The Hobart

Miss Kaninna

by Hobart Magazine
Miss Kaninna

Tassie girl Miss Kaninna’s debut single Blak Britney rocketed to the top of the Triple J charts earlier this year. From a childhood in the bush and beaches of Bruny Island and Dodges Ferry to a performing arts academy, a national tour with The Sapphires theatre show, performing her own song on festival stages and that number one single, it’s been a big few years for the Yorta Yorta, Kalkadoon and Yirendali artist. Kaninna sat down for a chat with us to reflect on her success and to look back on growing up with racism in Tasmania. Oh, and to share her intense enthusiasm for Hobart’s cafes.

Congratulations on your incredible year! How has it been for you? This year has been crazy, I’m still getting used to this type of lifestyle, city living. I’m really enjoying all the new experiences and getting to meet so many talented people in the arts but it can be overwhelming sometimes for this little island girl.

Your massive breakout hit Blak Britney just went bonkers this year – tell us about why and how you created that song? Blak Britney was such a fun process to make with Finn Reece (another Tassie born-and-bred artist). I actually wrote the hook of that song driving in the car on the Tasman Highway in traffic! I showed Finn the idea and he was keen on it, so we developed the bones of the song over zoom. We then finished the song in his studio in Melbourne while I was there for The Sapphires rehearsals and developments. I was so surprised the song did as well as it did and I am so grateful to all the people who supported the song.

What was your Tassie childhood like? Childhood in Tassie was pretty bush for me. I lived on Bruny for most of my childhood and went back and forth between Dodges Ferry and Bruny Island, so I spent most of my time at the beach or out bush. Although I am very grateful for growing up in Tassie and having access to so much beautiful nature, I do however acknowledge the racism I experienced both in schools and in public. Tasmania has a very serious racism problem that needs to be addressed and as one of the only little black kids at my schools, I copped a lot of racism. I hope to help change that.

How important are the arts and performance to your family? The arts are huge in my family. My nan was a very famous painter and also loved singing country music, my pop also never failed to buy the best country music CDs and have them on full blast in the car when he would take me to work. My mum [Ruth Langford] is a singer/artist/performer/ everything under the sun arts-wise and my uncles don’t shy away from smashing the strings in the guitars at family events.

What do you want to convey with your music? I want to represent black people and black women in music and give voice to those who aren’t heard. I want to shed light on the racism that Aboriginal people face in this country and I also want people to feel good about themselves. I want to make impactful music while also at the same time make music people can shake their ass too!

Please tell us there is more new music coming soon?! Of course there is girlll, since putting out Blak Britney I have become way more harsh and critical of my own music, so I wanted to be 100% happy with the next single before releasing it.

When you do come back home for a visit, where do you go first? I always go straight home to my family home and see everyone, then I go for a long walk with my doggy on the beach and connect back to country.

What are some of your favourite places to hang out in town here? Hmm, I love to eat, so probs Ginger Brown cafe in South Hobart, they have this lamb salad and it’s the shit!!! I get it every time without fail. Omg, Dana Eating House, the oysters there!!! I’m pretty sure I went there every couple of weeks for like a year. I also love Saigon Express, everything from there is good af.

What are you looking forward to over the next 12 months? I’m looking forward to creating new music and performing. I have so many shows over the next 12 months in all different states as well, so I am looking forward to meeting new people and seeing new places.

Love this

Cold Water Wake Up Call
It seems everywhere I turn someone is talking about or participating in cold water swimming right now.
A Short Geelong Getaway
Since the Spirit of Tasmania terminal moved from Melbourne to Geelong late last year, a visit to Geelong has been on the radar.
27 Hobart Friends Get Snipping For One Off Wine
The borders were declared shut in Tasmania on the 30th of March, 2020; the first stare to do so amid the COVID- 19 pandemic and hard lockdown of Hobart followed.
Danphe Nepalese and Indian Food + Peppermint Bay Bar and Bistro
Nepalese food is a comfort in our house. Having spent much time trekking and mountain climbing in Nepal as a younger man, Nepalese food is something I always love to go back to.
That’s DR Hannah Gadsby To You
From Smithton to Netflix and the Emmys stage, Tasmanian stand up comic Hannah Gadsby has forged an unlikely path. Following on from the massive success of her shows Nanette and Douglas, Hannah brings her new show Body of Work to Hobart this month.
PODCAST: Incat founder Robert Clifford on why electric boats are the future
Robert Clifford is the founder of Incat, a Hobart company building fast ferries for the world. Always looking to future opportunities, he has identified where Hobart sits in the next wave of transportation. For more of this interview listen to The Hobart Magazine podcast.
Is Tourism Ready For More Forestry Wars?
Tasmanian forests are special. They’re home to centuries-old trees, including the tallest flowering trees on the planet, and support unique native species. Yet not everyone agrees on how these forests should be managed.
Hobart Chefs: When The Obsession Becomes Real
Tasmania’s brand as a foodie haven is cemented. But within the local hospitality industry there are those who love to use local produce...and those who are next-level obsessed with it. We spoke to a bunch of Hobart chefs who are top of the game when it comes to fostering relationships with local farmers and growers.
Did You Know Australia’s First Female Doctor Was Hobartian?
Tasmania, despite its small size and population in comparison to the mainland, has produced more than its proportionally predicted percentage of significant figures and heroes of Australian history. 
Return Travellers Adding Pressure to Hobart Housing
For all of us 2020 was a year like no other, punctuated by rapid change and plenty of new challenges. For vulnerable people in Tasmania, including people facing homelessness, those on low incomes and those facing increasingly higher rents, it was very challenging. We are seeing a growing demand for homes in Tassie from international travellers returning home, people moving for work and others seeking the lifestyle that our Apple Isle has to offer.
AboutContributeAdvertiseNewsletter Sign UpContact
February 2024

Stay up to date with everything happening at the Hobart Magazine.

Thank you to Luke Brokensha for mobilising his friends and local residents recently to host two rubbish clean ups along the Hobart Rivulet after heavy rains.
The warm weather returns...hello summer.
Need a laugh? Check out @theinspiredunemployed feed on Instagram.
Moto Vecchia Cafe in Bellerive and Czegs Cafe in Richmond have joined the Clarence City Council dementia program, creating dementia-friendly spaces for all patrons.
It’s hard to believe it’s not standard practice to have a working phone in every aged care room - shared phones make private conversations impossible and increase the risk of spreading COVID-19.
Tacks on the tracks. Mountain bikers beware of tacks being left on certain tracks on the mountain.
Just when you think your cousins are alright. NZ Opposition Leader Judith Collins took aim at Tassie during her recent (unsuccessful) campaign, calling us Australia’s “poor cousin.” She also seems worried about us nabbing tech businesses, “It’s a lovely part of the world but do you necessarily want to go there with your high- tech business? Possibly not,” she said. We beg to differ!