Epic demand for Fire Fight bushfire relief tickets
PEKING Duk's Reuben Styles and Adam Hyde sprang into action when the Falls Festival at Lorne was cancelled in December because of the escalated threat of bushfire, pulling together a last-minute gig that night to assist the relief effort for victims and firefighters.
That Melbourne show in late December raised $50,000 and now they are part of the quest to raise millions more at the mammoth Fire Fight Australia concert.
More than 65,000 tickets were sold to the bushfire relief concert at Sydney's ANZ Stadium on February 16 in under five hours after going on sale on Monday.
"Due to such overwhelming demand, the promoters are now working with the venue, ANZ Stadium, to release as many tickets as possible to drive total sales well over 70,000," organisers said.
The Peking Duk lads, who originally hail from Canberra, have family and friends who lost homes on the NSW south coast and feel personally invested in helping to add millions more to the relief fund.
Styles said his aunt and her family lost their Rosedale home during the New Year's Eve emergency.
Another mate who had spent eight years of weekends and holidays lovingly building his South Coast wooden house is faced with starting again after fire destroyed the property.
"The before and after photos are so chilling," Styles said.
"For a lot of people in Canberra, the south coast is where they do their actual living; they spend their weeks in the city for school and work and then head straight to the coast.
"At least 20 friends and family have been directly affected by the fires, have lost their homes."
Meanwhile, many of their loved ones in Canberra continue to deal with the serious health threat posed by the pervasive smoke pollution blanketing the nation's capital.
Dozens of artists have had their livelihoods affected by the fires because of the cancellations of festivals and outdoors events planned during the summer.
Yet musicians have always stepped up to support communities devastated by disasters, with international superstars including Queen, Alice Cooper and k.d. lang joining with their Australian peers to support the Fire Fight Australia concert.
The Peking Duk duo are keen to hook up with their childhood rock hero Alice Cooper at the big gig.
"Our mums drove us when I was 14 to Sydney to see Alice Cooper at the Enmore Theatre and we're still huge fans, so never in a million years did I think me and Reuben could be on the same stage as Alice Cooper," Hyde said.
While they are planning on a medley of songs for their Fire Fight appearance, they harbour a not-so-secret wish to collaborate with John Farnham.
And reportedly Whispering Jack is keen to work with them too.
"We have to ask John Farnham to jump on with us; he did tell our manager during Falls that he wants to do something with us," Hyde said.
Fire Fight Australia concert ticket profits and all contributions through Ticketek will go towards key organisations providing vital "Rescue" (rural and regional fire services), "Relief and Recovery" (Red Cross) and "Rehabilitation" (RSPCA Bushfire Appeal).
Fans can also donate to bushfire relief through www.firefightaustralia.com.
Organisers TEG Dainty and TEG Live stress Ticketek Australia is the only authorised seller of Fire Fight Australia tickets. Do not pay more than the prices listed for your tickets.