The 2017 National Indigenous Music Awards blew an appreciative Darwin audience away at the iconic Amphitheatre under the stars tonight as Troy Cassar-Daley, A.B. Original and Electric Fields all took home major awards, showing the breadth across genres of Australian Indigenous talent. Opening with an amazing set from triple j Unearthed winner Baker Boy and closing with a touching tribute to Dr G. Yunupingu, the night was a night of elation and emotion as generations of Indigenous music and its place in Australian culture were celebrated and acknowledged.
Troy Cassar-Daley took home the coveted Artist of the Year trophy as well as album of the year for ‘Things I Carry Around’, adding to his Golden Guitar win earlier in the year and addition to the Country Music Awards Roll of Renown.
“Things I Carry Around” is one of the most personal things I’ve ever made and talking about my family in depth like that and my culture as well was vitally important to what the album meant,” said Troy Cassar-Daley, “I just want to say thanks to everyone who voted.”
A.B. Original took home two trophies for Song and Film Clip of the Year for their modern Australian anthem ‘January 26’ featuring Dan Sultan. A blistering performance of the track was one of the night’s highlights along with special guest Paul Kelly joining A.B. Original and Dan Sultan for their version of ‘Dumb Things’.
New Talent of the Year Electric Fields also delivered a blistering set of electronica proving they have truly arrived on the national scene. In a tightly contested category, the audience was also treated to live performances from nominees Emily Wurramara and Apakatjah as well as last year’s new talent winner Gawurra.
Traditional Music Awards were awarded to the Numbulwar community’s Numburindi Festival 2016, Numbulwar’s Mardayin Skin Ceremony 2016 and the Wangga Complete CD set, while Community Video Clip went to the Halls Creek Indigenous hip hop project’s “Save Our Water (Ngaba)”.
The night ended with a touching tribute to Dr. G Yunupingu including speeches and musical tributes recognizing the life of the National Indigenous Award’s most awarded artist over their nine-year history.
The National Indigenous Music Awards compilation “The Sound of Indigenous Australia” double CD in conjunction with Warner Music Australia is in stores now and features tracks from this year’s winners, nominees and performers including A.B. Original, Troy Cassar-Daley, Dan Sultan, Yirrmal, Emily Wurramara, Gawurra, Apakatjah, Jessica Mauboy, Busby Marou, Leah Flanagan, Tia Gostelow and Electric Fields. Disc two features anthems of Indigenous Australia including Yothu Yindi’s ‘Treaty’, Archie Roach’s ‘Took the Children Away’, Christine Anu’s ‘My Island Home’, Warumpi Band’s ‘Blackfella/Whitefella’, Kev Carmody’s ‘From Little Things Big Things Grow’ and many more.
The National Indigenous Music Awards will return in 2018 to continue the campaign to celebrate, nurture and advocate for Indigenous music across Australia and the world.
2017 NATIONAL INDIGENOUS MUSIC AWARD WINNERS
ARTIST OF THE YEAR : Troy Cassar-Daley
SONG OF THE YEAR : A.B. Original Ft. Dan Sultan – January 26
ALBUM OF THE YEAR : Things I Carry Around – Troy Cassar-Daley
NEW TALENT OF THE YEAR : Electric Fields
FILM CLIP OF THE YEAR : A.B. Original Ft. Dan Sultan – January 26
COMMUNITY MUSIC CLIP OF THE YEAR: Save the Water (Ngaba): Halls Creek Indigenous Hip Hop Project
Wangga: Complete CD Set
Galiliwa Nunggarrgalu, John Lalbich for Mardayin Skin Ceremony 2016 Numbulwar
John Murrungun, Samson Ngalmi, Samuel Ngalmi for Mardayin Skin Ceremony 2016 Numbulwar
Jeff Nunggarrgalu, Graham Nunggarrgalu for Numburindi Festival 2016 Numbulwar
Giningayi Ngalmi, Richard Ngalmi for Numburindi Festival 2016 Numbulwar
Kerwin Murrungun, David Murrungun, Dean Austin Bara, Bradley Bara for Numburindi Festival 2016 Numbulwar