There’s a new movement of Soul music sweeping across Australia and the rest of the world is listening.
From the Neo-Soul movement to the Jazz-Funk bands coming out of Australian cities and regional areas alike, Australia has got Soul.
In the wake of the recent cancellation of Soulfest, and the many disappointed fans that were left with no soul place to go, we thought we’d put together a list of some of the talent coming from our own shores.
Hiatus Kaiyote have become Australian Future Soul Sweethearts, gaining international accolades including a Grammy nomination and thumbs up from Prince. The quartet is fronted by vocalist and guitarist Nai Palm. Their music is described as Multi-Dimensional, Poly rhythmic Gangster Shit.
Lance Ferguson’s nine piece Melbourne outfit, The Bamboos, have been a staple in the Australian Funk and Soul scene since forming in 2001. Most recently the Bamboos have collaborated with Tim Rogers (You Am I) and released an album “The Rules of Attraction”. The Rules of Attraction is nominated for the Best Blues & Roots category at the ARIA 2015 Awards(NOV 26th).
Kellie Knight and the Daze
Newcomers, Kellie Knight and the Daze, hail from the regional area of Byron Bay and bring a unique slant to the Soul scene. Combining Jazz, funk and pop sensibilities with the distinctly unique voice of soulful powerhouse front woman, Kellie Knight, this band are an up and coming force. Their new punchy retro soul single release ‘TWISTED’ came out this week and their debut EP has won several Australian music Industry awards.
Emma Donovan and the Putbacks
Emma Donovan is an Indigenous Australian singer/songwriter making waves in Melbourne’s vibrant music scene. Together with Melbourne rhythm combo, The PutBacks, They deliver a gritty, Live and raw soul experience. Emma Donovan and The PutBacks have brought together some very special guests to release a new 7” single featuring two classic Aboriginal Australian songs. Emma is joined by Tim Rogers of You Am I and rapper Joelistics on a version of Warumpi Band’s 1985 anthem Blackfella Whitefella and by Archie Roach on a deep soul rendition of his late partner Ruby Hunter’s heartbreaking hit, Down City Streets.
Paul Kelly, The Merri Soul Sessions
Who better to breath a voice into the awakening Australian Soul music scene but Australia’s singer/songwriter royalty, Paul Kelly. With his new boundary breaking collaboration project ‘Paul Kelly Presents The Merri Soul Sessions’ Paul gathered a bunch of talented singers and create an unforgettable Soul inspired album and accompanying tour experience with the likes of singers Clairy Browne, Vika and Linda Bull, Dan Sultan, Kira Puru and himself.
Melbourne’s Women of Soul
Melbourne has been a hub for a thriving Soul scene of recent years and out front are a bunch of ladies who definitely got the soul. Big hair, big sequins, big heart, big voices – these ladies are leading the way and have come together for the Women of Soul project. Soul vocalists Kylie Auldist, Stella Angelico, Candice Monique, Rita Satch, Chelsea Wilson, May Johnston (Deep Street Soul), Lisa Faithfull (Soul Safari) and Christina Perfection (The Perfections) are the force behind the project.
Brisbane indie soul songstress Bec Laughton is a petit redhead with a monstrous voice and a serious knack for penning a pop hook. A clear love of booty shaking old-school funk informs her music. Bec Laughton played in 2014’s Soulfest line-up.
Clairy Browne & The Bangin’ Rackettes
Retro Soul Band from Melbourne, Clairy Browne & The Bangin’ Rackettes, have made international inroads with their brand of old soul. In 2012, the band gained wide exposure after its song “Love Letter” was featured in a Heineken ad campaign. Most recently Clairy Browne has released a pop influenced single called “Vanity Fair”
The Cactus Channel
The Cactus Channel are a Melbourne based dark instrumental soul band who on September 18th 2015 put out two tracks featuring ARIA Award Winner Chet Faker through HopeStreet Recordings. They are also about to embark on a spring Australian tour
Cookin’ On 3 Burners
Cookin’ On 3 Burners are Australia’s hardest hitting Hammond Organ Trio – joining the dots between Deep Funk, Raw Soul, Organ Jazz & Boogaloo. They have a new 7″ called “The Writing’s On The Wall” featuring Tex Perkins.
Ms Murphy is an R&B, Soul and Neo-Soul musician, visual artist and music director from Sydney, Australia. Here new Album "Dirty Soul" features soul/gospel treatment of songs by Sam Cooke, The Rolling Stones and Percy Sledge. There are also two songs, Rising Moon and Sure Got Me, by one of her biggest admirers, Australian songwriter Paul Kelly.