MUSEUM VISITING CONTACT  NEWSLETTER JOINING ROLL OF RENOWN HANDS OF FAME
 

JIMMY LITTLE AO 1994

Jimmy Little

1937 – Born James Oswald Little on the 1st of March at Cumeragunga Mission Settlement on the Murray River near Barmah, a member of the Yorta Yorta tribe.

1953 - Age 16 competed in Australia’s Amateur Hour with his dobro guitar.

1954 - The Jimmy Little trio is established in Sydney under Pat Ware’s management.

1956 - On August 11, Jimmy cut his first tracks on a 78 for Regal Zonophone, “Mysteries of Life” and “Heartbreak Waltz”.

1959 - Made his TV debut on Channel 7 with the Jimmy Little Trio on “Sydney Tonight”, “The Keith Walsh Tonight Show”. He was the first aboriginal entertainer to appear on television. 

Jimmy had begun an acting career in the late 1950’s with a major role in the film “Shadow of the Boomerang” in 1961. This was followed with his other roles on the theatre stage in plays such as "Black Cockatoo" and films by Tracy Moffatt as well as Wim Wenders film “Until the end of the World”.

1963 - Releases the chart topping "Royal Telephone", selling more than 75,000 copies it achieved gold record status and has now become one of his signature tunes.

1964 - Australian national magazine “Everybody's”, named Jimmy Australian Pop Star of the Year.

1969 - 2TM presents “The All Star Jimmy Little Show” at the Tamworth Town Hall with “The Singing Kettles, Johnny Heap, Geoff Brown, Gary Brown” plus others.

1972 - Although mostly recognised for country musical style, he kept his fondness for big orchestral sounds alive in his 1972 album 'Winterwood'.

1974 - He quickly followed that with his top ten hit single 'Baby Blue' in 1974, and subsequent releases continued in this vein.

1978 - Inducted into the Hands of Fame in Tamworth.

1985 - Was asked to teach at the Eora Centra, a training college for Aboriginals in Redfern, Sydney.

1989 - As well as appearing in Tracy Moffatt's The Night Cries and the opera Black River, his teaching and community work earned him the title of NAIDOC Aboriginal of the Year in 1989.

1990 - South Australian Country Music Festival Awards- Inducted into the Hall of Fame.

1991 - Had a roll in the film “Until the End of the World” with Sam Neil, William Hurt and Ernie Dingo.

1994 - Elevated to the prestigious Tamworth Roll of Renown.

1997 – Mo Awards wins The John Campbell Fellowship Award.

1999 - ARIA Music Awards “Messenger” won 'Best Country Album' and 'Best Adult Contemporary Album', with Jimmy also being inducted into the ARIA Hall of Fame.

2002 – “Messenger” album achieves huge sales resulting in world trip promoting the record. 

2003 - CD release “Down the Road” on ABC records.

2004 - A public vote named him a “National Living Treasure” and Jimmy received an Australian Order (AO) for his life in the entertainment industry and his ongoing work with indigenous education and health.

2010 - A documentary entitled "Jimmy Little’s Gentle Journey" was completed and shown on ABC TV.

2011 - Present with a Golden Guitar for "Lifetime Achievement".

2012 - Passed away on April 2nd.