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YoWo Music, the Melbourne-based contemporary music program for girls and gender non-conforming youth in high school, has today announced their debut album entitled Work Like That, set for release on November 23.  Produced with support from Creative Victoria and Australia Council, Work Like That is a strong, heartfelt collection of songs from Melbourne’s brightest young female and GNC musicians.  Work Like That is preceded by new single Built For Boys, a warm exploration of identity, out November 9.  The YoWo Music performers will be celebrating the album release with an all-ages launch show at Melbourne’s iconic Evelyn Hotel on November 25.


What happens when Melbourne’s brightest young female and GNC musicians get together to make music? YoWo Music is the answer. Their song ‘Built For Boys’ is not only an amazing song but tackles an exploration of identity. Jen asked YoWo’s Indigo King Top 4 Underage Musicians. 

#1 Willow Smith 

I have been listening to Willow since her ‘Whip my hair’ days and still think she’s sick today! She’s pretty experimental with her music and explores lots of different sounds that aren’t necessarily the norm for many pop songs/ artists. I loved to watch videos of her performing when I was younger and was so inspired to see a young female making it in the music industry and really committing to improving her vocal + instrumental abilities. One of my favourite songs of hers is her cover of ‘Easy Easy’ by King Krule. It was my first introduction to King Krule (who is now one of my favourite artists) and I remember being so impressed with how different her version was in comparison to King Krule’s, yet she still maintained the same groove and complimented all it’s best bits!!! She’s amazing! 


#2 Billie Eilish 

I have been listening to Billie for only a year or so now and she has already grown so much and received crazy amounts of well deserved recognition! I am so inspired by her songwriting and the lyrics and melodies she composes with her brother, Finneas. I also like that she doesn’t conform to typical feminine beauty standards and her focus is purely on feeling comfortable on stage and putting on a good show. Her songs are versatile bangers in which you can dance, cry or sleep to while listening to them!!!!


#3 Jakal

Jakal are a young six piece soul/funk band who have recently been doing heaps of gigs in and around Melbourne. Their performance presence is incredible and I am always inspired after I see them play! They have a such a great energy and it is always such a big happy vibe at their gigs! 
#4 Hot Glue
I met Hot glue members, Lily and pearl, through the YoWo music program and now have all of their tunes in my ‘PUMP UP LADY’ Spotify playlist! I love how playful and fun their music is and how easy it is to listen to. They’re not only very talented musicians but very down to earth and fun. They are never afraid to get up on stage and smash out some bangers and have inspired me to organise more gigs and never say no to a music opportunity!



Tickets available from


Work Like That track listing

Built for Boys (Lily Harnath)

Half The Time (Ruby Sweeney-Spitzeck)

Self Love (Isabella Muñoz)

Christine (Pearl Harnath)

Mr Nobody (Genevieve Boardman)

In The Morning (Indigo King)

Suck It Up (Lily Ward)

I’ll Hold On (Lucinda Moje-O’Brien)

Your Mind (Bridget O’Meara)

Through guidance and mentorship from professional musicians, current YoWo Music participants and alumni teamed up to create Work Like That, a nine-track collection of diverse and skillful songwriting and performing from these young musos.  Artistic directors of YoWo Music, Lena Douglas and Claire Cross, both agree that this is a pretty special release, as Lena describes, “These are all original songs written and played by teenagers – and despite us not setting a theme for the album, all the tracks seem to have something in common; they all say something about navigating relationships and trying to find your place in the world.”  From Self Love, which describes accepting one’s complexities as a person, to Suck It Up, about navigating selfishness within a ‘dysfunctional’ teenage relationship, these songs each speak honestly about feelings that most people have felt before.  Work Like That demonstrates an affection for and exploration of a number of different genres – from pop, rock, jazz, and folk.  The process of creating the album from start to finish was a unique learning curve for the participants, as YoWo participant Isabella Munoz says, “This would be the first time that I’ve done something as important as this.  Being able to be a musician and release an album with an amazing group of people, both those who I’ve known for a while and those who I’ve met briefly, is such a privilege.  I’m so happy to be involved and to share a part of our creations.”

On top of current artist mentors Francesca Gonzales (Cousin Tony’s Brand New Firebird) and Maggie Rigby (The Maes), the YoWo team expanded greatly this semester, as Work Like That was written and recorded over a six-month period – it was all hands on deck, as Claire explains, “We are so lucky to have an incredible team that has worked on this album.  Emah Fox worked closely with our bands and mentors in pre-production sessions to really develop the songs for recording.  Once we were in the studio, Emah continued to produce, with Anna Laverty taking on the role as producer/engineer.  Anna has also done an amazing job mixing the album for us too.  We have a really lovely relationship with the team at Rolling Stock Studio (Myles Mumford, Jem Savage and Tom Strode), which is where we recorded this album as well as our first YoWo EP in 2016. Myles has brilliantly mastered the album for us.  We also had Hannah Reaney onboard for all of the recording sessions, being a general legend and studio assistant.  It was pretty exciting to see, at one point, about 4 female studio engineers in the same room at the same time!  Having so many female role models in the same room was a fundamental aspect of this project, and I think the album and confidence of our participants has benefited hugely from this positive influence.”

Lead single Built For Boys, out November 9 and written by YoWo alumni Lily Harnath, is evocative of the DIY styling and pop songwriting of Alvvays and Japanese Breakfast, boasting driving guitar and percussion, and sweet, clever lyricism.  With a heady vibe and undeniable chorus hook, Built For Boys feels like a track you’d Shazam while driving along to triple j.  Speaking on the inspiration behind the track, Lily says, “My song is about one of my friends trying to find her identity, but I also think it relates to most people’s search for where and how they belong in the world.”  Built For Boys is accompanied by a beautiful clip, directed and filmed by Billy Crombie, which gives a deeper insight into the creative process behind Work Like That.

The YoWo team will celebrate the release of Work Like That with an all-ages performance at Evelyn Hotel in Melbourne on November 25, giving audiences a chance to catch tracks from the new album live for the first time.  Pumped for the gig, and with many successful YoWo performances under her belt, Lena gives a taste of what to expect from the show, “Watching the YoWo gigs are some of the most heartwarming experiences I’ve ever had.  It’s incredibly inspiring to see young people putting themselves out there and going beyond their comfort zone, and makes you want to do the same!  Some of these kids are writing super catchy tasty pop songs – their skills might just surprise you!”                

Work Like That
is out November 23. Built For Boys is out November 9.

This project is supported by the Victorian Government through Creative Victoria.

This project has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body.


Tickets available from


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