The 2018 finalists for the Carol Lloyd Award with winner Leanne Tennant.
The Carol Lloyd Award, now in its third year, provides an opportunity for a budding Queensland songstress to receive a significant leg-up in the music industry.
Conceived as a tribute for one of the most important battlers in Australian music history, the Carol Lloyd Award has grown into one of Queensland's most sought-after accolades.
The Award offers a female songwriter aged 16 or older $15,000 to either record an album or EP and tour it. “It began 'round about the same time Katie Noonan and I were involved in putting together a tribute concert for Carol,” Annie Peterson says, a legend in grassroots music and arts. “When we knew she was on [her] last drinks and on her way out, we put on a big party at QPAC and a lot of artists across the country came together to say what she meant to her.”
Annie has been a consistent supporter and co-ordinator for various events and creative organisations in Australia during the past 30 years, with credits including Woodford Folk Festival, Flipside Circus, and now the Music Development Program at Hummingbird House Palliative Care Centre. “Carol basically would do anything for you,” Annie says of Carol, best known as the frontwoman of Australian band Railroad Gin.
“She was a Queensland legend,” Annie continues. “But she'd literally take the jacket off her back if you were cold. She spent her life giving and contributing, but, as artists... there's no holiday and superannuation waiting for you. She had a very serious illness that needed to be treated which took her life savings, so we wanted to start something that would support artists getting started in her honour.
“We got APRA AMCOS involved... she was mentoring and recording Queenslanders... we knew this would be an honour and a legacy for Carol that would last a long time. I wasn't one of the judges on the first run through, but last year I came onboard to join the others.
“It was really exciting to see all of us on board, practicing artists or producers and managers, people who have been really a big part of, in their own, little way, supporting Queensland artists, to lobby for the artists turning our heads... to come up with the winner.
Leanne Tennant - 2018 winner of the Carol Lloyd Award.
“I'm excited to see what's happening this year. The first winner, Georgia Potter, has gone on to do fantastic things. You're not going to retire on 15 grand. It's a kickstart to get to the next level. What do you need to get from A to B, the next level on your journey. We want to see artists using that opportunity,” Annie says.
The importance of the award lies in its earnest acknowledgement of artists' struggles in getting recognition on a professional level for their efforts by the music industry.
“It's a super exciting way to acknowledge the Queensland women that Carol was one of, that she spent her life trying to support. In her day it was tough. It was pretty 'blokesville', and she spent her time trying to support female artists and to get the equality happening. It's great to see the legacy of who she was and who she still supports, alive in so many Queenslanders.”
“It's something that i'm personally passionate about. Over the last 26 years the talent in this state has made me proud, and it's wonderful to see some of those artists in the early stages of their career and what happens next. Artists like Katie Noonan and Kate Miller Heidke, you knew they had it from day one, but it's interesting to see them making intelligent decisions on their way.
“That's what the grant is about. For someone who's focused and knows what they want next, this is a fantastic vehicle. If you just want to be famous, you're wasting your time, but if you're working hard and know what you need to do, an obstacle may be money. Be it recording or a tour, we're helping you get what you need to do what's next. It's a great opportunity to help people get creative. Carol's legacy is a great project, and it's a privilege to be a part of it!”