Archie Roach AM - In Memoriam

Musical storyteller

State recipient Australian of the Year 2020

Archie Roach AM was a singer, songwriter, musician and campaigner for the rights of First Nations Australians. After being forcibly removed from his family at age two, he overcame teenage alcoholism and homelessness – and the 2010 death of his beloved wife, Ruby – to become an Australian music legend.

In 1992, Archie won two ARIA Awards for his 1990 debut album Charcoal Lane. He also received a Human Rights Achievement Award for his iconic Stolen Generations song, Took the Children Away – a first for any songwriter. He then released eleven more albums and embarked on nationwide and global tours, exploring issues that affect First Nations people in modern Australia.

He is a Member of the Order of Australia for his lifetime contribution to Indigenous arts and culture.

Archie went on to run the Archie Roach Foundation, which looks to improve opportunities for young First Nations people through art and culture. Through his work, Archie spread a powerful message of love, reconciliation and healing.