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The National Indigenous Music Awards have opened nominations for 2017, in what has been a landmark year for Indigenous music in Australia. Celebrating their 14th anniversary, the NIMAs are one of Australia’s most important music events, held under the stars at Darwin’s historic Amphitheatre on August 12.

This year has been an incredible time for Indigenous music, with A.B. Original’s win of the Australian Music Prize, #1 ARIA chart positions for Busby Marou’s ‘Postcards From the Shell House’ and Jessica Mauboy’s soundtrack to her national TV series, Troy Cassar-Daley taking out Album of the Year at the Tamworth Golden Guitars and Casey Donovan returning to national prominence via mainstream television are just some of the incredible achievements of the sector.

Briggs & Gurrumul, NIMA 2016

The awards are not just a place to celebrate the mainstream success of Indigenous music, but also as a place to uncover the next generation of Australian musicians, with artists including Gawurra and Tia Gostelow going on to make serious inroads in the Australian music scene since being uncovered at last year’s awards.

Indigenous artists from across Australia and the Torres Strait are encouraged to submit their tracks which will be judged by a panel of Australian and International music industry members.

“2017 promises to be a watershed year for Indigenous music with some of the most anticipated releases of the year coming from Indigenous acts,” said MusicNT Executive Director Mark Smith. “MusicNT is excited to launch this years’ National Indigenous Music Awards and looks forward to celebrating and showcasing some of the country’s biggest talent in August.”

As the nation commemorates 50 years since the national referendum to recognise Indigenous people, The National Indigenous Music Awards has also collaborated with Warner Music Australia to create the National Indigenous Music Awards CD which will be available for the first time, shining a light on the contribution that Indigenous Australia has made to the rich tapestry of Australian music.

The double-CD set will take listeners through the very best of Indigenous music in 2016/17 on disc one, before celebrating the biggest Indigenous songs of all time on disc two, including tracks from Yothu Yindi, Archie Roach, Jimmy Little, Christine Anu, No Fixed Address and many more. The compilation celebrates the strength of Indigenous music over the years and is a timely reminder not only of the great number of classic Indigenous songs that mark the Australian music landscape, but also of the commanding position Indigenous musicians hold in Australian music today.

To submit your music to the 2017 National Indigenous Music Awards or to get your tickets to this year’s awards night on August 12, visit

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