Singer and songwriter Ruby Hunter will be posthumously inducted into the National Indigenous Music Awards’ Hall of Fame, set to take place Saturday night, August 8th.
Hunter will be feted with special musical tributes from Emma Donovan and her wife and musical partner Archie Roach, organisers announced Friday.
Born in 1955, born on the banks of the Murray River in South Australia, Hunter was a Ngarrindjeri, Kokatha and Pitjantjatjara woman.
Her songs reach deep into the story of her life, and capture the lived experience of both First Nations people and women across Australia.
Roach and Hunter met as homeless teens. They would form one of the great partnerships in life and music, creating important works together for more than 35 years before Ruby’s death in 2010.
During her lifetime, Hunter cut several landmark records. Her song ‘Down City Streets’ appeared on Roach’s debut Charcoal Lane from 1990, and in 1994, she became the first Indigenous woman to release a solo album with the ARIA Award-nominated Thoughts Within.
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A follow-up LP came in 2000 with Feeling Good.
Check out Ruby Hunter’s ‘Down City Streets’:
A founder of the Black Arm Band, children’s author, actor and humanitarian, Hunter was “a national gift,” say organisers of the NIMAs, “creating connection and understanding through music and other projects, both independently and in partnership with Archie Roach, that both educate and inspire Australians of all backgrounds to this day.”
Roach, the legendary “voice of the Stolen Generations,” Ted Albert Award recipient and 2020 Victorian Australian of the Year, previously announced his 2020 Final Round tour dates would be his last.
The annual NIMAs will be broadcast on National Indigenous Television (NITV), Double J, National Indigenous Radio Service, TEABBA, Facebook, Youtube and Twitter from 7pm AEST.
Viewers will be treated to the first public performance of Midnight Oil’s new single ‘Gadigal Land’ along with performances by Kaleena Briggs, Bunna Lawrie, Dan Sultan, Thelma Plum, Pitjantjatjara and Torres Strait Island R&B star Miiesha, Numbulwar band Mambali and triple j Unearthed competition winner JK-47, and crosses to Jessica Mauboy, Mitch Tambo and Electric Fields.
Check out Midnight Oil’s ‘Gadigal Land’:
Also, the event will feature a tribute to the Warumpi Band with an exclusive rendition of ‘My Island Home’ with songwriter Neil Murray, Christine Anu alongside TSI rapper Mau Power, Jim Moginie and Oils drummer Rob Hirst.
With a hattrick of nominations each, Baker Boy and Miiesha lead the pack for the NIMAs.