Amanda Brown (musician)

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Amanda Brown
Amanda Brown (musician) in garden.jpg
Background information
Birth nameAmanda Gabrielle Brown
Born (1965-11-17) 17 November 1965 (age 54)
GenresRock music, film music
InstrumentsViolin, oboe, guitar, keyboards, bass, mandolin, autoharp, vocals
Years active1978–present
LabelsVitamin, Fuse/Think, Polydor, rooART, EMI, Capitol, Beggars Banquet.
Associated actsClimbing Frame
Tender Mercies
Blood Brothers
The Go-Betweens
Cleopatra Wong
Love Me
The Mood Maidens
The Junction House Band
The Rainy Season

Amanda Gabrielle Brown (born 17 November 1965) is an Australian composer, classically trained musician, singer and songwriter known for her role as the violinist of the band The Go-Betweens and more recently a session musician and soundtrack composer.


Brown's early bands during the early 1980s were Climbing Frame, Tender Mercies (with John Willsteed, also later with the Go-Betweens) and Blood Brothers, in which she played violin, oboe, guitar and keyboards. In 1986, The Go-Betweens – soon after signing a new contract (this time with Beggars Banquet) – discovered Amanda Brown playing live in a café. She later joined the band in London, her addition expanding the line-up to a five-piece, for which she provided backing vocals, violin, oboe, guitar and keyboards and arrangements.[1]

Brown played on two studio albums, Tallulah (1987) and 16 Lovers Lane (1988). The Go-Betweens toured for 18 months following the release of 16 Lovers Lane, ending in Munich, Germany. They broke up in December 1989, after a farewell tour of England.


Following the break-up of the Go-Betweens, Brown formed the band Cleopatra Wong (1991–1992),[1] with Go-Betweens drummer Lindy Morrison, resulting in two marginally successful mini-CDs on the rooArt label, Egg and Cleopatra's Lament, including the single (and video) "Thank You". During this period, she also undertook session work with Tactics, the Shane Howard Band and Wendy Matthews Band and sang back-up vocals on former Go-Betweens member Grant McLennan's 1991 debut album Watershed.

Later work included playing with Sydney band Love Me (1997–1998) and diverse session appearances with artists including R.E.M., The Reels, Died Pretty, Silverchair, David Bridie, David Lane, The Cruel Sea, The Apartments, and Boxcar (on the album Algorhythm).[2]

Brown was the first ever musician to guest host the music video programme RAGE, on ABC TV, in February 1990.

Recent work[edit]

A graduate of the Australian Film Television and Radio School, Brown has established a career as a screen composer, writing for television and film soundtracks. In 2003 she released the Incognita soundtrack CD, a mixture of songs and instrumentals accompanying a performance by the Stalker Theatre Company.[3] The performance of Incognita toured Australia and Europe, commencing at the Sydney Festival 2003, and the show explored issues of Australia's past and present.

Brown has composed scores for feature films, including Preservation (2003), Floodhouse (2003), Look Both Ways (2005) Monkey Puzzle (2007) and Son of a Lion (2008).[4] Documentaries she has composed the music for include Suburb For Sale (2006) and A Well Founded Fear (2008).[4]

Brown is also the occasional 'sixth' member of Toni Collette's live band, The Finish, and has continued to record and perform with various artists including The Vines, Youth Group and Josh Pyke.[2] In the winter 2007–08 she duetted with the Danish singer Michael Møller on the song "A Sunday Routine" from his debut solo outing from his band Moi Caprice.[5]

In 2008 Brown won the IF Inside Film Award for Best Music for her score of Son of a Lion.[6] A soundtrack album was released in late 2008.[7] In 2009 she won the APRA/Australian Guild of Screen Composers Award for Best Music in a Documentary for the score of Sidney Nolan: Mask and Memory.[8]

Brown continues to diversify; in 2009 she mixed David Lane's album Head in the Clouds.[9]

On her 50th birthday in 2015, Brown was elected to the APRA Board as a Writer Director.[10]

Brown resides in the Sydney suburb of Maroubra with partner Simon Marnie.[11]

Further reading[edit]

  • David Nichols (2003) "The Go-Betweens" Puncture Publications ISBN 1-891241-16-8
  • Robert Forster (2016) "Grant & I: Inside and Outside the Go-Betweens" Penguin Books Australia ISBN 978-0-67007-822-6


  1. ^ a b Strong, Martin C. (1999) The Great Alternative & Indie Discography, Canongate, ISBN 0-86241-913-1
  2. ^ a b Amanda Brown/Discography
  3. ^ "Amanda Brown – Incognita". Archived from the original on 3 October 2008. Retrieved 21 July 2008.
  4. ^ a b Internet Movie Database/Amanda Brown/Composer
  5. ^ Go Betweens/Discography/Michael Moller/Every Streetcar's Got A Name (An Album About Sex and Desire)
  6. ^ Inside Film Awards 2008 Winners Archived 25 November 2010 at the Wayback Machine
  7. ^ ABC/Dig Music/Artist/Amanda Brown Archived 11 April 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  8. ^ APRA/AMCOS Screen Composers Awards 2009 Winners "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 25 March 2010. Retrieved 25 April 2010.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  9. ^ Vitamin Records/David Lane Archived 12 October 2009 at the Wayback Machine
  10. ^ APRA and AMCOS Board Elections Results
  11. ^ "Orchestrated acrobatics". Wentworth Courier. 5 August 2015.

External links[edit]