The Ivors Academy has announced the winners of this year’s Ivor Novello Awards with Amazon Music at Grosvenor House, London, on Thursday 18th May.
In the 68th year of The Ivors, 30 songwriters and composers collected Ivor Novello Awards across 14 categories in recognition of outstanding achievements in songwriting and composing for screen.
This year’s Songwriter of the Year Award with Amazon Music went to Wet Leg’s Rhian Teasdale and Hester Chambers. Wet Leg’s debut album took the music industry by storm on its release last year, topping the charts and spawning the hit singles ‘Wet Dream’ and ‘Chaise Longue’. The Ivors judges described Teasdale and Chambers’ writing as fresh, unapologetic and direct, with surprising melodies that demand attention.
Best Contemporary Song went to Raye, 070 Shake and Mike Sabath for ‘Escapism’ – which Raye performed live at the awards ceremony. Described by the judges as daring, brave and empowering songwriting, the track found huge success after going viral on TikTok, marking Raye’s first ever number one single in the UK, where it was also certified platinum.
In recognition of the massive impact her musical vision has made on her fellow songwriters, hyper-pop trailblazer Charli XCX is awarded the Visionary Award with Amazon Music.
Harry Styles, Kid Harpoon and Tyler Johnson, together win PRS for Music Most Performed Work for their collaboration on the UK’s biggest song of 2022, ‘As It Was’. This marks the third Ivor Novello Award each for the fruitful partnership of Harry Styles and Kid Harpoon, who won both PRS for Music Most Performed Work for ‘Adore You’ and Songwriter of the Year in 2021.
With over 40 million records sold worldwide, the Special International Award celebrates the outstanding career and influence of Blondie’s Debbie Harry and Chris Stein. Emerging from the New York new wave scene in the mid-seventies, the group have written a huge number of celebrated songs throughout their illustrious career and remain one of the world’s most influential bands.
Best Album goes to 11 by SAULT, written by Dean “Inflo” Josiah Cover, Jamar McNaughton, Cleopatra Nikolic and Jack Peñate. Drawing from Afrobeat and blues influences, 11 was one of five critically acclaimed albums released for free simultaneously by SAULT in November 2022. Dean “Inflo” Josiah Cover’s win marks the significant achievement of his fourth Ivor Novello Award.
Best Song Musically and Lyrically goes to ‘King’ by Florence + the Machine, written by Florence Welch and Jack Antonoff. Considered a standout from the group’s last album, Dance Fever, the song discusses Welch’s conflict in choosing between her career and starting a family as well as gender expectations for women in society.
KAMILLE’s impressive body of work was recognised with the Outstanding Song Collection award. KAMILLE has built a career as one of Britain’s most successful songwriters, working with artists such as Mabel, The Saturdays, Dua Lipa and, most famously, Little Mix, for whom she wrote over 30 songs including the number one hits ‘Black Magic’ and ‘Shout Out To My Ex’. On top of her songwriting achievements, she has also launched a career as an artist in her own right.
The PRS for Music Icon Award goes to Tim Booth, Saul Davies, Jim Glennie, Larry Gott and Mark Hunter for James. From their original breakthrough in the ‘Madchester’ scene of the early nineties, James have become an enduring gem of British music, selling over 25 million albums over their 39-year career.
The Rising Star Award with Amazon Music has been awarded to singer-songwriter Victoria Canal, who counts legendary names in Chris Martin and Jon Hopkins amongst her admirers and mentors. She is the fourth consecutive female songwriter to pick up the award since it was introduced in 2020, with The Ivors judges complementing her powerful songwriting and compelling sound.
Sting received the Fellowship of The Ivors Academy, the highest honour the Academy bestows. With over 100 million albums sold throughout his career from his combined work with The Police and as a solo artist, Sting is one of Britain’s most successful, accomplished, and pioneering songwriters. Among his countless accolades, he has won seven Ivor Novellos, including the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award in 2002. He joins an illustrious list of Fellows that includes Sir Paul McCartney, Kate Bush CBE and Joan Armatrading MBE.
Hannah Peel won Best Television Soundtrack for her work on The Midwich Cuckoos. Hannah’s innovative approach and electronic sensibilities saw her using analogue synthesisers, tape manipulations, drones and woodwind in an imaginative and otherworldly way.
John Powell wins Best Original Film Score for Don’t Worry Darling, a film which featured fellow Ivor Novello winner Harry Styles in an acting role. Directed by Olivia Wilde, the film yearns for romance despite its dark overtones, with a compelling and subversive score that marks John Powell’s fifth Ivor Novello Award.
The award for Best Original Video Game Score goes to Gareth Coker, Grant Kirkhope and Yoko Shimomura for Mario + Rabbids Sparks of Hope. Each composer is renowned for their work including Nintendo classics such as Donkey Kong 64 and Super Mario RPG.
Tom Gray, Chair of The Ivors Academy, said “On behalf of The Ivors Academy of songwriters and composers I wholeheartedly congratulate all of our winners. When we choose to reward one of our number, when we recognise and validate their work, we are saying that as an Ivor Novello award winner, you represent the very best of us.”
For the first time in years, the awards show featured live performances from Sting, who delighted attendees with a rendition of the classic ‘Message In A Bottle’, Raye, who performed her chart-topping hit ‘Escapism’ and Matilda Mann, who unveiled a stunning cover of ‘Heart of Glass’ in honour of two of the honourees – Debbie Harry and Chris Stein.
Title sponsor and collaborator Amazon Music scaled up The Ivors’ reach with the first ever livestream from the event. Presented by +44 Podcast hosts Zeze Millz and Sideman, as well as radio DJ Zach Sang, the livestream featured live coverage direct from The Ivors red carpet, plus the award show performances, and backstage interviews with the winners.
In a special edition of The Zach Sang Show, Amazon Music Breakthrough UK: Artist to Watch 2023, Henry Moodie, performed his songs ‘pick up the phone’ and ‘drunk text’, as well as a cover of the classic ‘Every Breath You Take’, originally penned by this year’s Fellow of The Ivors Academy, Sting, for The Police.
Finally, Matilda Mann, Henry Moodie and Kurt Vile will today each release new Amazon Original tracks tributing three of the 2023 Ivor Novello winners. Matilda Mann covers Blondie’s “Heart of Glass,” which she performed during the awards, Henry Moodie covers Sting’s “Every Breath You Take” which he performed during the Amazon Music livestream, and Kurt Vile covers Charli XCX’s “Constant Repeat.”
In addition to these special Amazon Original tracks tributing three of the 2023 Ivor Novello winners, Amazon Music listeners can access hundreds of Amazon Originals, featuring both emerging and established artists across numerous genres, available to stream only on Amazon Music.
The 2023 winners:
written by Dean “Inflo” Josiah Cover, Jamar McNaughton, Cleopatra Nikolic and Jack Peñate
performed by SAULT
published in the UK by Copyright Control and Sentric Music
Best Contemporary Song
written by 070 Shake, Raye and Mike Sabath
performed by Raye and 070 Shake
published in the UK by Sony Music Publishing and Warner Chappell Music
Best Original Film Score
Don’t Worry Darling
Composed by John Powell
published in the UK by Universal Music Publishing
Best Original Video Game Score
Mario + Rabbids Sparks of Hope
Composed by Gareth Coker, Grant Kirkhope and Yoko Shimomura
Best Song Musically and Lyrically
written by Jack Antonoff and Florence Welch
performed by Florence + The Machine
published in the UK by Ducky Donath Music-Sony Music Publishing and Universal Music Publishing
Best Television Soundtrack
The Midwich Cuckoos
Composed by Hannah Peel
published in the UK by SATV Publishing
Outstanding Song Collection
PRS for Music Icon Award
Tim Booth, Saul Davies, Jim Glennie, Larry Gott and Mark Hunter for James
PRS for Music Most Performed Work
As It Was
written by Kid Harpoon,Tyler Johnson and Harry Styles
performed by Harry Styles
published in the UK by Universal Music Publishing and Pulse Songs-Concord Music Publishing
Rising Star Award with Amazon Music
Songwriter of the Year with Amazon Music
Rhian Teasdale and Hester Chambers
Special International Award
Debbie Harry and Chris Stein
Visionary Award with Amazon Music