It’s a beautiful thing that in life we turn to music to guide us through dark times and to revel in when things seem perfect.

I’m someone that always has music playing, and now with isolation and solo living, there isn’t an hour that passes without me putting on some tunes.

Lately, I’ve been trawling through Spotify and YouTube on the daily, and I’ve found a huge number of deadly First Nations musicians.

So, here’s a small list of a few of my favourite up-and-coming musicians for you to filter into your own daily listening.


Loren Ryan

From Tamworth, NSW, Ryan has the voice of an angel. A proud Gamilaraay woman, Ryan has this ability to weave a blend of Hip Hop, Pop, R&B and Soul together.

Her debut album, Fight came out in 2016 and is packed full of sweet, sassy melodies.

In January this year, Ryan release a new single, Yilalu. With an infectious beat, colourful harmonies and one mighty message, Yilalu ticks all the boxes.


Key Hoo

Imagine if Dan Sultan, Ocean Alley, The Foo Fighters, Gang of Youths and Fall Out Boy produced a record. What you’d be listening to would be the sound of Key Hoo.

The four-piece band made it big the Melbourne suburb of Fitzroy and have been stealing hearts and filling headphones ever since.

The band played at the Yaluk-ut Weelam Ngargee Indigenous music festival in January along with appearances at Groovin’ the Moo and SongHubs in 2019.

Key Hoo released their self-titled EP this year, which is filled with that infectious rock anthem sound.


Becca Hatch

Rebecca Hatch, a.k.a. Becca Hatch, is a 20-year-old powerhouse.

Hatch’s music sits between Alicia Keys, Jorja Smith, Mahalia and Solange in my playlists. She has a sweet, sensual and empowering style, creating a fresh and enticing R&B sound.

Hailing from Campbelltown in Sydney’s west, Hatch is a proud Kamilaroi and Samoan woman.

With a talent for storytelling, Hatch has two songs currently listed on Spotify: Girl Like Me and 2560, both released this year.

Hatch was the 2017 triple j Indigenous Unearthed High winner at the National Indigenous Music Awards and has performed to huge crowds at the State of Origin and at the iconic Sydney Opera House.


Jamahl Ryder

Indigenous Hip Hop holds a special place in my heart, the style of artists like Dallas Woods, Birdz, Nooky and Barkaa is something you find only within deadly First Nations artists.

Jamahl Ryder is no exception.

From Perth, WA, Ryder draws influence from Tupac, the Notorious B.I.G., Eminem and others.

His debut album, Defy Reality, was released last year and sees Ryder flex his insane song writing abilities. Writing from the age of 15, Ryder began his musical career as part of Obstrukt—an Indigeonus Hip Hop group formed at Abmusic College WA.


Kyarna Rose and Matty Walker

Last but certainly not least are these two. Although they’re not yet on Spotify, the pair have a wide reach on their YouTube and Facebook platforms.

With 349 YouTube subscribers and over 4,700 views on their videos, the pair are gaining traction fast and rightly so.

The Wollongong-based duo have an array of incredible covers from Kenny Rogers and Cindi Lauper to Hootie & the Blowfish and Lady Antebellum.

My personal favourite is Walker’s solo singing of Troy Cassar-Daley’s Ladies in my Life. Walker sits on the steps of Wollongong train station and busts out one of the most beautiful versions of this song I have ever heard.

To listen to Kyarna Rose and Matty Walker, visit their YouTube channel here:


By Rachael Knowles