“Australia’s most successful blues record label” -
Music journalist Christie Eliezer

John Durr - Black Market Music founder, producer and A & R manager, first encountered the blues in his youth in the form of T-Bone Walker, which sparked a lifelong passion for the genre. He kept his focus on the goal of producing and distributing blues music throughout a variety of roles within the music industry. He looked to Berry Gordy of Motown Records, Leonard Chess of Chess Records and Sam Phillips of Sun Records for inspiration...

Based in Melbourne, Australia, Black Market Music began in 1991 with the aim of bringing international blues and roots music to the Australian public through an import and retail business. The wealth of talent on local soil soon found them shifting focus to producing and releasing albums by local blues, roots and folk artists.

Says John:
'We released our first locally produced album, Sassy Mama, by Melbourne blues outfit The Mojo's (now disbanded) in 1995. We have since released nearly 300 albums by artists including awarded acts such as Collard Greens and Gravy, Jimi Hocking, Maria Forde, Phil Manning, Brian Fraser, The Detonators, Fiona Boyes, Matt Corcoran, Ash Grunwald, Bob Brozman, Nick Charles, Jan Preston and Inka Marka. Our artists can frequently be heard on ABC and community radio and keep a public profile through the press. They continue to be recognised on state, national and international levels. Collard Greens and Gravy won an ARIA Award (Australia's equivalent to America's Grammy Award) for 'Best Blues and Roots Album' with their second release More Gravy in 2001. Inka Marka's debut album Auki Auki was nominated for an ARIA Award for Best World Music Album in 2000.

Our artists have regularly triumphed at the International Blues Challenge (IBC) in Memphis, Tennessee. The IBC is an annual competition held by The Blues Foundation to unearth outstanding independent blues musicians. Jimi Hocking, from Melbourne, won first place in the solo/duo division in February 2005. Collard Greens and Gravy won the 'Best Self-Produced CD' competition, also at the 2005 IBC, with their third album Silver Bird. In 2003 Fiona Boyes won first place in the solo/duo division. Andy Cowan came second in the solo/duo division in 2002. Collard Greens and Gravy won second place for the overall competition in 2001. Collard, Greens and Gravy made a second appearance at the IBC again in 2009 with their album 'Devil In The Woodpile', shortlisted for 'Album of the Year' in the Memphis competition. Our continued success in this renown annual international competition confirms Australia's place as a serious contender in the international blues scene.

With the changing environment for the music industry, BMM has adapted to current trends. Recognizing that iTunes and various streaming services such as Spotify are the mediums by which the public discovers new music, BMM has embraced these changes. Recent releases by Dreamboogie, Paulie Bignell and Nick Charles have all appeared in various radio download charts and to considerable charting success.

Whatever the delivery medium, the basic issue will always remain - strong songs, well performed and well produced will always find an audience.'

Black Market Music is continually developing its new and existing artist roster to produce great recordings with dedicated, working musicians, songwriters and performers.

Please click on the ‘Artist’s Awards’ section above for a complete list of awards and achievements.