Published on March 29th, 2017 | by admin

Archie Roach and Emma Donovan

MELBOURNE, FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – In collaboration with the 2017 YIRRAMBOI First Nations Arts Festival, Arts Centre Melbourne will be hosting an exciting program of contemporary Indigenous performances, talks and exhibitions, including two important musical offerings: Archie Roach performing from his new album Let Love Rule on May 13, and Emma Donovan & The Putbacks paying tribute to the music and memory of pioneering Aboriginal singer-songwriter Ruby Hunter on May 12.

When Aunty Ruby Hunter died suddenly in 2010, she left an indelible mark on Australian music and culture. A Ngarrindjeri woman from South Australia, Hunter was a gifted musician and songwriter. Together with her lifelong partner and collaborator, Archie Roach, she paved the way for many younger generations of Indigenous musicians.

One of the artists that took inspiration from Ruby Hunter’s music and songwriting is the acclaimed vocalist and proud Gumbainggir woman Emma Donovan. Described as a ‘tour de force of funk and soul’ and ‘a charismatic soul singer for the ages’, Donovan and Melbourne rhythm combo The Putbacks will be performing songs from Hunter’s groundbreaking 1994 debut album, Thoughts Within.

Archie Roach has been labelled ‘the definitive voice of indigenous Australia’. On May 13, he will perform songs from his latest album, Let Love Rule at Arts Centre Melbourne, joined by members of the award-winning Short Black Opera and Dhungala Children’s Choir and backed by a seven-piece band comprising some of the country’s finest musicians.

Roach is one of Australia’s most treasured performers. He has received multiple awards including a Human Rights Award for his iconic song, Took the Children Away, and several ARIA and Deadly Awards. In 2015 he was made a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for his services to music and his support of social justice. At next week’s APRA Awards, Roach will be presented with the prestigious Ted Albert Award for Outstanding Service to Australian Music, whose previous recipients include Paul Kelly, Slim Dusty, The Seekers and Cold Chisel.

Together with Molly Meldrum, Kylie Minogue and Michael Gudinski, Archie Roach is an inaugural Patron of Arts Centre Melbourne’s recently launched Australian Music Vault, celebrating Australian contemporary music – past, present and future.

Three decades after the release of his 1990 debut album Charcoal Lane, Roach’s work continues to explore universal themes of love, friendship, family, country and community. Let Love Rule, his tenth album, examines love in all its glorious, unruly incarnations. Musically, his work continues to be recognised locally and internationally.

Arts Centre Melbourne and YIRRAMBOI First Nations Arts Festival present:

Emma Donovan & The Putbacks

Friday, May 12, 8pm

Arts Centre Melbourne, Playhouse

Archie Roach

Saturday, May 13, 8pm

Arts Centre Melbourne, Playhouse

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For more information on YIRRAMBOI First Nations Arts Festival visit:

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