Monday, 14 September 2009

Gurrumul Announces Shepherd's Bush Empire Show 8th November

Gurrumul returns to Britain on his European tour to play at London’s Shepherd’s Bush Empire on November 8th.

Tickets £18.50 - Box office - 08444 77 2000 or

"...the greatest voice this continent has ever recorded..." Sydney Morning Herald

Gurrumul’s sound is as fragile as gossamer yet as robust as time itself. His tenor voice resonates with emotion as he tells stories of his land, his ancestry and his culture with the simplest of musical accompaniments. An unlikely superstar, Gurrumul has become just that. Quietly, and with little fanfare, Gurrumul and his poetic songs, which he sings in Yolngu dialects, have connected with listeners around the world. No one expected it, least of all the intensely shy 39 year old from east Arnhem Land in the Northern Territory of Australia.

Citing his favourite singers as Neil Diamond and Elvis Presley and favourite groups as The Eagles and Dire Straits Gurrumul learnt to play guitar as a young boy. Because there were no left-handed guitars in the area he played a normally strung right-handed guitar upside down and continues to do so. He played for eight years in the internationally successful Yothu Yindi but found that his blindness made the constant travel exhausting and returned to Elcho Island where he formed The Saltwater Band. Meeting Michael Hohnen, a classically trained bassist, was the catalyst for Gurrumul to record a solo album on which, opting for the less is more approach, Gurrumul’s extraordinary voice is the main instrument with the sparse backing of his guitar occasionally joined by Hohnen on bass.

This record, simply titled ‘Gurrumul’, has seeped into the mainstream consciousness of Australia, causing a nation to reassess its relationship with its indigenous people. Winning a string of awards in 2008 including Aria Award for ‘Best Independent Release’, Limelight Award for ‘Emerging Artist Of The Year’ and 3 AIR (Australian Independent Record) Awards, in June 2009 an APRA Award followed for ‘Breakthrough Songwriter Of The Year’.

Meanwhile in Europe Gurrumul’s music is captivating a new audience with the album entering the charts across the continent including a top 10 chart position in Germany. In Britain earlier this year he appeared on Later With Jools Holland and played at Islington’s Union Chapel to great acclaim; this summer he performed at the Latitude Festival and at Queen Elizabeth Hall leading the Daily Telegraph to write “The sound he makes is extraordinary”… “It feels like a privilege being allowed to listen in”…

Prior to the concert, on October 12th, Dramatico will release the single ‘Bapa’, a delicate homage to Bapa (Father) on which Gurrumul’s exquisite, transcendental voice and his hauntingly beautiful music penetrate the soul.

“Grief has taken hold of me for my father when the sun sets, oh beloved father”

For more information:

...."his celestial voice and his swelling acoustic songs full of dignity reduce you to tears, aching with the pain of the past and hope for the future..." Q Magazine