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The Canberra Times
The Canberra Times
Amy Martin

The Misogyny Speech and the Neighbours theme: Here's what made the Sounds of Australia list

Julia Gillard's misogyny speech in Federal Parliament | Canberra Times | October 2012

What does Australia sound like? That's the question the National Film and Sound Archive - with the help of the public - aims to answer every year.

On Tuesday the archive announced the 10 new additions to its Sounds of Australia registry, with the 2022 additions representing a huge diversity of sound recordings, including speeches, a classic television theme tune, advertising, breaking radio news and music.

Julia Gillard's Misogyny Speech, Staying Alive by The Bee Gees and the Neighbours theme song all have been added to the Sounds of Australia registry. Pictures supplied

"They are usually reasonably diverse additions but I think over the last few years ... the nominations are getting much more thoughtful, maybe less obvious as well," National Film and Sound Archive curator Thorsten Kaeding said.

"That might be a consequence of the fact that there's already a lot of material - over 160 sounds - already on Sounds of Australia, but I also think it's because people are getting more interested in the history and cultural history of the country and the diversity of the country."

The Lord's Prayer, by Sister Janet Mead, a 1973 pop-rock song featuring the Catholic prayer, has been added to the Sounds of Australia registry. Picture supplied

The most recent recording added to the list is then-prime minister Julia Gillard's famous 2012 misogyny speech. Celebrating its 10th anniversary earlier this year, this is the first opportunity for the speech to be added to the registry, as the criteria for the additions is that the audio is at least a decade old.

Some of the other additions to Sounds of Australia this year, however, have been nominated by the public for registry previously. But the panel of audio industry experts have left them off the list until now. These include the 1977 disco hit, Stayin' Alive by The Bee Gees, and The Lord's Prayer, by Sister Janet Mead, a 1973 pop-rock song featuring the Catholic prayer.

The Neighbours theme song, by Barry Crocker, also made the list this year - perhaps unsurprisingly considering the year that the soap opera had. It was set to finish after 37 years on air earlier this year, however, Amazon has announced that it will pick up the show, with it set to return in 2023.

"I think for Barry Crocker's version of this song, there are not many television theme songs that everyone can hum along to, and sing, and this is one of those," Mr Kaeding said.

"It just seems to have a life outside of the television show and for that to happen, for a jingle for a soap opera, it is just amazing. It just shows the quality of the song and the quality of Barry's singing as well, that it just seems to encapsulate suburbia."

Also joining the list is a 17-hour radio broadcast by Radio Redfern from January 26, 1988, when more than 40,000 people took part in the largest march in Sydney since the Vietnam moratorium.

The first known audio from an Australian Governor-General - the farewell address from Lord Hallam Tennyson from 1904 - has been added to the Sounds of Australia. Picture supplied

There is also the first known audio from an Australian Governor-General - the farewell address from Lord Hallam Tennyson from 1904 - a live concert recording from the Horrie Dargie Harlequintet, which was Australia's first gold record, and Jack Lumsden's iconic war tune Digger.

Finally, there is the catchy jingle Out With The Old And In With The New, from when decimal currency was introduced to Australians in 1965, and The Drover's Dream, a 1955 song by Alan Scott and The Bushwhackers.

Nominations for next year's Sounds of Australia registry will open early next year. For the full list, go to

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