As the Gold Coast Music Awards edge ever-closer, it’s time to take a look at some of the best and brightest up for nods at this year’s festivities.

Ever since it launched back in 2015, the Gold Coast Music Awards have stood tall as a beacon of support for the the region’s stunning artists, recognising the amazing roster of talented names that have shone brightly each and every year.

In the years since its inception, the awards have not only become one of the must-watch events for all music-lovers, but have become renowned for their early support of local and international success stories.

Until 2020, every edition of the annual awards had managed to sell out, with the digital edition of last year’s ceremony showcasing that even without a physical event in their corner, the Gold Coast Music Awards are still one of the biggest events on the local music calendar.

Now, with this year’s physical event set to kick off on Saturday, September 4th, we’ve decided to take a look back at some of the biggest names who have been nominated at this year’s awards. From beloved names like Peach Fur and Busby Marou, to successful exports like Casey Barnes and Jesswar, this year is on track to be a big one, with some of the region’s most exciting artists all in contention for well-deserved awards.

Of course, if you’re in the Gold Coast region and are keen to head along to experience the wonder of the festivities (or you just like a day of music recognition in a theatre with some of the industry’s finest), then don’t forget that tickets to the ceremony are on sale now via the official Gold Coast Music Awards website, with full nominations and event details below. If you can’t attend in person, be sure to check out the livestream of the event, too, with details available from the awards’ website.

A closer look at this year’s Gold Coast Music Awards finalists


To some, it might feel like just yesterday that we were first introduced to Jesswar, but the Canberra-born, Fijian-raised, and Gold Coast-based artist has been dishing out huge tracks for a number of years now. Renowned for her live performances and slick tracks, it was only earlier this year that we finally received her long-awaited debut EP, Tropixx.

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But with years of hard work under her belt working with some of the country’s biggest names (who can forget her appearance on 2019’s ‘Front Row Hustle’ with DZ Deathrays, Briggs, and Trials?), it’s hardly any surprise that Jesswar is the year’s most-nominated artist, up for Artist, Breakout Artist, Live Act, Release, Song, and Video of the Year at this year’s festivities.

Check out Jesswar’s ‘Medusa’:

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Casey Barnes

One of the year’s most-nominated artists, it’s fair to say that Casey Barnes has had something of a big year. With nods for Artist, Live Act, Release, and Song of The Year, Barnes has more than lived up to his name as one of the country’s most exciting country exports.

Having released the likes of ‘Come On Turn Me On’ earlier this year as the first taste of new material since his ARIA-nominated album, Town Of A Million Dreams (which helped him nab the Artist of The Year award last year), it’s fair to say that Barnes is in the prime of his career, and ensuring that Aussie country music is in good hands.

Check out Casey Barnes’ ‘Come On Turn Me On’:

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Eliza and The Delusionals

When Eliza and The Delusionals released their first single half a decade ago, it’s fair to say that no one – not even the band themselves – knew what the future held. However, in just a handful of years, the group have pulled out all the stops, evolving and growing at every opportunity, ultimately garnering mass critical acclaim with their previous two EPs, including a win at last year’s Gold Coast Music Awards as Breakout Artist of The Year.

Now, they’re back at it again, and with a pair of singles to their name this year, Eliza and The Delusionals are up for further honours, with a nomination for Artist of The Year, and both Song and Video of The Year nominations for ‘Sentimental’. We’ll all be feeling a bit sentimental if they manage to pull of another win for the second year in a row.

Check out Eliza and The Delusionals’ ‘Sentimental’:

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Peach Fur

It goes without saying that Peach Fur have been quiet achievers over the last few years, slowly rising their profile as their fanbase grows larger and larger with every release. With frequent play on the likes of triple j, their work’s been acclaimed by legions of fans around the country, with diehard fans completely devouring their latest EP, Awake, which arrived in March of last year.

Featuring tracks like ‘Preloved’, they’ve nabbed a Song of The Year nomination for that one, while Awake has been recognised in the Release of The Year category, too. Still not enough? They’ve also been nominated for Artist, Breakout Artist, and Live Act of The Year, proving that Peach Fur are well and truly in the midst of a purple patch.

Check out ‘Preloved’ by Peach Fur:

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Karl S Williams

It was back in 2020 that Karl S Williams released his most recent album by way of the mesmerising Lifeblood. Full of the soulful, bluesy rock numbers that fans have come to know and love from the artist, it didn’t take long for the record to become a favourite of many tastemakers over the last year.

Now, with the 2021 edition of the Gold Coast Music Awards looming, Williams is up for an impressive three awards, including Artist of The Year, Live Act of The Year, and Release of The Year for the truly beautiful Lifeblood.

Check out ‘I Know There Is A Light’ by Karl S Williams:

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Busby Marou

It surely couldn’t be a celebration of Gold Coast music without the beloved duo that is Busby Marou getting some attention. With 2019 bringing with it their most recent album, The Great Divide (which won Release of The Year at the 2020 awards), this last year has been a little bit quiet for the acclaimed duo, but it hasn’t stopped them getting the recognition they so deserve.

Up for Live Act of The Year, Busby Marou are up against some stiff competition in the category, with the likes of Casey Barnes, Donny Love, Hussy Hicks, Jesswar, Karl S Williams, Peach Fur, Selve, and Tijuana Cartel also in contention. However, if the pair’s mesmerising compositions and arresting stage presence is anything to go by, they could once again be in with a strong chance.

Check out ‘Gone’ by Busby Marou:

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Gold Coast Music Awards 2021 Finalists

Artist of The Year
Sponsored by Southern Cross University

Casey Barnes
Eliza and the Delusionals
Hollow Coves
Karl S Williams
Mass Sky Raid
Peach Fur

Breakout Artist of The Year
Sponsored by Griffith University and the Queensland Conservatorium

Beckah Amani
Greatest Hits
Peach Fur
Rave Radio
René Le Feuvre

Live Act of The Year
Sponsored by Gold Coast Music

Busby Marou
Casey Barnes
Donny Love
Hussy Hicks
Karl S Williams
Peach Fur
Tijuana Cartel

Musician of The Year
Sponsored by TAFE Queensland

Ella Fence
Fletcher Babb
Harry J Hart
Jackson Dunn
Lindsay Waddington
Mitch King
Scott French

Release of The Year
Sponsored by Blank Street Press

Casey Barnes – Town of a Million Dreams
DOOLIE – Hope You Like My Mixtape
Hussy Hicks – Gather Up The People
Jesswar – Tropixx
Karl S Williams – Lifeblood
Peach Fur – Awake
Saint Lane – If You Leave Me In The Fire
These Four Walls – This Is Not A Future

Song of The Year
Sponsored by CBD Live

AYA J – ‘Shine’
Beckah Amani – ‘Standards’
Casey Barnes – ‘Come Turn Me On’
DVNA – ‘All My Friends’
DENNIS. X FDVM – Run Little House’
Eliza and the Delusionals – ‘Sentimental’
Geniie Boy – ‘Fool’s Play’
Jesswar – ‘Venom’
Lastlings – ‘Take My Hand’
Peach Fur – ‘Preloved’
Saint Lane – ‘When Did We Grow Up?’
These Four Walls – ‘White Lies’

Venue of The Year
Sponsored by Oztix

CBD Live
Miami Marketta
Mo’s Desert Clubhouse
Wallaby Hotel

Video of The Year
Sponsored by QT Gold Coast

American Doubles – ‘Can’t Let Go (feat. JVMIE)’
Baltimore Gun Club – ‘Universe City’
Beckah Amani – ‘Standards’
boWsER – ‘Supersonic’
DENNIS. – ‘What You Do (feat. Professor Paul)’
Eliza and the Delusionals – ‘Sentimental’
Jesswar – ‘Venom’
Selve – ‘The Pink Hotel’
Tijuana Cartel – ‘Minimal Stuffing’

Gold Coast Music Prize
Sponsored by Friends of the Arts

Chloe Styler
Girl and Girl
Harry J Hart
Liv Heyer
Pure Milk
Talia Rose

Gold Coast Music Awards 2021

Saturday, September 4th
Home of the Arts (HOTA), Gold Coast, QLD
Tickets and Info: Gold Coast Music Awards

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