|EDITOR’S BLOG Topics|
|• Slang||• Holidays||• Food||• Odds & Sods|
|• Music||• Animals||• Writers||• Daylight Saving|
|• Sports||• People||• Problems||• Big Things|
|• Charity||• Awards||• What Is It?||• Comments|
Australia has always been known for its music. Aussie music is defining the future of music with a fresh sound, quirky lyrics and unusual beats
See also our Australian Music section
with over 100 Aussie songs.
Top Music Singles in Australia
We added 70 years of Number One Singles in Australia to our website. Most aren’t by Aussies, but it does show you what made it to the top of the Aussie music charts.
Why this list? A friend planning a birthday party asked us what music was popular in 1949 when his mom was born. I had fun looking it up and thought you might enjoy it too.
ToThe Ends Of The Earth
When life seems to overwhelm me, I find that music lifts my sprits. I have a rather eclectic taste. Walk by my office and you’ll hear anything from hard rock to country western to classical music depending on my mood.
When Father Galea sent me two of his latest CDs – Reach Out and What A Day, a short break suddenly became a very long one.
It was a pleasure to listen to music that’s both spiritual and comforting on a very personal level. One of my favourite songs from his new CDs is the lovely and inspirational To The Ends Of The Earth.
With Father Galea’s gracious permission, I’ve added the lyrics and his music to our website along with two more of his songs.
• To the Ends of the Earth
• Here I Am
• Lift Me Up
Father Galea has recorded with several renowned artists such as pop idol Guy Sebastian and Paulini. You can find his CDs at his very informative website.
• Fr Robert Galea’s Website
Fr Robert Galea is a Diocesan priest at the Sandhurst Diocese in North Victoria. He helped to found a series of fast growing youth retreats called the Stronger Youth Program.
I hope you enjoy his music as much as I did.
Adam Greenwood kindly wrote to tell us we mistakenly credited the song G’day, G’day to Slim Dusty. We’ve updated our page .. song written by the singer/songwriter Rob Fairbairn.
It’s hard to think of the song G’day, G’day without thinking of Slim who made it famous. Rob, by the way, co-wrote the song This is Australia Calling, another Aussie favourite.
I Am Australian – Australian Spirit
Birgitt from Germany wrote to us about the song I Am Australian they learned in school. They didn’t know what the stanza with “The spirit of this great land” meant.
I Am Australian is one of the most loved songs in Australia. It talks about all the different kinds of people we are, from many lands, from the past and today … all are Australian.
We’ll try to explain the stanza at the end of the song that you asked us about. The words “this great land” means our country, Australia. That stanza is talking about all the things that make us
For example “I’m the drought and flooding rains” is speaking about the hardships we face in the past and today. Overcoming hardships makes us strong.
“I’m the mountains and the valleys” is speaking about the beauty of our country. “I’m the black soil of the plains” describes the rich soil where we grow our crops. “I am the rock, I am the sky” means we are part of everything in our great land.
We talk with pride about Aussie “battlers”. They are people who struggle to pay their bills and feed their families. They work hard at their jobs, but still struggle.
They have the “spirit” the poem talks about … to keep trying and never give up when you know there will always be problems to face. That’s why Aussies make so many jokes. It’s part of our spirit to find humour in our problems. It helps us face and overcome them.
Every country has a spirit. It’s developed from the way people lived and struggled to build that country. It shapes the way you think today and the way you act with other people. It’s what I believe makes us Aussies.
Trivia – A Music First
9 February 1788 — Rogues March is said to be the first named piece of music performed in Australia. It was played at the drumming-out of a sailor who had been caught in the women convict’s tents.
Oh! My Walla!
Hanna M. from Germany asked us to find a song she heard sitting around the campfire on her recent visit to Australia.
“Oh my Walla! It’s rumbling it’s tumbling”
Luckily we found it for her. It’s called Oh! My Walla! and listed along with others in Why Reconciliation? Conference booklet by the students and staff of SA schools. Link to 69 page PDF. It looks like a good resource for parents and teachers wanting to know more about reconciliation.
Martin’s Unknown Song
Martin from Denmark is looking for a funny song he heard while visiting Australia. It’s about a guy with a plum tree in the backyard. As Martin describes it, you sing about something “in the back and something in the front” of the house while you “tell the story of the song with your arms”.
Aussie Song Answer
To all the people who wrote to us about the song Martin from Denmark was looking for … yes, it’s Home Among the Gum Trees.
Martin didn’t think that was the song, but as Mike, an Aussie who wrote to us said, “Most people relate only to the chorus of the song, thinking the chorus is the song. When they see [the rest of] the words, they say I don’t know that song.” We agree. That’s probably why Martin thinks it’s not what he heard while visiting Australia.
Lyn’s Mystery Song
Lyn contacted us for help with a song. “I am going slowly mad trying to find what I believe was a song which included:
‘… pioneers of Australia,
may your glory never fade,
pioneers of Australia,
our heritage you made …’
“I have Googled everything I can think of”
Sadly, I struck out too and cannot find that song. If you know what it is, please let me know.
In response to reader requests, I’ve added YouTube versions of many of the 100+ songs we have on this website. Some of the most requested Australian songs especially during Australia Day are –
- I Still Call Australia Home
- I Am Australian
- True Blue
- G’day G’day
- Waltzing Matilda
- Give Me a Home Among Gumtrees
- Advance Australia Fair
(Australian National Anthem)
I hope you enjoy the YouTube versions I picked.
Stormcellar Releases New CD
Michael Barry of Stormcellar sent me their latest CD release titled Hired Guns & Borrowed Glory. (Thank you for all the autographs!)
Hired Guns & Borrowed Glory is their 5th album of original songs. With the band making it to # 1 on the Australian Blues/Roots Chart and # 49 on the US National Blues Chart, their credentials are well established.
While Stormcellar has been put in a box labeled Australian Blues / Roots, this might be changing. I don’t like boxes myself, but if I had to put them in one it might be Ozicana.
Never heard of Ozicana? Not surprising. It’s a new kind of Australian music. Salty Dog Dennis Trevarthen coined the term Ozicana – a blend of urban roots, blues, country and folk. Harder to explain than to just sit back and listen for yourself.
One of my favourite songs from the new CD is Black Crow. I’ve added the lyrics and the music to our website along with the other 2 Stormcellar songs we have.
• Black Crow
• Last Drinks at Glenrowan
• Sunshine in the Rain
The band can be seen performing at various venues all over Australia as well as on radio and television. I hope you enjoy their music as much as I do. Their CDs are available at the Stormcellar website.
Coolabah or Coolibah?
A student from Broughton Anglican College emailed me to say that “you had spelt coolabah wrong. It is spelt coolibah.” He was talking about the song Waltzing Matilda.
The coolabah is a tree is found throughout Australia. Since the scientific classification is E. coolabah (Eucalyptus coolabah), I chose to spell it the same way with the “a”. However, both coolabah and coolibah are acceptable for common use.
I want to share with you a website I added in our Australian Music, Movies and TV page called Curious Legends.
Curious Legends is a theatre company that brings together an inspiring mix of puppetry, live music, dance, and theatre.
What’s nice about their website is that they have video from their performances. One look at the children’s reactions as they watch The SandDragon’s Tail and I know more children should experience this especially with their parents.
For over 7 years, Curious Legends has created inspiring theatre designed to help bring out the imagination in children and adults. This Melbourne based independent theatre and production company also produces theatre arts festivals and abilities workshops. It’s well worth your time to explore their website Curious Legends.
Chris wrote us from the NLA government website that they moved their Waltzing Matilda info. (We’ve updated our link to them.)
Did you know there is more than one version of Banjo Paterson’s Waltzing Matilda? Have a look at the song and you’ll see what we mean.
Looking for . . .
Bill B wrote me asking for help, “Stealaway at the Argyle Tavern in 1986 had a song called I’m Australia. Any information on it? I loaned my cassette out and never got it back. I believe one of the Cooey Brothers was in the group.”
“It went something like: I’m Australia, I’m Australia, there’s more to me than what you think you see.”
Grazia M wrote me, “There was a movie made about the 1983 win. I believe it was called Aussie Challenge. I wondered if a DVD exists and is available for purchase.”
Joan L is looking for a song she heard 20 years ago on a children’s tape. Part of the chorus was “… and Perth and Darwin and Sydney and Digger’s Rest …”
If anyone can help with info, please email me and I’ll send the information on to them.
Another Unknown Song
Kristen wants to know the words to this song. It’s another version of the 12 Days of Christmas Aussie Style.
Part of it is …On the fourth day of Christmas,
a goanna on the rock said it’s stinkin’ hot
How ’bout the flies
Good on ya, cob
Have a ripper Aussie Christmas mate
On the fifth day of Christmas,
Frank put up the sign total fire ban
If you know this song, please let us know and we’ll send the info to them.
More Unknown Songs
Rosie is looking for a song called Good On Ya Blue or Blue the Roo. She said it came out on a 45 record around 1982. If you know it, please let us know so we can pass on the info.