NZ music history: The Loxene Golden Disc Awards

Music 10/08/2018

The forerunner of today's Vodafone New Zealand Music Awards, the Loxene Golden Disc Awards were first presented in 1965. The awards were named after Loxene shampoo, and were founded by the New Zealand Broadcasting Corporation (NZBC) alongside soap powder manufacturer Reckitt & Colman. 

The awards were designed to "create public awareness of the wealth and quality of New Zealand pop music talent", with 10 songs originally being selected by a panel and the public then voting for their preferred choice. Voting was done through entry forms that were available at all chemists and other selected stores. 

A few new rules were introduced in 1967, when voting was only eligible through entry forms in The New Zealand Listener, and a teenage judge needed to be present on the panel. Discs only "made completely in New Zealand" were to be considered. 

Viking Records released Golden Disc albums in 1965 and 1966, then taking a hiatus until 1970 when 26 thousand albums were made, sold for $2.99 each. 

The record companies of each finalist had to release new song copies for free to every radio station in New Zealand, which was a very expensive process for smaller labels. 

Terence O'Neill-Joyce of Ode Records, one of the big labels at the time, expressed his concerns about the awards in 1972, stating:

"The Loxene Golden Disc Award does not do full justice to locally produced material, it merely creates a situation annually whereby a large amount of local material is recorded, programmed and played over the NZBC network. What we want to see is a situation where locally produced material is aired 52 weeks a year and we feel it is time the NZBC acknowledged this."

The New Zealand Federation of Phonographic Industry (NZFPI) instituted it's own system of awards in 1973, named the Recording Arts Talent Awards (RATAs), with Reckitt & Colman dropping their sponsorship. NZFPI then rebranded itself in 1978 as the Recording Industry Association of New Zealand, holding annual awards until 1999 when the name was changed to the Tui Awards. 

Here is a list of the Loxene Golden Disc Award winners from 1965-1972. You can also listen to each of the songs in the video below.

1965 Ray Columbus and The Invaders Till We Kissed
1966 Maria Dallas Tumbling Down
1967 Mr Lee Grant Thanks To You
1968 Allison Durban I Have Loved Me A Man
1969 Shane St Paul
1970 Craig Scott (solo) Let's Get A Little Sentimental
1970 Hogsnort Rupert (group) Pretty Girl
1971 Craig Scott (solo) Smiley
1971 Chapta (group) Say a Prayer
1972 Suzanne (solo) Sunshine Through a Prism
1972 Creation (group) Carolina