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The APRA Best Country Music Song finalists have been announced! And they are:
South Otago singer Aaron Jury with his song “29”, 2011 APRA Silver Scroll finalist Delaney Davidson with “You’re A Loser”, and “Ghost of This Town” by Marlon Williams - who also doubles as member of Country Album finalist band The Unfaithful Ways.
The finalists for the RIANZ Best Country Music Album 2012 have also been announced today.
Two of the finalists - The Harbour Union and The Unfaithful Ways - are from Christchurch and both of their albums have emotional connections with the city’s devastating earthquakes.
The third finalist is no stranger to the awards – Tami Neilson’s “The Kitchen Table Sessions Vol II” is her third finals berth.
Both awards are to be presented on Thursday 31 May at the New Zealand Country Music Awards in Gore.
No stranger to the country music industry, song finalist Aaron Jury has performed with Adam Harvey and has twice been a Toyota Star Maker Finalist Australia. Aaron has also been a NZ Overall Gold Guitar Winner and has won the prestigious N.Z - M.L.T Song Writing Award. He is a CMAA College Graduate.
Song finalists Delaney Davidson and Marlon Williams, along with their solo work, are both part of The Harbour Union. Delaney’s country ballad is from his 2011 album Bad Luck Man which also features "Little Heart", the song which threw him into the spotlight as a finalist in the 2011 APRA Silver Scroll Awards.
Marlon is part of Christchurch four-piece The Unfaithful Ways, whose debut album “Free Rein” was retrieved from the studio which had been tagged for demolition. The Unfaithful Ways was a finalist in the 2011 Vodafone NZ Music Awards Critics’ Choice Award and performed at the Big Day Out that same year.
Ant Healey, Director of New Zealand Operations for APRA says: "The quality of songs entered this year was unsurpassed. Our three finalists represent a new found popularity of country music in New Zealand. These are great songs and great songwriters."
Auckland-based Tami Neilson is a two-time winner of a RIANZ Country Music Awards Tui – in 2009 (“Red Dirt Angel”) and 2010 (“The Kitchen Table Sessions”). She was also a co-finalist last year.
“The Kitchen Table Sessions Vol II” builds on Tami’s successful previous Sessions album with her trademark raw energy and music that is a hybrid of acoustic torch and stripped-bare country blues.
RIANZ managing director, Chris Caddick, says: “What an absolutely brilliant year for Country Music. Congratulations to the three finalists all of whom have recorded outstanding albums. We wish them all well for the big night in May.”
The New Zealand Country Music Awards are presented by The New Zealand Songwriters Trust. Held through-out a weeklong celebration in Gore, the Southland town attracts more than 5,000 country music fans. For more information visit: http://www.goldguitars.co.nz
For more information on the APRA Best Country Music Song read here.