Introducing Always Was, Always Will Be — a collection of music from First Nations artists curated by Yorta Yorta/Bangerang woman and Acclaim staff writer Taneshia Atkinson. The ongoing playlist aims to platform storytelling that highlights the creativity of First Nations people, the power of community and the impacts of colonial violence — whilst reclaiming space and paying homage to the very first storytellers. From newcomers to the music scene, debut tracks and timeless melodies, be sure to follow the playlist for regular updates of some of the best tracks traversing First Nations voices.
To get you started, we’ve pulled a few standout tracks for some more insight into a few highlights from the first edition of Always Was, Always Will Be:
Sugar Coated Lies – Ziggy Ramo ft. Alice Skye
Ziggy Ramo and Alice Skye join forces for this powerful track that cleverly narrates Australia’s dark history with sugar cane farming and Blackbirding. Ziggy raps smooth and comfortably over this trap-like beat intertwined with haunting yet sweet vocals from Alice Skye delivering allure, artistry, and imperative storytelling.
The Plumber (Hot Wet American Summer) – CLOE TERARE
This song comes off CLOE TERARE’s most recent project ‘Burn Book (deluxeee)’, which sees her explore RNB and pop in a way that is reminiscent of her returning home. The track is full of sensuality and wordplay that bounces over a catchy bassline, kinda sounding like the love child of Doja Cat and Mallrat. Iconic.
Aussie Aussie – Birdz
Released under Bad Apples Music in 2021, ‘Aussie Aussie’ explores the impact and relationship of nationalism and the continued erasure of First Nations voices. In this track, Birdz imitates a parallel lullaby with heavy bars over eerie piano keys, perhaps emphasising the importance of truth-telling from a young age.
Blak Matriarchy – Barkaa
Barkaa’s ‘Blak Matriarchy’ is a timeless anthem and an ode to First Nations women, making you feel like you are ready for war. Opening the track is a powerful political interlude by actor Shareena Clanton, then backing it up with hard-hitting bars; Barkaa reminds us of the power of the Blak matriarchy that is here to stay.
Beat The Odds – INKABEE
If you haven’t heard of INKABEE before, get ready. This 10-year-old Wongai up-and-comer is one to watch. The track is INKABEE’s debut single, co-written by his father, fellow rapper FLEWNT, narrating messages of unity, community and overcoming hardship.
Keep it locked to Acclaim, and follow the playlist for regular updates.
- Curated by: Taneshia Atkinson