Album of endangered Australian bird songs and tweets dominates Christmas classics

“Songs of Disappearance” debuted at number five on the Australian ARIA music charts – ahead of ABBA’s Christmas favorites, Mariah Carey and Michael Bublé

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Now that the Covid-Omicron lockdown has thwarted most people’s vacation plans – and even their Christmas shopping plans – I thought I’d share something that I think a lot of people will enjoy: a Album full of recordings of Australian bird calls.

Songs of disappearing differs from other vacation music albums and sounds. It consists exclusively of recorded bird songs and calls – no singing people, barking dogs, howling sirens and above all no annoying Christmas music! Instead, this album includes audio recordings of the wide variety of distinctive sounds made by 53 of Australia’s rarest bird species that are critically endangered. Here is the title track to enjoy:

The title track was arranged by the Australian violinist Simone Slattery, co-founder of the musical duo Bowerbird Collective. This track, which sounds a bit like an imaginative bird’s morning choir, consists of isolated recordings of all 53 bird species featured on the album, such as the forty-point panda, one of Australia’s rarest birds, and the one on extinction threatened regent honeyeater.

The title soundtrack shows what is lost if people, politicians and companies don’t take immediate action to save Australia’s famous birds.

“Immerse yourself in a choir of iconic cockatoos, the hum of bowerbirds, a bizarre symphony of sea birds and the haunting call of one of the last remaining night parrots,” says the album description.

“This album is a very special record with some rare recordings of birds that may not survive if we don’t come together to protect them,” writes Paul Sullivan, CEO of BirdLife Australia, a nonprofit and nonprofit that works in. was founded in 1922 to preserve Australia’s unique birds. All proceeds from the sale of this album will be donated to Birdlife Australia to support their conservation work. More than 3,000 units have been sold to date, around half of which are in advance sales.

The impetus for this album was a recently published study by Charles Darwin University (CDU), which found that every sixth Australian bird (216 of 1,299 species) is now critically endangered. This study from 2020, Australian Birds Action Plan, noted that climate change is driving most of Australia’s birds to extinction, a situation made worse by the 2019 and 2020 bush fires that devastated much-needed trees and habitats. Based on this and other studies, BirdLife Australia estimates that the number of endangered bird species has recently increased by up to 25%.

This album is the result of a conversation between Anthony Albrecht, co-founder of the Bowerbird Collective, and his doctoral supervisor Stephen Garnett, professor of nature conservation at the CDU. Professor Garnett is the author of the recently updated Australian Birds Action Plan.

“He asked if there was something the Bowerbird Collective could do to support the funding [the Action Plan], and it was immediately clear to me what had to be done, ”explains Albrecht The guard.

“I’m very interested in understanding if environmental art like this project has an impact [public] Attitudes and behavior, ”Albrecht told ABC News. “I think it’s incredibly important to tell stories about nature in a way that people are really emotionally involved.”

Sound recordings were courtesy of David Stewart, a nature recorder and wildlife sound expert. He spent 36 years traveling the remote regions of the continent to record these high quality sound recordings – the largest collection of natural bird, frog and mammal sounds made in Australia. Some of these recordings took weeks of research to find the best locations to record extremely rare species, followed by days of hiking and hours of waiting, hidden in the most remote parts of Australia, overrun by poisonous spiders, snakes and other dangerous animals.

Along with David Stewart, Birdlife Australia, Charles Darwin University and the Bowerbird Collective in this collaboration, Mervyn Street, one of the Gooniyandi, was a writer, illustrator, carver and artist and a former chairman of Mangkaja Arts. This core group of academics, musicians and conservationists hoped that this project would raise public awareness of Australia’s unique and endangered birds.

This unusual album hit the headlines last week when it debuted at number 5 on the Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA) charts – the first time an album with birdsong was in the top ten. This week it has moved up to number 1.

“We made it!” BirdLife Australia was happy to see its website. “Thanks to your incredible support, we reached number 5 on the ARIA charts, ahead of ABBA, Mariah Carey and Michael Bublé.”

Songs of disappearing also defeated Justin Bieber and Billie Eilish.

Mr. Albrecht is happy Songs of disappearing Feedback from so many Australians.

“In a way, it’s not surprising because I believe that Australians in general are now so much more attuned to the environmental crisis we are all facing – and which is facing the unique and incredible species that are also affecting Australia Call home. “

But, my friends, you don’t have to be in Australia to buy this album: thanks to the magic of the internet, people living outside Australia (like me!) Can also purchase this album online for instant download. (Buy and download here!) Anyone can become part of this extraordinary event and enjoy the remarkable sounds of these amazing birds. As an added bonus, we can all also help conserve endangered Australian birds! What do you dislike?

NOTICE: Although I have heard the whole album bit by bit, I have nothing to do with sharing news from this inspiring project with you and telling you how to purchase your own copy of this recording. But thanks to your readership, I deserve tons of smug points.


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