Marlene Cummins
(NSW)

Australia’s foremost indigenous female blues writer and performer, Marlene knows the blues from an Aboriginal woman’s perspective. Her story is one of vulnerability, strength and survival. Marlene refined her skills as a blues saxophonist and songwriter at the Berklee College of Music Boston in the mid-90s.
A regular broadcaster on Koori Radio with her renowned blues show, ‘Marloo’s Blues’, Marlene won Broadcaster of the Year at the 2009 Deadly Awards and Gadigal Information Broadcaster of the Year 2015. For the past 2 years Marlene has represented Koori Radio at the Byron Bay Bluesfest as a roving reporter interviewing major blues artists from around the globe.
In 2014 Marlene released her first full-length album, Koori Woman Blues to coincide with the premiere of her SBS film Black Panther Woman. A career highlight was performing on saxophone with Charles Neville (Neville Bros) at Snug Harbour New Orleans in 2017. Recently Marlene has performed with her band at Club 505 Sydney, Paris Cat Melbourne, German Club Canberra, Yabun Festival Sydney, the 2018 Parramasala Festival and at the official launch of indigiTUBE. Always in demand for NAIDOC week, this year Marlene performed at numerous events in Sydney and in 2018 performed a solo concert at The Melbourne Recital Centre.
Marlene presents a biographical journey through her music; a myriad of political, social and personal experiences that content her lyrics and songs. With a mixture of original and traditional blues numbers, the centrepiece and original song is the stirring epic blues anthem, ‘Koori Woman’. Marlene dedicates this song to Aboriginal women everywhere as they were, in her words, ‘the backbone of the struggle’.
“The life Marlene has lived is closer to the life that produced those original blues singers like Muddy Waters, than any contemporary American blues artist.” (Richard Field, Producer)