Deni Mob - 'State Of The Heart'

Young Way

Added by Desert Pea Media

Description Desert Pea Media is very proud to announce our new collaboration with the Barapa Barapa and Wemba Wemba communities of Deniliquin in Western NSW. This production brought together Elders, community members and young people to create a conversation about culture, country and sustainability.

This project was funded by the Environmental Protection Authority, part of an ongoing partnership with DPM to create awareness and conversation around caring for country, and runs alongside community-focused waste management projects in Original Nations communities all over NSW.

‘State of the Heart' was created in July 2018, the result of a five-day Desert Pea Media storytelling workshop. Co-written by, and starring, an incredibly talented group of Indigenous young people enrolled at Deniliquin High School, community members and local Elders - with support from DPM staff and local services.

Desert Pea Media projects involve a dialogue-based storytelling process that encourages participants to analyse 'the real', 'the ideal' and 'the bridge'. In simple terms this means critically thinking about how to create positive change for yourself, for each other and for our communities.

We are really proud of the young people involved in this production. The complex issues raised in this song around race and cultural identity are complex and often difficult to talk about. The co-writers and performers showed great bravery and intelligence, and it was a very special thing to be a part of.

This project featured the musical direction and production of DPM producer Josh Nicholas (aka Hazy). We thank you brother for you artistic vision and hard work.

Special thanks to Project Manager, Jessie Peuker from the Deniliquin Local Aboriginal Lands Council, and the staff at Deniliquin High School. A huge thanks to Uncle Freddie Egan for making us feel welcome and teaching us about country and community. Thanks once again to Tash and Danyelle from the EPA and the good people at RAMROCK Murray.

Our story is that thing that lotta my people forgot
Now it’s all grog & drugs & cops & my mob movin’ around a lot
Where that respect gone? I’m black but I look white
Where that respect gone? Connecting with that fire that burns inside

Now it’s all – Iphone on the wifi, wanna connect but it’s on the screen
Not with your mob, never on country, but it’s on the couch glued to the TVStep back and – we’re from where the red gum grow
Swamps and creeks where the Edward flow
We run these streets we search for freedom under big skies where the red sun glow.

Forbidden from speaking our unwritten language
Shifted into tin huts and given mission blankets
Some made a living shearing but the town doors were closed
White flour, sugar, tea is not what we chose

I know when I’m wanted and I know when I’m not
This sadness got me feeling like someone this country forgot
But when I’m noticed and acknowledged by my mob
That’s when – I know who I am. I know I belong.

My mind frame changes when I’m playing my part
It’s not the shade of my skin it’s the state of my heart
I can’t change who I am, this is all that I got
This is my mob, land and culture and I’m keeping the lot

My mob is getting stronger, showing that you one of us
No more hiding – round the campfire in the smoke and the dust
Better trust – we your mob, this your country, this your song
This your story, this your river, this my mission, we belong

Hey Kooka – tell me some stories all ‘bout what we used to do
Hey Nyanka –tell us our history, sing us songs about the truth
Kwe – it’s me, it’s you, you’re a part of this too.
Gotta take the – ancestor’s wisdom and we’ll make it brand new.

Never waste your time, never waste your mind, never waste your what? Potential.
Keeping things moving in a cycle’s fundamental, it’s essential
Keep your mental strong, keep the waste where it belongs
Not on sacred country, move it along or use it later on.

Who’s the most dangerous black fe-lla under the sun
Well the most dangerous black fella’s an educated one.

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