Hip-hop artist Sampa the Great has won the 13th Australian Music prize for her debut album Birds and the Bee9.
Sampa, whose full name is Sampa Tembo, beat eight other shortlisted artists, including Paul Kelly and Jen Cloher, to take out the annual $30,000 prize for best Australian album of 2017.
Born in Zambia but now based in Sydney, Sampa said upon winning: “I didn’t see any of this in my periphery when coming to Australia.”
“BBEE9 came out of a point in my life that was very hard to navigate and to see soo much love come out of all that confusion is humbling. The time is now” she added
Previous winners of the prize are Indigenous hip-hop artists AB Original, singer-songwriter Courtney Barnett, and rock bands Augie March, the Drones and the Jezabels.
Prize judge Mikey Cahill described Sampa’s album as having “an openness to the future”, saying she was a poet “using hip hop and soul to connect and hit the ground gunning”.
More than 400 albums were eligible for the award this year, which was presented on Friday in Me. The other shortlisted albums were: Second of Spring by Beaches; Intimacy & Isolation by Darcy Baylis; Chrome Halo by HTMLflowers; Jen Cloher’s self-titled album; Wallflower by Jordan Rakei; TFCF by Liars; Life is Fine by Paul Kelly; and The Vampires Meet Lionel Loueke by the Vampires.
The prize has been running since 2005. It is voted on by a panel of music industry figures, journalists and other artists, and is funded by music licensing organisation PPCA.
(Source :The Guardian)