At ease, patriots
That’s it for Guardian Australia’s Australia Day/Survival Day liveblog. Recapping the main events of the day:
- Thousands of Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians have marched to mark Survival Day and campaign to change the date of Australia Day. Others have protested against the proposed plan for constitutional recognition.
- The Australia v India match at the SCG is on hold thanks to un-Australian wet weather.
- Even John Howard isn’t prepared to back PM Tony Abbott’s decision to make the Duke of Edinburgh one of Australia’s first knights.
- Triple J disqualified Taylor Swift’s Shake It Off from the Hottest 100, saying it had the “unfair advantage” of a commercial backer.
- Music lovers will complain no matter what song tops the Hottest 100.
Enjoy the rest of the public holiday.
This is what Chet Faker had to say to Triple J’s Matt and Alex:
I definitely wasn’t thinking about the Hottest 100 (when I wrote the song). It was more about the hottest ex-girlfriend kind of vibe.
Faker, who spoke to Triple J from the ABC bureau in Japan, where he is on tour, said he didn’t expect to win - even though ABC staff asked him not to leave the radio booth after he spoke to Triple J earlier in the countdown.
I though you guys were just keeping me in the studio to get me back for not doing an interview some other time... or for making fun of you at the ARIAS.
Here’s Monica Tan again, with some final thoughts on the countdown:
And the winner of Triple J’s Hottest 100 is Chet Faker, with his monster track Talk is Cheap. No surprises there, the year belonged to Faker, real name Nicholas Murphy who had no less than four tracks enter the countdown: including a cover of Lover’s You Don’t Treat Me No Good at No 21, and original song 1998 and Gold at 8 and 7. It caps off a year filled with Aria awards and sold out international tours for the Melbourne producer.
Considering the #Tay4Hottest100 dominated discussion of the countdown this year, it seems only fitting to point out that the top 20 tracks came with three bonafide pop songs: Lorde’s Yellow Flicker Beat at No 18, Sia’s glorious power-ballad Chandelier at No 9 and Mark Ronson (feat Bruno Mars) song Uptown Funk came in a No 6.
Along with Sia and Chet Faker, other Aussies to make it into the elusive top 20 include: Hilltop Hoods (their third year at the third spot), Peking Duk (with two tracks in the top 20), Vance Joy, Illy, Ball Park Music and Sticky Fingers.
That’s it for Hottest 100, but final thought – did anyone else miss the Big Day Out? Sure, it’s been a few years since I’ve attended, but just the knowing the final song would be flashing on the big screen as the sun set on festival punters made Australia Day feel complete.
Here are the top 25 songs on the Hottest 100 for 2014:
25. Bluejuice – I’ll Go Crazy
24. Meg Mac – Roll Up Your Sleeves
23. Future Islands – Seasons (Waiting On You)
22. The Amity Affliction – Pittsburgh
21. Chet Faker – (Lover) You Don’t Treat Me No Good (Like A Version 2014)
20. Sticky Fingers – Gold Snafu
19. Ball Park Music – She Only Loves Me When I’m There
18. Lorde – Yellow Flicker Beat
17. Illy – Tightrope (feat Scarlett Stevens)
16. Alt-J – Left Hand Free
15. Arcadia – The Kite String Tangle
14. Alt-J – Every Other Freckle
13. Vance Joy – Mess Is Mine
12. Glass Animals – Gooey
11. Zhu – Faded
10. Asgeir – King and Cross
9. Sia – Chandelier
8. Chet Faker – 1998
7. Chet Faker – Gold
6. Mark Ronson – Uptown Funk (feat Bruno Mars)
5. Peking Duk – Take Me Over (feat Safia)
4. Milky Chance – Stolen Dance
3. Hilltop Hoods – Cosby Sweater
2. Peking Duk – High (feat Nicole Millar)
1. Chet Faker – Talk is Cheap
And the number one song of the Triple J Hottest 100 2014 is Chet Faker’s Talk is Cheap.
Guardian Australia photographer-at-large Mike Bowers at the Australia Day dawn service at Lone Pine cemetery in Gallipoli.
He filed this report:
The service was attended by young Australians from Jason Clare’s Blaxland electorate in western Sydney and a party from Scott Morrison’s electorate of Cook in Cronulla.
The annual politicians’ pilgrimage is held to promote understanding and friendship between young people from the different electorates. Jason Clare led the service.
We’ve now heard three songs from thinking hipster’s crumpet, Chet Faker, in the top 20, and he’s headed for a fourth (we still haven’t heard Talk is Cheap).
So it’s probably a good time to take a break from the beard and look at the representation of ladies of the Hottest 100. Over to Guardian Australia deputy culture editor, Monica Tan:
At No 32 is Lana Del Rey’s West Coast – one of five songs we put down as deserving, but unlikely, to take out No 1. Our own Elle Hunt describes the track as “smooth, surly, and one of the best songs of 2014 (not to mention by Del Rey, ever).” I’m inclined to agree, and frankly if you’re looking for an American female pop singer to pitch as deserving No 1 on the Hottest 100, it’s Del Rey – not Swift.
Inclusions like Sia, Lorde and Del Rey – all making challenging, groundbreaking pop music – in the shortlist prove that Triple J is far from anti-pop or anti-female. Admittedly such artists rarely nab No 1 – the two female winners of Hottest 100 of the past decade have been one-half of a duo: Kimbra, featuring on Gotye’s track Somebody That I Used to Know; and Julia Stone with her brother Angus on Big Jet Plane.
Nonetheless, their inclusion in the mix points at the fact it’s neither genre or gender that’s excludes Swift from the station’s setlist. The fact is, her sound is just too shiny and straight for what is meant to be an alternative space to the host of popular commercial stations out there. Planting a Swift flag in Triple J territory is the same as kicking out another indie female rap act like Tkay Maizda who came in at No 100.
And isn’t a #Tkay4Hottest100 – or better yet, #Tkay4CommericalRadio – a far more deserving campaign?
And we’re into the top 10 of the Hottest 100, with Iceland solo artist Asgeir’s King and Cross.
Here’s an update from Guardian Australia culture editor, Nancy Groves:
Just songs away from the Top 10, we’ve just heard Alt-J’s Every Other Freckle at 14, the so-called “pastrami in the Australian sandwich” of Arcadia by the Kite String Tangle at 15 and last year’s Hottest 100 winner Vance Joy with Mess is Mine at 13.
Followed by a little more Tay-Tay chat to reiterate why she won’t be making it into the Top 10. “Performance-enhancing drugs have been used on Taylor,” say the DJs. “Taylor was Marion Jones-ing it all the way to number one.” Honest votes could have got Shake It Off to number 12, they add, so “apologies if you did vote for it out of the love of your heart”.
Apparently, the explanation site triplejfeed.com got 30,000 views in the first 30 seconds after Triple J tweeted it out so no wonder it melted down.
More from Russell Jackson:
Okay, this is actually a bit pissweak. The game is taking place on Ramsey street rather than the nearby home of Erinsborough CC. Budget cutbacks hitting this production, methinks.
We’ve got a wheely bin with stumps painted on and the toss (of the bat rather than a coin - amateur-hour stuff) goes the way of Gen Y. Their line-up, I’m sorry to say, contains far too many new faces for me to give you entirely accurate coverage.
Toadie gives plenty of instructions to his fielders. “We’re bleeding runs over there”, he berates one. His bowlers are copping an absolute pasting too and to add insult to injury, the batsman doing most of the damage is wearing a lemon-coloured singlet and would not be recognisable to a single person under the age of 35.
As we head towards an ad break, the episode cuts away from the cricket action and Paul Robinson is up to something dodgy. You genuinely don’t have to have watched the last 10 years to slide straight back in, do you?
From the cricket: Australia v India
As my colleague Russell Jackson awaits confirmation that the game has been rained off, he has a very important update from Ramsey Street.
I’ve had word from some kind souls that tonight’s episode of Neighbours –written by my mate Pete Matessi – includes a cricket scene. On Australia Day, what could be more Aussie than that?
Woah, it’s not any old cricket scene, either. It involves Toadie and Dr Karl, vital players in the famous Erinsborough v West Waratah game in which Drew Kirk was said to average “three wickets and two retired hurts” per game by a sledge-happy teammate.
“Mate, it’s T20, it’s all about athleticism and pure ball striking” says a character who has clearly appeared in the ten years since I stopped watching Neighbours. He’s talking smack to Toadie, which is always fraught. Their exchange has been overheard by Dr Karl, who hears of a looming encounter between Gen X/Boomers and Gen Y whippersnappers and wants in.
Will Dr Karl play on Toadie’s team? Surely there’s not enough fit Boomers? What a development this is. There’s a lot to process right now in this plot. The anti-Boomer flavour is a level of complexity that has floored me.
Controversy! Taylor Swift’s best antipodean friend, Ella Yelich-O’Connor aka Lorde, spoke to Triple J’s Matt and Alex about her song, Yellow Flicker Beat, taking out the #18 spot in the Hottest 100. And she didn’t even mention Tay’s disqualification? It’s like she doesn’t care.
Lorde did have a super exciting but potentially hyperbolic announcement about next year’s countdown:
I’ll have numbers 1 to 100. They’ll just be Lorde songs.
Former prime minister John Howard has “no comment” on the decision of his protege, PM Tony Abbott, to make the prince consort a knight of Australia.
My colleague Bridie Jabour reports that Howard was approached by Channel 10.
Press gallery doyen Laurie Oakes also weighed in on the Sir Prince debate, which he said caused some disquiet in Liberal party ranks. Oakes quotes one Liberal MP as saying Abbott seems to have a “death wish”.
Calla Wahlquist here, taking over the blog just in time to field complaints about Helen Davidson’s last post picking on Taylor Swift.
Probably time to catch up on the Hottest 100. We’re moving into the top 25.
Here’s the latest list:
40. Broods - Mother & Father
39. Flight Facilities - Two Bodies (ft. Emma Louise)
38. First Aid Kit - My Silver Lining
37. Alison Wonderland - I Want U
36. Hilltop Hoods - Won’t Let You Down (ft. Maverick Sabre)
35. Allday - You Always Know The DJ
34. SBTRKT - New Dorp. New York. (ft. Ezra Koenig)
33. San Cisco - Run
32. Lana Del Rey - West Coast
31. Childish Gambino - Sober
30. Thundamentals - Something I Said (ft. Thom Crawford)
29. The Preatures - Somebody’s Talking
28. The Griswolds - Beware The Dog
27. Banks - Beggin for a Thread
26. Alt-J - Hunger of the Pine
25. Bluejuice - I’ll Go Crazy
My esteemed colleague Monica Tan has found hope for all you sad* Taylor Swift fans. Read on:
*By “sad” I obviously mean unhappy because T-Swift didn’t make it, OK? It’s definitely not because this whole thing has gone way too far for what is really just this year’s version of the “Why Triple J Sucks” conversation which has been happening since before Cows With Guns came in at number 28 in 1997.
Taylor Swift may have been officially booted out of this year’s Hottest 100, but did you know there is an opportunity for Swifties to see Shake It Off – or at least a cover version – voted into next year’s countdown?
Little known fact: most songs played on Triple J throughout the year are automatically added to the Hottest 100 short list. Thus, Milky Chance (whose song Flashed Junk Mind nabbed No 44 this year) and their cover of Shake It Off will likely be in the running this time next year. The song was performed in January on the station’s weekly segment Like A Version.
Which means all of you determined #Tay4Hottest100 campaigners will have another opportunity to “troll the poll” – as the station is calling it.
Other recent highlights from the last hour of the countdown: previous Hottest 100 winner Vance Joy (and believe it or not, Taylor Swift support act) took No 50 with his song First Time. Interestingly a Flume remix of Tennis Court by Lorde has taken No 47. The song was one of five tracks that we believed deserved – and predicted would fail to nab – the top spot.
A personal favourite of mine, Two Weeks by FKA Twigs came in at No 45. Earlier this year we asked her about the song, apparently all about wooing a man away from a sexless relationship, and includes the line “I can fuck you better than her”. Here’s how she responded:
Weird things can be sexy. Vulnerability is the strongest state to be in. How boring would it be if we were constantly dominant or constantly submissive? In the video, it’s this vision of me feeding myself, milking myself. I was naked, painted in gold, doing krump dance moves. It’s bizarre, but hot in a very weird way.”
Read more on the career highlight of Buzzfeed’s Mark di Stefano here.
Having just taken the reigns of the live blog, I’ve noticed my colleagues have made a glaring omission in the documenting of major Australia Day events.
These pictures from where you’d rather be – the Darwin Ute Muster.
From the cricket: Australia v India
Guardian Australia’s Russell Jackson is getting a bit down, as weather stops play in the one day international against India again.
Although he may have a point, perhaps the patriotism is becoming a little overdone today.
When it starts up again you can follow the game over-by-over, uh, over here.
Here are a few more pictures and tweets from Invasion/Survival Day protests and events in capital cities.
If you’d like to read more about why 26 January is not a day of celebration for many Indigenous Australians, this is a thoughtful explanation over at the Conversation.
Chelsea Bond, whose mother is a fifth-generation Australian of English and Irish heritage and father is Munanjahli and an Australian-born South Sea Islander, writes:
The disconnect I feel on the January 26 is not a rejection of my mother’s history. Rather, it is a rejection of the privileging of one version of history at the expense of another. I simply cannot be part of the collective amnesia that sweeps the nation on January 26 each year. This amnesia is evidenced in our current prime minister choosing the arrival of the First Fleet as the “defining moment” of our national identity.
This nation has a history that extends well beyond the past 227 years, not to mention a few more inclusive “defining moments” since then.
There is no doubt that the arrival of the First Fleet was a “defining moment” for this nation, but defining for vastly different reasons for Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians. For me, this day is worthy of commemoration, not celebration.
It’s the controversy that just won’t go away today. No, not Taylor Swift. The other campaign to elevate famous people to a position they probably don’t care much for.
PM Tony Abbott has apparently been peppered with questions about his
demotion honouring of Prince Philip. He has responded thus:
Probably not at the moment, to be honest, prime minister. We’re all still quite flummoxed.
A serious post for the moment. Around Australia there are a number of Invasion/Survivor Day protests of varying size.
My Canberra colleague Shalailah Medhora has reported on a demonstration at the Aboriginal tent embassy rejecting the push for constitutional recognition.
Read her report in full here. Below is a snippet.
Up to 150 protesters gathered in Canberra’s city centre to march to the “tent embassy” outside Old Parliament House, as part of a three-day Freedom Summit on sovereignty for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
Many of the dozen or so speakers argued the constitution was a tool of oppression.
“We don’t want to be part of the crown,” one summit delegate, Ella Mundie, said. “We never ceded our land.”
Ben Taylor, a member of the stolen generations and a campaigner on the issue of deaths of Indigenous people in custody, criticised the push for recognition. He heckled other speakers who disagreed, shouting: “Get rid of the constitution.”
This is Helen Davidson checking in for a little while. Thanks to Michael Safi for an entertaining couple of hours.
Perth correspondent Calla Wahlquist has filed this dispatch from the lovely and hopefully shark-free Cottesloe Beach:
The pride is strong in this state. Western Australia has proved once again it’s the best at floating on novelty replicas of popular footwear.
An impressive (or depressing, depending on your view) 2,210 people clambered aboard inflatable thongs* and took to the water at Cottesloe Beach today, because ‘Straya.
They set a new world record for most people bobbing about on inflatable thongs*, the third in a row for WA, and, more importantly, beat those chumps at Bondi.
*Not translating for international readers because that would be un-Australian.
Sydney has played hosts to dozens of citizenship ceremonies today, including one at the city’s Town Hall.
Sydney lord-mayor Clover Moore welcomed 24 new Australian citizen, making a total of 19,024 people she had seen accept their certificates during her time in the role.
They included new citizens from China, Canada, the United Kingdom, Bangladesh, the United States and Thailand.
Our culture editor, Nancy Groves, is following Triple J’s Hottest 100 Countdown. Don’t tell Taylor, she writes, but several acts have already made it into TWICE into the Top 100. Greedy greedy. Here they are:
– Thundamentals with Got Love (Ft Solo) – 90 and Quit Your Job at 78
– Ball Park Music with Trippin’ The Light Fantastic at 99 and Everything Is Shit Except Your Friendship with Me at 58
– Kingswood with Microwars at 76 and I Can Feel That You Don’t Love Me at 56
– Röyksopp & Robyn with Do It Again at 73 and Monumental at 59
– The Amity Affliction with The Weigh Down at 71 and Don’t Lean on Me at 64
Our favourite celebrity caller to date: Childish Gambino, aka Community actor Donald Glover, who admitted he was celebrating his track Sweatpants making the list by, um, wearing some, and drinking a ho-cho and marshmallows. “You mean you don’t drink hot chocolate in Australia?”
Our Don might have played Splendour in the Grass last July but I don’t think he’s quite au fait with the January rituals. Read our top six actor-turned-musicians breeds while you wait for No 50.
This morning, my colleague Monica Tan went to a protest outside the Villawood detention centre, led by an Indigenous elder and two of his friends. You might think the private security company that runs Villawood would be untroubled by a small, dignified a show of dissent outside the centre. You would be wrong.
Frank “Riverbank” Doolan, a much-loved Wiradjuri elder, lives in a caravan on the banks of Macquarie river but has driven 400km to Sydney to spend the day highlighting an issue that in his view all Australians should care about: asylum seekers in detention.
Villawood detention centre is just a 30-minute drive from my home, nestled in the suburbs of western Sydney. I arrive at 7am just as Doolan pulls up in a beat-up Volvo with his friends Christopher David Ryan and Nina Angelo, a former refugee. I watch them attempt to drive closer to the centre’s visitor entrance when they’re stopped by a Serco security guard.
By this time I’ve parked my car and jumped into theirs. “We’re going to have to setup outside,” explains Doolan. We drive out of the car park to the street, where Doolan sets up his banner on a small spot of grass just by the driveway leading up Villawood.
I have a feeling that leaving my car behind in the centre car park was a bad idea, so Ryan and I take the Volvo and go back up the driveway. I quickly get back into my car, but as we both try to exit we are suddenly surrounded by seven Serco security staff. They are rude and aggressive and refuse to let us leave.
They demand I hand over my identification and look at the photos I’ve taken on my camera. I immediately lock the doors of my car. Knowing I might be forced to delete the pictures at any moment, I jump on to the internet and email them to a friend.
“You think this is really funny, don’t you?” says one of the guards, sneering. I tell her that in fact, I am terrified.
It’s a strange hour of limbo not knowing my fate, in what seems like an excessive security response to three citizens in their 60s, armed with nothing but a banner, and one journalist with a mobile phone.
Eventually the police arrive and Ryan and I are given permission to leave.
Outside, the group of protesters has grown to five. I ask Doolan about his decision to drive to Villawood detention centre, of all places, for the day.
He takes the opportunity to address directly his “Aboriginal brothers and sisters”, particularly leadership he feels has failed to speak out on the issue. “Refugee people are stateless people, they are persecuted people. In a lot of cases they’re running for their life while we make an argument about what is a refugee, and call people legal or illegal.”
Doolan is particularly aggrieved by the detention of child asylum seekers, of which there are now 333 in centres across the country, and an additional 135 in offshore processing centres.
Recently he took to Facebook to share a story of his father, a survivor of the stolen generations: “Fast forward to 2015 and lo and behold in Australia we’re still locking up children,” writes Doolan. “No, I’m not referring to the 1000’s in Juvenile Justice (misnomer) Centres in Australia. I refer instead to the children of asylum seeking refugees in detention. What about those children? Why are they incarcerated? What have they done wrong and when will they be released?”
One band making a statement today is Brisbane alt-rock outfit the Medics, half of whose members are Indigenous. They call 26 January Survival Day: “A day to remember our people and the struggle – the continuing struggle,” band member Kahl Wallis told my colleague Monica Tan.
To time with Survival Day, the band have released a new track called Wake Up, available for free download. It will be the first new material the band have put out since their explosive debut three years ago, which saw their album Foundations featured on Triple J, peak at No 29 on the Aria charts and win big at both the National Indigenous Music and Rolling Stone awards.
The song proudly wears its political messaging on its sleeve and has all the Medics trademarks: angst-ridden emo-punk vocals, with layers of guitar and drums that build, crash and boom.
Let’s tack briefly towards the Triple J Hottest 100, where we’ve just had a change of presenter – but no change of on-air policy. Despite Lewis McKirdy confirming the Tay-Tay disqualification before the countdown even started, there’s been no mention of it since. It’s like the social media debate isn’t even happening. Are the callers being briefed?
The triplejfeed.com is momentarily live again – it explains the eight reasons Swift wasn’t allowed to make the list. Some on Twitter are suggesting she would have placed 12th if she wasn’t forbidden, but that’s not yet confirmed.
Anyway, here’s the countdown from 87-70, kicking off with Briggs, another great Guardian Australia interviewee back in October.
“People are ready for hip-hop with a voice that isn’t middle-class, white Australian.”
Here’s the list:
87. Briggs – Bad Apples
86. Sticky Fingers – Just for You
85. Chvrches –Get Away
84. Foo Fighters – Something from Nothing
83. British India – Wrong Direction
82. Hopium – Dreamers (Ft Phoebe Lou)
81. The Avener – Fade Out Lines
80. Rise Against – I Don’t Want to be Here Anymore
79. Jack White – Lazaretto
78. Thundamentals – Quit Your Job
77. Highasakite – Since Last Wednesday
76. Kingswood – Micro Wars
75. 360 – Live It Up (Feat. Pez)
74. Duke Dumont – I Got U (Feat. Jax Jones)
73. Royksopp and Robyn – Do It Again
72. Run The Jewels – Close Your Eyes (and Count to Fuck) [Ft. Zack dela Rocha)
71. Amity Affliction – The Weigh Down
70. Odd Mob – Is it a Banger?
We’re also live-blogging Australia’s clash with India at the SCG, the beginning of which has been delayed due to poor weather. It’s left Channel 9 scrambling to fill the airtime, as my colleague Russell Jackson writes.
As the rain tumbles down there is much faffing in the commentary box. James Brayshaw is screaming something about the cooking capabilities of the wives of each of his commentary cohorts. If that doesn’t have you heading for YouTube, nothing will. Earlier they showed some footage of the very first Australia Day ODI, the SCG clash between Australia and the West Indies in 1982. That was, needless to say, a better move.
Check-in on the game here. It’s scheduled to begin at 3pm, weather permitting.
Tall ships in Sydney harbour commemorating Australia’s national day
There’s plenty to celebrate about being Australian, and there’s plenty not to celebrate too. A national day should acknowledge all of it, Paul Daley writes.
Growing up in the 1960s and 1970s I was, typically for many Australian children, usually at the beach when most Australia Days rolled around.
I can’t remember my family and friends ever making much of a fuss about it.
For us third and fourth generation European-Australians Australia Day seemed to signify little but the end of the long, lazy summer holidays. It meant mothers poised to wrestle clear plastic onto the covers of the year’s textbooks and a time to fit sand-blasted feet with torturous new school shoes of unyielding patent leather.
It felt like a breezy day of underrated celebration – of something or other, I wasn’t too sure. It seemed to be mostly for others, though, not least the throngs of (mostly) olive-skinned European migrants who converged on the foreshore to play bocce, grill sausage, drink grappa, talk and laugh on Australia Day afternoon.
I remember my father, descendant of Irish immigrant grandparents, explaining to me that Australia Day was when the “new Australians” modestly celebrated becoming part of the post-war ethnic melting pot that was Australian society. It was their day, he explained, and those of us whose families had been on the continent for a long time should stand back, and let them enjoy it.
I’ve since come to loathe Australia Day.
Adam Giles on Prince Philip: "We're not a bunch of tossers."
The Northern Territory chief minister has mocked the decision by Abbott to bestow a knighthood on Prince Philip, Helen Davidson reports from Darwin.
NT chief minister and Country Liberal party member Adam Giles began a doorstop press conference after a citizenship ceremony in Darwin by addressing the appointment without being asked.
“Happy April Fools’ Day, everybody, as I saw in the paper reading Prince Philip is now a knight,” Giles said to media.
“I woke up this morning and read the wires and … was confused between Australia Day and April Fools’ Day. We’ve got to be real. It’s Australia Day, a time when we all get together to celebrate all the good things about being Darwinites, Alice Springites, Territorians, Australians, everything that is unique about us as a culture and as a people. And we see something like this, it takes away from the legitimacy of the knighthood role, it makes us a bit of a joke in a range of areas, and I really question the motivations in doing this.
In a time when we’ve got Bill Shorten coming out and calling for a populist republic debate, and we start to reignite these things about monarchies and republicans on Australia Day. I’m a person who supports both sides of the channel – we don’t need to change everything, we’re independent, we’re Australia. Let’s just keep going the way we are, but then you’ve got the Australian government coming out and giving a knighthood to Prince Philip which blows one side of the argument completely out of the picture. It’s Australia Day, we’re not a bunch of tossers, let’s get it right.
I’m not sure how the full appointment is taken place in this regard, but you do have to ask yourself what’s actually going on. We’ve had Angus Houston with a knighthood. I think Angus is a very worthy recipient, but Prince Philip with all due respect is someone who gives good governance and counsel from a commonwealth point of view, but it’s Australia, it’s Australia Day, let’s get real.
Sir Adam Giles, anyone?
Spotted in a Bondi butcher’s shop
Afghani man Besmellah Akbari is one of 619 people becoming an Australian citizen at Wanneroo Showgrounds in WA, in the country’s largest naturalisation ceremony, Calla Wahlquist writes from Perth.
Akbari was sponsored by his father, who arrived in Australia as a refugee in 2000.
Akbari’s sister, Zainab Akbari, and mother arrived in Australia in 2006. Zainab’s three children were born in Australia.
They became citizens in 2010 and in 2013 sponsored Zainab’s husband, Liyaqat Al Shokat Ali, to come to Australia as well. Shokat Ali is now waiting on his citizenship ceremony, slated for 2018, so he can offer the same assistance to his own family.
Zainab said she felt fortunate to have been able to avoid the refugee process, “which is becoming more and more difficult”.
“[Afghanistan] is not a safe place,” she said. “Even when you are just going shopping, something makes you worried, something makes you think, ‘is something going to happen?’”
Shokat Ali, who lived in Kabul, said he was concerned for those who remained. “It is still highly volatile,” he said.
How do you end the country’s biggest citizenship ceremony? With a group cry of Aussie! Aussie! Aussie!, apparently.
News of Sir/Prince Philip not going down well up north.
Meanwhile, it appears that Taylor Swift has been disqualified from the Hottest 100 after the radio station published a screenshot on their Instagram feed of a web page explaining the decision.
The website, called triplejfeed.com, briefly went live on Monday morning with an article called “8 Hilarious But Totally True Reasons You Didn’t Hear ‘Shake It Off’ In The Hottest 100”. The site soon crashed, presumably under weight of traffic.
ABC reporter Will Ockenden did some digging and found that the domain name was registered two days ago, and points to a server in the US, which prompted speculation that the site may have been a prank.
Triple J’s Instagram post appears to confirm that Swift has indeed been disqualified, but the station has not officially confirmed the decision. Could they be teasing us? We may not know until the countdown is over.
Meanwhile, the Twittersphere rages.
The ABC has tussled with some powerful enemies the past 12 months. In taking on Swift’s legions of adoring fans, it may have bitten off more than it can chew.
We’re now one hour into the Triple J Hottest 100, with a lucky 13 tracks down
Here’s 100 – 88
100 Tkay Maidza – Switch Lanes
99 Ball Park Music – Trippin The Light Fantastic
98 Bombay Bicycle Club – Luna
97 Japanese Wallpaper – Between Friends [Ft Jesse Davidson]
96 Safia – Paranoia Ghosts and Other Sounds
95 Thelma Plum – How Much Does Your Love Cost?
94 Sticky Fingers - Liquorlip Loaded Gin
93 Vance Joy – Georgia
92 One Day – Love Me Less
91 Meg Mac – Bridges
90 Thundamentals – Got Love (Ft Solo)
89 Cold War Kids – First
88 Death Rays – Gina Works at Hearts
Eleven of the songs so far have been Australian, with six of them getting their start on Triple J Unearthed, we’re told.
Prince Philip may have snatched the spotlight, but there’s another well-known Brit celebrating this Australia Day. Shailalah Medhora reports that antiques expert and BBC stalwart Hilary Kay has become an Australian citizen at a ceremony in Canberra.
Kay, originally from just outside Oxford in the United Kingdom, has lived in Australia for eight years. She has been part of the television show Antiques Roadshow since 1978.
Despite loving antiquities, Kay has made the young nation her home.
“Australia is a country that is willing to meet you more than halfway,” she said. “It’s extraordinarily welcoming and people are encouraged to succeed here.”
Kay first visited Australia in the 1980s when she was in her 20s.
She remembers thinking the country was “being drowned by the sunshine” and expressed surprise at how big and spacious the country is.
Kay warmed to Australia’s rich cultural heritage and wants to learn more about its Indigenous past.
She said its migrant history means she’s constantly finding interesting antiques in the most unexpected of places.
“The heritage that people bring with them isn’t young,” she said.
Nationwide, 15,900 people from 152 countries will become Australian citizens.
More than 330 citizenship ceremonies will take place on Monday.
Guardian Australia’s Melissa Davey reports from Melbourne:
People have placed flowers on the steps of parliament house in Victoria in recognition of Indigenous Australians who have died since their land was invaded.
Organisers also acknowledged Indigenous deaths in custody and ongoing inequality.
A smoking ceremony was followed by a rally and march to Birrarung Marr park.
Melissa’s elegant photo shows a note that begins: “In loving memory of all the innocent souls ... ”
Data journalism demonstrates its value to the Triple J Hottest 100. Excellent take from Nick Evershed:
Not sure precisely where else Guardian Australia’s Darwin correspondent Helen Davidson expected new Australian citizens to come from:
The Guardian’s inteprid Paul Farrell is in Cronulla:
A group of around 35 police officers have just walked out of Cronulla police station to begin patrols of the beach and Cronulla mall. No doubt they are beginning their annual Australia Day peacekeeping exercise, a task that perhaps that should not be underestimated.
Cronulla mall is quite busy and there are increasingly more locals with an assortment of Australia Day hats and the odd flag draped around those most patriotic of teenagers’ lanky shoulders.
A sausage sizzle is underway down by the beach, purporting to be Cronulla’s best sausage sizzle on Australia Day. Rival pop-up stores are making similar claims over at Gunnamatta Bay. This will require further investigation, perhaps even a datablog, but by the end of Australia Day we will definitely be able to say which store had the best sausage sizzle in Cronulla.
No sightings yet of the former immigration minister, Scott Morrison. No doubt his current whereabouts are an operational matter.
Guardian Australia (unofficial) competition:
And straight in at 100 is Australia’s own Tkay Maidza. We interviewed the Zimbabwean born singer - playing Laneways festival this month – back in November and she had the following to say about her country.
I think Aussies are so chilled out and heaps sarcastic. So that’s basically what I am. It’s all for fun and being silly, at the same time as being yourself. That’s being Australian.
Ooohh, the first JJJ controversy/rumour/confected outrage for Australia Day 2015:
So here we are again for another year.
Call it what you want – Australia Day, Invasion Day or Survival Day – but one thing we can all agree on is 26 January is Hottest 100 Day.
Last year our colleague Alex Needham live-blogged Triple J’s Hottest 100 in its entirety. Following his stirling lead, Guardian Australia’s culture team will be listening in and keeping you updated all day on Australia’s biggest countdown since Molly Meldrum’s retirement.
I’m also on firstname.lastname@example.org. We’re armed and ready.
Tom Uren, former Whitlam government minister, boxer, soldier, PoW, has died, aged 93
Tom Uren, the former deputy leader of Australia’s Labor party, has died at the age of 93.
He served as a minister in the cabinet of Gough Whitlam as minister for urban and regional development and established the Australian Heritage Commission.
He was a former boxer, once challenging for the Australian heavyweight title, and served in the Australian Army in WWII. He was a prisoner of war, held by the Japanese, and worked on the notorious Thai-Burma railway. He watched the glow of the atomic bombing of Nagasaki from a PoW camp.
Labor leader Bill Shorten described him as a “champion of equality”.
Still gloomy in Sydney, but...
this is good news for the World Cup (though ‘pouring rain’ might be a bit strong CA, steady drizzle more like).
Spraying the electronic walls of the internet with graffiti...
Tony Abbott has defended the decision to award Prince Philip a knighthood
He described Prince Philip as a “great servant” of Australia and for a life of duty and service.
He’s the patron of hundreds of organisations. He’s the inspiration and wellspring of the Duke of Edinburgh’s Awards which have provided leadership training for tens if not hundreds of thousands of Australians over the years.
I’m just really pleased that in his 90s, towards the end of a life of service and duty, we in this country are able to properly acknowledge what he’s done for us.
It is fitting that we pay tribute to an extraordinary life of service.
The Prime Minister dismissed social media criticism of the decision to award the knighthood to the Prince as “electronic graffiti”.
Social media is kind of like electronic graffiti and I think that in the media, you make a big mistake to pay too much attention to social media. You wouldn’t report what’s sprayed up on the walls on buildings.”
Recognising the too-often overlooked contribution of teddy bears to Australia
The Wiggles play at Sydney’s Opera House.
Oh, oh, oh, oh...
The opposition leader, Bill Shorten, has praised Prince Philip’s decades of public service but reckons the government might have been able to find an Australian more deserving of a knighthood than an nonagenarian Greek-born, UK-domiciled member of the House of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glucksburg.
It’s a time warp where we’re giving knighthoods to English royalty. I think that on Australia Day, where we’re talking about Australia, Australian identity, the government’s managed to find a British royal to give a medal to, a knighthood to. I’ve just been at citizenship functions, local breakfasts – some people there wondered whether it was an Australia Day hoax.
Prince Philip’s been very distinguished ever since he married the young Queen, I mean he’s had six decades of public service. My reservations are not about him, but I just think that he already has a lot of knighthoods and awards, I just wonder if they couldn’t have picked someone who is Australian in character and activity.
The prince is famous for his extemporaneous remarks/gaffes – catalogues of them are available online. In 2002, he reportedly told a group of Australian school-aged musicians who had performed, apparently admirably, for him: “You were playing your instruments? Or do you have tape recorders under your seats?”
Reporter Paul Farrell is in Cronulla, New South Wales, where he says Australia Day has got off to an “eerily quiet” start:
While the beach is usually starting to fill up right about now with tattoo- and flag-clad locals, the unseasonal weather has put a distinct dampener on the morning.
In fact, all Cronulla’s beaches are closed due to dangerous surf conditions, and lifeguards told Guardian Australia there was no indication this would be changing any time soon.
The big winners out of this are the surfers, who largely have the beach to themselves, and a choppy south swell that has whipped up some turbulent but rideable waves.
“It’s pretty messy out there but it’s the best swell we’ve had in weeks,” said Glen Thomas, an 18-year-old Gymea resident.
“Even if the weather’s crap it’s not a bad way to spend Australia Day.”
Here are some pics from the citizenship ceremonies taking place around the country.
Joshua Robertson snapped this lovely pic in Brisbane of proud parents Tejasvini and Niraj Bende, originally of India, with new Australian citizen Yash, 20 months.
In Darwin, the day began with a 7am fun run. Helen Davidson reports:
Hundreds of people rose at dawn to head to the waterfront for the annual fun run at 7am before it got too hot – just a balmy 29 degrees with 80% humidity. This reporter took part with enthusiasm (standing at the finish line with an ice coffee and a muffin). Some took it seriously, sprinting the 2.5km or 5km track through the city and around the harbour. Others got dressed up and just had fun with it. Some did both – the man in the Morph suit was one of the first over the line for the shorter track.
Meanwhile, the Kangaroo sanctuary in Alice Springs wishes you a happy ’Straya Day. Awww.
Guardian Australia’s Brisbane correspondent, Joshua Robertson, says he is celebrating Australia Day by “sweating it out under a tin roof” at the Gap state high school in Brisbane.
That’s in the seat of Ashgrove, with the campaigning Queensland premier, Campbell Newman, in attendance.
Darwin reporter Helen Davidson writes:
The Top End’s chief minister, Adam Giles, has congratulated the Territorians among the Australia Day honours.
“I am extremely pleased to see the contributions of those who have dedicated their lives to helping Indigenous Territorians receive recognition as well,” he said.
“Without the advocacy of passionate individuals, many of the issues facing Indigenous Territorians would remain unaddressed.”
The Territorians honoured are:
- ABC broadcaster Charlie King has been awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia for service to broadcast media and to the Indigenous community of the Territory.
- Kathleen Abbott for significant service to Indigenous Territorians as an advocate for improved health and wellbeing.
- Timothy Nadjowh for significant service to the Indigenous communities of West Arnhem Land.
- Michael Burgess, (former chief executive of the Department of Chief Minister) in recognition of his significant service to public administration in the Territory.
It’s Australia Day, but do a random assortment of people in Sydney know enough about Australia’s national icons to really be celebrating?
Reporter Michael Safi tests their knowledge in a kind of Australia Day Rorschach test and finds we’re far from universally knowledgeable when it comes to Australiana.
Here’s Melbourne correspondent Oliver Milman:
Drizzly weather in Melbourne hasn’t deterred Australia Day devotees who have swooped upon the prized barbecue spots beside the Yarra river. Groups of people, some wrapped in Australian flags, huddled under umbrellas as they attempted to get the barbies fired up. Hopefully, Melbourne’s reputation for changeable weather will come to their aid by lunchtime.
Eight former Australians of the Year have used Australia Day to call for the immediate release of all refugee and asylum-seeker children from immigration detention, Guardian Australia reporter Ben Doherty writes.
“We are a country of hope, with a commitment to the freedom and dignity of all people … that strives to protect the rights of the most vulnerable,” they write.
“Indefinite detention of children and babies is at odds with these hopes and principles.
“These children and their parents came to us in desperation, seeking our help. They came to us seeking safety, knowing of Australia’s reputation as a fair, inclusive and just society and knowing we are a people who are never afraid to lend a hand to those in need.”
The letter is signed by eight winners of the Australian of the Year award: Prof Ian Frazer (2006), Prof Peter Doherty (1997), Ian Kiernan (1994), Prof Gustav Nossal (2000), Simon McKeon (2011), Geoffrey Rush (2012), Prof Fiona Stanley (2003), and Prof Pat McGorry (2010).
Here’s a report on today’s cultural events from Guardian Australia’s culture editor, Nancy Groves.
Another year’s Australia Day celebrations kicked off this morning as the Australian and Aboriginal flags are raised side by side on the Sydney harbour bridge after the traditional WugulOra Indigenous ceremony at 7.30am.
Early in the morning in Melbourne too, Aboriginal elders gathered with tissue paper flowers of red, yellow and black to piece together floral wreaths to lay on the steps of Victoria’s Parliament House. And across the country, gatherings such as the Yabun festival will mark 26 January as Survival Day of Australia’s first people.
For some, Monday will be a spent on the water, from the culmination of the three-day Festival of Sails in Geelong to the annual Tall Ships race and Ferrython in Sydney harbour. Others will spend in the sky, including the participants of Perth’s famous Skyworks – which ambitiously combines fireworks and a four-hour flyover of Cessnas, choppers and a RAAF Hawk performing loop-the-loop acrobatics.
But for many it will be a day spent indulging in eccentricities as only Australia can, whether that’s the 11th annual Glenbrook Park gnome convention in the Blue Mountains or Bondi’s Australia Day thong challenge, in which a beach full or revellers wade into the surf carrying only giant inflatable thongs.
And then, of course, there’s the Hottest 100.
Will Taylor Swift upset the apple cart with Shake it Off? Her fans have spoken and we’ll be counting down the tunes all day as, worldwide, more than 3,550 venues throw a Triple J-registered party, including the National Portrait Gallery in Canberra, where you can vote for your Hottest 100 works of art, too. Fancy. Not sure they have a Taylor in the collection though, Swifties.
For many, Australia Day is a day of mourning, as Nakkiah Lui wrote in this piece for Australia Day last year. A number of Invasion Day events are planned throughout the country.
- At 10am, a smoking ceremony will take place next to Parliament House in Victoria, followed by a rally. People are encouraged to place flowers on the steps of parliament, in commemoration of the stolen generation and Indigenous people who have died in custody, through genocidal practices and in massacres.
- Thousands of First Peoples are expected in Canberra to join in a sit-in protest at Parliament House.
The former ACT Australian of the Year Dr Tom Calma has urged Australians to reflect on what today means to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, SBS reports.
“In the last survey we did at Reconciliation Australia, about half the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who were interviewed felt that discrimination still existed,” Calma told SBS.
“About a third of them actually personally experienced racism in the last six months so it’s alive and well.”
And you can find a comprehensive list here.
Meanwhile, here’s some of the reaction from Twitter.
Welcome to Guardian Australia’s Australia Day live blog. We’ll be bringing you coverage of the day from across the country, including citizenship ceremonies, Invasion Day events, and the Triple J Hottest 100.
“To be an Australian is to have won the lottery of life,” Abbott said.
“But we can’t rest on our laurels and everyone has a part to play in sustaining a country that is strong and prosperous, free and fair.”
About one year after reintroducing the honours of dame and knighthood, Abbott has also issued a statement to say the Queen has accepted his recommendation that Prince Philip and the former Defence Force chief Angus Houston “be awarded Australia’s highest honour as Knights of the Order of Australia”.
Houston told ABC radio this morning he won’t be pressing people to call him “Sir”.
“I’m very comfortable with who and what I am,” he said.
As for Philip – remember that time he asked a group of Aboriginal elders: “Do you still throw spears at each other?”
And in case you missed it: the recipients of the 2015 Australian of the Year were announced yesterday at parliament house in Canberra, with women winning every category for the first time in the event’s 55-year history.
The domestic violence campaigner Rosie Batty took the top honour for her work in highlighting the devastation of domestic violence, following the murder of her 11-year-old son Luke by his father Greg Anderson in February last year.
Batty said she’d like to see a government-funded domestic violence public awareness campaign.