New For 2021
We're shining a spotlight on the best new Australian artists set to dominate 2021. Welcome Melbourne-based singer-songwriter Kee'ahn.
The Kee’ahn Story
There is something magical that happens when an artist comes along, and with just one song can capture the attention of many. That’s where Townsville-raised, Melbourne-based singer-songwriter Kee’ahn steps in.
The proud Kuku Yalanji, Jirrbal, Zenadth Kes song woman made music lovers and critics alike sit up and take notice thanks to her debut single ‘Better Things’.
Penned in the middle of lockdown, while grappling with feelings of isolation from her family in Far North Queensland, the single is about looking up in dark times.
Despite only recently releasing the track, Kee’ahn has spent the last five years developing her sound and honing her craft. Her music is a statement of her mission to heal and connect, serving what she describes as ‘dreamy soul food’.
With a name coming from the Wik people of Cape York meaning to dance, to sing, and to play she honours her ancestors through her vulnerable soulful melodies of identity, heartbreak, and healing, and her intimate live performances.
As a First Nations woman, my connection to music is strong because of my connection to my culture. I come from a long line of disruptors. My matriarchs were told to quieten their voices, but our stories were always shared and heard. My voice and my music allows me to connect to my Ancestors and to my purposeKee’ahn
Immediately, it is Kee’ahn’s rich, velvety vocals that grab your attention, floating and soaring within the single’s dreamy groove and emotional melody. It is timeless, sounding as if you have both heard her sing in another lifetime and are only just meeting her for the first time.
Off the back of that single alone, Kee’ahn earned herself a swag of awards and industry nods including winning the Archie Roach Foundation Award at last year’s National Indigenous Music Awards and being nominated for the night’s New Talent of the Year and Song of The Year awards, and securing a nomination for best emerging artist at the 2020 Music Victoria Awards.
She has also performed at St Kilda Festival, Yirramboi First Nations Festival, Laneway 2019, Bigsound, Melbourne Music Week, Dark Mofo, and more.
There is hurting and heartbreak weaved into ‘Better Things’ beauty, but ultimately, the anthem will leave you feeling hopeful – and leave you wanting more.
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