Linguist Luise Hercus has spent over 50 years recording and studying Australian Aboriginal languages. She produced over 1,000 hours of unpublished recordings documenting Aboriginal languages from Victoria, New South Wales, South Australia, the Northern Territory and Queensland. This invaluable collection includes recordings of more than 40 Aboriginal languages which are endangered or no longer spoken, including Arabana, Birladapa, Diyari, Kuyani, Madhi Madhi, Malyangapa, Ngarigu, Wangkangurru, Wergaia, Wirangu, Yardliyawarra, Yarluyandi and many others. It contains the only known recordings of some of these languages.
This clip features a verse from a wind arresting song belonging to Pirlakaya native well ‘Beelaka’ and sung by Mick McLean in Port Augusta on 31 January 1974. Mick McLean’s birthplace is in the central Simpson Desert and the language he’s singing in is Wangkangurru.