New gen Indigenous Australian artist Yirrmal Marika, from North-East Arnhem Land, has made a refreshing entrance into the music scene. Inspired by his Grandfather, Dr Yunupingu, former lead singer of Yothu Yindi, he fuses tradition and contemporary with class and passion. Yirrmal is an inspiring songwriter and guitarist with a beautiful voice, singing songs about his homeland and culture with feeling and depth beyond his years.
Yirrmal is related to Dr G Yunupingu on his mother’s side, and his father, Witiyana Marika, was a singer and dancer in Yothu Yindi. He has extensive knowledge of traditional Yolngu “Manikay” songs, and he is also an excellent dancer and didgeridoo “yidaki” player. He is connecting a newfound sound and engaging the hearts of all who are lucky enough to hear him.
Yirrmal has lived in Geelong for the past six years where he has been continuing his education and participating in the Marrma’ Rom Two Worlds Leadership Program. He aims to set an example for Indigenous youth and to be a strong, positive role-model for the next generation.
Over the past 3 years Yirrmal has worked with song-writing mentors Neil Murray, Shane Howard and released his debut EP ‘Youngblood’ in November 2016. The release was followed by a short regional Victorian and interstate tour. Yirrmal is looking forward to working with more mentors in 2017 to write material for his first full-length album recording in 2018.
Career highlights include performing at the Northern Territory NAIDOC Week concert and NAIDOC Ball, the National Indigenous Music Awards, Garma Festivals, New Zealand Music Festival and Singapore and Taipei Music Festivals with the Black Arm Band, Nannup Music Festival, BluesFest Touring Shows and Bluesfest Music Festival, Woodford Festival, the Port Fairy Folk Festival and he was the recipient of the 2017 Maton Class Act for Emerging Talent award. Yirrmal also received great reviews for his performance in the concert ‘1967: Songs in the Key of Yes’ marking the 50th anniversary of the Referendum.
For a glowing review in The Age of his live performance click here
And he gets a nice mention here amongst some class