Ngurambangga Yanhanha—Walking on Country has been written and performed by Sharron Lindh in the language of the Wiradyuri people, with deep respect to Uncle Stan Grant Senior, Leteisha Harris, Sue Green, and to all Elders and Traditional Custodians.
Language and culture are often celebrated through song, music and dance. Singing and making songs together helps little ones express themselves and learn. By sharing songs in a child’s first language, or by learning about other cultures through song, children develop a greater understanding of their world.
Sharron encourages all people to explore and connect to country, either in the backyard, on acreage or way out bush. Singing, dancing and playing instruments are just some of the ways your child can learn and grow through music.
Sing along with Sharron, as she shares her story. Full song lyrics available under the ‘video transcript’ toggle above.
Lyrics and music copyright April 2017 to Sharron 'Mirii' Lindh.
Please find below a note from Sharron, on the creation of the song.
'Throughout this journey, I have walked proper way, with Yindyamarra—going softly, slowly and gently with honour and respect, with this energy and the Elders’ hearts singing to me through their voices, through their country and all living things.
It was with their blessing and their support, the song Ngurambangga Yanhanha—Walking on Country was born. Everywhere we went, country spoke to me. It was as if country knew I was there to do special work. Throughout the song you will hear the many sounds of nature being respectfully honoured.
For this, I thank you, and would like to pay my deep respects and acknowledge Uncle Stan Grant Senior, Aunty Maureen Mossman, Aunty Ruby Sims, Aunty Jenny Wyles, Uncle Billy Thaiday, Suzanne Thompson, Leteisha Harris and Sue Green.
Ngurambangga Yanhanha was created in three way sharing (in three parts), having many meanings.
For me, the song and three way sharing represents:
- our creator, Mother Earth and Father Sky
- ancestors, the light and the dark
- child, mother/female side, father/male side
- self, our positive and negative side
- our body, our mind and our spirit
- past, present and future.
Always remember to honour each side of your story as you connect and walk upon country. All life is sacred. We are all connected and are one with all creation.
I begin the song with language, as our languages were spoken and sung here first, English coming afterwards representing our two worlds, and continuing on with language. Our languages are as ancient as our beautiful and sacred Mother Earth. Language has always been here and will continue to be here. It flows within our waterways. It remains within the mountains and the trees. It lives within us, in our DNA and in our heartbeat.
Both language parts of the song are not reflected in the English words. Their meaning is completely separate. In the past, our people had no choice in speaking English. This is a great opportunity for you to research and find out what the words mean, either by looking online, or connecting with one of our Wiradyuri language speakers. Reach out and find out more about our first languages and our culture.
Music touches us and speaks to our heart in many ways. This is just my interpretation. The beauty of music will take you on your own journey. It is my wish that Ngarumbangga Yanhanha be sung in all first languages across this beautiful country we now all call Australia.
With an open heart, if you choose, I give permission for you to change the Wiradyuri words and sing in your language on your country. When we sing in language we heal the earth and all living things.
Language brings life back to the sacred places deep within ourselves, our people and our country. All I respectfully ask is that, proper way, you be culturally mindful and acknowledge where the song Ngurambangga Yanhanha has come from.
Together, we can create a new dreaming story for our little ones and help them discover their own song, their own story, their own dance.