Hear My Country Singing - Walungurru Community

Our Music

Added by Red Dust Role Models

Description Red Dust headed back to Walungurru school in October to work with the community to write, record and produce a music video.

All good music in Walungurru starts in the Old Green Shed studio space… and often with a good jam!

Red Dust Music facilitators Steve, Kai and Matt spent much of Monday jamming with young wati (men) Luke, Winston, Fabian, Roy and Lindsay, ably led by Running Water band’s Francis and Ricky.

Soon we had a track … a lively western desert reggae groove, wildly propelled by young wati Luke (Kintore’s Keith Moon reincarnate) with a ska influenced refrain (reminiscent of early Elvis Costello)

As the numbers swelled in the old green shed (what happens when music radiates throughout the community) so did the lyrics for the track.

Most of the songs Red Dust have written with community over the last decade deal with the longing community mob have for their country, particularly when they are away. It’s a deep aching that music seems to help soothe.

This song is something a little different. It is more of a picture of the landscape and cultural connection to that. The chorus, ‘When you burn, life returns, colours change, everything is growing’ came from Francis and clearly spells out the community’s intrinsic relationship to the landscape and their part in its renewal. Also, for the first time in many Red Dust music projects, the group decided to sing the lyrics in English.

The song was then recorded live and the group worked on the phrasing for the melodies together.
Finally, a guide track was put down, and we made our way over to Yirara College to gain their input.

There was a small but keen class of senior students at Yirara College.

Daria, Jandelle, Mango, Celia, Trenton and Reagan were all keen to add their voices to the song and together we came up with the call and response backing vocals that are so distinct in this song.

The students in Kipara class at Walungurru School also added their enthusiasm and voice to the project.

Early in the week, we had a discussion with Walungurru School teaching assistant Shirley Conway about what the video might look like. Shirley was keen for the younger classes to be involved in the video and get them painted up to dance.

Once the word spread around the community, everyone got excited.
On the Thursday morning the whole community came down to the Sorry camp. It was the first time something like this had happened for a few years and the excitement was palpable.

For many of the young children from the school involved, this was their first dance in front of community.

Later that day we set the band up for the photoshoot in the roundabout at the entrance to Kintore.

Traditional song at start: Josephine Napurrula
Drums: Luke (unfortunately not drumming in video)
Bass: Ricky
Guitar: Francis
Piano; Winston
Organ: Luke
Vocals: Francis, Daria, Jandelle, Mango, Celia, Trenton, Reagan, Clarence, Jake, Leo, Akeisha and Henry

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