Artists you should get to know as part of National Reconciliation Week
31.05.2021

Artists you should get to know as part of National Reconciliation Week

Miiesha by Cole Bennetts
WORDS BY PADDY COPPINGER

NRW, a week to amplify Aboriginal and Torres Straight peoples voices and stories; to learn and engage with our nation's history.

This week is National Reconciliation week. From the 27th of May to June 3rd, all Australians are encouraged to come together to recognise and share in our nation’s history, culture and achievements. Reconciliation is a journey, an act that each and every Australian has the right, and duty to be a part of.

At its heart, it is a movement to strengthen the bonds and relationships between the broader Australian community and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

2021 marks the 20th year of Reconciliation Australia, with the week commemorating both the successful 1967 referendum, and the High Court Mabo decision, moments in history that were instrumental steps in the fight for justice for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

With this week so much about the amplification of Indigenous voices, their stories, culture and gifts to the story of Australia, we here at Forte have compiled a list of only a short few of the amazing Indigenous and Torres Strait Islander artists and musicians you should be investing your time in this week, and the weeks to come.

Ziggy Ramo

 Ziggy Ramo Burrmuruk Fatnowna, but professionally known as Ziggy Ramo, gifted us with his debut album ‘Black Thoughts’ last year in 2020, after having shelved its original release in 2016. He twists and turns through topics of dispossession, systematic racism, and colonialism, whilst playing tribute to his seminal influences of classic US Hip-Hop.

A few days ago, Ramo released his own re-work of the Paul Kelly folk classic ‘From Little Things Big Things Grow’, an already powerful story of Vincent Lingiari and the story of his protest for Indigenous land rights. Ziggy beautifully moulds a story of dispossession and white colonialism whilst atop the iconic Sydney Opera House. A visual and auditory spectacle, to say the very least.

 

Alkina Edwards

 A digital finger artist and designer, Alkina Edwards of Yorta Yorta, Wemba Wemba, Muthi Muthi and Wiradjuri decent creates gorgeous artworks focused on identity, culture, family and love. She has recently exhibited her work at Queen Victoria Women’s Centre.

She artfully brings modern technology together with traditional techniques to create pieces that are visually stunning and magnetic. Her piece Yapameyepuka (Together) is currently adorning the Melbourne Visitor Booth of Bourke Street Mall in Melbourne’s CBD. It serves as a huge splash of colour and shape that resembles a vibrant oceanic scene, very much worth the look if you find yourself in the area.

 

Miiesha  

 Originally from the Anangu/Torres Strait regions, R&B singer/songwriter Miiesha is holding a commanding position amongst the fresh and up and comers in the Australian music scene. Her most recent release ‘Damaged’ is a gift of ridiculously strong vocals produced by those who have worked with the likes of superstars Justin Bieber and 6lack.

Her debut album Nyaaringu explores stories of strength and identity she discovered in her family, especially her grandmother, who narrates much of the project. This collection of songs also won the artist an Aria, marking 2020 a milestone year for her music and career.

Her story, through her artistry and music is one we can all find relation in. One that is very much worth hearing.

Budjerah

 A soulful talent of merely 18 years old, riding off of his enigmatic and wavy May release of his self-titled EP, Budjerah is someone soon to climb the ladder of musical success, with modest help from Aussie great Matt Corby.

His single ‘Higher’, a funk groove with soul-infused vocals demonstrates the young man’s artistic ability, talent, and vocal prowess, whilst also promising growth and a future we can all be excited for. It’s climbing the NIMA charts here in Australia, second only to The Kid LAROI, who if you’ve been under a rock recently, has been taking the world by storm with his track ‘WITHOUT YOU’.

To learn and engage further with the journey of reconciliation, click the link here.