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This database presents the results of the Murriny Patha song project, conducted by Linda Barwick, Allan Marett, Michael Walsh, Joe Blythe, Nick Reid and Lysbeth Ford in 2004-2009. This research was funded by the Australian Research Council project DP0450131 “Preserving Australia’s endangered heritages: Murrinh-patha song at Wadeye” (2004-2008). You can find more information about the project at our project website. Linda Barwick coordinated the database development with Daniel Tse and Aidan Wilson providing technical assistance in its implementation. The project is headquartered in the Faculty of Arts, University of Sydney.

This database documents the history, language and music of public songs and dances composed and performed at Wadeye (also known as Port Keats) in Australia’s Northern Territory. It focuses on three songsets of Murriny Patha people: djanba, wurltjirri and malgarrin. We also include information on other public songs performed in the Wadeye area, including lirrga and wangga. You can customise the menus and orthography in the site to use English, Murrinh-patha (the preferred community orthography) or the researcher orthography (Murriny Patha).

Please use the Login area at the top right if you have been provided with a login to enable you to access the full features of the database. For further information, with an explanation of why you want to access the database.

Who are we?

The project idea came from senior composers, owners and performers at Wadeye, especially the late Lawrence Karramanhi Piyalem Kolumboort. The research was carried out in close consultation with community elders — with collaboration from the Wadeye Aboriginal Languages Centre and the Wadeye Knowledge Centre — by musicologists Allan Marett and Linda Barwick (University of Sydney) together with linguists Michael Walsh, Joe Blythe (both University of Sydney), Nick Reid (University of New England and Lysbeth Ford (University of Sydney). Daniel Tse developed this online version of the database.

How to get started

To start browsing, click on one of the headings linked above (songsets, people, places, and so on). Here are links to a few suggested searches .

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