The best in Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Music

Deadlys Nominees 2011: Most Promising New Music Talent

Benny Walker

Talented singer/songwriter Benny Walker cut his teeth on classic blues, surf and folk before finding his own voice in the raw honesty of acoustic roots music. His intuitive, heartfelt songwriting combines with a rich, soulful vocal delivery. He released his first EP ‘No Cares’ in 2007.

This year Benny’s performances have included a string of live shows along the East Coast with Tom Richardson and he is appearing at major festivals later in the year. Benny’s music combines raw, powerful, honesty and upbeat, catchy rhythms to deliver captivating music that will have you humming for days.

Yung Nooky

Indigenous Australian rapper Yung Nooky (Corey Webster) recently returned from the US where he recorded a track with Black Eyed Peas’ member Taboo.

Corey hails from Nowra on NSW’s south coast. He has performed his music throughout Australia and is an aspiring Aboriginal hip hop artist from the Niara tribe, part of the Yuin Nation. In recent years, he has also been involved in a cultural research project at University of Wollongong, taking time to speak with researchers and demonstrate his music making and performance skills.

Karnage & Darknis

Karnage gains immense satisfaction from producing his own music. A proud Arrernte man, Karnage moved to Adelaide at an early age and started writing and developing his own rapping.

His introduction to the work of many well-known rappers led to an interest in free styling, rapping with others and writing tracks by the age of 13. After building on his production skills for over 10 years, Karnage is now working alongside Ngarrindjeri/Kokatha woman Darknis.

Darknis has always loved expressing hip hop music on stage. Performing about and for her people gives her gratitude and strength.

Knowledge Bones

WA-born Knowledge Bones was spellbound by music from an early age, embracing a diverse range of artists. He also raps under the name Black Dundee – an ode to his Indigenous roots. He is making a name for himself as one of the country’s most promising MCs.

With his live performances continuing to gain him a loyal fan base and excitement surrounding his album release, Knowledge finds himself in the class of Australian hip hop heavyweights. Aside from his musical endeavours, Knowledge wants to run workshops for Indigenous children in various communities around Australia.

Iwantja Band

Iwantja Band played a record 10 sets at Dreaming Festival earlier this year, received a Breakthrough Grant courtesy of the Federal Government, and are playing as part of the Sand Tracks tour with Manuel Dhurrkay (Saltwater Band).

They incorporate many styles of music, from reggae and rock, to country, blues and instrumental. The group was received with great acclaim throughout 2010 and 2011, culminating in a performance at the 25th anniversary of the handback of Uluru to its traditional owners.

The band launched their new album ‘Palya’ at the Wide Open Space festival in Alice Springs in April. Most of the songs on the album are in Pitjantjatjara/Yankunytjatjara.

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