Pyke at the 2012 APRA Music Awards.
|Birth name||Joshua Jon Pyke|
|Also known as||Josh Pyke|
|Born||18 December 1977|
|Origin||Sydney, New South Wales, Australia|
Beginnings and Feeding the Wolves (2004–2005)Edit
Josh Pyke was in his first band by age 12 and played his first performance in front of 650 parents and students at his primary school graduation. Playing guitar and initial song writing efforts came aged 14. Despite his aptitude for song writing and performance, he stayed 'under the radar' throughout his high school years at Fort Street High School.
While part of Sydney band An Empty Flight he successfully applied for a grant from the Music Board of the Australia Council under the Buzz Project to remix a number of his own demo recordings to be released as an EP Current Works Volume 1, under the name of Night Hour. The lead track, "Kids Don't Sell Their Hopes So Fast", received wide-ranging radio airplay on national youth broadcaster triple j and on various community radio stations including 3RRR in Melbourne and Fbi in Sydney. In 2004 Pyke won the Jaxter Music Award for his single "Kids Don't Sell Their Hopes So Fast". The proceeds went towards a home studio, which enabled him to concentrate on his solo output and songs that were to become his debut mini-album Feeding The Wolves.
Pyke signed to Australian indie label Ivy League Records in 2005 and his first release on the label was a mini-album entitled Feeding the Wolves. It features the single "Middle of the Hill", as well as second single "Private Education". Josh toured early in 2005 with Jebediah frontman, Bob Evans, aka Kevin Mitchell.
In 2006 Pyke spent a month in New York, writing and performing showcases, and also ventured to the UK for the first time in support of Feeding the Wolves, once supporting New York band the Walkmen, and once on a small club tour of the UK.
Pyke is an APRA Ambassador and has been a member since 2002.
Memories & Dust (2006–2007)Edit
Josh Pyke travelled to New York to mix his debut record with Michael Brauer. It was released on 10 March 2007 and it debuted at number 4 on the Australian ARIA Album Chart. He also guest programmed rage on that date. The lead single from the new album, entitled "Lines on Palms", hit Australian airwaves in mid-January. When fans pre-ordered Memories & Dust through the fanclub website, they received a bonus CD of the live private show Josh did at The Wesley Anne in Northcote, Victoria in 2006.
The pattern for Josh to release Memories & Dust worldwide was laid out when Ivy League Records linked a deal with Island/Universal (UK) in mid-2006 via the label's managing director Dan Keeling, who made his mark signing global superstars Coldplay.
Pyke toured the UK in support of Ben Kweller and Scott Matthews, as well as conducting his own sold out headlining tours across the UK, culminating in being invited to play the legendary Glastonbury Festival in 2007. That year he also played at the SXSW music conference in Austin, Texas, where he performed on the Island records showcase with Amy Winehouse and the Kaiser Chiefs.
Pyke performed at the 'Escape to the Park' concert in King's Park, Perth, Western Australia alongside The Panda Band, Tex Perkins, Sarah Blasko and Augie March. He also performed at the 2006-2007 Falls Festival in Lorne, Victoria and Marion Bay, Tasmania on New Year's Eve.
Pyke picked up an ARIA for Best Adult Contemporary Album at the 2007 ARIA awards for Memories & Dust.
A number of Pyke's songs were featured on the triple j Hottest 100 Countdown of 2006 and 2007. "Memories and Dust" and "Private Education" were voted number 38 and 57 respectively in the Triple J Hottest 100 of 2006, "Lines on Palms", "Sew My Name" and "Forever Song" finished in 79th, 91st and 97th place in the Triple J Hottest 100 of 2007.
Chimney's Afire (2008–2010)Edit
Pyke's second album Chimney's Afire was released 4 October 2008 and was recorded at Sydney's Linear Recording studios. Josh also travelled to LA to mix the record with Rob Schnapf. It made its debut at number 3 on the official ARIA Album Chart, and number 1 on the ARIA Australian Album Chart. He conducted a small tour to showcase songs off this album. The first single off the record was "The Lighthouse Song", and the second "Make You Happy".
In 2008, Pyke and Michael Yezerski won the APRA award for Best Original Song Composed for the Screen for "When We Get There", from the film The Black Balloon.
Pyke was featured in the Triple J Hottest 100 in 2008 for the fourth time, where "Make You Happy" placed at 29 and "Lighthouse Song" at 27.
In 2009 Pyke again went abroad, this time to the US to play in LA supporting Youth Group, a small club show run in New York, followed by two showcase performances at SXSW. Pyke then flew from the US to carry out a short sold out headline tour of the UK. The same year he also played at Sound Relief, Splendour in the Grass and Sounds of Spring.
In August 2009, he played a series of concerts where The Beatles’ White Album was played from start to finish with Tim Rogers, Chris Cheney and Phil Jamieson. The tour was extended due to popular demand.
That year Pyke reclaimed the ARIA for Best Adult Contemporary Album and was also nominated for Best Male Artist.
In 2010 Pyke headed back to the UK for a string of dates with Emma Pollock.
Josh worked with Passenger on a collaboration for the 2010 released record Flight of the Crow, co-writing the title track. He also performed on a duet "What You're Thinking", which has been streamed over 16,000,000 times.
Only Sparrows (2011–2012)Edit
In January 2011 Pyke spent a month alone in New York to finish writing the Album that was to become Only Sparrows. On return he recorded the album with ARIA Award-winning producer Wayne Connolly and released 19 August 2011. The album debuted at number 4 on the ARIA Charts.
In October 2011, Pyke once again toured the UK, this time on a co-headline tour with friend and occasional collaborator Mike Rosenberg AKA Passenger. While touring, the pair collaborated on new material, which resulted in Passenger having writing credits on "Leeward Side" and Josh having writing credits on "27".
In late November 2011, Pyke released a new song from the album, entitled "Punch in the Heart", singing harmonies with Australian musician Katy Steele, who resided in New York at the time of the song's release. The song's music video portrays both singers in a split-screen view performing twin one-take vocal recordings to the camera.
For the 2011 ARIA Awards, Pyke was nominated for three awards with Connolly: Best Male Artist, Engineer Of The Year and Producer of The Year.
Josh rounded off the year playing at the 2011/2012 Falls Festivals in VIC and TAS before heading to Southbound Festival in WA. In February 2012 he performed "Love Lies" and a cover of The Jezabels' "Endless Summer" featuring Elana Stone (The Rescue Ships) on triple j's Like a Version. The song was included on the Like a Version Volume 8 CD.
Soon after he embarked on his Love Lies national tour and also played at Byron Bay Bluesfest.
That year, Pyke also joined a cast of Australian musicians and industry folk to launch a campaign to support peers who have hit hard times. The campaign was called Support Act and Pyke became an ambassador, featuring in the TV commercial—"Not everyone in the music industry is able to lead a comfortable life when the music stops playing".
Song Summit took place mid 2012 during which Pyke took part in songwriting & coaching. Pyke was also a mentor for Backstage Pass, a unique program catered for students.
Soon after Pyke joined fellow Aussie musicians Holly Throsby, The Grates' Patience Hodgson, Eskimo Joe’s Kav Temperley, Kevin Mitchell of Jebediah/Bob Evans and a six-piece band for the Bob Dylan Night. The tour celebrated 50 years of Bob Dylan. The year of 2012 also saw Pyke play at River Sessions, Golden Days and Summer Starter Festival.
Pyke became a PPCA Patron Program Ambassador after its launch in 2012. It was established to better educate artists, record labels and businesses around the country on the work PPCA does in safeguarding the rights of Australian artists.
The Beginning and the End of Everything (2013–2015)Edit
The Beginning and the End of Everything received a nomination for Best Adult Contemporary Album at the 2013 ARIA Awards.
Josh spent much of 2014 travelling Australia for his three Lone Wolf tours (Lone Wolf Tour, Lone Wolf Regional Tour and Last of the Lone Wolf Tour). Throughout these tours Josh played two shows at the iconic Quarry Amphitheatre in Perth and a sold out show at Melbourne Zoo playing to a crowd of over 3500.
In July 2014 Josh Pyke joined Phil Jamieson (Grinspoon), Chris Cheney (The Living End) and Tim Rogers (You Am I) for the second time to tour Australia on The White Album Concert tour. Both the 2009 and 2014 tours were completely sold out and extended due to popular demand.
Since the release of The Beginning and the End of Everything, Pyke has played at several festivals including, Conception Day at Macquarie Uni, Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers and City of Wanneroo, on top of four national tours.
In April 2015 Josh Pyke collaborated with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra for two specially curated shows at the iconic Sydney Opera House. Josh spent three months working with ten up-and-coming composers retooling his songs for the shows. Following the success of these performances, Josh was given the opportunity to bring the show to the Perth Concert Hall to play with the West Australian Symphony Orchestra in July.
But for All These Shrinking Hearts (2015-present)Edit
On July 31, 2015 Josh Pyke released his fifth studio album, But for All These Shrinking Hearts, which debuted at number 2 on the ARIA Albums charts which is his highest debut to date. In conjunction with the release, Josh played four sold out intimate Fans First shows around Australia. He then sold out shows at Melbourne Zoo and Taronga Zoo in Sydney on his capital city tour.
Josh appeared the 2015 Woodword Folk Festival and the Falls Music & Arts Festival.
In 2016 he made appearances on The Morning Show, Sunrise and Rockwiz and undertook an extensive regional tour of Australia.
He is currently on hiatus from music, recently publishing the children's book Lights outs Leonard (2019)
Indigenous Literacy Foundation (ILF), Busking for Change and the Josh Pyke PartnershipEdit
This section of a biography of a living person does not include any references or sources. (December 2013) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
Pyke is an ILF ambassador and has contributed thousands of dollars towards the fund. In September 2009, he held the event ‘Busking for Change’ as part of Indigenous Literacy day, with all proceeds going towards the ILF. Pyke performed a solo set to a small audience, along with guest speakers from the ILF discussing the need for change in literacy levels in Indigenous communities. Pyke stated: "Indigenous issues are something I've been interested in for many years, and the concept of words and language and communicating ideas in that way is especially relevant to my own career". Guest performers included Tim Rogers (You Am I), Phil Jamieson (Grinspoon) Tim & Dave (Dappled Cities) and DJ's 'More Pop Less Rave'.
Following the success of the 2009 event, another was held in August 2010, in which Holly Throsby, Boy and Bear, Passenger and a DJ set raised more greatly needed funds for the ILF. In 2011, Pyke donated proceeds from his Fans First tour to the ILF. The third sold-out Busking For Change event occurred in 2012, with guests Passenger and Evan & The Brave. Josh held his fourth Busking For Change event in 2014, with special guests Urthboy and Patrick James. The fourth event allowed him to reach his goal of raising over $50,000 in total for the ILF.
Pyke and Andy Griffiths attended the ILF's Garma Festival in 2011, run by the Yothu Yindi Foundation. While there, Pyke performed and ran music workshops at the youth forum.
In conjunction with APRA in early 2013, Busking for Change presented the Josh Pyke Partnership. The partnership offered an unsigned musician the opportunity to receive mentorship and funding to help grow their career. The prize included an initial meeting with Pyke, Gregg Donovan (Wonderlick Entertainment) and Stephen Wade (Select Music) to establish a business plan, a follow-up meeting three months later and $7500 in funding. At the end of 2014, Josh announced the return of the Josh Pyke Partnership, with the winner announced in March 2015 as Sydney-based singer/songwriter, Gordi.
Sydney Symphony OrchestraEdit
Pyke did a one-off performance at the Sydney Opera House in 2015, accompanied by the Sydney Symphony Orchestra. The recorded performance was released in 2016, debuting at number 1 on the Classical ARIA charts. The album won the ARIA Award for Best Original Soundtrack / Cast Show Album.
Josh Pyke PartnershipEdit
Pyke (in conjunction with APRA AMCOS) offers an unsigned musician the opportunity to receive mentorship and funding that will help to grow their career. The 2015 winner was Gordi, the 2016 winner was Alex Lahey and the 2017 winner was Angie McMahon.
Collaborations and co-writesEdit
Pyke is a member of Australian indie group Basement Birds, which includes Kav Temperley, Kevin Mitchell aka Bob Evans and Steve Parkin. They released their self-titled debut 16 July 2010 and toured the album in Australia in August the same year. The weeks and months following the release also saw the Basement Birds on a media rollercoaster, which included a Sunrise appearance, triple j Like A Version, APRA performance and a Channel [V] Guerilla gig.
In addition to Basement Birds and his collaborations for the Bob Dylan and The Beatles White Album tours, Pyke has also featured in a number of songs with Australian and international artists:
- "Wuthering Heights" – No Man's Woman compilation album (2007)
- "Bachelor Kisses" – 'Write Your Adventures Down: A Tribute to The Go-Betweens compilation album (2007)
- "When We Get There" – The Black Balloon soundtrack album (2008)
- "What You're Thinking" – Passenger, Flight of the Crow (2010)
- "Throw It Away" – 360, Falling & Flying (2011)
- "Someone Else's House" – Urthboy
Josh has also co-written a number of songs including:
- "Cotton Wool" with Katie Noonan
- "Never in a Million Years" with Emma Birdsall
- "Everything I've Done Wrong" with Wendy Matthews
- "All the Very Best of Us" with Holly Throsby
- "Someone Else's House" with Urthboy (Tim Levinson)
- "Momentary Glow" with Dustin Tebbutt
- "Songlines" with Marcus Azon
- "What You're Thinking" with Passenger
- "27" with Passenger
He also co-wrote Music Count Us In’s 2012 song "Different People (Stand Together)", which involved more than 500,000 students from around Australia
ARIA nominations and awardsEdit
- Feeding the Wolves (2006): Nominated for Best Pop Release
- Memories & Dust (2007): Won Best Adult Contemporary Album, Won Producer of the Year (with Wayne Connolly). Nominated for Breakthrough Artist and Best Male Artist
- Chimney's Afire (2009): Won Best Adult Contemporary Album. Nominated for Best Male Artist
- No One Wants a Lover (2011): Nominated for Best Male Artist and Producer of the Year with Wayne Connolly
- Only Sparrows (2012): Nominated for Best Adult Contemporary Album
- The Beginning and the End of Everything (2013): Nominated for Best Adult Contemporary Album
- "The Beginning and the End of Everything" (single) (2014): Nominated for Producer of the Year with John Castle
- Live at Sydney Opera House (with Sydney Symphony Orchestra) (2016): Won Best Original Soundtrack, Cast or Show Album
- "Josh Pyke". The Sydney Morning Herald. 9 April 2007.
- Australian Council for the Arts bUzz 2003 Archived 27 September 2007 at the Wayback Machine
- Jaxter Artist Awards 2004 Archived 29 June 2007 at the Wayback Machine
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 30 May 2010. Retrieved 18 October 2010.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 16 December 2008. Retrieved 10 May 2010.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
- Cronin, Seanna (8 July 2013). "Josh Pyke makes the most of his success". The Satellite. The Queensland Times Pty Limited. Retrieved 3 October 2013.
- Foundation, Indigenous Literacy. "About the Indigenous Literacy Foundation - ILF history - who is ILF". Indigenousliteracyfoundation.org.au. Retrieved 25 April 2018.
- "busking-for-change - Josh Pyke". Joshpyke.com. Retrieved 25 April 2018.
- Awards, ARIA. "2016 Nominees". ARIA official website.
- "Winners by Award – Producer of the Year". Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA). Retrieved 5 November 2016.
- "17th Annual ARIA Awards". Australian Recording Industry Association. Archived from the original on 23 February 2004. Retrieved 5 November 2016. Note: User may be required to access archived information by selecting 'The History', then 'By Award', 'Producer of the Year' and 'Option Show Nominations'.
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