Dawn Barrington is a contemporary folk singer-songwriter based in Fremantle, WA. Her songs are stories and she is well known for her social conscience. Woven throughout her songs are the issues closest to her heart, namely – the plight of refugees stranded in PNG, Nauru and Australia.
Dawn shares stories of human rights abuses and social justice in the most thoughtful manner, with compassion, humour and harsh truths, all the while never failing to entertain, inform more often than not convince an audience to embrace the same passion for justice.
Regular tours have taken Dawn across Australia a number of times, with her most recent trip driving from Denmark WA to Melbourne VIC, and further afield to the refugees on Manus Island in 2018 and 2019. Her grass roots approach and desire to connect with people, has taken her to audiences off the beaten track and to many communities across Australia. Throughout her travels she has made solid connections with local radio presenters from Community and ABC radio and will warmly take up the offer for an interview and/or play a song, during her tour schedule.
Both albums, “Break of the Day” 2016, and “When Did It Change” 2017, highlight her concerns for social and environmental issues. Single, “Women of War” 2015, is a powerful reminder of Dawn’s commitment to raising the voice of the women who didn’t go to war but stayed to “stoke the home fires”, they became the backbone of the nation.
A raw response to her new found friendships with the refugees, single “Fly Free Little Bird” released 2018 at Townsville Festival (from EP “Can’t Let Go” 2019) connects listeners first-hand to the heart of the stories from Manus. “Fly Free Little Bird” was selected for the KISS my WAMi compilation CD in 2018 by West Australian Music (WAM). Dawn was subsequently nominated for Best Regional Act in 2019 by West Australian Music (WAM).
Single “We Live and We Die” released 2020, is a collaboration with Kurdish Iranian refugee Kazem Kazemi, it was co-written on Manus. “Crossing New Borders” released at Nannup Music Festival 2021.
Dawn is currently working on 2 more singles to be released early 2022. Lest we look away, this body of work from Dawn Barrington reminds us that there is still much work to be done for our friends in detention both in and around Australia. Even though her passion for social justice is the fuel for her music, it is up to us all to pick up the tools that best define us and make some noise.
TO DATE, DAWN HAS RELEASED:
Single “Pledge My Soul” February 2022
Single “He’s My Brother” December 2021
Single “Crossing New Borders” March 2021
Single “We Live and We Die” May 2020 (collab with Kazem Kazemi Kurdish Iranian refugee on Manus Is)
EP “Can’t Let Go” offical launch August 2019
Single “Fly Free Little Bird” August 2018
Album “When did it Change?” June 2017
Album “Break of the Day” March 2016
Single “Women of War” February 2015
EP “Voices” June 2014
If you want to find out more about Dawn please don’t hesitate to contact her, you can message her on the “Contact me” page.
Subscribe to her on Youtube or join her mailout list firstname.lastname@example.org or Linktree
“Can’t Let Go” – EP by Dawn Barrington
This collection of 5 songs from Dawn Barrington is tangible evidence of further maturation to her very considerable songwriting talents. Her empathy for the vulnerable and powerless in our world, and her passion for social justice, are adamantly clear in the lyrics.
I think the highlight on this disc is “It’s Gonna Be OK”, where Dawn shows great compassion for those folk who are so psychologically troubled, that they shut themselves away from an external world that threatens to overwhelm them. This engaging song also gives a poignant insight into the situation of the people who are the first line carers for these individuals.
The title track, “Can’t Let Go”, is a piece with lyrics that can be seen to exist at several different levels of meaning. The voice is that of someone with a burning personal conviction that cannot be ‘let go’, and it overshadows all other aspects of their life, even if it damages personal relationships, and/or invites political or social repercussions. It also contains a subtle warning to those who would seek to limit free speech, in order to stifle discussions on topics that are deemed politically inexpedient.
This EP is a little gem. The music is bright and engaging; the lyrics have the real message that we ignore the misery and desperation of others, only at great cost to our humanity. It is a collection that rewards repeated listening. Alan Edwards (Musical Australiana) OKR-FM Kilmore
“The magic and depth of the lyrics of Dawn’s music, symbolises dawn of a new age when artists dedicate their creativity to something beyond entertainment: Social Change for a Better World.” Farvardin Daliri, Co founder and organiser for Townsville Cultural Fest 2017
“The irrepressible Folk artist Dawn Barrington is a truly inspirational Musician… she commenced writing and recording her first EP ‘Voices‘ followed soon after by single ‘Women of War‘ and an LP ‘Break of the day‘, all while simultaneously forging herself a performing career. …..Dawn has recorded and independently released her second album ‘When did it change‘ and it is astounding how far that this songwriter has progressed in so few years. With the courage of her convictions and some help from a core of exemplary musicians …. Dawn has crafted a wonderful Folk recording. ‘It was you‘ and ‘Cross to bear‘ are two of my favourites, both songs verging on folk rock, propelled along by robust melodies and exquisite musicianship. ‘A young lady I Once knew‘ is another highlight on this album, as are the inspired covers of Leaving on a Jet plane and Blowing in the wind. In fact ‘When did it change‘ sounds very much like a sixties recording, even without the covers just mentioned, yet it still manages to be of the here and now, Tony King’s guitar work has a lot to do with that, though I think it has more to do with the songwriters own influences and her modern interpretations of a bygone era. In a nutshell Dawn Barrington has found her voice.
I truly enjoyed listening to ‘ When did it change ‘ ….” Pete Williams – Presenter 3NRG 99.3FM, Sunbury, VIC
“Dawn Barrington is a folk singer from Western Australia and I became aware of her music in September of 2014 when I downloaded her track Voices from AMRAP. Early 2015 saw the release of the single “Women of War” to coincide with the 100th anniversary of Gallipoli and put the war in a perspective not often acknowledged, that of the women who either took part directly or who stepped up to support the war effort from Australia as well as generally keeping the home fires burning.
I would describe Dawn’s music as a set of carefully crafted lyrics’ riding an original meandering tune to simultaneously arrive at a point.
A few months back, Dawn toured the east coast for the first time and I was lucky enough to have her as a guest on Rare Traxx & Eclectic where she sang live in the studio. Later that same week, I went to the Illawarra Folk Club to see Dawn perform live. I witnessed a very warm exchange between artist and audience which I thoroughly enjoyed. I look forward to Dawns next visit and the possibility of seeing her perform live at a house concert venue.” Michael Hayes – Producer 2MCR 100.3FM, MacArthur, NSW
What a delightful evening’s concert featuring two wonderful acts in Swimming to Florida & Dawn Barrington. Both presented the audience with an eclectic choice of music in differing genres. Would not hesitate to recommend either acts for their next performances! Thank you! Jeannette Lawrence, Humph Hall, Allambie Heights, NSW Apr 9th 2017
“Inspired by a documentary on the women left behind by war, Great Southern Institute of Technology’s Dawn Barrington has released her single, Women of War…….Ms Barrington said the song was an important one for her and she wanted use her music to highlight other social issues. Ms Barrington will be playing at the Denmark Festival of Voice this weekend.” T Wolfe – Albany Advertiser May 2015.