TAMWORTH’S-own Aleyce Simmonds is in the running for one of the nation’s most recognised songwriting honours.
Simmonds, who recently released her latest album, More Than Meets the Eye, was nominated in the Country Work of the Year category for her song Greatest Companion. She’s up against country music colleagues Kirsty Lee Akers, Travis Collins, O’Shea with Rob Hurst and the Wolfe Brothers for the honour.
The winner will be announced on Monday, April 3 at a special ceremony in Sydney. “(I’m) overwhelmed, shocked, surprised. I still can't believe it,” Simmonds said.
“Greatest Companion came about after I spent a couple of hours in at 2UE one night with Luke Bona on Australia Overnight. It was the wee hours of the morning but people from all over Australia were ringing in to talk to me and tell me their stories. I was so enlightened. “It also became apparent that for some, Luke (or) any radio presenter is the only friend that they have. Whether they're working, living alone, their loved ones have passed on, the radio is a lifeline to some.”
Simmonds, one of country’s sweethearts, is in the middle of heavily promoting her album, which was officially launched at the Tamworth Country Music Festival. She’s been touring with her band and signed copies are available via her website or the album can be downloaded on Itunes.
In the midst of it all, she said to be a finalist for the APRA award was the icing on the cake. “It's incredible. This means that my little song was one of the highest grossing country songs of the year. It doesn't mean I can go out and buy a house though which is a little disappointing,” she laughed. “Still, I couldn't feel more proud. I was also the only one of the finalists that wrote their song on their own which I feel really proud about.”
Simmonds said she received an email inviting her to the awards and wrote back asking when the finalists were announced. But to her shock, she was told she was in the top five which is purely based on sales figures. “I literally fell off my chair and then wrote back an incredibly excited email asking her (APRA representative) if she was sure," she said.