At a special event in Sydney, the 2017 National Live Music Awards revealed their nominees across no less than 54 categories, recognising the best musicians, venues, events and industry members from all corners of Australia.
Coming off of their biggest Australian tour to date, Gang of Youths lead this year’s nominations, with six across the national and state categories, including Live Act of the Year presented by APRA AMCOS, and Live Voice of the Year for lead singer David Le’aupepe. Julia Jacklin, Amy Shark and Camp Cope all sit right behind the gang with five nominations each, following stellar years for all three – in particular Amy Shark, who is up for Best New Act presented by Young HenrysAll Our Exes Live in Texas, Stella Donnelly and the St Jerome’s Laneway Festival all enjoy an impressive four nominations.
Bringing particular weight to this year’s nominations is the strong representation of female artists across all categories. A whopping 63% of the artists nominated in the national categories, and 51% in the State/Territory Categories, are either female or are a group led by a female vocalist. Organisations like Sad Grrls Club and Girls Rock! Melbourne are also recognised amongst the industry categories, who hold the flag up high for female representation in live music.
Meanwhile, Minus18 has scored a nomination in the new All Ages Achievement (AAA) category for Victorians, an organisation who organise under 18 events for the LGBTQI+ community. Artists prominent in the LGBTQI+ community also feature amongst the nominations – to mention only a few: Cub Sport enjoy two nominations, Canberra’s Glitoris have three, while emerging Newcastle artist Rachel Maria Cox has scored a Pop nomination, proving the award’s newest category is anything but predictable.
The representation of Indigenous musicians is also strong, with artists such as Electric Fields, Kardajala Kirridarra, Dan Sultan, The Lonely Boys, Tjupi Band, Eleanor Dixon, Yirrmal, William Barton and A.B. Original nominated across a wide range of categories.

Director of the NLMAs, Larry Heath, had this to say about the nominees at the award presentation in Sydney, “Over the last couple of months, our group of almost 100 judges have been tasked with crafting a list of nominees who are as diverse as they are eclectic.”

“While I’m sure some will debate the absent nominees who were just as deserving, I don’t think the judges could have done a better job at creating a more exciting, nor a more deserving and representative list of nominees. These are the artists, venues, events and industry professionals who make Australia one of the live music capitals of the world.”

Board Member Damian Cunningham, of the Live Music Office, said, “The nominees for the 2017 NLMAs are all of such high calibre; a truly diverse reflection of the strength of Australia’s live music industry!”

All categories, bar the two People’s Choice Awards, are voted on by a panel of judges around the country, representing every State and Territory in Australia. The nominees of the two People’s Choice Awards were chosen by the judges, however the public will be able to have their say amongst ten nominees for Best Live Act and Best Live Voice from Monday, October 23rd with prizes up for grabs from Audio-Technica. More details on voting processes will be revealed closer to the date.

The winners to all categories will be announced at simultaneous events around Australia on Thursday, the 7th of December. Also revealed tonight, here are the venues set to hold National Live Music Awards events, some past winners themselves:

Melbourne, VIC: Grace Darling (Invite-Only Gala)
Sydney, NSW: Leadbelly
Brisbane, QLD: Lefty’s
Fremantle, WA: Mojos
Adelaide, SA: Grace Emily
Launceston, TAS: Club 54
Alice Springs, NT: Epilogue Rooftop
Canberra, ACT: Smith’s Alternative

Tickets to all events, bar the invite-only Melbourne gala, are free and will be available exclusively through NLMA’s official ticketing partners OzTix from Monday, October 23rd. More details about who will be performing and what time doors will open at each venue will be revealed as we approach the night.

The awards are also once again excited to support Support Act, with $5 from every ticket sold to the Melbourne Gala going towards the charity – and donations on the door encouraged at all events. Those who don’t pre-book their free tickets will be asked to donate $5 on the door to the charity.

A few fun facts about the awards:
  • This is the first time the event has been held in Fremantle, Alice Springs or Launceston.
  • There are two new awards this year: Best Pop Act and Best Country or Folk Act. 
  • The All Ages Achievement (AAA) Award, which recognises an individual or organisation who supports and fosters all ages events, has expanded from NSW to Victoria thanks to The Push.
A few awards have changed their names:
  • “The Heatseeker Award” is now “The Best New Act presented by Young Henrys”, though the award is still given to an artist who has exploded over the last 12 months.
  • The “Hard Rock or Metal” genre category has been shortened to just “Hard Rock”, however this encompasses a wide range of genres including Punk, Metal and Hard Rock.
  • The previous “Roots” award is now the “Blues & Roots” award, with Country and Folk nominees given their own category for the first time.
  • Gender Balance: A whopping 63% of the artists nominated in the national categories, and 51% in the State/Territory Categories, are either female or are a group led by a female vocalist.
  • Strong Indigenous representation, with nominated artists including Electric Fields, Kardajala Kirridarra, Dan Sultan, The Lonely Boys, Tjupi Band, Eleanor Dixon, Yirrmal, William Barton and A.B. Original.
  • Gang of Youths lead the nominees with 6 nominations.
  • Julia Jacklin, Amy Shark, Camp Cope sit right behind with 5 nominations.
  • All Our Exes Live in Texas, Stella Donnelly and the St Jerome’s Laneway Festival all have 4 nominations.
And now, for the nominees…
National Awards
Live Act of the Year presented by APRA AMCOS
Amy Shark
Client Liaison
Gang Of Youths
The Jezabels

Best New Act presented by Young Henrys
Amy Shark
Confidence Man
Stella Donnelly
Vera Blue
Live Voice of the Year
David Le’aupepe (Gang of Youths)
Julia Jacklin
Meg Mac
Stella Donnelly
Vera Blue
Live Guitarist of the Year
Joji Malani (Gang of Youths)
Lee Hartney (The Smith Street Band)
Oscar Dawson (Holy Holy)
Tash Sultana
Live Bassist of the Year
Dan Stanley Freeman (Fanny Lumsden & The Thrillseekers)
Gus Gardiner (Montaigne, Jarryd James, Megan Washington, Nicole Millar & More)
Kelly-Dawn Hellmrich (Camp Cope)
Tom Tilley (Client Liaison)
Zoe Hauptmann
Live Drummer of the Year
Sarah Thompson (Camp Cope)
Shauna Boyle (Cable Ties)
Scarlett Stevens (San Cisco)
Tim Commandeur (PNAU, Tkay Maidza, Panama, KLP & More)
Tom Myers (Kim Churchill, Jack River, Thelma Plum & More)
Live Instrumentalist of the Year
Happy Axe (Emma Kelly)
Kirsty Tickle (Exhibitionist)
William Barton
R&B or Soul Live Act of the Year
Caiti Baker
Hiatus Kaiyote
Mojo Juju
Odette Mercy and the Soul Atomics
Blues & Roots Live Act of the Year
Cash Savage and the Last Drinks
CW Stoneking

Dan Sultan
Gretta Ray

Tash Sultana
Pop Live Act of the Year
Amy Shark
Client Liaison
Confidence Man
Rachel Maria Cox
Country or Folk Live Act of the Year
All Our Exes Live in Texas
Fanny Lumsden
Henry Wagons
Julia Jacklin
Ruby Boots
Hard Rock Live Act of the Year
Cable Ties
Cursed Earth
High Tension
Totally Unicorn
DJ or Electronic Live Act of the Year
Happy Axe (Emma Kelly)
Japanese Wallpaper
Peking Duk
Rainbow Chan
Hip-Hop Live Act of the Year
A.B. Original
Citizen Kay
Genesis Owusu
L-Fresh The Lion
Sampa The Great
International Live Achievement – Group
All Our Exes Live In Texas
Camp Cope
King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard
Methyl Ethel
The Middle Kids
International Live Achievement – Solo
Alex Lahey
Julia Jacklin
Tash Sultana
The NLMA – Industry Achievement
Hugh Nichols, City of Sydney
Live Music Office
Matt and Dan Rule
Sad Grrls Club
Your Choice
Best Live Music Event in Australia presented by Music Insight
Dark Mofo
Golden Plains
Splendour in the Grass
St Jerome’s Laneway Festival
People’s Choice Awards
Voting opens October 23rd
Live Act of the Year presented by The Music Network
A.B. Original
All Our Exes Live in Texas
Cable Ties
Camp Cope
Client Liaison
Confidence Man
Gang of Youths
Hands Like Houses
King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard
Methyl Ethel
Live Voice of the Year presented by Audio-Technica
Alex Lahey
Amy Shark
Courtney Barnett
Julia Jacklin
Sampa The Great
Stella Donnelly
Tash Sultana
Vera Blue
NSW Awards
Presented in partnership with 2SER
Live Act of the Year
All Our Exes Live In Texas
Gang of Youths
Kirin J Callinan
Polish Club
The Preatures
Live Voice of the Year
David Le’aupepe (Gang of Youths)
David Novak (Polish Club)
Jack River
Julia Jacklin
Live Venue of the Year presented by OzTix
The Bald Faced Stag
Golden Age Cinema and Bar
The Lansdowne
Oxford Art Factory
Rad Bar (Wollongong)
Live Event of the Year presented by Howl Around Entertainment
Groovin’ The Moo (Maitland)
King Street Crawl (Newtown)
St Jerome’s Laneway Festival (Sydney)
Sounds of the Suburbs (Cronulla)
Yours and Owls (Wollongong)
AAA (All Ages Achievement) Award presented by Music NSW

Beatdisc Records

The Plot
Tracks: A Western Sydney Hip-Hop Project (FBi Radio)

Waverley Council’s WAVE Program

ACT Awards
Presented by partnership with BMA Mag
Live Act of the Year
The Ansah Brothers (Citizen Kay and Genesis Owusu)
Helena Pop
Moaning Lisa
Live Voice of the Year
Alice Cottee (No Hausfrau, Glitoris and Alice Cottee)
Azim Zain (Azim Zain & His Lovely Bones, Elk Locker)

Beth Monzo (Betty Alto)

Ella Hunt (The Lowlands)
Nathan Gubler (The Blade Winner, Space Party and The Sinbirds)
Live Venue of the Year presented by OzTix
The Basement
Lobrow Gallery & Bar

Smiths Alternative

The Phoenix
Transit Bar
Live Event of the Year
Art not Apart
Groovin The Moo
Mulgara presents No Front Fences
The National Folk Festival
Spilt Milk
SA Awards
Presented in partnership with Radio Adelaide
Live Act of the Year presented by City of Adelaide
A.B. Original
Electric Fields
West Thebarton
Live Voice of the Year
Dusty Lee Stephensen (Wanderers)
Häna Brenecki (Hana & Jessie-Lee)
Louis Donnarumma
Paige Renee Court (MANE)
Zaachariaha Fielding (Electric Fields)
Live Venue of the Year presented by OzTix
Crown & Anchor
Ed Castle Hotel
Fat Controller
The Gov
Grace Emily
Live Event of the Year
A Day of Clarity
Blenheim Festival
The Porch Sessions
St. Jerome’s Laneway Festival
TAS Awards
Presented in partnership with Edge Radio
Live Act of the Year
A. Swayze and The Ghosts
Ani Lou
EWAH & The Vision of Paradise
The Sleepyheads
Live Voice of the Year
Emma Waters (EWAH & The Vision of Paradise)
Maddy Jane
Mary Shannon (Bansheeland, Disrepute, solo work)
Seth Henderson
Tyler Richardson (Luca Brasi)
Live Venue of the Year presented by OzTix
The Brisbane Hotel
Club 54
The Grand Poobah
The Homestead
The Republic Bar
Live Event of the Year
A Festival Called Panama
Mona Foma
Party In The Paddock
Til The Wheels Falls Off
VIC Awards
Presented in partnership with SYN Media
Live Act of the Year
Big Scary
Cable Ties
Camp Cope
Tim Rogers
Oh Pep!
Live Voice of the Year
Ainslie Wills
Jenny McKechnie (Cable Ties)
Romy Vager (RVG)
Live Venue of the Year presented by OzTix
The Athenaeum
The Old Bar
Theatre Royal (Castlemaine)
The Tote
Live Event of the Year
Golden Plains
Groovin’ The Moo
St Jerome’s Laneway Festival
Sugar Mountain
Wetfest III: Wetter Than Ever
AAA (All Ages Achievement) Award presented by The Push
Charm of Finches
Girls Rock! Melbourne
Jackknife Music
Wrangler Studios
WA Awards
Presented in partnership with RTR FM
Live Act of the Year
Grievous Bodily Calm
The Love Junkies

POW! Negro
Rag N’ Bone

Tired Lion

Live Voice of the Year
Bella Nicholls (Demon Days)
Kiera Alice Owen (Rag N’ Bone)
Lucy Peach
Peter Bibby
Stella Donnelly
Live Venue of the Year presented by OzTix
The Bird
Fly By Night Club
Jack Rabbit Slim’s
Live Event of the Year
Camp Doogs
In The Pines
Nannup Music Festival
State Of The Art
QLD Awards
Presented in partnership with 4ZZZ
Live Act of the Year
The Creases
Cub Sport
Good Boy

Violent Soho

Live Voice of the Year presented by the Queensland Music Festival
Amy Shark
Joe Agius (The Creases)
Marie DeVita (WAAX)
Miss Blanks
Tim Nelson (Cub Sport)
Live Venue of the Year presented by OzTix
Black Bear Lodge
The Foundry
The Tivoli
The Triffid
Sol Bar (Maroochydore)
Live Event of the Year
Against The Grain
The Blurst of Times
Grass is Greener
Mountain Goat Valley Crawl
NT Awards
Presented in partnership with Foldback Magazine
Live Act of the Year
At The Dakota
Kardajala Kirridarra
The Lonely Boys
Tjupi Band
Live Voice of the Year
Caiti Baker
Dave Crowe (Resin Moon)
Eleanor Dixon
Stevie Jean (GAIA)
Live Venue of the Year presented by OzTix
Arnhem Club (Nhulunbuy)
Epilogue Lounge
Darwin Railway Club
The Gap View Hotel
Montes (Alice Springs)
Live Event of the Year
Barunga Festival
Bush Bands Bash
Darwin Festival
Wide Open Space Festival
NLMAS square logo

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