Jennie Skulander and Tami Neilson


It’s been an age since we last caught up with these two local talents (here and here), and with it being NZ Music Month, I thought it high time to round up all the goss and achievements these two female powerhouses have collected since 2014!  There’s awards and albums and tours and even a new baby girl in the mix!  Get ready to be blown away and then fall HARD for these ladies all over again (and again, and again)


Jennie Skulander of DevilskinDevilskin UK Tour 2017 PosterJennie Skulander

Devel Vs Project: The Devilskin Dress, Sep 2014

Nov 2014 – We Rise released on vinyl, accompanied by a live show in-store at Real Groovy, and release of Live At The Powerstation CD/DVD.

Dec 2014We Rise album becomes the biggest selling independent release in NZ.

Feb 2015 – Opened for Slash at both NZ shows, and played Rockapalooza show in Auckland.

Mar 2015We Rise goes platinum, after selling more than 15,000 copies

Apr 2015 – Played at Whisky A Go Go in LA.

May 2015 – Opened for Mötley Crüe and Alice Cooper in Auckland.

Sep 2015 – Mountains And The Moon Tour.

Nov 2015 – Nominated for Breakthrough Artist of the Year and Best Rock Album by Vodafone NZ Music Awards, and performed live at the awards evening.

Jan 2016 – Named as ‘Hot New Band’ by Metal Hammer magazine.

Feb 2016We Rise UK/European tour, and recording of Be Like The River, while poor Jen was super unwell from both early pregnancy and the flu.

Apr 2016 – Headlined the Rock Stage at Homegrown.

Aug 2016 – Baby Georgia is born.

Oct 2016 – Graced the cover of Oct/Nov issue of NZ Musician magazine.

Nov 2016Be Like The River album released, and opened for Disturbed in Auckland.

Dec 2016Be Like The River album release tour, played Rhythm & Alps festival in Wanaka and NYE show in Christchurch.

Jan 2017 – Toured with Halestorm in Australia.

Feb 2017 – Headlined the Rock The Park show in Auckland.

Mar 2017Be Like The River European tour, UK tour with Sumo Cyco.

UPCOMING:  UK/European Tour in June, incl Download festival and shows supporting Airbourne.


Tami Neilson by Tony McKayTami Neilson Don't Be Afraid Album Launch PosterTami Neilson Tour PosterTami Neilson Canada Nashville Tour PosterTami Neilson - The Songs Of Sinners Tour PosterTami Neilson

Devel Vs Project: The Tami Dress, Dec 2014

Jan 2015 – Headlined the Vintage Weekend Street Carnival in Wanganui, and played a show on a Navy ship as a part of the 175th Auckland Anniversary celebrations.

Feb 2015Dynamite album top ten finalist for Taite Music Prize 2015, while, unfortunately, her beloved, fellow-musician father passed away.

Apr 2015 – Mini-tour with Skyscraper Stan and Will Wood, played a Record Store Day show with Neil Finn.

May 2015 – Won the APRA Best Country Music Album, was finalist for Best Country Music Song.

Jun 2015 – Played at the Woodford Folk Festival in Australia.

Jul 2015 – Featured in The Brokenwood Mysteries TV show, both her music and as an actress.

Aug 2015 – Played at the Country Music Awards NZ in Hamilton, Dynamite is released in the UK and receives four-star review in The Guardian, and graced the cover of the Aug/Sep issue of NZ Musician magazine.

Sep 2015Dynamite released in Canada, new single Lonely released and hits #1 country song on iTunes, and new Don’t Be Afraid album released, with release show at Tuning Fork in Auckland, hitting #1 on the iTunes country charts, a 5-star review in the NZ Herald, and a 4.5-star review in the Sunday Star Times, while Dynamite receives a 4-star review in MOJO magazine.

Oct 2015 – Played in The Church Tour with Delaney Davidson, Marlon Williams and Barry Saunders (tour and interviews filmed for The New Sound of Country documentary), Don’t Be Afraid debuts at #1 on NZ Music charts and receives 5-star review in the Dominion Post and Rip It Up magazine, played at the Tauranga Arts Festival, featured in Australian Women’s Weekly, and performed with Hopetoun Brown at their album release.

Nov 2015 – Played late session show at City Gallery in Wellington, performed with Dave Dobbyn at the Vodafone Music Awards, and played Timaru Festival of Roses.

Dec 2015 – Played at Save Our St James awareness show, opened for Gin Wigmore, included in ‘Best Music of 2015’ lists for NZ Listener, Stuff, Elsewhere and NS News.

Jan 2016 – Played at Mangawhai Tavern.

Feb 2016 – Canada tour, incl shooting the music video for Holy Moses, played at the Marlborough Wine & Food Festival, Nostalgia Festival in Christchurch, Myers Park Medley in Auckland and at Leigh Sawmill.

Mar 2016 – Played in the Dust to Dusky shows as part of Auckland Arts Festival, played at Auckland City Limits Music Festival and WOMAD Festival., and shows in Wellington and Paekakariki.

Apr 2016 – So Far Away single featured on episode of US TV series Nashville, played Record Store Day show at Southbound Records, Dust to Dusky show taken to Queenstown.

May 2016Songs of Sinners show at the NZ International Jazz and Blues Festival, nominated for APRA Best Country Music Song, won Best Self-Managed Artist from Music Managers Forum Awards, performed in the Alchemy show at Holy Trinity Cathedral with Ria Hall, Anna Coddington and Julia Deans, played a surprise show and the Daffodils benefit gala in Auckland.

Sep 2016 – In top 5 finalists for APRA Silver Scroll 2016, sellout Songs of Sinners show at Tuning Fork, nominated for Best Original Music in a Series by APRA for The Brokenwood Mysteries score, Don’t Be Afraid released Canada and release tour, played at Americanafest in Nashville along with acts like Wanda Jackson and Joanne Cash, Holy Moses reaches Top 20 on Canada’s CBC Radio 2.

Oct 2016Don’t Be Afraid released in US, Holy Moses reaches Top 5 on CBC Radio 2, nominated for Album of the Year and Best Female Artist by NZ Music Awards, support to Hopetoun Brown’s album launch show.

Nov 2016 – Performed at NZ Music Awards evening and in The Last Waltz show.

Dec 2016 – Performed at Christmas in the Park, Loco Mama music video released, Don’t Be Afraid is named one of the Best Albums of 2016 by Maclean, Country Universe, and Saving Country Music.

Feb 2017 – Opened for James Taylor in Auckland and Napier, Canada tour with Colin James incl a special International Women’s Day performance with CBC Radio 2.

Apr 2017 – Performed at Festival of Colour in Wanaka and UPSURGE Festival in Bay of Islands, opened for Mavis Staples in Auckland, Don’t Be Afraid released in UK and Europe, played at World Masters Games in Auckland.

May 2017 – Won Best Self-Managed Artist for the second year from NZ Music Managers Forum Awards.

UPCOMING:  The Songs of Sinners NZ tour during May and June, more Canada shows late in June, UK Europe tour during Aug/Sep incl Tønder Festival.


Wowee!!  These ladies have been busy belting out their tunes all over the world, collecting ever-bigger and utterly-adoring fans along the way; try not to be impressed, I dare ya!  What a ride the last couple of years have been for both of them, with even bigger and more-exciting things on the horizon!  YEOW!!


Hats off to you, Jennie and Tami, you’re doing yourselves and this fine little country proud! 



Source: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6