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News April 5, 2018

Power and the passion: Midnight Oil to receive Outstanding Services award at APRA Awards

Senior Journalist, B2B
Power and the passion: Midnight Oil to receive Outstanding Services award at APRA Awards

APRA AMCOS announced Midnight Oil as recipients of the Ted Albert Award for Outstanding Services to Australian Music, as part of next week’s APRA awards in Sydney.

The late Ted Albert was an early independent record producer and a publisher whose Albert Productions launched the careers of The Easybeats, Billy Thorpe, AC/DC, Rose Tattoo and The Angels.

He died on November 11, 1990, of a heart attack at the age of 53.

Midnight Oil were more than just a band who played each show like it was their last, had a “us against the music industry” attitude, and sold 12 million albums worldwide.

They planted the Australian flag around the world, and brought to light Australian issues as land rights, corporate power, environmentalism and militarism among many others.

An APRA industry poll in 2001 put 1987’s ‘Beds Are Burning’ as third best Australian song of all time.

It remains their best known song outside Australia, reaching #1 in New Zealand, South Africa and Canada; #3 in the Netherlands; #5 in France; #6 in the United Kingdom and Australia; #11 in Ireland and #17 in the United States and Sweden.

APRA chair Jenny Morris said, “Midnight Oil’s uniquely Australian songs took on societal issues with fiery determination and a musical conviction that continues to connect on a global scale.

“I don’t want to say there will never be another Midnight Oil because the world will always need a band like Midnight Oil – now, more than ever.”

The band issued a statement: “It’s a great honour for our band.

“Ted’s great skill was his knack for picking talent, his genuine love for original Australian music, and the creation of his legendary production house – which has become a by-word for excellence and success.

“Midnight Oil’s connection to Alberts began in 1978, when the band –  in between playing sweaty pub gigs in and around Sydney – recorded our first album at the Boomerang House studio in King St (‘Whoah! A band that eats!’ said Harry Vanda, when he caught us scoffing burgers).

“Nine years later we were back at Alberts, this time at Neutral Bay, to record Diesel and Dust –  an album inspired by the Australian desert and Top End communities, but which opened doors for us right around the world.”

As part of the accolade, the Australian Music Vault will create a special section for the Oils in its exhibition at Arts Centre Melbourne that will include film footage and items such as the handwritten score of ‘Beds Are Burning.’.

Arts Centre Melbourne CEO Claire Spencer remarked:, “The Australian Music Vault is excited to be working with APRA AMCOS to celebrate the achievements of Midnight Oil, this year’s award recipients.

“Midnight Oil stand tall in the Australian musical landscape as artists whose work has helped to shape the way we see ourselves both as Australians and as global citizens.

“We invite everyone to come in and celebrate the history and impact of this iconic Australian band.”

APRA AMCOS also unveiled this morning the performers who will traditionally reinterpret the songs nominated for the song of the year.

They include Tim Minchin, and #1 Dads’ Tom Snowdon and Big Scary’s Tom Iansek now working together on the new No Mono project.

Breakthrough Songwriter nominee Ben Abraham will team up with All Our Exes Live in Texas while Jack Gray will perform with Perth pop singer songwriter Teischa.

Nat Dunn, Los Angeles-based writer of the Marshmello & Anne-Marie global smash ‘Friends’ will also hit the stage.

So will Baker Boy, Suze DeMarchi and Baby Animals, Adalita and Isabella Manfredi.

Manfredi also pulls double duty as a presenter, along with Tracey Spicer, Adam Eckersley, Brooke McClymont,  Kasey Chambers, Starley Hope, Andrew Farriss, Sony/ATV Music Publishing Australia managing director Damian Trotter, Amber Lawrence and Guy Sebastian

Ed Sheeran is announced as winner of International Work of the Year for ‘Shape Of You’.

The Licensee of the Year, a category introduced last year, is the Settlers Tavern, Margaret River, WA for its “ongoing support of live music.”

The 2018 APRA Music Awards will be held on Tuesday April 10 at the International Convention Centre Grand Ballroom in Sydney’s Darling Harbour.

The event will be hosted by Julia Zemiro with live music performances curated by Robert Conley.


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