The first ever anthology of Gurrumul’s classics, The Gurrumul Story is set for release on September 10, 2021 by Decca on digital platforms, CD, Deluxe CD+DVD and on vinyl. The Indigenous Australian singer/songwriter Gurrumul (1971-2017) grew up on Elcho Island (Galiwin’ku), off the coast of tropical North East Arnhem land in Australia’s Northern Territory.
The anthology includes ‘Wiyathul (Longing For Place)’ a brand new, orchestrally-augmented version of the song that thrust Gurrumul into the limelight back in 2008. This new version will be accompanied by a new music video (the song’s first official music video) that was filmed in May 2021 on Gurrumul’s home of Elcho Island and features local dancers interpreting the song’s lyrics through the movement of their totemic dance.
Also included on the album is a rare duet version of the song ‘Bayini’, from Gurrumul’s sophomore album Rrakala, featuring a touching contribution by Australian singer/songwriter Sarah Blasko.
The Deluxe CD+DVD Edition of The Gurrumul Story contains a 25-minute documentary that chronicles Gurrumul’s rise to fame and four studio albums, as well as a selection of music videos.
Born blind, Gurrumul was a member of the Gumatj clan and a speaker of the indigenous Yolngu language, Gurrumul’s songs describe identity and spirit, connection with the land, the elements, and the ancestral beings to whom he is related. His fragile but uniquely emotive high-tenor voice and aura-like persona elicit feelings of peace and longing in listeners.
Gurrumul first gained world-wide fame when his self-titled debut album Gurrumul was released. His voice connected with fans the world over, including such notable figures as Elton John, will.i.am, Sting, Gary Barlow, Quincy Jones and Stevie Wonder.
To date, over half a million Gurrumul albums have been sold worldwide. He has won nine ARIA awards, and was posthumously named Australian Artist of the Year in 2018. Following a long battle with illness, Gurrumul passed away in 2017 at the age of 46.