Advance Australia Fair

 

Australia’s a great country, but we have the worst national anthem in the world.

The words are archaic and mean nothing to most Australians. Nobody actually knows the words of the second verse, so it’s never sung. Considering Australia’s treatment of refugees and aborigines, the lyrics also lie,

For those who’ve come across the seas
We’ve boundless plains to share.

Furthermore, the tune is utterly unable to be sung. At sporting events and public occasions, often a professional singer is drafted to belt out the anthem over the sound system, but inevitably, it seems, the melody, the key and the orchestration are modified to make possible a passable rendition.

It’s a perpetual embarrassment, watching national sporting teams or Olympic athletes miming the anthem to the best of their ability, while 100,000 spectators remain silent.

It is possible, though, to sing the words, rather more jauntily, to the “Gilligan’s Island” theme, or to rock it to the tune “House of the rising Sun”.

I’ve decided that we need a new anthem, which addresses the real issues facing Australians, to which our governments, state and federal, are seemingly oblivious, and which reinterprets the word “fair” to mean just and equitable, as well as the original sense, of beautiful.

I’m afraid that my compositional skills don’t extend to making up a new tune. Someone else might do that, for the fun of it. I don’t expect to hear my anthem sung at the Rio Olympics, but that’s alright.

When “Australia 11” won the America’s Cup, they flew the unofficial Australian sporting banner, the boxing kangaroo, and the musical theme for the television coverage was Men at Work’s “Land Down Under”. The words don’t make the grade as an anthem, but it would get the crowd dancing!

Anyway, here’s my revised version of Advance Australia Fair. I’ll just run it up the flagpole and see what happens. Hopefully no one will be offended.

Advance Australia Fair

With apologies to Peter Dodds McCormick

Australians, we’ve all got the choice;
Our country’s young and free!
We don’t need coal, we don’t need oil;
We don’t need CSG!
Our farming land is nature’s gift,
Of beauty rich and rare;
Fair work, fair wage! We’ve come of age!
Advance Australia Fair!
We don’t need any English king!
Advance Australia Fair!

It’s play the game, not win or loss,
Australians understand.
It’s grass and water, sheep and cows,
It’s lend a helping hand!
For those who’ve come across the seas,
We’ll give them their fair share!
This land is ours, not yours or mine!
Advance Australia Fair!
Come drought or rains, don’t fret, just sing, 
Advance Australia Fair!

 

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