Above: Women and children from Papunya. Below: Jessica Mauboy with fans.
“Follow your dreams, work hard, explore the world! Run with your goals, take the opportunities, you can do it!” All of the Mbantua Festival stars had the same message for their fans, particularly the adoring youngsters. From Aaron Pederson to Jessica Mauboy, they had their stories to tell of being one of “you mob” but of nurturing ambitions that have taken them out into the wider world. KIERAN FINNANE and ERWIN CHLANDA were there.
VIDEO (click FULL STORY): Jessica Mauboy sings while ladies from Yuendumu and Laramba dance, in the festival where the worlds meet.
The living past spoke to us last night. It is there every day, held in the trees, the hills, the river but with Bungalow Song we heard its human voice, multiple human voices. Arrernte chant reached us as if on the wind through the trees. The priceless photographs and film footage – of individuals, men, women and children, of family groups, of ceremonial groups – taken at this very spot at the end of the nineteenth century was projected onto the tin roof of the Old Telegraph Station building in front of us. It was a riveting experience of the people and culture prevailing in this place before the ravages of European settlement. KIERAN FINNANE reviews. Photos by ERWIN CHLANDA.
In some ways Warren H Williams seems singularly suited to be “the voice” for people who are “the last to be recognised” but the first to be the subject of “government experiment”. If he put his message to music, who could turn away from that husky, golden voice from the desert, that sings so movingly of “the hills of home”? KIERAN FINNANE was at the launch of his run for the Senate today, on the Greens ticket.
UPDATE, August 25, 10.41pm: With 95% of the ballot counted, Alison Anderson (Country Liberals) has been returned in Namatjira with 64.5% of the vote. Des Rogers (Labor) has 28.3% and Warren H. Williams (FNPP), 7.2%. Ms Anderson's win is part of a historic swing to the CLP in the bush, which has given them government.
Nicholas Williams (at left) was in Hermannsburg this morning, handing out how-to-vote cards for his father, Warren H. Williams, while stationed in front of Alison Anderson's campaign vehicle.
"I'm campaigning for both," he said, "Warren is my father, Alison is my aunty. I'm doing it for family."
In practical terms that meant telling prospective voters to put his dad at number one but to give their second preference to Ms Anderson. This went against his father's how-to-vote, where Ms Anderson was in the last spot, with second preference going to Labor's Des Rogers. Nicholas said he didn't mind who won the seat, out of his two relatives.
And the most important issue in his home community? Families have to change and become "role models" for kids, he said. KIERAN FINNANE reports from Hermannsburg.
Warren H Williams – singer, musician and song writer from Hermannsburg in Central Australia – has won the $50,000 Red Ochre Award for his outstanding contribution to Indigenous arts. This is Australia’s highest peer-assessed award for an Indigenous artist presented by The Australia Council’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Arts Board.
The award was made today at the 5th National Indigenous Arts Awards, held at the Sydney Opera House.
While known widely as a country musician, Warren H brings together many threads of the contemporary Australian sound, merging Aboriginal music with country and rock, bringing these musical genres onto a world stage.
“Warren plays a vital and unique role in the Australian music industry,” says Lee-Ann Buckskin, who was appointed Chair of the Australia Council ATSIA Board this week. “He’s a quiet achiever who not only shows young people the way to have a successful career in the music industry, but also dedicates his energy to issues of health, Aboriginal rights and the environment."
Source: Australia Council media release. Photo by Karen Steains.
Well known Indigenous singer and songwriter Warren H. Williams has settled a complaint against the Action for Alice Group for a series of advertisements ran last March by accepting their apology and the removal of the advertisements from broadcast and the internet. Shine Lawyers, in a media release, say they together with Human Rights and Cyber Racism expert George Newhouse launched the complaint against the Action for Alice Group and the local television station Imparja in the Australian Human Rights Commission in March. Mr Williams’ original complaint argued the advertisements were racist as they portrayed Aboriginals as criminals. "I am pleased that the Action for Alice Group has accepted that the advertisements were offensive to ordinary Aboriginals like me," the release quotes Mr Williams. “The outcome we have negotiated means that the Action for Alice Group and Imparja have agreed not to publish or broadcast the advertisements ever again."