Bird song album from endangered species soars ahead of Christmas classics in Australian charts

It is the first album of its kind to appear in the top 10 of the chart, let alone the top five

Peony Hirwani
Thursday 16 December 2021 08:21
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<p>File photo: A rare blue and gold macaw (’Ara ararauna’), called ‘Panama’, takes flight at Sydney’s Taronga Zoo</p>

File photo: A rare blue and gold macaw (’Ara ararauna’), called ‘Panama’, takes flight at Sydney’s Taronga Zoo

An album created using sounds of endangered Australian bird species has surpassed Christmas classics by Mariah Carey and Michael Bublé in the country’s ARIA album chart.

Titled Songs of Disappearance, the album consists of sounds of 53 bird species that are on the brink of extinction in Australia.

It is the first album of its kind to appear in the top 10 of the chart.

According to Ecowatch, the sounds were recorded in the span of 40 years.

“The title track celebrates the incredible diversity of the Australian soundscape and highlights what we stand to lose without taking action,” says the album description.

“Be immersed in a chorus of iconic cockatoos, the buzzing of bowerbirds, a bizarre symphony of seabirds, and the haunting call of one of the last remaining night parrots.”

Songs of Disappearance

The project is a collaboration between nature recordist David Stewart, the Bowerbird Collective, BirdLife Australia, Charles Darwin University and Mervyn Street of Mangkaja Arts.

The motto behind the project is to increase awareness that one in six birds in the country are threatened with extinction, as cited by a study carried out by Charles Darwin University.

The audio was recorded by Stewart, whose collections of nature recordings have been housed in The British Library, the National Sound Archive and the Macaulay Laboratory of Ornithology in Ithaca, New York.

Earlier this month, the release of the album sparked a social media campaign to help the album appear high on charts.

“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,” BirdLife Australia chief executive Paul Sullivan told The Music Network.

“While this campaign is fun, there’s a serious side to what we’re doing, and it’s been heartening to see bird enthusiasts showing governments and businesses that Australians care about these important birds.”

At the moment, Songs of Disappearance reigns in the top five albums alongside Ed Sheeran’s =, Adele’s 30, Taylor Swift’s Red and Paul Kelly’s Christmas Train.

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