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Uncle Bruce by Nigel Bird original medium

Sounds Of The Pilbara II: Songs In Language announced

24 Apr

WAM is excited to officially announce the Sounds Of The Pilbara II: Songs In Language project, heralding a unique direction for the critically applauded Sounds Of compilation series. Capturing a diverse range of songs in Indigenous languages from WA’s Pilbara region, a pop-up studio has been established in South Hedland, which will record songs and stories from country, along with contemporary tracks in several of the 31 languages known to the region.

The project could not be undertaken without the partnership of Celebrate WA and Karlka Nyiyaparli Aboriginal Corporation (KNAC), this traditional owner corporation sponsorship breaking new ground in collaborative creative partnerships in Western Australia.

Of this partnership, Bradley Hall from KNAC said, “Sounds Of The Pilbara II serves to record and preserve the traditional Indigenous languages found throughout the Pilbara. Karlka Nyiyaparli Aboriginal Corporation is very pleased to be involved as partners in this project. We welcome this focus and expect it to result in an increase in public recognition and appreciation of Indigenous languages.”

Throughout this project, WAM is also privileged to be working closely with Pilbara Indigenous language linguists from Wangka Maya. The relationship with Wangka Maya is important to ensure we are working towards outcomes that align with the peak organisation for Indigenous languages in the region.

As well as promoting the preservation of Aboriginal languages, culture and history through this project, WAM will be developing the audio engineering skills of locally based engineers and linguists through informal mentoring. Advancing the skills and knowledge of regional based engineers is a key aim of the Sounds Of’ projects. This mentoring model has been successful in demonstrating lasting benefits for communities that have been part of previous Sounds Of projects.

“This is the third Sounds Of project we have been a part of,” noted Celebrate WA CEO Patria Jafferies, “and we’re particularly proud to be part of the collective creating this permanent collection of songs in language. It allows us to highlight to Western Australia and beyond the rich diversity of our state.”

WAM CEO Mike Harris added, “The diversity of partners supporting this project is testament to its importance. It’s fundamental imperative is to protect and cherish traditional indigenous language through the medium of music.”

Alongside major partners Celebrate WA and Karlka Nyiyaparli Aboriginal Corporation, we would like to thank Pilbara Development Commission, Pilbara Ports Authority and Horizon Power for their support in this project, plus acknowledge the in-kind support from Soundtown, Rio Tinto Dampier Salt and the Town of Port Hedland.

Currently in the recording stages, Sounds Of The Pilbara II: Songs In Language is due to be released mid-year.

Government of Western Australia Department of Culture and The Arts Australian Government

WAM is supported by the State Government through the Department of Culture and the Arts, and is assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body.