Ten sound recordings with cultural, historical and aesthetic significance were added to Sounds of Australia for 2008.
This year's sounds include the sound of a koala grunting, the first known recording of 'Waltzing Matilda', Slim Dusty's best known song, the voice of Donald Bradman and an anthem of the Aboriginal land rights movement.
Established in 2007, Sounds of Australia is the NFSA’s selection of sound recordings which inform or reflect life in Australia. Each year, the Australian public nominates new sounds to be added with final selections determined by a panel of industry experts.
See the Complete Sounds of Australia list.
The voice-over announces 'the male koala grunting’. We hear a series of deep-voiced grunts similar to the sounds of a large pig.
Summary by Maryanne Doyle
Image from: Koalas - The Bare Facts (1990), Creator: Paul Scott, © NFSA. All Rights Reserved
This is the first verse of the original 1957 recording of ‘A Pub With No Beer’ sung by Slim Dusty. The song was composed by Gordon Parsons, with lyrics inspired by Dan Sheahan’s poem.
A popular radio jingle advertising an Australian brand of jelly crystals. The song was recorded in 1938 and broadcast on Sydney radio in the 1940s – up to 100 times a day.
Summary by Maryanne Doyle
In this clip we hear the landmark Aboriginal protest song 'We Have Survived’, as performed by No Fixed Address on the soundtrack of 'Wrong Side of the Road' (1981).
Summary by Brenda Gifford
This is an excerpt from the 1972 single release of ‘Most People I Know (Think That I’m Crazy)’ by Billy Thorpe and the Aztecs.
Summary by Thorsten Kaeding
In this clip you hear the team’s new star, Don Bradman, begin to speak. The order of all the speakers on the record is Bill Woodfull, captain of the team, followed by senior batsman Alan Kippax, spin bowler Clarrie Grimmett, Bradman, fast bowler Tim Wall and all-rounder Stan McCabe, youngest member of the team.
Summary by Paul Byrnes
Cover image: The 21-year-old Don Bradman photographed in London in 1930. Courtesy State Library of South Australia (Mortlock Library)
This is the theme music and opening announcement from the long-running ABC radio drama Blue Hills (1949–76).
Summary by Matthew Davies
The first recorded version of Waltzing Matilda, recorded in London in 1926, by John Collinson, a born near Newcastle upon Tyne, UK. For no obvious reason they changed the melody a little for the chorus. It didn’t sell many copies, a fate shared by the next recorded version, by Colin Crane in 1930.
This is a 30-second excerpt from the ABC recording of Peter Sculthorpe’s 'Irkanda lV’, released in 1967. The work is performed by the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra conducted by John Hopkins. The violin soloist is Leonard Dommett.
Summary by Vincent Plush
This is a pianola version of Percy Grainger’s ‘Country Gardens’ performed by the composer in New York in 1919.
Summary by Graham McDonald