Songwoman Maroochy of the Turrbul People. Image by Bianca Holderness.
2020 QMAs Winners Revealed
The 2020 Queensland Music Awards (QMAs) took place last night at The Fortitude Music Hall celebrating the artistic and commercial success of Queensland music over the last 12 months, featuring performances from some of the best the state has to offer including Jaguar Jonze, Cub Sport, Nat Dunn, Busby Marou and Order Sixty6.
Leading the winners at this year’s QMAs is Thelma Plum winning Album Of The Year with her critically-acclaimed debut album ‘Better In Blak’, an album telling the story of a Gamilaraay woman’s culture, heritage, love and pain, offering incredible strength, courage and heartbreaking tenderness.
The Jungle Giants took out the Song Of The Year and the Pop category for their latest release ‘Heavy Hearted’, their first release following their third album ‘Quiet Ferocity’.
“2019 was a stellar year for Queensland music and tonight we got to celebrate some of our finest homegrown talent who are at the forefront of Queensland artists making big waves on the national and global music front,” said QMusic CEO Angela Samut.
The Queensland Government’s 2020 Billy Thorpe Scholarship was awarded to Harry Phillips, who will receive $10,000 to record his next release along with career planning advice from Chugg Entertainment. Supported by the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland, the Scholarship is now in its 12th year and has supported emerging musicians including Song Of The Year winner Sam Hales (The Jungle Giants) and Jeremy Neale in their developing years.
Harry is a singer-songwriter from Brisbane who has written with some of the most established names in the Australian music scene, as well as several high-profile international songwriters. Harry is such an important artist in that his music carries a social message. The support Harry will receive from the Billy Thorpe Scholarship will allow Harry to grow his career and continue telling his stories through song.
The QMusic Honorary Award was presented to Sony Music Executive Denis Handlin in recognition of his 50-year tenure at Sony Music Entertainment where he has developed and supported local artists, driven charitable contributions and successfully overseen the Asia Pacific region over the last 10 years.
Icon of the Brisbane punk scene and lead singer of Blowhard, Brentyn ‘Rollo’ Rollason was posthumously honoured with the Grant McLennan Lifetime Achievement Award after decades of leading the way and inspiring others in the music industry with his work on stage and through Splurt Records.
The Kite String Tangle won two awards, the producer and songwriter’s latest ‘P()L4R’ took out the Electronic / Dance and Video categories. The Video Award presented to the production team responsible for the music video with producer Caitlin Johnston, director Lucus Thyer, production Liam Connor and director of photography Brian Lowe.
The incredible commercial success of Queensland music was on show through the night with Amy Shark winning the Highest Selling Single award for ‘Mess Her Up’, Conrad Sewell winning the Highest Selling Album award for ‘Life’ and Nat Dunn winning the Export Achievement award. All three artists were at the awards celebrating Queensland music.
Central Queensland was heavily represented at the QMAs with Rockhampton locals Busby Marou rising to the top in the Blues / Roots category with their Torres Strait Meriam Mer language titled single ‘Naba Norem’ and Woorabinda rising-star Miiesha winning the Remote category for her sophomore release ‘Drowning’.
Jaguar Jonze picked up the Singer Songwriter / Folk award fresh off her shoulder-dislocating performance on Eurovision Australia Decides, she also finished the night with a show-stopping performance of her single ‘Kill Me With Your Love’.
Pop-rock up-and-comer Hope D was awarded the inaugural QMusic Emerging Artist Of The Year award after years of frantically playing Brisbane stages, her debut single Swim launched her to the top of music consciousness in May last year.
Noosa sisters Oh Harlow won the Country award for their single ‘Give It A Miss’.
Gold Coast four-piece Eliza & The Delusionals took out the Rock category with their song ‘Just Exist’ and fellow rockers DZ Deathrays took home the Heavy category with their hit ‘Still No Change’.
Brisbane’s expert on late nights, Carmoflague Rose, was awarded the Hip-Hop / Rap award for his single ‘Sele’.
Thursday Island hip-hop artist Mau Power won the Indigenous award with his moving single ‘Arrived ft. Marcus Corowa’ and fellow Far North Queenslander, Leanne Tennant took home the Regional award for ‘Bring It All Back’.
17 year old alt-pop artist HANNI received the Schools award for her debut release ‘Wired’, and neo-soul group Pink Matter took out the Soul / Funk / R’n’B category with their tune ‘Soul Fruit’.
Pianist, Sean Foran took out the Jazz category for his release ‘Monkey’, and Matt Hsu’s Obscure Orchestra won the World Music category with ‘Make Everything’.
Queensland’s Sunshine Coast was on full show in the People’s Choice Award categories this year with the Big Pineapple Music Festival crowned as the Festival Of The Year for the third year in a row and Solbar taking the title of Regional Venue Of The Year. The Triffid was awarded Metro Venue Of The Year for the second year in a row.
Album Of The Year - Presented by APRA AMCOS
‘Better In Blak’
Billy Thorpe Scholarship - Presented by Queensland Government through Arts Queensland
QMusic Honorary Award
Blues / Roots - Presented by Byron Bay Bluesfest
BUSBY MAROU ‘Naba Norem’
Thomas Marou, Jeremy Busby
Country - Presented by CMC Rocks
‘Give It A Miss’
Tiana Dennis, Briannah Dennis, Nolan Wynne
Electronic / Dance - Presented by The Big Pineapple Music Festival
THE KITE STRING TANGLE
Daniel Harley, Bridgette Amofah
QMusic Emerging Artist Of The Year- Presented by Noisegate
Export Achievement Award - Presented by Lyrical Road
Grant McLennan Life Achievement Award - Presented by QMusic
BRENTYN ‘ROLLO’ ROLLASON
Heavy - Presented by The Tshirt Mill
’Still No Change’
Shane Parsons, Simon Ridley, Lachlan Ewbank
Hip-Hop / Rap - Presented by The Sound Garden
Graham Herrington, James Angus, Matthew Khabbaz
Highest Selling Single
‘Mess Her Up’
Highest Selling Album
Indigenous - Presented by TRYP Fortitude Valley Hotel
‘Arrived ft. Marcus Corowa’
Jazz - Presented by Running Boards
Pop - Presented by Hit Network
THE JUNGLE GIANTS
Rock - Presented by The Triffid
ELIZA & THE DELUSIONALS
Eliza Klatt, Kurt Skuse, Ashley Martin
Schools (Grade 6 - 12) - Presented by JMC Academy
Hannah Schloman, Marco Ghikas
Singer Songwriter / Folk - Presented by Savannah In The Round
Deena Lynch, Tim Tan
Song Of The Year - Presented by Green Beacon Brewing Co
THE JUNGLE GIANTS
Soul / Funk / RNB - Presented by Katarzyna
Kerry Raywood, Isobel De Leon, Megan Christensen, Elizabeth Scott
World - Presented by Howard Smith Wharves
MATT HSU’S ORCHESTRA
Matthew Hsu, Ashleigh Finlay
Regional - Presented by Azentro
‘Bring It All Back’
Remote - Presented by Telstra
Miiesha Young, Stephen Collins, Mohamad Komba
Video - Presented by Nightlife Music
THE KITE STRING TANGLE
Caitlin Johnson, Lucas Thyer, Liam Connor & Brian Lowe
People’s Choice Awards - Presented by Oztix and The Music
Metro Venue Of The Year
Regional Venue Of The Year
Festival Of The Year
BIG PINEAPPLE MUSIC FESTIVAL