APRA Awards 2018: All the winners and awards’ night highlights

• APRA AMCOS honours Paul Kelly, Billy Miller, Amy Shark, M-Phazes, Sia, Peking Duk, Sarah Aarons and more
• A.B. Original makes APRA history

The 2018 APRA Music Awards at the International Convention Centre in Sydney have celebrated talented songwriters and music publishers that have achieved outstanding success in the past year.

“Firewood and Candles”, co-written by Paul Kelly and Melbourne music all-rounder Billy Miller (The Ferrets) took out the coveted peer-voted APRA Song of the Year.

A.B. Original (Briggs and Trials) took out the 2018 Songwriter of the Year award. The duo set the music world ablaze with their debut album “Reclaim Australia”. Briggs and Trials are the first hip hop artists to be named APRA Songwriter of the Year.

Briggs and Trials

The APRA Board of Directors named Sarah Aarons the Breakthrough Songwriter of the Year. At just 23, Aarons has already had astonishing success as a behind-the-scenes songwriting force, co-writing the Billboard chart-topping hit “Stay” by Zedd featuring Alessia Cara, co-writing Jessie Ware‘s single “Alone”, as well as writing with artists including Flume, Demi Lovato and Bishop Briggs.

The Overseas Recognition Award went to Ben Abraham and Kylie Sackley. Recently signed to Atlantic Records, Ben Abraham has become a sought-after writer, with credits to his name including Kesha’s game-changing platinum-certified Top 10 hit “Praying”, Demi Lovato, rising stars Wrabel and Wafia and many more. Nashville-based songwriter and Cairns native Kylie Sackley has been blazing a trail since her arrival to the music city in the early 2000s. She wrote LeAnn Rimes country comeback smash “Nothin’ ‘bout Love Makes Sense” and co-wrote Faith Hill’s “Sunshine” and “Summertime” (both of which went Top 5 on the US Billboard Country Chart). Most recently, Sackley co-wrote country-pop song “You Broke Up with Me” for Walker Hayes, which ended the year in the US top 100 most played country songs of 2017 and certified Gold in the US.

Peking Duk’s “Stranger” (written by Adam Hyde, Reuben Styles, Kaelyn Behr (Styalz), Elliphant, Daniel Goudie and Ashley Milton) was a dual winner, scoring the Most Played Australian Work and Dance Work of the Year. Another two-time winner is M-Phazes, who along with Illy, Grant Michaels and Suzanne Shin took out the Urban Work of the Year award for “Catch 22” (performed by Illy featuring Anne-Marie).

M-Phazes also received an APRA Award for his collaboration with Amy Shark, whose monster hit “Adore” took out Pop Work of the Year.

Amy Shark

The Country Work of the Year was awarded to “Kiss Somebody” written by Morgan Evans, Chris De Stefano and Josh Osborne and performed by Evans, who was anointed by Billboard as one of 15 country artists to watch in 2018. Busby Marou’s song “Best Part of Me” written by Thomas Busby, Jeremy Marou and Jon Hume was the Blues & Roots Work of the Year winner.

Winning their fifth APRA Music Award was Birds of Tokyo (Ian Berney, Ian Kenny, Glenn Sarangapany, Adam Spark and Adam Weston) for “Brace” in the Rock Work of the Year category. Taking her APRA Music Awards tally to nine was international songwriting superstar Sia, who had the Most Played Australian Work Overseas with her song “Cheap Thrills”.

Legendary rock group Midnight Oil accepted the Ted Albert Award for Outstanding Services to Australian Music, an honour that APRA confers on a group or individual who has contributed immensely to Australian music.

As previously announced, The Licensee of the Year award was given to the Settlers Tavern, Margaret River, WA for its excellent music citizenship.

Ed Sheeran and co-writers Kevin Briggs, Kandi Burruss, Tameka Cottle, Steven McCutcheon and John McDaid received the International Work of the Year for “Shape of You”.

APRA chair Jenny Morris delivered a moving tribute to much respected outgoing APRA AMCOS CEO Brett Cottle who leaves with more than 40 years’ service to APRA AMCOS, and 28 of those years as its chief executive.

Tim Minchin and Paul Kelly

The 2018 APRA Music Awards were hosted by Julia Zemiro while Robert Conley programmed a stellar list of performances for his final turn as musical director.

In keeping with Music Awards tradition, artists put their own spin on the songs nominated in the APRA Song of the Year category. Tim Minchin performed 2018 Song of the Year “Firewood and Candles”, while Overseas Recognition Award winner Ben Abraham teamed up with All Our Exes Live in Texas for their rendition of “Fallin’”. Nat Dunn and Jeremy Marou hit the stage with their interpretation of “Weekends” by Amy Shark. Jack Gray and Teischa played “Running Second” and No Mono took on David Le’aupepe’s “What Can I Do If The Fire Goes Out?”

In a musical tribute to outgoing APRA AMCOS CEO Brett Cottle, Song of the Year nominee Ainslie Wills performed her new Songhubs single “Society”. Arnhem Land sensation Baker Boy opened proceedings with his anthemic “Marryuna”, while an all-star super group featuring Suze DeMarchi and Baby Animals, Adalita and Isabella Manfredi paid musical tribute to Midnight Oil.

Midnight Oil

2018 APRA Awards presenters were Isabella Manfredi, Tracey Spicer, Kasey Chambers, Adam Eckersley, Brooke McClymont, Starley Hope, Andrew Farriss, managing director at Sony/ATV Music Publishing Australia Damian Trotter, Amber Lawrence, Guy Sebastian and the Hilltop Hoods.

Winners List: 2018 APRA Music Awards

Song of the Year
Title: Firewood and Candles
Performer: Paul Kelly
Writers: Paul Kelly / Billy Mille
Publisher: Sony/ATV Music Publishing

Songwriter of the Year
A.B. Original (Briggs & Trials)

Breakthrough Songwriter of the Year
Writer: Sarah Aarons
Publisher: Sony/ATV Music Publishing

Overseas Recognition Award
Ben Abraham (and) Kylie Sackley

Ted Albert Award for Outstanding Services to Australian Music
Midnight Oil

Most Played Australian Work
Title: Stranger
Performer: Peking Duk feat. Elliphant
Writers: Adam Hyde / Reuben Styles / Kaelyn Behr (Styalz) / Elliphant / Daniel Goudie / Ashley Milton
Publishers: Universal Music Publishing / Sony/ATV Music Publishing / Kobalt Music Publishing / BMG

Country Work of the Year
Title: Kiss Somebody
Performer: Morgan Evans
Writers: Morgan Evans / Chris De Stefano / Josh Osborne
Publishers: Warner/Chappell Music Publishing / Sony/ATV Music Publishing / Kobalt Music Publishing

Blues & Roots Work of the Year
Title: Best Part of Me
Performer: Busby Marou
Writers: Thomas Busby / Jeremy Marou / Jon Hume
Publisher: Sony/ATV Music Publishing

Dance Work of the Year
Title: Stranger
Performer: Peking Duk feat. Elliphant
Writers: Adam Hyde / Reuben Styles / Kaelyn Behr (Styalz) / Elliphant / Daniel Goudie / Ashley Milton
Publishers: Universal Music Publishing / Sony/ATV Music Publishing / Kobalt Music Publishing BMG

Rock Work of the Year
Title: Brace
Performer: Birds of Tokyo
Writers: Ian Berney / Ian Kenny / Glenn Sarangapany / Adam Spark / Adam Weston
Publisher: Mushroom Music

Pop Work of the Year
Title: Adore
Performer: Amy Shark
Writers: Amy Shark / M-Phazes
Publishers: Mushroom Music obo UNIFIED Music Publishing / Universal Music Publishing

Urban Work of the Year
Title: Catch 22
Performer: Illy feat. Anne-Marie
Writers: Illy / M-Phazes / Grant Michaels / Suzanne Shinn
Publishers: Mushroom Music obo UNIFIED Music Publishing / Universal Music Publishing / Native Tongue Music Publishing

International Work of the Year
Title: Shape of You
Performer: Ed Sheeran
Writers: Ed Sheeran / Kevin Briggs / Kandi Burruss / Tameka Cottle / Steven McCutcheon John McDaid
Publishers: Sony/ATV Music Publishing / BMG and Warner/Chappell Music obo She K’em Down and Pepper Drive Music / Sony/ATV Music Publishing and Warner/Chappell Music obo Kandacy Music and Tony Mercedes Music / Sony/ATV Music Publishing and Warner/Chappell Music obo Tiny Tam Music and Tony Mercedes Music / Universal Music Publishing obo Rokstone Music / Kobalt Music Publishing obo Spirit B-Unique Polar Patrol

Most Played Australian Work Overseas
Title: Cheap Thrills
Artist: Sia
Writer: Sia Furler / Gregory Kurstin
Publisher: Sony/ATV Music Publishing / Sony/ATV Music Publishing obo Kurstin Music

Licensee of the Year
Settlers Tavern (Rob and Karen Gough)

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