Listen to Our Country and find true connection: the message in the music

Gambirra Illume. Image credit: Courtesy

Connection to Country is at the heart of all that Gambirra Illume does, including producing the powerfully moving opening and closing tracks of Australian Geographic: Our Country. Have a listen.

“Connection to country is connection to the self,” says Yolŋu woman, musician, artist and producer, Gambirra Illume.

“The more we explore, and sit with Country, the more we connect with ourselves on a cellular level.”

Hailing from the Gumatj clan of Northeast Arnhem Land in the Northern Territory, Gambirra brought her immeasurable talents to the soundscape of Australian Geographic: Our Country. 

She composed, arranged, produced and breathed life into the opening and closing tracks of the immersive experience; weaving strings, breath, yidaki (didgeridoo), foley (everyday sound effects) and singing together in collaboration with the other musical artists The Bowerbird Collective and Si Mullumby.

Gambirra’s emotive and soulful singing in Yolŋu Matha (Yolŋu tongue) translates to:

This is yours and my Country,

Let us work together to look after this Country

Acknowledging all living things

This is our Country.

Growing up in the Northern Territory, Gambirra had a rich cultural upbringing, involving much ceremony and community, and resulting in her fundamental belief that “all aspects of life are interconnected and sacred, and everyone’s wellbeing always comes back to connecting with Country.”

Gambirra says the immersive experience’s Our Country name resonated deeply with her. “It’s all-encompassing and has many layers of significant meaning to it. I was very excited to create music that would explore what it means to connect to Country.” 

To find out more about Gambirra’s and follow her projects, head to her website.