A singer and songwriter who specializes in an off-center hybrid of pop and R&B, Ngaire Joseph, known as Ngaiire, made a name for herself as a Top 30 contestant on the second season of Australian Idol.
Her performances of Mary J. Blige's "No More Drama" and John Farnham's "Don't Let It End" -- a pair of ballads almost comically dissimilar from one another -- barely hinted at the creative directions Joseph took later. Born in Lae, Papua New Guinea but based in Sydney, Joseph had a turbulent childhood. She beat an early case of cancer, her home was buried by volcanic ash, and her parents later divorced. She coped with music. After she narrowly missed the Australian Idol Top 12, Joseph made sporadic solo recordings and spent a few years with Blue King Brown as a background vocalist. Significant strides were made during the early 2010s, including collaborations with the Tongue and Lancelot (the latter on an update of Gwen Guthrie's club classic "Ain't Nothin' Goin' on But the Rent"), among others. Lamentations, the first Ngaiire album, was released in 2013 with left-field pop and strutting throwback R&B part of the mix. Blastoma, titled in reference to the singer's childhood health battle, followed in 2016. ~ Andy Kellman, Rovi