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Listening to playback of recording, Oenpelli
Title : Listening to playback of recording, Oenpelli Listening to playback of recording, Oenpelli
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Creator : Mountford, Charles P., photographer
Source : PRG 1218/34/2861
Date of creation : 1948
Format : Photograph
Dimensions : 60 x 60 mm
Contributor : State Library of South Australia
Catalogue record
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Description :

Aboriginal men from the Oenpelli area listening back to recordings they made for members of the American-Australian Scientific Expedition to Arnhem Land. Group includes Marawana (second from left), Ray Giles (second from right) and Colin Simpson (right).

Colin Simpson joined the Expedition party in Oenpelli, with audio technician Ray Giles. Their brief was to make a radio documentary about the Expedition for the ABC.

Using a Pyrox wire recorder they captured Gunwinggu ceremony and music - including some of the first yidaki (didgeridoo) recordings broadcast in Australia - as well as interviews with Expedition members, and the sounds of Arnhem Land's teeming wildlife.

The ability of the wire recorder to play back recordings meant that on some occasions performers, including talented yidaki player Marawana, asked to re-record songs when they were unhappy with their efforts.
Related names :

Giles, Ray


Simpson, Colin, 1908-1983

Coverage year : 1948
Place : Oenpelli
Region : Northern Territory
Further reading :

American-Australian Scientific Expedition to Arnhem Land, (1948). Records of the American-Australian scientific expedition to Arnhem Land, Melbourne : Melbourne University Press, 1956-1964

Berndt, Ronald M. and Catherine H. Man, land & myth in North Australia : the Gunwinggu people, Sydney : Ure Smith, 1970

Berndt, Ronald M. and Phillips, E. S. (eds). The Australian Aboriginal heritage : an introduction through the arts, 2nd ed, Sydney : Australian Society for Education through the Arts in association with Ure Smith, 1978

Cole, Keith. A history of Oenpelli, Darwin : Nungalinya Publications, 1975

Hamby, Louise (ed). Twined together = kunmadj njalehnjaleken, Gunbalanya, N.T. : Injalak Arts and Crafts, 2005

Lamshed, Max. 'Monty' : the biography of C.P. Mountford, Adelaide : Rigby, 1972

National Geographic Magazine, vol. 96, no. 6, 1949, pp. 745-782, 'Exploring Stone-age Arnhem Land' by Charles P. Mountford.

Simpson, Colin, Adam in ochre : inside Aboriginal Australia, 5th ed, Sydney : Angus & Robertson, 1962

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