Where are they now? The outstanding artists of the South Australian Music Awards from over the years
30.10.2020

Where are they now? The outstanding artists of the South Australian Music Awards from over the years

TKAY Maidza 2017. Photo by Lauren Connelly

The 2020 SAM Awards go down on November 3.

With 2020 and COVID-19 not doing the music industry an favours the South Australian Music Awards are here to shine on a bright light on the many and talented people that make up the SA music community.

Held for the first time in a specially constructed outdoor format, the 2020 SAM Awards continue to be a highlight of the South Australian music industry calendar, celebrating the best in local music now and looking ahead to the New Year.

The SAM Awards this year will see dynamic and genre-diverse performances from four of the city’s best acts. Emerging hip-hop and R&B artist J-MILLA will perform alongside indie rock group SEABASS, experimental producer and songwriter Lonelyspeck, as well as breakthrough pop-punk trio Chelsea Manor.

All up for awards themselves in November, ticket holders will be able to get a reminder as to why these artists are garnering attention around the country, and stand out as strong names to watch in 2021.

The SAM awards first came to life in 2015, previously being known as Fowler’s Live Music Awards, and have seen a whole bunch of brilliant people recognised for their contributions in and around music, take a look back at a few of the outstanding artists below!

Hilltop Hoods
The SA locals won way back in 2012 for Best Hip Hop Artist. Since then they have rocked up 10 Arias, multi-platinum sales, half a billion global streams and songs that have been embedded into the national consciousness. In May this year they released the track ‘I’m Good’, of which all proceeds went to Support Act’s ‘Roadies (Crew) Fund’ to assist live music industry workers during the coronavirus pandemic. The single was the groups first release sing their eighth album ‘The Great Expanse’ was released in February 2019. The album debuted at number-one on the ARIA Albums Chart making it the sixth consecutive Hiltop Hoods album to do so and consequently breaking a chart record.

Tkay Maidza
The 2015 awards saw Tkay Maidza clean up, taking out Best Release for her ‘Switch Tape’ EP, Best Female Artist, & Best Song for ‘Switch Track’. Studying Architecture at the University of South Australia before becoming a full-time musician Tkay released her new EP, ‘Last Year Was Werid, Vol. 2’ in August, is is already being celebrated as “an ecstatic trip through R&B, rap, and pop that occupies a lane of its own”, according to Pitchfork.

Having played major festivals both domestically and internationally, as well as collaborating with everyone from French DJ Martin Sloveig to fellow Australian pop star Troye Sivan, this young star has already achieved things others can only dream of.

A.B. Original
Respectively coming from the Yorta Yorta and Ngarrindjeri tribes, Briggs and Trials are socially conscious outspoken Indigenous artists. They bring a new voice to Australian hip hop as A.B. ORIGINAL.

In 2017 the hip-hop duo won a total of six awards at the SAM’s with their 2016 debut album ‘Reclaim Australia’ winning Best Release, their politically charged anthem January 26th feat. Dan Sultan winning Best Song. A.B. Original also won the awards for all round Best Group and Best Aboriginal or Torres Strait Island Artist. Richard Coburn from Kojo brought another win to A.B. Original with his direction of the Best Music Video for ‘January 26th’. In the People’s Choice Award category, A.B. Original won the Hip-Hop Award.

That same year they were also awarded the Triple J Album of the Year; 2017 ARIA Best Urban Album AND Independent Release; 2017 Australian Music prize and multiple 2017 AIR Awards (including Best Independent and Best Hip Hop Album Awards); and the ongoing success of their critically acclaimed single ‘January 26th’ (National Indigenous Music Awards 2017 Song of the Year).

Since the release of their debut album, A.B. ORIGINAL have appeared at a number of live events including; BigSound Keynote presentation and interview; MC and key performer at Laneway 2017; and support act for – 50cent Australian tour; Hilltop Hoods Australian tour; Midnight Oil and a special live performance with Paul Kelly at the 2017 ARIA Awards before their last release of ‘Blaccout’ in 2018 which also went on to win at the SAM’s.

The SAM Awards remain a standout calendar moment for the South Australian music industry, as well as becoming a key date for national industry players too to keep an eye on what’s happening in SA and discover just why it has been named a UNESCO City of Music.

“The South Australian Music Awards will once again recognise, promote and celebrate excellence in our local music industry,” says Minister for Innovation and Skills David Pisoni. “The Marshall Liberal Government is proud to be a major partner of Music SA and the SAM Awards. We value our state’s music sector which, not only contributes enormously to the cultural fabric of our community, but also supports hundreds of local jobs.”

As always, the SAM’s Industry and Major awards will be decided by a panel of 15 national and local judges who represent and work across various facets of the industry and are valued members of the overarching Australian music community.

The awards will take place on the 3rd of November and with acts like EAST AV3, Jess Day, Stellie, Naomi Keyte, SEABASS, Ollie English, Motez, Hidden Intent and Horror My Friend also nominated we can’t wait to see who takes the cake.

You can view the full list of nominees via the website.