Madi Colville-Walker shares new single Yinyarr Mulana Winyarr

August 23, 2023

Marking the third sublime single released in conjunction with the Singing Our Futures program, aka The Archie Roach Foundation’s mentoring experience helping emerging First Nations artists on their songwriting and recording journeys, the glistening new track Yinyarr Mulana Winyarr from Yorta Yorta artist Madi Colville-Walker is a warm and calming ode to home and country, and it comes off the back of Colville-Walker picking up the coveted Archie Roach Foundation Award at the NIMAs, alongside a performance of the single at the awards, accompanied by Allara Briggs-Pattison on double bass.

A gentle yet passionate outing, Yinyarr Mulana Winyarr, which translates as ‘Free Spirited Woman’, is coated with lush textures draped in bright acoustic guitar and Colville-Walker’s ethereal vocals. Mentored by Emily Wurramara, also one of the key initial inspirations behind the single, Yinyarr Mulana Winyarr also nods to fellow Blak artists, including Tiddas and Kutcha Edwards guiding the bright and visceral end result, as Colville-Walker explains, When I sit and listen, I feel there is this strong wave of warmth and calmness that resonates back to me, it reminds me of the feeling I get when I spend time out on my country. At the time I was in the process of writing Yinyarr Mulana Winyarr, I was listening to lots of Blak artists, and many of these artists sing and tell stories in language. As a young artist and storyteller myself, hearing and recognising how powerful and sacred these songlines are gave me a huge influence in growing my knowledge for my language (Yorta Yorta). I wrote Yinyarr Mulana Winyarr about my connection to my Woka (Country), and how I feel when I come back home. Being in the music industry has allowed me to travel throughout Australia, I’m honoured I get to see so many beautiful places; but I can get homesick every now and again. When I arrive back on country, I feel as if a weight gets lifted off my shoulders, I don’t have to worry about anything, I can just be calm. It’s almost like my Ancestors are welcoming me home. The title of the song translates into ‘Free Spirit Woman’, this also is a name that many of my family and community have given me.”

Under Wurramara’s mentorship and produced by Colville-Walker and Candy SuiteYinyarr Mulana Winyarr may be Colville-Walker’s first official single under the Singing Our Futures program; but it isn’t the first time she and Wurramara have crossed musical paths, with the pair meeting back in 2020. And it was a moment that would go on to spark Colville-Walker’s eventual involvement in the Singing Our Futures program, as Colville-Walker elaborates, “It was at the end of 2020, myself and a few other artists were approached by Uncle Archie’s Foundation along with Culture Is Life, it was the anniversary of Uncle’s Charcoal Lane Album. We had been asked to curate a song in response to Took The Children Away, and this was such a beautiful moment to be a part of. I was then approached by Candice Lorrae, and I was put in contact with my mentor Emily Wurramara, I was so excited to work with Em, I have always admired how she presents her songs. I have made so many amazing memories and gained so much knowledge during this journey with Singing Our Futures. It has allowed me to grow and become more confident as an artist and performer.”

Armed with a lifelong passion for music, Colville-Walker hails from an extremely musical family; although her own musical journey would not fully ignite with gusto until the age of 16. A shy and quiet teen, it would take Colville-Walker learning a handful of guitar chords from her mother to jubilantly open the floodgates, with the talented artist swiftly going on to play a festival in her hometown of Moama alongside the headline act, and one of Colville-Walker’s own pivotal musical inspirations, Archie Roach. Armed with her guitar and effortless stunning vocal prowess, Colville-Walker has only gone from strength to strength, attending the CMAA Junior Academy of Country Music in Tamworth, and named in 2018 as one of 15 emerging young artists at the inaugural MAV Songwriters’ Camp. And from her first ever official live performance to recently performing with her fellow Singing Our Futures peers, Colville-Walker’s passion and intrinsic ability for music continues to shine ever brightly, as she concludes, “When I was around sixteen years old, I asked my mum to show me a few guitar chords; since then, I haven’t stopped playing. This led me to a gig called Three Rivers Festival in my hometown. The headline act for this show was Uncle Archie Roach and all of my family was sitting front row. I can still remember how nervous I was before I stepped on the stage. In 2022, the Singing Our Futures Mob had the opportunity to perform at Port Fairy Folk Festival, and I had the privilege to be a part of Uncle’s Kitchen Table Yarns; a memory I will cherish forever. I remember we spoke about family and how music came so naturally to me, it must flow through my bloodstream. I am beyond excited to share my song Yinyarr Mulana Winyarr with the world. To have this opportunity to be a part of the inaugural Singing Our Futures Program, is an experience I will hold very close to my heart forever. I couldn’t be more grateful.”

A meaningful and culturally safe songwriting program that supports young First Nations artists to tell their story through songwriting, Singing Our Futures was devised pre-COVID and was one of the leading programs of the Archie Roach Foundation. Led by Candice Lorrae (The Merindas), an established singer-songwriter and music producer with Jawoyn and Torres Strait Islander roots, Singing Our Futures has evolved into an impactful and ever-growing initiative for emerging artists and storytelling that spans genres and generations.

Yinyarr Mulana Winyarr is out today, Wednesday August 23.
The Singing Our Futures EP will be released later this year.


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