Midnight Oil

~ Group


Midnight Oil (also known informally as "The Oils" to fans) are an Australian rock band, who originally performed as Farm from 1972 with drummer Rob Hirst, bass guitarist Andrew James and keyboard player/lead guitarist Jim Moginie. While vocalist Peter Garrett was studying at Australian National University in Canberra, he answered an advertisement for a spot in Farm, and by 1975 the band was touring the east coast. By late 1976, Garrett moved to Sydney to complete his law degree, and Farm changed its name to Midnight Oil by drawing the name out of a hat.

Important to their development was manager Gary Morris who was able to negotiate favourable contracts with tour promoters and record companies and frustrate rock journalists. Guitarist Martin Rotsey joined in 1977 and Midnight Oil, with Morris, established their own record label Powderworks, which released their debut eponymous album in November 1978, and their first single "Run by Night" followed in December. Founding bass guitarist James, forced to leave due to illness in 1980, was replaced by Peter Gifford. Gifford was himself replaced by Bones Hillman in 1987. Through a long and distinguished career, the band became known for its driving hard-rock sound, intense live performances and political activism, particularly in aid of anti-nuclear, environmentalist and indigenous causes.

Midnight Oil's albums which peaked in the Australian Top Ten were 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, Red Sails in the Sunset, Species Deceases, Diesel and Dust, Blue Sky Mining, Scream in Blue (Live), Earth and Sun and Moon, Breathe, 20,000 Watt R.S.L., Redneck Wonderland, The Real Thing, Capricornia and Flat Chat. Australian Top Ten singles were "Power and the Passion", "The Dead Heart", "Beds Are Burning" and "Blue Sky Mine". Aside from chart success, both "Power and the Passion" and "Beds Are Burning" were listed by Australasian Performing Right Association (APRA) in the Top 30 best Australian songs of all time in 2001, a chart in which Midnight Oil are the only artists to feature twice. In December 2002, Garrett announced that he would seek to further his political career and Midnight Oil disbanded. But they would reform for two warm-up shows in Canberra leading up to their performance at one of the "Sound Relief" charity concerts, in honour of the victims of the 2009 "Black Saturday" fires in Victoria and floods in Queensland.

Midnight Oil won eleven Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA) Awards during its career, including induction into the Hall of Fame in 2006. At the induction, ARIA chairman Denis Handlin described Midnight Oil as true legends that always led by example in a uniquely Australian way with music that is powerful, uncompromising, inspiring, entertaining and enduring.

In 2010, their album Diesel and Dust ranked no. 1 in the book The 100 Best Australian Albums by Toby Creswell, Craig Mathieson and John O'Donnell.

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Year Title Artist RatingReleases
1991 Deadicated Various Artists 1
1998 Not So Dusty: A Tribute to Slim Dusty Various Artists 2
2003 Gaia Alan Simon 1

Album + Compilation

Year Title Artist RatingReleases
1988 1988 Australian Rocks Various Artists 1
1989 Building Bridges: Australia Has a Black History Various Artists 1
1989 Gold & Platinum, Volume 5 Various Artists 1
1991 The Cities’ Sampler, Volume 3: Songs for the Earth Various Artists 2
1993 Voices for Life Various Artists 1
1995 Sounds of the Eighties: The Rolling Stone Collection 1986–1987 Various Artists 1
1995 The Big Backyard Various Artists 1
1998 The All Time Greatest Rock Songs of the 60s, 70s, 80s & 90s, Vol 2 Various Artists 2
1998 The All Time Greatest Rock Songs, Volume 1 Various Artists 3
1999 Rock: The Train Kept A Rollin’ Various Artists 1
1999 Viva East Timor Various Artists 1
2000 Best of Rock: The Ultimate Collection Various Artists 1
2000 Australia's Ultimate Songs Various Artists 1
2000 Where 2 Now? Various Artists 1
2002 KFOG: Live From The Archives 9 Various Artists 1
2003 The Very Best of MTV Unplugged 2 Various Artists 3 1
2003 Peace Not War Various Artists 2
2006 Songs 2: Von Folk bis Hip Hop Various Artists 1
2006 Aria Awards 20th Anniversary Various Artists 1
2007 Shouting From the Streets: Songs of Protest Various Artists 1
2008 50 Years of Australian Rock & Roll Various Artists 1
2008 Caution: Life Ahead - Artists for Recovery Various Artists 1
2009 Bushfire Aid Various Artists 1
2009 Super Rock Hits Various Artists 1
2009 Triple J: Hottest 100 of All Time Various Artists 1
2010 Songs From the 100 Best Australian Albums Various Artists 1
2011 Triple J: Hottest 100 Australian Albums of All Time Various Artists 1
2011 The Rock Album Various Artists 1
2011 The Great Australian Songbook Various Artists 1
2011 Flood Relief Various Artists 1
2012 101 Sporting Anthems Various Artists 1
2012 Las grandes canciones que debes escuchar antes del fin del mundo: Los 80's Various Artists 1
2015 40 Years of Music Various Artists 1
80’s Night: The Ultimate DJ Collection Various Artists 2
Antrologia Various Artists 1
Australian Legends Various Artists 1
Best Of CMJ 1979-1989 Disc 5 Various Artists 1
Mastermix Classic Cuts 14: Alternative Various Artists 1
ROCK Australia Various Artists 1
Rock Circus - Rock, Vol. 2 Various Artists 1
Rock Internacional Various Artists 1
Triple M's New Stuff, Volume 1 Various Artists 1

Album + Compilation + Live

Year Title Artist RatingReleases
1993 Biggest Hits Live USA, Vol. 9 Various Artists 1
2007 ONXRT: Live From the Archives, Volume 10 Various Artists 1

Album + Live

Year Title Artist RatingReleases
1993 Biggest Hits Live USA Vol. 1 Various Artists 1
1993 ONXRT: Live From the Archives, Volume 1 Various Artists 1
1994 Alternative NRG - Greenpeace Various Artists 2
2002 More Music Live From the Panel Various Artists 1
2002 Cold: Live at the Chapel, Volume 3 Various Artists 1
2002 Live at the World Cafe: Handcrafted Various Artists 1
2002 KBCO Studio C, Volume 14 Various Artists 1
2002 E-Town Live, Volume 3 Various Artists 1

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