ARIAs 2020: Early awards go to Tame Impala, Archie Roach and Sampa The Great

ARIAs 2020: Early awards go to Tame Impala, Archie Roach and Sampa The Great

November 25, 2020

An ARIA Awards like no other has begun, with COVID-19 restrictions leading to the traditional red carpet being replaced by a virtual pre-show event.

In a live stream that was plagued with technical difficulties – from sound issues to delays between hosts and winners, to microphones not being muted while winners were accepting their awards, to directors being heard counting presenters in – the COVID-era ARIAs kicked off without a bang.

Tame Impala took out two awards at the ARIA Awards pre-show.Credit:Neil Krug

A few key awards announced at the pre-show indicate a big night for Kevin Parker, with the Perth producer's music project Tame Impala winning engineer of the year and producer of the year for album The Slow Rush. Sampa The Great has also earned a trophy, for best independent release for The Return.

Hall of fame inductee Archie Roach also scooped up an award, for best adult contemporary album. He's still up for another two awards, including best male artist, which will be announced during the ceremony.

Organisers opted to announce two of the most popular awards during the pre-show, with First Nations singer Miiesha winning best soul/R&B release for her debut album Nyaaringu, while Dom Dolla took out best dance release for San Frandisco. King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard also took out the best hard rock/heavy metal album for Chunky Shrapnel.

Sampa The Great won an early award at the ARIA Awards pre-show.

Another interesting win? Chelsea Cullen's trophy for best original soundtrack for I Am Woman. Cullen provided the singing voice for Tilda Cobham-Hervey in the recent film of the same name, about iconic Australian artist Helen Reddy. A tribute to Reddy performed by awards host Delta Goodrem, Marcia Hines, Kate Ceberano, Tones and I, Amy Shark, Montaigne, The McClymonts, Jessica Mauboy, Emma Watkins, Christine Anu and several performers in a virtual chorus will form part of the ceremony.

The stranglehold The Wiggles once had on the best children's album category looks to be over – Teeny Tiny Stevies took home the trophy this year for their album Thoughtful Songs for Little People. The Wiggles haven't won the award since 2016 despite being nominated every year.

In a year when significant Australian artists such as Don Burrows, Helen Reddy, Andrew 'Greedy' Smith and Peter Starkie died, ARIA organisers elected to move the In Memorium segment from the main ceremony, which is broadcast, to the pre-show, which is streamed on Youtube.

The ARIAs main show kicks off at 7.30pm on Nine (the owner of this masthead), with the major major awards split into two categories: those chosen by the industry, such as best male and female artist, and album of the year; and those chosen by the public such as best video and song of the year.

Lime Cordiale leads the pack with eight nominations, followed by Tame Impala with seven, Sampa The Great with six and Miiesha and DMA's with five each.

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