Amy Shark and Genesis Owusu dominate 2021 Aria award nominations

·3 min read

The singer/songwriter Amy Shark and the hip-hop artist Genesis Owusu have dominated the list of nominees for the 2021 Aria awards, with both attracting six nominations across as many categories.

Revealed on Wednesday, the eight-time Aria-award winner Shark is up for album of the year for Cry Forever, featuring the single Love Songs Ain’t For Us (featuring Keith Urban), which is nominated in the publicly voted categories of song of the year and best video.

She is also nominated for best artist, best pop release and best Australian live act for her Cry Forever Tour 2021.

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Owusu is also nominated for best artist and best album of the year for his debut album Smiling With No Teeth, which is also up for best cover art.

He is also in the running for the best independent release, best hip-hop release and best Australian live act for his Smiling With No Teeth album tour.

The emerging 19-year-old Indigenous artist Budjerah has attracted five nominations, including the Michael Gudinski breakthrough artist award. He is also nominated for best artist, best soul/R&B release for his self-titled EP, best video for Higher and best Australian live act for his 2021 Budjerah tour.

The rock veterans AC/DC and Midnight Oil have also been nominated in five categories, along with Masked Wolf, Tones And I, Vance Joy and the Avalanches.

The international hip-hop sensation the Kid Laroi is nominated in four categories including best pop release for his collaboration with Justin Bieber, Stay.

Budjerah performs in Melbourne in April
Budjerah performs in Melbourne in April. Photograph: Richard Nicholson/Rex/Shutterstock

Bieber is also among the nominees for most popular international artist, a field that includes Ariana Grande, Miley Cyrus, Kanye West and Taylor Swift.

The winner in this category will be decided via social media. Voters can go to the following Twitter hashtags to cast their ballot:

#ARIAsArianaGrande #ARIAsDojaCat #ARIAsJustinBieber #ARIAsKanyeWest #ARIAsLukeCombs #ARIAsMachineGunKelly #ARIAsMileyCyrus #ARIAsOliviaRodrigo #ARIAsPopSmoke #ARIAsTaylorSwift

All Aria winners will be announced in Sydney on 24 November 2021, and broadcast internationally on YouTube.

Notable absence

This year’s Aria awards will have one notable absence: the former Sony Music Australia boss Denis Handlin, who was also chairman of the Arias until his dismissal from Sony in June.

John Farnham and Denis Handlin
John Farnham, left, with Denis Handlin accepting his Ted Albert award at the Apra awards in 2017. The award was revoked this month.
Photograph: Joe Castro/AAP

On Monday Handlin was stripped of his 2014 Aria Icon award – an award he lobbied to create a year earlier, with the inaugural gong going to Michael Gudinski.

Handlin retains his Order of Australia but has been stripped two other awards in the past fortnight, amid the fallout of a Guardian Australia investigation and an ABC Four Corners program into complaints by former Sony Music Australia employees about a toxic workplace culture at the company during Handlin’s 37-year reign as chief executive.

He still retains two overseas music industry awards – a 2017 label executive of the year bestowed by the Worldwide Radio Summit Industry awards, and a Sony CEO special recognition award.

This was presented to Handlin by the global Sony boss Norio Ohga in 1996, and praised by the New York president of Sony Music Entertainment at the time, Bob Bowlin.

  • The announcement of the full list of Aria nominations is now streaming on YouTube and can be viewed at youtube.com/aria, and is available to stream free on 9Now

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