Split Enz scored huge success in 1980 with the release of their album True Colours and the hit single "I Got You", which marked the emergence of Neil Finn.

Mushroom entered the international scene by signing The Saints, Kylie Minogue and Jason Donovan in the eighties. They were release internationally through PWL. In the 1990s, Mushroom missed out on what could have been one of its biggest signings, and although the label was reportedly in the front-running to sign rising new Australian band silverchair, the group opted to sign with the Sony label instead.

After selling 49% of the company to News Corporation in 1993, Garbage signed for the label, followed by Pop Will Eat Itself, Ash and Peter André. Gudinski sold the remaining 51% share of the label to News Corporation in 1998 for a sum repported to have been around AU$40 million. However, the sale of Australia's last major indepenedent label to a multinational engendered some adverse publicity, with Gudinski controvesially claiming that he had sold the label as a protest at the federal government's changes to the regulations governing the parallel importation of recordings.

Gudinski maintained control of most other Mushroom Group companies (including interests in music publishing, film production, band booking, national touring and venue operating ) and the name Mushroom Records. When Mushroom was merged with News Corporations's record label Festival Records to form Festival Mushroom Records in 1998, Gudinksi relaunched Mushroom Records and Liberation Records.

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