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Quincy Jones Praises 'Unbelievable' Indigenous Australian Singer Gurrumul: Watch
The legendary producer and composer has posted a short video praising the "unbelievable" talents of Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu, the blind indigenous singer from Australia's Elcho Island who is set to embark on his first-ever solo tour of the U.S.
"I know everybody's kicking back, ready to get your mind blown like I had my mind blown when I first was privy to hear this incredible human being's voice. It's unbelievable," Quincy says in the post on his Facebook page.
"I know you're going to get blown away as much as I was when I first heard him. So kick back and let it all in, 'cause this is one of the most unusual and emotional and musical voices that I've ever heard. I want you to give it all up and check out Gurrumul."
The Aussie artist, who sings almost exclusively in his tribal Gumatj dialect, which is spoken by no more than 3,000 people, has won admiration from the likes of Elton John, Stevie Wonder and will.i.am.
Gurrumul became a star in his homeland with his self-titled 2008 Skinnyfish Music release, which peaked at No. 3 on the ARIA Chart and won an ARIA Award for best independent release. Its follow-up, Rrakala, also peaked at No. 3 following its release in 2011. Both albums are platinum certified Down Under. "Across both albums we have sold over 500,000 copies which isn't bad for an Australian artist that does not sing in English and does not speak to the press," Mark Grose, managing director of Skinnyfish Music, tells Billboard.
The Gurrumul album was recently re-released in the U.S. through MGM USA and a new, orchestral album is expected later this year.
Quincy Jones and SubCulture present Gurrumul's first U.S. date in New York on April 29. See the full itinerary below.
Gurrumul's U.S. tour dates:
April 29 -- SubCulture, New York, NY
May 1 -- New Orleans Jazz Fest, New Orleans, LA
May 3 -- Old Town School of Folk Music, Chicago, IL
May 6 -- El Rey Theater, Los Angeles, CA
May 9 -- Sweethall Music Hall, Mill Valley, CA