MOMENTOUS MONDAYS: INFLUENTIAL ARTISTS OF ALL TIME – WEEK 54: NATALIE IMBRUGLIA

‘…it got to a critical point for me where I was just like, ‘I’m not sure I want to be doing this’. All I wanted to do was be on stage performing, and there was all this other BS, for want of a better word. I just think I got to the point where I was so frustrated trying to please everyone, then please the label, and then make choices I didn’t agree with, and it was time for me to focus on something other than myself. It’s also very insular. You are your product and that gets annoying too. I think as you get older as well, I’m not really obsessed with my career in the way that some people are. For me, I just want to enjoy my life and be happy. I want to get the balance of work and pleasure more on an even keel…’
‘…I think that’s always been there [ageism in music]. The entertainment industry in general – whether it’s male or female – is always considered a young person’s game. More so for women than men, but it’s one of those ongoing problems that has always been there. We go two steps forward and then ten steps back sometimes. You can choose to let that bother you, or not bother you. It’s not something I allow to really frustrate me by any stretch, but it’s certainly there. It’s a constant pressure on women in so many different ways to be… even at my age I’m considered to be far along the line for doing it. Then you look at Fleetwood Mac killing it on tour and making good music. There are a lot of artists who still have careers…’

Australian music seems to be lost in the sea of international music, nowadays. Not that there’s anything wrong with Australian music, quality-wise, it’s just that when we look at music history and the impact and influence of current artists at this point in time, there seems to be much more emphasis and priority on acts from the U.K., Canada or U.S.A. rather than the little land Down Under…and that seems a little unfortunate. I mean, think of the artists that are buzzing right now- Post Malone, Ed Sheeran, Ariana Grande, Khalid, Drake, Billie Eilish, Taylor Swift, BTS, Halsey, the Jonas Brothers, Shawn Mendes, Panic! At the Disco, PINK, Dan + Shay, Lady Gaga, Imagine Dragons, Thomas Rhett, twentyone pilots, Lewis Capaldi, Eminem and Florida Georgia Line; and that is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of artists that are popular at the moment, all from places other than this land of OZ. Maybe I’m just biased because I’ve grown up in Australia my whole life, maybe it’s because I’m a little over-consumed with music from the U.S. that I want a change in the nationality of the artist (so as for me to gain a different perspective); but regardless, I’ve seen the lack of Australians hitting the international market in terms of music, which is a very big shame. Australia has a lot of talent, a lot of it underground and indie, but nevertheless, talent that for one reason or another, seems to be overlooked, when you are looking at music from a grander scale.

And so, for me; as I have embarked upon this 100-influential-music-artists’ list (subjective of course!), I’ve consciously tackled a fair amount of Australian artists- understanding and realizing that all of the Australian bands/artists I’ve written about thus far are not just pillars within the Australian music community, but nevertheless still impactful in the wholistic music industry at large, even though popularity-wise, Aussie music seemingly gets shafted in favour of every other. The McClymonts, Newsboys, Tina Arena, Delta Goodrem, for KING & COUNTRY, Guy Sebastian, Hillsong (all it’s facets), Keith Urban and Rebecca St. James have all had their humble starts in the land of OZ before a fair amount of them had varying amounts of success in an overseas platform over the years, and all these artists reminds us all of how much quality of music, this nation of 6 states and 2 territories, actually has. Enter in another Australian artist I’ve understood to be impactful and influential in their own right- even if their discography of music only brings forth 5 albums (one of them actually a covers album)- the last being recorded more than 5 years ago. Natalie Imbruglia has been gracing the airwaves since the 1990s, and though she’s still currently in the production stage of her upcoming 6th album (which will probably release sometime in 2021); her music has been iconic and synonymous with Australian culture over the years. Sure her name may not be as recognisable to the average Englishman or even the average American; but Natalie’s involvement in music over the years is much to be admired and respected. An Aussie singer-songwriter at heart- while also being an actress on the side from time to time (especially during the early 1990s where she played a pivotal role of Beth Brennan on the Aussie soap opera TV show Neighbours); Natalie’s songs, especially those from her first three albums Left of the Middle, White Lilies Island and Counting Down the Days; are melodies in which this dual Aussie/British citizen has been famous for. And while even now her popularity in today’s current musical landscape may not be as high as other Aussie artists (namely Delta and Guy, and to a lesser extent Stan Walker, Dami Im and Jessica Mauboy, all of whom are dominating the Aussie music industry at the moment!); Natalie’s mark on not just Australian music but on music full stop, is such as to deserve and warrant a selection here, on this very subjective, yet still very informative and intriguing, top-100 influential artist list. Natalie’s songs are here to stay, and as I hear these melodies, some more than 20 years old; I am nevertheless reminded of the timelessness of songs from the 1990s- Natalie Imbruglia’s included.

Maybe it’s just me, but I’ve always felt that there’s something different about the music from Australia- not bad different or good different, just different. Maybe I’m reading too much into things but I’ve often that a lot of the personality and culture of Australia as a whole comes out through the music- we’re a convict country- U.K. sent their convicts to the Land Down Under and then the rest of it was history. People who survived and survived long here in Australia had to develop a thick skin- to have a sense of humour and a determination may never really seen that much compared to the modern western world. Australian’s by nature I’ve seen, are a jovial bunch- they enjoy a good laugh and a good catch-up with mates. We are larrikins, we don’t take ourselves too seriously, we often go the extra mile for someone in need if we know it’s the right thing to do. We look towards the bright side of things, and as pivotal moments of our past- World War 1 and 2 especially, have shown to us; we fight the good fight, never giving up, and going towards the prize at the end of it all. We aren’t quitters, and we pride ourselves in our own independence, as referenced to our own separation from Britain, in the form of the federation of Australia. And how that relates to music, especially Australian music? I’ve seen a much more positive outlook within music from Australians, as opposed to a lot of music and artists around the world. I dunno if there is any association with Australia’s culture, from the findings (that Aussie music in a general sense is much more joyful, heartfelt, emotive and just plain fun compared to its U.S. counterparts!), but what I will say is this- Australian music for me hits more at home, for whatever reason.

The Newsboys, when Peter Furler was frontman, was a much more jovial, Aussie-larrikin, fun-filled band that often poked fun at a myriad of things, and just used their humour in their music to present a unique way of delivering poignant themes- songs like ‘Breakfast’, ‘Reality’, ‘Take Me To Your Leader’, and more recently ‘Your Love is Better Than Life’, ‘Wherever We Go’ and the ever-reliable ‘Shine’, all touch upon this very aspect of humour and a sense of joy to convey these messages. Delta Goodrem has always had a strong sense of purpose, intentionality and an inspirational element to her own music, while Guy Sebastian’s music can be a swing from emotional and heavy (‘Standing With You’), to upbeat and still an inspirational message (‘Choir’), to songs with just fun and entertainment in the foreground (‘Let Me Drink’). Tina Arena has had her own fair share of powerful ballads back in her day (‘Wasn’t It Good’, ‘Sorrento Moon’, ‘Chains’, ‘Burn’, ‘Dare You To Be Happy’, ‘Heaven Help My Heart’), while Hillsong, Rebecca St. James and more recently for KING AND COUNTRY have been carving their own mark in music history, impacting Christian music for the better part of 20 years, for KING AND COUNTRY recently delivering a powerful #1 hit ‘Together’, a song collaborated with singer-songwriter Tori Kelly and gospel sensation Kirk Franklin, to create a song that has been very poignant and heartfelt, especially during this COVID-19 experience. Natalie Imbruglia, though not that impactful and famous now in 2020, was nevertheless so, way back in the 1990s/2000s. She too has anchored her own music on the poignancy and heartfelt moments that her songs have been built around, as her music, just like the many other Aussies, places the importance on meaningfulness and a sense of joy, rather than delivering songs where it can be clearly seen that there’s a void of humour and happiness. Natalie’s songs speak volumes, as I’ve come to know over these last few weeks- and is a joy to listen to, if you’ve been impacted by similar-styled artists- Delta Goodrem and Tina Arena, to name a few!

If you were to look at her discography of music over the years, there’d be one song that would stand out- ‘Torn’, and that’s not even her own original. With ‘Torn’ being first and foremost a cover song Natalie recorded, originally by the indie-rock band Ednaswap; we are reminded that a song doesn’t necessarily have to be written by the artist singing it, for it to be famous- in this instance, regardless of Natalie not even writing ‘Torn’, the song itself is still attributed to her, years later. Ednaswap, now disbanded, unfortunately was only around for five years, of which their famous hit was in fact ‘Torn’ (made more famous by Natalie in her own debut album Left of the Middle in 1997). ‘Torn’ the song is also synonymous with the 1990s, and the culture of songs that defined the era, includes ‘Torn’, period- the song was even recorded by a recent American The Voice finalist and current country superstar Cassadee Pope way back in 2012. And even though ‘Torn’, a cover, is one of Natalie Imbruglia’s most impactful and popular songs she has ever recorded through her 23 year career; we are nevertheless reminded of how the power of a song can have the ability to transcend the artist everytime- which is exactly what the song ‘Torn’ in fact did. Left of the Middle, Natalie’s most popular album, sold the most- 7 million copies worldwide- more so than the rest of her career: a combined 3 million copies; 4 million shy from the 7 that Left of the Middle produced. While a lot of Natalie’s songs are jovial, heartfelt and meaningful, ‘Torn’ is a song very emotive and at times disturbing, that from hearing it, you can almost tell that this really isn’t a Natalie Imbruglia song, just from hearing a bit more of her discography and contrasting the feel of it to this particular track. Regardless, we all attribute ‘Torn’ to her. The lyrics themselves? ‘Torn’, at literal value, is about a persona who thought they found the perfect partner, only to believe that this perfect person has as many flaws as they do, maybe even more. The song itself doesn’t hold back on the issues relevant and prevalent in the song- the persona is so distraught about finding out the imperfections of their partner, that they unveil that they are broken, crying, lying on the floor. ‘Torn’ is emotional, and underneath the happy-go-lucky pop sheen is a track that is a gem of a song, one that embodies all the emotions that come with the realisation that the perfect relationship we may have been attaining, isn’t necessarily perfect to begin with.

‘…I was so desperate to become famous when I was a kid, and then when it happened and it didn’t feel like I expected it to feel, it was quite confusing. Then I came to London and was really famous from Neighbours, and then lost all my money just because I wasn’t working, and then my fame was dwindling. So all I can say is that I’ve experienced peaks of fame, and then had it not be there. I know it’s transient and I don’t put a lot of weight on it because it’s not who I am. There’s a misconception that if you’re famous then you feel good. It doesn’t work like that. There might be some perks to the job, but happiness is something that’s inside yourself. It’s a feeling that you have that’s separate to what you do. I realised that very young, thank God. I’ve never put any kind of importance or value on fame. Obviously you want recognition for being good at what you do, and that’s important to me. I like getting credit for what I do as an artist, but it’s not really about the fame…’

It is in this quote that I realise that many Australian artists have a sense of humility and not letting fame get to you, compared with artists around the world. Australia in a general sense doesn’t have as much support in the music industry, compared to let’s say, U.S. or the U.K. Aussies tend to work harder for their big breaks, and appreciate the accolades and fame when they come, knowing full well that these things can be as transient and blowing as the wind. Natalie Imbruglia reminds us of this, in the above quote, and also give us music (aside from ‘Torn’) full of hope, encouragement and joy. For it is when we realise that the things we often want to attain, can easily be taken away from us as quickly as it has been given, then we truly find freedom in what we have been creating- in Natalie’s case, music. Though only standing at 5 albums, from 1997 till now; Natalie’s career has been one of chart-topping success and often no success at all- and maybe that’s ok. For more often than not, it is the times where success doesn’t come, that we often truly learn that maybe the definition of success we may hold onto, isn’t really the success that is needed for us to embark upon, for us all to remain content in where we are now, and that the success that comes our way need to be consistently appreciated for what it’s worth- a way for us to use what we’ve been given to impact others around us. Natalie’s vocal gift and that of music, has impacted us all whenever we hear songs like ‘Torn’, but also other melodies more uplifting as well.

It is weird and ironic that when I’m sure people hear the name Natalie Imbruglia, they immediately think ‘Torn’- indeed her most popular recording, but nevertheless, a cover. Natalie’s career- aside from ‘Torn’, seems to unfortunately be overlooked, which is a shame. As I’ve heard her music for weeks upon weeks now, I’ve come to assert and state that a lot of her songs are hopeful and encouraging, motivational and poignant, a lot more impactful than if you just listen to ‘Torn’ and that’s it. In fact, my very own exposure to Natalie and her music was in the mid-2000s, when I heard songs like ‘Counting Down the Days’, ‘Shiver’ and ‘Starting Today’, from her 2005 album Counting Down the Days– that album, her third, holds a special place in my own heart, as I regularly listened to those three songs whenever they were on my very own local Christian radio station FM 103.2 (now called Hope 103.2). It was during that time that Natalie’s music was one of the first mainstream music (I guess aside from Delta) that I heard during the teenage years, just accidentally, and never really knowing the artist- but still, it was in hearing these three songs throughout the 2000s that made me less and less ‘afraid’, if you will, of mainstream music. For now, I know that mainstream music isn’t necessarily that ‘bad’ as it had been suggested- for God speaks through even the likeliest of sources. Take these three songs I heard during the 2000s- ‘Shiver’ is about a budding relationship that is in its honeymoon phase where the presence of a person near the other makes the other shiver with longing and anticipation; while ‘Counting Down the Days’ is a track Natalie herself wrote about her then-husband, longing to be with him and wanting time to ‘count down’ so that the time apart can seem less than what it really is.

But it has been the song ‘Starting Today’- not an official single, but nevertheless a song still on Australian radio, that has spoken to me a lot recently over the last few weeks. The acoustically driven track is all about taking chances and travelling into the unknown, of starting something today that you may have tried to procrastinate and postpone till tomorrow. As we understand that there is no time but the present, we can implement the plans we are still on the verge of making, and realise that in order to live life fully, we have to embrace each day for what it is- never worrying about tomorrow and its cares, or lamenting on what we could’ve done better yesterday. For when we start from today, and make a declaration to live life with no regrets, to place priorities on what does matter rather than superfluous things that seem to take up space in our memory; then we can live without the what-ifs and the if-only. ‘Shiver’, ‘Counting Down the Days’ and ‘Starting Today’ have all been a part of the history of my own teenage years, and it is in this light and respect that I’ve come to respect Natalie and her own influence on Australian music around a time where the resurgence of good Aussie artists/bands started to re-emerge.

As I’ve heard Natalie’s music over the last few weeks, there’s a range of emotions expressed, from happiness, sadness, lament and hopefulness, to joy, longing, expectation and anticipation for new beginnings. ‘Wrong Impression’, from Natalie’s second album White Lilies Island, is a melancholy track dressed up in upbeat undertones to create a track where it’s message is setting the record straight in a relationship where only one person can be seen as undertaking all the effort and work- Natalie may have written this song based on personal experience, but as a lot of us can testify, be it in romantic relationships or just friendships in life, there are some where it can seem like you’re the one that is doing everything to maintain it and make it stay afloat, for whatever reason. ‘Wrong Impression’ encourages us all to be honest with the other, especially if we’re the ones who feel like we are investing in something that sadly isn’t reciprocated, no matter how valid the reason. ‘Smoke’, from 1997’s Left of the Middle, is as emotionally charged as ‘Torn’, maybe even more, as Natalie uses this song to present a song about loss, abandonment and disillusionment, all from the perception of a young kid viewing difficulties going on with parents. While the specific meaning isn’t necessarily clear in this track, what I can attain is that ‘Smoke’ channels through emotions like longing and loss- the song sung with a sense of worry and wonder, as if presented through the eyes of a child looking through an ordeal and trying to comprehend at such a young age, what is happening around them. ‘Wishing I Was There’, again from her 1997 album, speaks of insecurities that people have, especially girls, when it comes to commitment and wondering what may happen if you open up to someone and expose what is personal. The song itself is about a persona who chooses not to be vulnerable, in fear of what may happen, so they travel along through life only having romantic surface relationships, but as the song entails, there’s this sense of longing and hoping, wishing that they were trying to connect on a deeper level with someone, but can’t because of worries they have to deal with in their own lives, themselves.

‘That Day’ speaks about how things are meant to be where they should in a song that fuses together spoken word with radio pop, as we’re reminded that where we are now in our lives is where we are supposed to be- normally placed there and given this platform by Jesus to use for His glory and our good, to share with others and encourage people on their own walks of life, as with just as much ours personally; while ‘Big Mistake’ challenges us all to see within our own selves as to who in our lives have made big mistakes, and whether we have it within ourselves to forgive them or not. Though this song by Natalie doesn’t really offer as much grace and forgiveness to certain situations as God Himself wants us to showcase, ‘Big Mistake’ nevertheless gives us a realisation that we have all made big mistakes, and that we are never too far away from forgiveness and a second start. ‘Beauty on the Fire’, also from the 2001 album White Lilies Island, speaks of this notion that to burn something away is to carve out something new from what was once old- a reminder that it is when we hit hard times, when the things external in our lives get burned away by just life and circumstances, we’re just left with what we’re made of, and can see what is underneath all the surface-level things. ‘Beauty on the Fire’ is ironic as well as dichotomous- for beauty to come from something tragic and unsettling like fire, can seem like something impossible- but such a song from Natalie is a reminder that it is when we are stretched beyond what we think is humanely possible, that we can find the beauty in the things we may have taken for granted had this ‘fire’ not come into our lives in the first place. For it is in these songs aforementioned here in these paragraphs above (and upon, many, many more songs), that I’ve come to appreciate Natalie’s motifs and imagery, and be reminded that such an Australian artist, who isn’t as popular as she should be, doesn’t mean that she’s any less influential.

‘Come September’ and ‘Goodbye’ are some of the lesser known tracks on White Lilies Island, and both are songs that have really struck a chord with me- the former being a hopeful track of things coming to fruition and hopeful outcomes to carve into reality as September rolls around- a metaphor of the month being Spring, a chance of rebirth and revitalisation, as we embark on things new and exciting; while ‘Goodbye’ is a song about actually saying the words ‘goodbye’ to someone and treating as if things are finite even if we don’t necessarily want them to be. For we know that unfortunately relationships don’t necessarily last as long as we think, or we understand in our heart of hearts that seasons change, and that relationships just change, just because. That doesn’t invalidate such a relationship before, it’s just that people are in different places, and for us to acknowledge the death of something in order too accept and welcome the rebirth of something else requires humility, guts, and faith in Christ that He will bring people in our own path, for them to encourage us in new seasons of life.

‘Glorious’, from Natalie’ s first compilation album Glorious- The Singles ’97 – ’07 (that consists of 9 previously recorded tracks, and 6 originals), is the lone single from the album, and speaks about seeing the wonder and glory of life, to see things from a point of view of joy and positivity, to always look for bright sides and appreciation of the finer things even when all we can often see in front of us is anything but, while ‘Be Like You’, another original song by Natalie for the compilation, channels U2 and ABBA both at once, with the lyrics reminding us all of the importance of people in the life we lead- that if people are not with us when we achieve certain amounts of success, then we don’t want to be in such positions if the person isn’t there to share it with. ‘Amelia’, ‘Against The Wall’ and ‘Stuck on the Moon’ are all new songs that appeared on the 2007 compilation, and though for me the three songs didn’t reach the musical and lyrical heights of songs like ‘Glorious’ and ‘Be With You’, the messages of them still are poignant even today- ‘Amelia’ sings of someone who is on the verge of losing a part of themselves they may not take back later on in life, and is calling for them to shine and not disappear into difficulties and drowning situations; while ‘Against the Wall’ speaks of inner demons that someone faces, and how what seems to be paralysing them has got them up against the wall, afraid to speak about against people that may have held them captive, physically, or even mentally- it’s not an easy song to hear and decipher, because there is indeed a lot of hidden meanings, but nevertheless, Natalie tackles a subject of being in relationships that are less than ideal, into a song that I reckon needs to be heard a few more times to be understood all the more. ‘Stuck on the Moon’ is a track full of metaphors- one that speaks clearly to me is a representation of the moon to mean something in life that can seem entirely impossible at the start, but over time, can be seen as something that one can overcome and be used to shape a life, to allow the person to understand more about themselves, the world, about God, relationship and everything else, just by taking a foot out and stepping towards something that seems uncertain, but nevertheless we do it anyway, because we know the Lord goes before us, and that it is in these unknown moments where our persevering character shines through.

2009’s Come to Life, came after 2007’s Glorious (the compilation album)…but unfortunately, as the way things go- the 2009 album isn’t that publicised that much. Only available on Amazon, and not on both Apple Music or even Spotify for even a listen or two, Come to Life, unfortunately is an album that maybe even Natalie herself didn’t want to remember- in an interview she undertook in 2015 as she promoted her covers album Male, she invited us all into her own thought process into Come to Life‘…[Come to Life had a limited release in the UK] and then it disappeared. It wasn’t even out long enough for people to even realise it was out. I did have private finance and could have continued on, but I didn’t want to. That was my choice to step away…[X Factor] came up, but also I just didn’t want to do the album, to be really honest. I wanted to take a break. There’s a lot of politics in the music industry with mergers and everything, and there was a window and I just felt like I didn’t want to…’ Come to Life unfortunately doesn’t really have that appeal to it compared to the first three albums- you can hear the album on youtube if you know where to look, and songs like ‘Want’ and ‘Scars’, standouts from the 2009 album, are just some of the bright spots in an overall album experience that seems to be a little lacking. ‘Scars’ is a reminder for us all that we all have them and we all ought not to be ashamed of these things we’ve been told to hide, while ‘Want’, as absurd as a actual message of it is, is nevertheless something we all need to hear at this point in our lives- Natalie declares the emotive lyrics, hoping and wishing that the person she’s singing to, gets what they want out of life. It is a reminder that people generally want the best for the other person, and that in our own lives, there are people along our own journey who either champion us from the sidelines, or go down deep into the trenches with us. However they come alongside us, we still now we have people in our corner, and songs like ‘Scars’ and ‘Want’ are little things to motivate us to a better, brighter day, especially in this life of COVID-19!

From 2009 to 2015, Natalie took a break from music, and concentrated on acting in indie movies ‘Closed for Winter’, ‘Underdogs’ and ‘Among Ravens’- because why couldn’t she- considering she was an actress prior to even starting her music career. Her stint on Neighbours in the early 1990s led to her experience in front of the camera, and thus, these movies during the late 2000s/early 2010s was no surprise. She even starred in a main role in the 2003 movie Johnny English with famed British comedian, Rowan Atkinson. She even had a one-season stint as being a judge on the second season of the Australian version of The X Factor. But what has been a total surprise for me, is that the comeback album Male is full of just covers- no original material since 2009, and even that album wasn’t as well received as maybe even she had liked. Male is a reminder that a cover album can be good, and that Natalie’s focus in delivering cover versions of songs primarily recorded by men, is something that places a different perspective on things. For someone singing the song, especially if it is of the other gender, gives a different feel to it- and this album MALE is a reminder that songs certainly transcend the artist- and we shouldn’t really care if males or females sing a certain song- if they’re good, they’re good regardless. While I didn’t really know much of the songs on MALE– aside from tracks like ‘Let My Love Open the Door’, ‘Instant Crush’ and ‘The Summer’ (tracks that were repeated heavily as I listened to Natalie’s discography on Spotify in preparation for this blog post); what I do know is this- that though I am under the impression that cover albums aren’t as good as their originals, Natalie seems to try and buck the trend, with these renditions of already powerful songs (of which a lot of them, I’ve got not much of a clue) are just as emotive and powerful as their original counterparts (of which this is certainly true of ‘Let My Love Open the Door’!). MALE is Natalie’s foray back into music, albeit a unique one in the form of a covers album…nevertheless, a reintroduction regardless.

Natalie and her music has been archived in a time an space from 1997 – 2005 (I don’t think many people, herself included, would say that her 2009 album is her finest work, nor it is even the most rememberable- considering the album itself is taken off Apple Music and Spotify without a care!); and though her imprint on Australian music is a reminder of yesteryear and nothing much now, her impact on society and music still warrants a least a listen through of her 2007 best-of project, at least once. Natalie’s re-introduction into music at a later stage in life (she’s 45 now), considering her upcoming album release in 2021, is nothing short of miraculous and a long-time-coming for Natalie Imbruglia fans. For her music has served as being iconic for a snapshot in time, and though currently, many people may have forgotten her songs, aside from ‘Torn’, what Natalie has accomplished during her tenure in music is something she herself should be very proud of. Her presence in an Australian industry that is so overlooked and underappreciated, is one of hope and promise that there’ll continue to be female artists in the future that push the musical boundaries that Natalie (and Tina and Delta) did back in the day. Songs like ‘Torn’, alongside others like ‘Counting Down the Days’, ‘Shiver’, ‘Smoke’, ‘Wrong Impression’, ‘Starting Today’ and ‘Big Mistake’, are all songs that have replay value, even years later; which indeed is a great reminder of how unique and energetic the 1990s and the early 2000s really was in terms of music quality, and how fickle minded the current generation really is when they consider what ‘popular’ music is, and how we as people who may have lived a little longer, see a distinction, a very clear one, between popularity and influence. Natalie is indeed influential, within the realms of Australian music, but not necessarily popular even now, especially when you have artists like Johnny Farnham and Jimmy Barnes still going at it even now. Still, Natalie’s songs of hope and encouragement have been a joy to listen to, and who knows, maybe her new album next year, will continue from where Counting Down the Days left off.

Does Natalie Imbruglia and her music make the list for you all when you write your own ‘Best Influential Artists of All Time’ list? Is there any song, like ‘Torn’, ‘Counting Down the Days’, or ‘Shiver’, that has impacted you on your journey through life thus far? Let us know in the comments. Till next time!

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