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Meet 3%. The newly formed First Nations collective is made up of Dallas Woods, Nooky and Angus Field. Named in reference to their people, who make up just 3% of the Australian population, the collective has made waves with their debut single OUR PEOPLE. It’s a raw, rallying anthem, written in response to Indigenous youth incarceration. The track features a sample from The Presets My People. “We want for people to understand how our first single speaks to the serious issue of over 400 Black deaths in custody with no convictions,” the band says. “Kids as young as 10 years old locked up in criminal institutions – to be traumatised and damaged by the system, forever!"

Today, it has been announced that the group’s first run of live shows will take place later this month inside a group of undisclosed Victorian Prisons. “It could have been easy and predictable for 3% to do a run of shows around our single “OUR PEOPLE” up the east coast of Australia,” they say. “While planning a tour and hearing the news of another Black death in custody in WA, we paused to think about what it all means to us. 3% will take our first-ever tour run into the prison system in Victoria. Five shows across five days taking our stories and our art to the mob locked up and trapped in this insipid cycle of poverty, injustice, incarceration, trauma and racism.” Ahead of the news we spoke to the collective about their formation and the poignant debut single:

Your new single 3% is so powerful. What was the catalyst for creating this song? When was the starting point?

Dallas Woods: As a collective and as individuals, we deal with all the topics we touch on and injustice. We have to see, hear and acknowledge on the weekly as leaders and community members our way of bringing awareness is to let our music channel the pain and use it as a weapon for change. Our people's well being physically and mentally always come first, that’s why ‘Our People’ came about.

What was your intention with this song? How do you hope the audience feels listening to it?

DW: We hope all our people feel empowered to stand up and tell their story and fight side by side like we always have for our next generation of leaders and our beautiful country

What have you learnt about yourselves through writing and releasing this track?

DW: I’ve learnt I don’t have to do it all myself, we are stronger together especially when tragedy hits. I love standing side by side with my mob.

The sample you’ve used is great. Were you longtime The Presets fans? Who else did you work with on this song in terms of production etc?

DW: This all came about because of Nooks being the genius he is. He told me since he first heard he wanted to flip the track to tell our story. Originally written by The Presets in response to Asylum Seekers and Refugees, and never having let any one sample the track ever before, we were privileged to get to pay homage to such an iconic track. This was always something Nooky wanted to do so too, get that sample really made the song feel like it was meant to be - big love The Presets, big love Tasker!

You’ve spoken about how many emotions you’ve poured into this track. The visuals are also super poignant. Tell us how the music video came to be?

DW: We were able to work alongside the local community, not only seeing new leaders and talent step up and take charge but also older community members who helped keep the spirit and energy BLAK. So very excited to see where these young mob take their talent. The future is bright.

Tell us a little about the beginning of 3% and how you came to be? What is your mission with this project?

Angus Field: 3% started on January 26 2023 with a session between Dallas and Nooks which started with one song, then a session with all 3 boys in July that turned into 16 songs. But just know in these sessions, all 3 of us felt something real and something special and what we created in both the music and the group we knew had weight and purpose behind it.

Our mission in this project is to create inspiration for our younger generation and make music that speaks for our people.

How has the response been so far? What has been the most rewarding comment you’ve received?

AF: The response so far has been incredible, having the song being consumed the way it has throughout all dsp’s, radio and the video making people feel the way we intended has been the most humbling experience. Our mission through this song was to hit people hard with the message of youth incarceration and how badly our youth get treated in jail. It was heard and received. The biggest compliment so far for us could have been either our first show at the Lord Gladstone hotel, where the venue was at capacity within the first hour of doors opening with our mob showing their support to our mission with this group. Some of the feedback and messages we have gotten from mob showing how much our song was heard and felt in all different corners of the country. That hit us hard.

Who else would you guys love to collaborate with on music?

DW: Just continue to collaborate and share stories with fellow BLAK performers that’s always first everything else will happen in time

What’s something you’re passionate about right now, aside from music?

AF: As a group and individually we all have a passion that we share and that is mentoring and developing the next generation of young black kids around the country. We all do mentoring programs in the most remote communities in Australia to show our mob that we all have the same opportunity and everyone can reach their goals no matter who you are or what cards you’re dealt.

What’s next?

AF: More releases, tour and play shows, keep writing music and Conquer the world.

Listen to 3% HERE.