On local music’s biggest night of the year, Tina thanked all the people who had helped her during her four decades in the business.
But she also took a swipe at the industry, calling on commercial radio to “continue to support Australian music on the quality of the song and not the age of artist” and “don’t meet your Australian quotas because you have to. Exceed them because you want to.”
The 48-year-old also hit out at the ageism which she says greets female pop artists. She mentioned Madonna, Jennifer Lopez, Annie Lennox and Kylie Minogue, who inducted Tina into the hall of fame, for their continued excellence in the face of discrimination.
“Ladies over 40 are still in the game. Keep doing what you’re doing, ladies, because we will decide when it is time for us to stop,” said Tina, who earlier performed a stunning rendition of her hit Chains with Brisbane sisters The Veronicas and Jessica Mauboy.
“I do believe radio has been a bit ageist. Who decides in radio a woman at a certain point in her life is not valuable?
“Why is it about our looks? There’s a big difference between a woman in her 20s and a woman in her 40s who has lived her life. You need to be proud of your age.”
Tina also thanked her adopted home of France, her partner Vincent and her son Gabriel, but saved her last thanks for her fans in Australia.
“Thank you for not making me a celebrity but thank you for celebrating my work because that is where I am most comfortable,” she said.
“When I take a leap Australia, you manage to catch me.”
Tina got her start at the age of eight on Young Talent Time, which she credits for getting her where she is today – her stellar career includes six ARIA awards, including female artist of the year.
She’s just released her 11th studio album, appropriately titled Eleven, and kicks off another national tour at the Bimbadgen Winery in Pokolbin, NSW, on February 20.
The biggest winners on the night was Perth’s Tame Impala who took out five awards for their third album Currents.
“Really, what really? That was really looking like it was setting up for Courtney Barnett,” frontman Kevin Parker said when the band took out the best rock album award.
Courtney, however, didn’t go home empty-handed – she won the best female award, along with breakthrough artist and independent release.
Guest international singer Ed Sheeran, picked up the inaugural diamond award for album sales of more than half a million, while Conrad Sewell won song of the year.