Queensland Music Awards recognise Townsville’s Buttah

Still from Buttah's QMA-winning Video for 'Ghost in the Machine', animated by Kwiver Kid.

Townsville Rap artist Buttah has joined the company of some of Queensland’s hottest music acts, taking out the Video Award at the Queensland Music Awards (QMAs) in Brisbane last night.

Buttah joins a list that reads like a who’s-who of Queensland’s musos, with other winners from last night including Amy Shark (Singer-Songwriter Award), Dead Letter Circus (Heavy Award), The Jungle Giants (Rock Award), and Confidence Man (Export Achievement Award).

Buttah collected the award for his 2018 Ghost in the Machine film clip, which was his second collaboration with UK animator Kwiver Kid.

“Kwiver Kid had previously animated the music video for  [another single] The Odyssey in 2017, which is a sister song of sorts to Ghost in the Machine,” said Buttah.

“The incredibly dark and surrealistic style with which he’d brought my words to life on that song resonated with me so strongly that I gave him a huge amount of creative license with Ghost in the Machine.

“He’d already proven himself to be so artistically in tune with my music that I just knew he’d create something beautiful. He came back with the initial concept, we gave it the green light, and with each new snippet he’d sent us we grew more and more confident that we were going to witness something very special.”

While being an artist based in a regional city is often considered an uphill battle, Buttah is one of a growing number of Townsville creatives smashing through roadblocks in the digital age.

“In the world of global communication international collaborations can sometimes be even easier than working with people face to face and trying to line up schedules,” said Buttah of working on the video with an animator across the globe.

“We essentially communicated through Facebook and emails where Kwiver Kid would send us snapshots of scenes he was working on or asking for feedback on what he’d done. For me, it was a very smooth, enjoyable process… But that’s probably just because he was putting in all of the hard work and long hours!”

Buttah and brother, Mitchell Burt, at the 2019 Queensland Music Awards
At the 2019 Queensland Music Awards: Townsville rapper and winner of the Video Award, Buttah, with brother, Mitchell Burt. SUPPLIED

Buttah rubbed shoulders with the big wigs of the Australian music industry at the Awards.

“The awards were great. It was a really warm atmosphere and there were lots of laughs. I almost tripped over a speaker when I got on stage but that wouldn’t be the first time I’d done that. I don’t go out much these days so to even be nominated and invited to attend an event like that was quite a highlight,” Buttah said.

“Winning a QMA just means a little light being shone on FNQ, which means the world to me. I grew up on the beaches of Cooktown and have always represented North Queensland in my music. We live in a very unique part of the world with some very unique and talented people. It feels good to know that with this award Far North Queensland may get a little more recognition on Australia’s musical map.”

Mackay’s Tia Gostelow picked up the award for Album of the Year with her debut Thick Skin, making her the youngest winner in QMA history.

Ghost in the Machine appears on Buttah’s City of Sirens – Dusk album, available on all major music platforms.


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