Frank Yamma is one of Australia’s most significant Indigenous songwriters with an ability to cross-cultural and musical boundaries. An initiated Pitjantjatjara man, Frank sings in his native language and English.
His mighty songs, magical guitar playing and deeply evocative voice tell stories of country, protection, heartache, travel and love. Although he’s lived in Adelaide for many years, Frank’s spirit belongs to the heart of Australia. Uluru. Docker River. Ernabella. Central Australia. As Frank says, “wherever the Pitjantjatjara mob come from”.
His solo albums, Countryman (2010) and Uncle (2014), released after a ten-year hiatus, gained Yamma widespread critical acclaim and recognition leading to an opportunity to perform nationally and internationally.
Frank’s touring highlights include WOMADelaide, Byron Bay Bluesfest and Sydney Festival. He has undertaken three tours to Europe including performing at the Womad (UK) and Colours of Ostrava (Czech Republic). In 2014, Yamma was included in the official showcase for WOMEX, a spot which is rare and coveted amongst artists from Australia as well as internationally.
Frank Yamma released his debut vinyl record, Tjukurpa: The Story in Feb 2020, a retrospective album with captures the best of Yamma’s storytelling prowess. The record is accompanied with a digital release of The Kulila Project a compilation which features contributions from long time collaborator David Bridie as well as remixes from CORIN, James Henry and EA Wave’s Jinku, Hiribae & Ukweli.
Both albums were critically acclaimed across the globe, receiving a nomination for ‘Best Blues & Roots Album’ at the 2020 ARIA Awards; a 5-star review in Songlines Magazine (UK); Feature Album on PBS 106.7FM and Feature Album on the Australian Independent Record Labels Association (AIR).
"Pitjantjatjara singer-songwriter Frank Yamma has long been one of Australia's strongest indigenous voices. From his 1990s central desert recordings – both solo and with his band Piranpa – through to his more recent albums Countryman (2010) and Uncle (2014), Yamma's heartfelt lyrics and moving delivery have always set him apart as an exceptional artist."
Seth Jordan, Songlines Magazine (UK)
"Countryman is an absorbing and immensely moving listening experience."
"Frank Yamma is going to break your heart, wipe away your tears, then make you cry some more… In the most enjoyable way possible."
Loud n Local