Courtney Barnett Wins 11th Annual Australian Music Prize

9 March 2016 | 2:50 pm | Staff Writer

The unstoppable troubadour is $30,000 richer for her troubles

Courtney Barnett has added to her ever-growing list of accolades by walking away as the 2016 winner of the 11th annual Australian Music Prize for her widely acclaimed album Sometimes I Sit & Think, & Sometimes I Just Sit.

The win nets the recent Grammy nominee $30,000 in cash (courtesy PPCA), and sees her fend off some fierce competition from some of the country's finest songwriters, including Dan Kelly (for Leisure Panic), Dick Diver (Melbourne, Florida), Gold Class (It's You), Jess Ribiero (Kill It Yourself), Methyl Ethel (Oh Inhuman Spectacle), My Disco (Severe), Royal Headache (High), Sarah Blasko (Eternal Return) and Tame Impala (Currents).

Barnett's album (along with Royal Headache and Methyl Ethel's, interestingly) was one of the first longlisted for this year's Amp, making its ultimate victory over all consequent competition even more impressive than it already is. 

Incendiary activist and musician Henry Rollins filled guest-speaking shoes at the 'Amped Up In Conversation' prize-giving event, where he expressed the belief that music is the greatest achievement of our species and, with the calibre of artists that fill out these final shortlists not showing any sign of losing steam, it's hard to disagree with him.

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Barnett now joins an elite few to have won the Australian Music Prize; last year's bounty was claimed by celebrated hip hop artist Remi, with previous winners also including the likes of Big Scary, Hermitude, The Jezabels and more.

previous amp winners

2014: Remi — Raw X Infinity
2013: Big Scary – Not Art
2012: Hermitude – HyperParadise
2011: The Jezabels – Prisoner
2010: Cloud Control – Bliss Release
2009: Lisa Mitchell – Wonder
2008: Eddy Current Suppression Ring – Primary Colours
2007: The Mess Hall – Devils Elbow
2006: Augie March – Moo, You Bloody Choir
2005: The Drones – Wait Long By The River & The Bodies Of Your Enemies Will Float By