Zoe Badwi is further proof that dance is far from dead Down Under. In a year that saw Sydney-siders Yolanda Be Cool land a global hit with “We No Speak Americano”, Melbourne-based singer Badwi enjoyed one of the biggest domestic dance tracks of the year with “Freefallin’” (Neon/Warner Music), which topped the ARIA Club Chart following its July release and peaked at No. 9 on the national singles chart. Its now platinum-certified (90,000 units), thanks in part to solid support from commercial radio network Nova and state-funded Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s weekend music video program Rage. “Zoe works hard, she’s well respected by fans, media and other artists, and she has a unique style that is popular on the dance scene and successfully crosses over into the commercial market,” explains Pat “Smiley” Cleary, owner and founder of Peppermint Blue Management and Neon Records. Badwi arrived on the scene in late 2008 with “Release Me” which reigned for seven successive weeks on the national club chart and collected nominations at both the ARIA and APRA awards. Bigger things are anticipated this time around. Produced by house music team Denzal Park, “Freefallin’ is diving into markets abroad, where its licensed through a network of labels including Atlantic Records/Big Beat (U.S.), Atlantic Records/One More Tune (U.K.), Pool-E (France), TIME (Italy) and Warner Music (Benelux, G/S/A, Scandinavia, Israel). Badwi’s debut album should land in Australia during the first quarter. “We are expecting this to be huge,” notes Cleary, who notes that Badwi will base herself in Australia for the foreseeable future and will “jump” at international opportunities as they arise. Badwi is booked by 360 Agency and represented by Sony/ATV Music Publishing.