For the sake of a song

Pumandjin (Place name: a hill)

TRACK 9 (Moy62-26-21) Song 5: Pumandjin

 
Sung text   Free translation  

ee

karra kana-nga-mu-viye karru

viye pumandjin yakarre

ee

karra kama-ngana-yi

kana-nga-mu-viye karru viye pumandjin yakarre

ee

karra kama-ngana-yi

kana nga-mu-viye

karra kama-ngana-yi

kana-nga-mu-viye karru yawa-ndha

ee

 

Ee

She [Numbali] is dancing [making a deliberate movement of her hands above her head]

On top of Pumandjin, yakarre!

Ee

It [the song] came from she [Numbali] who is standing

Dancing [making a deliberate movement of her hands above head] on top of Pumandjin, yakarre!

Ee

It [the song] came from she [Numbali] who is standing Dancing [making a movement of her hands above head]

It [the song] came from she [Numbali] who is standing

dancing [making a deliberate movement of her hands above head], truly there

Ee

 

This song, recorded by Alice Moyle at Bagot in 1962, is about Jimmy Muluk’s deceased sister, Numbali (not explicitly named in the song), who is dancing on the top of Pumandjin, a hill behind Mica Beach (Muluk’s long-time place of residence, previously mentioned in the text of ‘Puliki’ (track 1)). Although his ancestral country lay far away, to the south of the Daly River, Jimmy Muluk had a particularly strong association with this local area, now known as Talc Head, which in the 1960s and 1970s was also the site of a camp for tourists for whom Muluk regularly performed his wangga. The text states that the song comes from his sister, and precisely describes her dancing movements—a particular movement of the hands above the head that is characteristic of women’s dancing in this area.

In its playful variation of text, melody and rhythm, this song is typical of Jimmy Muluk’s corpus.

Wangga Image Figure 5.5 In 2011, relatives of Jimmy Muluk in Belyuen identified this dancer as his sister Numbali, dancing at the tourist corroboree, Mica Beach, September 1972. Photograph by Allan Laurence.

Song structure summary

VOCAL SECTION 1

Rhythmic mode 1 (without clapsticks)

Melodic section 1

Text phrase 1

   
ee 
SW 

Ee

Melodic section 2

Text phrase 2

   
karra  kana  -nga  -mu  -viye  karru 
SW  3MIN.S.R walk  3MIN.F.REFL  do  head  3MIN.S.R travel [74]  

She [Numbali] is dancing [making a deliberate movement of her hands above her head]

   
viye  pumandjin   yakarre 
head  place-name  EXCL 

on top of Pumandjin, yakarre!

INSTRUMENTAL SECTION 1

Rhythmic mode 4a (moderate even)

VOCAL SECTION 2

Rhythmic mode 1 (without clapsticks)

Melodic section 1

Text phrase 1

   
ee 
SW 

Ee

Melodic section 2

Text phrase 2

   
karra  kama  -ngana  -yi 
SW  3MIN.S.R.stand  from  PERF 

It [the song] came from she [Numbali] who is standing

   
kana  -nga  -mu  -viye  karru  viye  pumandjin   yakarre 
3MIN.S.R walk  3MIN.F.REFL  do  head  3MIN.S.R travel  head  place-name  EXCL 

dancing [making a deliberate movement of her hands above head] on top of Pumandjin, yakarre!

INSTRUMENTAL SECTION 2

Rhythmic mode 4a (moderate even)

VOCAL SECTION 3

Melodic section 1

Text phrase 1

Rhythmic mode 1 (without clapsticks)

   
ee 
SW 

Ee

Text phrase 2

Rhythmic mode 4a (moderate even)

   
karra  kama  -ngana  -yi 
SW  3MIN.S.R.stand  from  PERF 

It [the song] came from she [Numbali] who is standing

   
kana  nga  -mu  -viye 
3MIN.S.R walk  3MIN.F.REFL  do  head 

dancing [making a movement of her hands above head]

INSTRUMENTAL SECTION 3

Rhythmic mode 4a (moderate even)

VOCAL SECTION 4

Melodic section 1

Rhythmic mode 1 (without clapsticks)

Text phrase 1

   
karra  kama  -ngana  -yi 
SW  3MIN.S.R.stand  from  PERF 

It [the song] came from she [Numbali] who is standing

   
kana  -nga  -mu  -viye  karru  yawa  -ndha  
3MIN.S.R walk  3MIN.F.REFL  do  head  3MIN.S.R travel  3MIN.ANAPHDEIC  really 

dancing [making a deliberate movement of her hands above head], truly there

Melodic section 2

Rhythmic mode 4a (moderate even)

Text phrase 2

   
ee 
SW 

Ee

INSTRUMENTAL SECTION 4

Rhythmic mode 4a (moderate even)