Immy Owusu, Cable Ties and Julia Jacklin win at 2023 Music Victoria Awards, celebrating the best in Victorian music

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Immy Owusu, Cable Ties and Julia Jacklin win at 2023 Music Victoria Awards, celebrating the best in Victorian music

Music Victoria Awards
Photo: Joshua Barreno
words by staff writer

Congratulations to all winners and nominees for 2023.

It was a night to remember in Naarm as the 2023 Music Victoria Awards shone a spotlight on the most talented artists, venues, festivals, and music industry leaders.

Held at The Edge, Fed Square on 31 October, the ceremony was a vibrant celebration of Victoria’s thriving music scene as a long list of incredible talent were crowned winners in Melbourne – Australia’s home of live music.

Keep up with the latest music news, features, festivals, interviews and reviews here.

Kutcha Edwards and Kirsty Rivers were inducted into the Music Victoria Hall Of Fame, cementing their significant contributions to the state’s music culture. Renowned for his prolific union of songwriting and activism, Kutcha Edwards, a survivor of the Stolen Generations, has a remarkable three-decade career, leaving an indelible mark as a solo artist and with bands like Watbalimba, Blackfire, and The Black Arm Band. Kirsty Rivers, instrumental in the establishment of Music Victoria, is dedicated to empowering women and diverse communities within the sector.

“Congratulations to the 2023 nominees, and of course, our winners! Victorian music is so special and something to be celebrated not just tonight, but year-round,” says Simone Schinkel, Music Victoria’s CEO. “Our artists, venues, festivals and industry are pushing creative bounds, working collaboratively and rethinking the wheel, and we’re so excited to see what the future holds.”

The 2023 Music Victoria Awards included industry-voted categories such as the Archie Roach Foundation Award for Emerging Talent (won by Charlie Needs Braces), Arts Access Victoria Amplify Award (awarded to Katie Dey), and MAV Diasporas Award (taken by Origami with Wang Zheng-Ting).

The list of winners continued with Matt Joe Gow (Best Country Work), Close Counters (Best Electronic Work), Joshua Moshe (Best Jazz Work), daine (Best Pop Work), Agung Mango (Best Hip Hop Work), Bumpy (Best Soul, Funk, R’n’B or Gospel Work), and Immy Owusu (Best Musician).

Publicly voted categories showcased Julia Jacklin as the Best Song winner for “Love, Try Not To Let Go,” and Cash Savage and The Last Drinks as the Best Album for “So This Is Love.” Cable Ties won Best Group, while other accolades went to Cara Murphy (Best DJ), Jen Cloher (Best Solo Artist), and Watty Thompson (Best Regional Act). Venue categories had winners like The Forum (Best Metro Venue), Caravan Music Club (Best Regional Venue or Presenter with over 50 gigs), and RISING (Best Metro Festival).

Notably, the 2023 Music Victoria Awards marked the first annual event where entrants didn’t need to be Music Victoria members, leading to a nearly 80% increase in entries. Electronic music overtook punk or rock for the first time, with 52 entries in the Best Electronic category.

The awards continue to honour musicians, venues, festivals, and industry professionals who contribute to Victoria’s thriving music scene. The 2023 winners join past winners like Mo’Ju, Sampa the Great, Baker Boy, and Paul Kelly. Over the years, Music Victoria has inducted legends like Archie Roach, Kylie Minogue, Olivia Newton-John, Michael Gudinski, and Vika & Linda into the Hall of Fame.

The 2023 Music Victoria Awards were a testament to the vibrant music culture in Victoria, celebrating incredible talent and setting the stage for what’s to come in the industry. Check the full list of winners below and open up your Spotify… these are the acts you absolutely need to know.

Music Victoria Awards 2023 Winners

 Industry voted categories

Archie Roach Foundation Award for Emerging Talent 

Charlie Needs Braces

Arts Access Victoria Amplify Award 

Katie Dey

MAV Diasporas Award 

Origami with Wang Zheng-Ting

Best Blues Work

Damon Smith

Best Country Work

Matt Joe Gow

Best Electronic Work

Close Counters

Best Experimental or Avant-Garde Work

Maria Moles

Best Folk Work

Lucy Wise

Best Heavy Work


Best Hip Hop Work

Agung Mango

Best Jazz Work

Joshua Moshe

Best Pop Work


Best Reggae or Dancehall Work

Killah Keys

Best Rock or Punk Work

Cable Ties

Best Soul, Funk, R’n’B or Gospel Work


Best Producer

Gab Strum

Best Musician

Immy Owusu


Publicly voted categories

Best Song or Track

Julia Jacklin – Love, Try Not To Let Go

Best Album

Cash Savage and the Last Drinks – So This is Love

Best Solo Artist

Jen Cloher

Best DJ

Cara Murphy

Best Group

Cable Ties

Best Regional Act

Watty Thompson

Best Metro Festival

RISING Melbourne (Kulin Nation)

Best Regional Festival

Port Fairy Folk Festival (Gunditjmara)


Best Large Venue (Metro)

Forum Melbourne (Wurundjeri and Boonwurrung)

Best Small Venue (Metro)

Brunswick Ballroom (Wurundjeri)

Best Regional Venue or Presenter (Under 50 gigs)

Meeniyan Town Hall – South Gippsland (Bunurong)

Best Regional Venue or Presenter (Over 50 gigs)

Caravan Music Club – Archies Creek (Boonwurrung)

Find out more here