Kiwi music icon Jenny Morris is to be inducted into the New Zealand Music Hall of Fame at the 2018 APRA Silver Scroll Awards.
The honour recognises the significant contribution the singer-songwriter has made to music on both sides of the Tasman.
Previous APRA Hall of Famers include Jordan Luck, Dave Dobbyn, Shihad, Hello Sailor, Herbs, Moana Maniapoto and The Clean, who were inducted last year.
“It’s an extraordinary privilege to be able to celebrate Jenny’s trailblazing career as a songwriter, advocate and champion,” says head of APRA AMCOS NZ Anthony Healey. “Her musical impact has been long lasting and her work, using music as a powerful vehicle for good is just inspirational.”
Born in Tokoroa and raised in Hamilton first found fame in the late 70s as the lead singer of new wavers The Crocodiles, whose members include actor/drummer Bruno Lawrence and Fane Flaws. Their hit single ‘Tears’ – also the name of their 1980 debut album – remains an iconic Kiwi anthem.
The group broke-up a year later, with Morris moving to Australia to build a solo career. Her debut single, ‘Puberty Blues’ – Tim Finn’s theme song of the film of the same name – was released in 1981 and she also enjoyed some modest chart success with her group QED in 1984.
In the same, she recorded a version of the country classic Jackson with INXS frontman Michael Hutchence, which led to her touring and recording with the group.
However, it wasn’t until 1987 that her solo career really took off with the release of her debut album Body and Soul, which included the Neil Finn-penned ‘You I Know’ and went on to win Morris the award for ‘Best Female Artist’ at the 1987 ARIAs in Australia.
The follow up, 1989’s Shiver, was produced by INXS’s Andrew Farris and was an even bigger hit reaching #2 in the Australian charts and #6 in New Zealand and earning Morris her second ARIA Award for ‘Best Female Artist’.
Shiver cemented her position as one of Australasia’s premier female singer-songwriters and she toured extensively throughout the 90s and early 2000s, as well as releasing four more solo albums.
In 2015 Morris revealed she was retiring from singing after battling for almost 10 year with a rare neurological condition called spasmodic dysphonia, which causes involuntary spasms in the larynx.
However, she has remained very active in the industry. Morris became a non-executive writer director on the APRA board in 1995 and in 2013 became the first female chair of the organisation, a position she still holds today.
She has also been one of the leading champions of the charity Nordoff Robbins Music Therapy Australia and last year was honoured by the Australian music industry with an Excellence in the Community Award for her achievements as both an artist and as a fundraiser.