Aboriginal Music

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ustralian Aboriginal music is said to be one of the oldest forms of music on earth, as old as 60,000 years old. It is an important part of the Indigenous Australian culture and is used by Aboriginal people to pass on, stories from the dreamtime, myths and family history from generation to generation. It is usually performed in the language native to the particular tribe or area of Australia, celebrating spiritual connections to the land and to their ancestors. Aboriginal people are taught to sing from a young age so that they may participate in corroborees and ceremonies. A corroboree is a form of non-sacred ceremony in which stories are re-enacted through song and dance and is different from a sacred ceremony in which there are strict cultural rules regarding who can attend and what roles are undertaken.

This is a piece of more traditional Aboriginal music…[Bushfire by traditional musician Jeremy Donovan]

What instruments can you identify?…Didgeridoo, clapping sticks, etc

What do you think this song is representing?

The most prominent sound in Indigenous music, both traditional and contemporary, is the low drone of the didgeridoo. It is thought to be the oldest instrument on earth, originating in Northern Australia thousands of years ago. They are made from the trunks of trees that have been hollowed by termites and the pitch varies with the length and shape. The sound of the didgeridoo imitates and represents the sounds of nature such as animals, the sound of the wind or running water. It is usually played as part of an ensemble, accompanying singers and dancers in ceremonies, though it is also played solo by some musicians. In traditional ceremonies, only men are allowed to play the didgeridoo and it is considered by some, to be inappropriate for a woman to play it. Other instruments that are also used to compliment the sound of the didgeridoo, include, clapping sticks or a bullroarer and improvised clapping and beating the ground....
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