In their latest track 'January 26' hard hitting duo Briggs and Trials, award winning rapper/producers in their own right, and now collaborating as A.B Original, have recruited Dan Sultan to deliver a hip hop track that asks the questions and echo the sentiments of all who can at best come together to celebrate survival, or let the day pass in mourning.
Opening with the lines 'You can call it what you want but it just don't mean a thing' A.B.Original go hard on the topic with a good dash of humour and sarcasm, 'I remember all the blood and what carried us / they remember 20 recipes for lamingtons' raps Trials.
Trials has told NITV that what they aim to achieve with the track is not an end to celebration of the country as a whole but consideration of when that takes place. "Australia Day for millions of Australians means barbecues, lamingtons and being proud of your country. All of these things are great at the appropriate time. Australia Day for Indigenous people is an entirely different conversation and that’s the one we wanted to continue, and in a lot of places, start."
"The date January 26 to us as young black men stands for the celebration of dispossession and death of so many of our ancestors."
The track was premiered on Triple J's breakfast program on Thursday, and Trials says that the response has been varied, as is the usual discourse around an issue that many feel strongly about. "The reaction has been splintered with a lot of the country understanding, agreeing and empathising with our perspective. And just as many people feeling as if we were being divisive when asking to change the date to something where we can all truly celebrate this country at its best, is the literal opposite of that."
"I’ve had a lot of people tell me 'my family wasn’t even here when that happened' and my response is 'mine was'."
Not ones to shy away from charged topics, Briggs summed up their approach to Tonedeaf. "We’re subtle like a sledgehammer. Being subtle and humble is what the oppressor wants. And we’re not about that."
Dan Sultan who brings his trademark rock n soul to the vocals on the track told NITV that he is proud to be a part of the conversation sparker. "All we’re doing is talking about the history of the 26th of January - “Australia Day”. If it offends people or makes them feel guilty, then that says more about them than us."
"I like the idea of an Australia Day but to have it on that day is a disgrace. It’s time to get better Australia."
In response to the debate that surrounds the topic Trials adds, 'If a holiday that started 80 years ago is more important than acknowledging and respecting the people that were here over 60,000 years ago and their position on it, we’ve still got a long way to go."
"In short, celebrating Australia is not the problem. Just the date it currently falls on."
The film clip will be released shortly, in the meantime check out the track through the Tonedeaf page http://www.tonedeaf.com.au/485784/a-b-original-dan-sultan-drop-powerful-anti-australia-day-anthem-january-26.htm