GYMPIE'S golden boy, record producer Matt Fell, has been nominated for a 2012 ARIA award in the category of Engineer of the Year for Tim Freedman's latest album, Australian Idle.
Fell, a former Gympie High School student, was announced in the first round of nominations for ARIA's Fine Arts and Artisan Awards.
He is up against fierce competition. Also in the running is the engineer behind Gotye's highly successful album, Making Mirrors.
"I am completely shocked and thrilled," Mr Fell said.
"The other four nominees are the engineers for Gotye, 360, Josh Pyke and The Jezebels, so I'm very chuffed to be in their company.
"Producing Tim's record was one of the most enjoyable experiences of my life.
"We had an amazing time and this is the icing on the cake."
Choosing the right producer was crucial says Tim Freedman, best known as The Whitlams' frontman.
"He's a very, very inventive producer," he said, clearly pleased with the collaboration.
"My producers over each album have played more and more of the music (on the album). I've learnt to trust who I've hired and let them run towards the light."
Mr Fell had the distinct advantage of recording and producing the album at his own facility, Love Hz Studios in Leichhardt, Sydney, just 12 minutes from Tim's home.
He won a Golden Guitar in Tamworth last year for producing the country album of the year, Still Walking by Graeme Connors, but Mr Freedman saw past the "country albatross" and found they had some of the same vinyl in their collections, and that Mr Fell's instrumentation was seriously ingenious.
The winners will be announced at the official ARIA nominations event in Sydney on Wednesday, October 3, at the Art Gallery of New South Wales where the nominees for the remaining genre awards will also be announced.