For more than a quarter of a century Terry Blamey was the man behind the scenes of Kylie Minogue's skyrocketing career.
From the early days of I Should be so Lucky, Blamey missed only half a dozen of Kylie's shows until her move to the Roc Nation stable in 2013 and believes his constant presence was a key to their long-lasting business relationship.
While Kylie's talent was obvious when they first started working together in 1987, the year she signed to Mushroom Records with the late Michael Gudinski, Blamey said no one could have predicted the heights she would reach.
"She certainly went beyond everyone's expectations, including her own probably, to become so successful for such an incredibly long period of time," he told AAP.
Blamey started in the 1960s when music management wasn't considered a career and in an industry littered with artist-manager bust-ups, he believes the main quality needed is honesty - oh, and the capacity to juggle a dozen things at once.
"That's why I enjoy it so much, you've got to be a lawyer and an accountant and a travel agent and a music critic and do the marketing," he said.
For his significant service to management in the music industry, Melbourne-based Blamey has been appointed a Member (AM) of the Order of Australia as part of the 2023 Australia Day Honours.
"It's a privilege to be honoured for contributing to other people's success," he said.
Blamey's talent list has included Dannii Minogue, Deni Hines, Gina G and Richard Clapton.
The modern music industry is not in good shape, according to Blamey, who stepped back from full-time management in 2013.
While it was easier to launch new artists on social media, they don't earn as much, and performers were still dealing with record companies' failure to embrace music streaming, he said.
"They dropped the ball very badly and I think the industry has suffered greatly because of that," he said.
Blamey manages Clapton and spends most of his time consulting, while remaining "good friends and colleagues" with Kylie, who runs her own show these days.
"We were together for 26 years - I think she picked up some management pointers," he joked.
There were gongs for others behind the scenes in the 2023 honours, with theatre producer Michael Cassel appointed AM, along with film and television producer Bruna Papandrea, plus music promoter Paul Dainty (AO).
Actors Claudia Karvan and David Wenham were also recognised along with actress and comedian Jean Kittson and TV chef Kylie Kwong.