Ngaiire Live & Revamped

During her show at Howler in Melbourne last week, Sydney-based soulstress Ngaiire talked of a time not so long ago when she questioned the value in continuing on her musical path. Thankfully Ngaiire found a way over that hump and is set this month to release her new single Once – with the full album Blastoma due out in September.

After hearing Ngaiire perform older and new songs to the made-happy Melbourne crowd clapping for more at the set’s end, there is no doubt in my mind of the incredibly-high value of her music in this world.

NGAIIRE live at Howler, Melbourne 2015

Ngaiire live at Howler 2015

From past experience the number and names of musicians on stage with Ngaiire at her live shows has been a fluid thing. The revamped, rejuvenated Ngaiire Camp of the Blastoma era is her on vocals and sample pads, Andrew Bruce on synth and long-time collaborator Jack Britten remaining by her side on keys and synth (and also co-producing Blastoma with Paul Mac).

Andrew Bruce w/ NGAIIRE live at The Howler, Melbourne 2015

Andrew Bruce

w/ NGAIIRE live at The Howler, Melbourne 2015

Jack Britten

My preference in any music is always for as much live instrumentation as possible – and at Melbourne’s show I surely missed the sounds of human hands on drums and bass. But truth be told when it comes to Ngaiire and her music, any combination of players on stage with her is a delightful experience for the fact that it includes Ngaiire front and centre: She who commands you to smile in awe at her powerful and emotive vocals; at the humility and humanity oozing from every word sung and spoken to the crowd; and too at her outrageouly-wonderful outfits (care of Sydney designer Amelia Vivash at Howler).

NGAIIRE live at The Howler, Melbourne 2015

All the better that the musicians and singers Ngaiire does choose to have by her side are also a highly-creative and skilled part of the musical whole – including back-up vocalists at Howler, Christian Hemara and Bille McCarthy.

w/ NGAIIRE live at The Howler, Melbourne 2015

Bille McCarthy

w/ NGAIIRE live at The Howler, Melbourne 2015

Christian Hemara

The group played songs beloved to those familiar with Ngaiire’s last album Lamentations – including Uranus (sampled below) – a duet encore performance of ABCD with Andrew Bruce on keys – and Dirty Hercules minus the original accompanying vocals of Nai Palm, who’s currently in the U.S. touring the new Hiatus Kaiyote album Choose Your Weapon, and whose achievements Ngaiire took the time to express pride in.

And finally the Melbourne crowd were treated to hearing 3 new tracks from Blastoma – including the first single Once which was co-written by Australian artist Megan Washington.

NGAIIRE live at The Howler, Melbourne 2015


Blastoma is new music from Ngaiire. Ngaiire’s voice and what she does with it, are divine. And three album/EPs later she’s given me no reason not  to trust in the musical goodness of what she’s delivering next.

Until it comes we’ve got Ngaiire Music Past to keep us good company. Here you have a sample track from her last album in compressed mp3 format – and of course the blessed amongst us with hard copies have so many more Ngaiire & co. sounds to hear and treasure 🙂 .

‘Uranus’ by NGAIIRE –  Lamentations (2013)
Lamentations (2013) - Ngaiire



NGAIIRE Live – Glastonbury Via The Basement

The first time I was blessed to have the live NGAIIRE experience was at AWME 2013 – a showcase of upcoming Australasian artists. Now, just 7 months later, Ngaiire is off to the UK to share her music with crowds at 2014’s sold-out Glastonbury Festival. She deserves all the success she’s had during this past year and before, confirmed for me again when I caught her last Australian show for a while last week at Sydney’s legendary music venue The Basement.

NGAIIRE live at The Basement, Sydney - May 2014

This particular NGAIIRE show bought me an hour or so of feeling that special indescribable joy that different music brings to all of us.  Like each of the previous three times I’ve heard her perform live, she and her band captivated me from the first note to the last.  

The Basement is a small, dark, ambient venue.  To hear and see NGAIIRE and her band perform up close and personal in that intimate environment was a very special experience indeed – one that will stay with me for a long time.

NGAIIRE is gorgeous to see and gorgeous to hear.  Her vocal range in all its power and subtleties, her emotive and intelligent lyrics and her very unique vocal phrasing will make you smile, and smile some more.  The three other talented musicians with her on stage will surely do the same.

NGAIIRE live at The Basement, Sydney - May 2014

Most songs in The Basement set were from NGAIIRE’s 2013 album Lamentations. Sample a dirty mp3 version of a track from Lamentations here…

Lamentations (2013) - Ngaiire

Lamentations (2013)

‘Rabbit Hole’ –  NGAIIRE – Lamentations (2013)


Then check these videos of ‘Dirty Hercules’ and ‘ABCD’ live at The Basement – videos of a quality which could never possibly do NGAIIRE and her band the justice they deserve, but will give you a teeny-weeny glimpse of the goodness…


One song in NGAIIRE’s set was a new one – as yet unreleased. Hopefully amongst her seemingly non-stop, demanding festival and tour schedule, she’ll find some studio time soon so we’re not waiting too long for her next album release.

Check out a video of that new song performed live at The Basement…

I’ve heard a lot of live music this year and lately, but NGAIIRE’s show at The Basement was definitely up there amongst the the most special. Like I’ve recently described Erykah Badu’s live shows, ‘divine’ is the word for the live NGAIIRE experience. Festival-goers at Glastonbury are in for a treat.

Ngaiire live @ The Basement, Sydney - May 2014

More Ngaiire

You can check out more of NGAIIRE’s musical gifts on this here site…

* Other sample tracks from Lamentations here.

* Sample tracks from Songs For No One and Two Minds here.

* Video of NGAIIRE live at The Toff In Town from AWME (Australasian Worldwide Music Expo) 2013 here.

* Video of NGAIIRE live with the Barefoot Divas at Mullum Music Festival 2013 here.

* Video of NGAIIRE live at WOMADelaide 2014 here.

Ngaiire @ live @ WOMADelaide 2014

NGAIIRE at WOMADelaide 2014

The Gift of Ngaiire

My Gift of Naiire

Last month AWME gave me the gift of Ngaiire and her band live in Melbourne, plus their debut album Lamentations to take away.

Ngaiire - AWME showcase

AWME showcase (Melbourne)

On the next weekend Mullum Music Festival blessed me with the gift of Ngaiire performing amongst the Barefoot Divas.

Mullum Music Festival 2013

Mullum Music Festival 2013

In between those two shows and since, I have listened to the 9 beautiful songs on Lamentations over, and over again.

Lamentations (2013) - Ngaiire

Lamentations (2013)

It’s music self-described as ‘future folk/soul’. I guess that’s true, but I don’t even want to think about naming it. It’s just special.

Think Erykah BaduMe’Shell NdegéocelloNneka.

Erykah Badu

Erykah Badu

Meshell Ndegeocello

Meshell Ndegeocello



Ngaiire’s music, nor her vocals, sound like theirs do.

Sydney based, Papua New Guinean Ngaiire, sounds like Ngaiire.



But all 4 of those contemporary female artists create innovative, unique and diverse music. They all have divine voices and use them in incredible ways.

Ngaiire is now amongst Erykah, Me’shell and Nneka in my group of musical heroines.

Your Gift of Ngaiire

2 sample tracks from Lamentations

They’re just a tiny taste of the diverse musical and vocal flavours on the album – but hopefully enough to make you want more.   I promise you the creations of Ngaiire and her musical collaborators (Aaron ChoulaiTim CurnickChris TownendNai PalmElana Stone –  Brian Campeau) sound much better on the original CD than in this here mp3 style.

Lamentations (2013) - Ngaiire

Lamentations (2013)

Dirty Hercules (Feat. the beautiful Nai Palm from Hiatus Kaiyote) – Lamentations (2013)

ABCD (For Ommo) – Lamentations (2013)

A special gift yes? 🙂  I think so.

You can buy yourself Lamentations on-line…or on foot in good music stores.

You can also find Ngaiire’s past releases on-line. Or you can try to find 2 copies of the original CDs – 1 for you, and 1 for me please.

Her Gift of Ngaiire

It’s a very rare thing that I’m brave enough to buy a music CD for someone by an artist they don’t know about. A risky gift to give yes?

This Christmas I’ve bought Lamentations for someone.  I’m not worried though. I have complete faith in the value of Ngaiire’s music being heard.

Future Gifts of Ngaiire

The gift of the live Ngaiire & band experience is on offer to folks all around Australia in coming months. They’ve just started their Summer tour with a support slot for Alicia Keys.

We can get the gift again at Ngaiire’s WOMADelaide show in March – on the festival program amongst other amazing worldwide artists.