Thursday, December 20, 2012

Review: SOLID ROCK Puli Kunpunka (Sacred Ground)

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 Solid Rock
Puli Kunpunka (Sacred Ground)

Shane Howard

Pitjantjatjara translation by Ruby James and Trevor Adamson

Illustrated by kids from Mutitjulu, Kaltukatjara and Imanpa with paintings by Peter Hudson

I’ve long thought songs like Solid Rock would make a much more apt anthem than our current one. A song with lyrics that reflect and respect this country’s First Nations people and appreciates the land.

Shane Howard’s ‘passionate, angry song about the general silence masking fundamental truths of Australian history' (Martin Flanagan) is so popular it has been reinvented many times. Newcastle lads the Street Warriors rocked the Sydney Opera House with Howard in 2009 as the closing act for the Deadly Awards and of course they also did a version with Shannon Noll the same year.

The kid’s picture version of the Solid Rock song lyrics was published by One Day Hill in 2010, but this year they re-released the work with a deadly CD included. One track is Howard and Band singing in English, and the second track is Howard, Band and the school communities of Pukatja, Pipalyatjara and Murputja singing in the Pitjantjatjara language.

What an extraordinary thing to hear and a great gift for all listeners and readers. I’ll be reading and singing this with my nieces and nephews this Christmas and be recommending to teacher / librarians for use in school as it comes with teachers’ notes also. Too easy!

And the best thing? 25% of profits from the sale of this title goes towards youth initiatives in the communities involved with this project. Too deadly!

Order your copy today from the publisher!

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