Two new Wiradjuri songs were introduced to a small gathering at the Parkes Library last Friday to mark International Mother Language Day.
Sean Cassidy of the Ub Ubbo Exchange, that promotes indigenous art forms, collaborated with the Parkes Wiradjuri Language Group and local musicians to create the songs titled Nuganirra and Gujung Giiny.
Nuganirra, meaning Beat with the Heart, Beat Regularly as the Heart, was developed in memory of Ron Waldrop, the first Wiradjuri language teacher in Parkes.
The project and concept were initiated by Lionel Lovett, current Wiradjuri language teacher in Parkes. “The song celebrates Ron, who would’ve turned 50 last year,” said Geoff Anderson.
This song was created by listening to the heart beat, then listening to the heart beat responding to the sounds in nature, and then responding to the rhythm of nature and the heart together. “Ron’s heartbeat echoes through the song,” said Geoff.
Nuganirra is the follow up song to “I am My Elders Blood” of 2016.
Gujung Giiny means Fire Heart and was created to the sound of fire. Instruments were played to sound like fire igniting and burning. Indigenous instruments were layered to sound like a heartbeat. The song features the Wiradjuri Language Group.
The songs were produced with the as- sistance of a Parkes Shire Council Cultural Grant and the Wiradjuri Condobilin Corporation Language Program.
Musicians and other people involved in producing the two songs are Chris Orr, Jason Nacho Murchie, Thomas Orr, Tiyana Towney, Dusty Yellow Sunbeams, Scott ‘Sauce’ Towney, Matthew Chi Chi Cicchini, Angus Taylor, Drew Farrant-Jayet, Sean Lea and Ryan Unger.
Gujung Giiny is on You Tube (see the link on The Parkes Phoenix Facebook page). For anyone interested in learning Wiradjuri, there is a Wiradjuri Language App developed by Stan Grant snr.
By Maggi Barnard