The May 2015 edition of IRCA’s Newsletter

Farewell to Indigenous Broadcasting Pioneer William Thaiday

One of the forefathers of Indigenous radio broadcasting and the remote Indigenous media industry, William Thaiday, passed away recently in Rockhampton Hospital.

"Uncle Bill", as he was known to us all with respect and affection, was a pioneer in the establishment of Indigenous radio broadcast services right across the country.

Following a visit to CAAMA Radio in Alice Springs in 1981, Bill and his younger brother Mick were inspired to start the steering committee for TAIMA (Townsville Aboriginal and Islander Media) in 1982 and became founding members of the inaugural board. They produced and presented radio programmes and trained others for the air times available to TAIMA on ABC Townsville with Graeme Steele and 4TTT Community Radio in Townsville during 1981 -1983 before the TAIMA building, studios and 4K1G station were established. Bill was the Manager of TAIMA from 1983 – 1987...




QRAM have recently installed new radio transmission equipment at Normanton and the local community is really coming on board. A local studio for the town is part of the next stage of development.

Meanwhile, in Doomadgee, Sai Matainavora (pic above) has taken the local Black Star service to new heights and has the entire community tuned in. His regular morning program encouraging kids to get to school attracting attention in other communities around the Gulf region and has been noticed as far away as Canberra. A new video featuring Doomadgee Radio’s success in getting kids to school is now being featured by the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet on their website.



CAAMA Radio have been busy with live broadcasts from the Tjungu Festival and the ANZAC Day Dawn Service in Alice Springs. The Tjungu Festival featured local acts Warren H. Williams and Jacinta Price (pic above).

CAAMA have recently employed a Youth Coordinator to interact with schools in the CAAMA footprints and start training and broadcasting accreditation.

Upcoming events include coverage of the Jazz and Blues Festival, AFL matches and Alice Springs 'fight nights'.


PY Media

PY Media have a new regular broadcaster at Mimili!

Muntjantjinya nganampa waakaringanyi Mimilila. Wirunya! Palunya kulintjaku radio nyurampa alanma dinner-ngka malangka Mondaynguru Fridaykutu. Palya!

PY Media now also have a free call number for radio requests 1300 422 222

PAW Media

IRCA and PAW Media reps recently met with Lajamanu community leaders and elders and local agencies. The elders gave approval for the 17th National Remote Indigenous Media Festival to go ahead in Lajamanu this year.

Thanks to Lajamanu RIBS operator Maxwell Tasman for organising the meeting and spreading the word. We look forward to working with everyone to make it a great event.

The festival will be held 27th September - 2nd October.


TEABBA have been busy with new radio installations and now broadcast via an ADSL line via Imparja. This has boosted their signal and audio strength giving listeners a clearer and stronger broadcast out to their communities.

TEABBA's Tech Team have been visiting communities and assisting councils to ensure their services are up and running after Cyclone Lam.

Download the recent TEABBA Newsletter here


PAKAM have had new broadcasters start in Balgo and Bidyadanga. They have also been busy with video projects for NITV. Their Jawa Jawa Songlines project has been entered into the Sydney Film Festival.

NG Media

NG Media have recently been working on some music video projects for ICTV as well as a Ngaanyatjara Health video.

Other News

National Indigenous Music Awards 2015

Music NT has opened nominations for NIMA 2015!

This year there is an exciting line up: Frank Yamma, The Painted Ladies and B2M! These acts join The Genesis Project by Arnhem Land band East Journey and Yothu Yindi. More acts will be announced in the weeks leading up to NIMA 2015.

Click on the link to find out more about the competitions, nominate in the NIMAS, to buy tickets or for more information.


Bush Bands Bash

Applications are now open for the 2015 Bush Bands Program!

Six bands from across Central Australia will be selected to attend Bush Bands Business and then perform at the annual Bush Bands Bash on September 5th in Alice Springs. This is a fantastic opportunity for your band to learn new skills, meet other musicians and perform on the big stage. It’s a chance to take your music to the mainstream! 

Applying to participate in the Bush Bands Program is very competitive. Each year we receive applications from all across the Central Desert region and only six bands will be selected to perform. You must supply 2 tracks, band biography and 2 band photos with your application. Include a support letter and IndigiTUBE or YouTube links will strengthen your application and your chance to be selected.

Applications are open until 28 May



North Tanami Band’s brand new album ‘Proud to be Warlpiri’ was launched 26 March at the Memo Club in Alice Springs. It’s the third album to be released on CAAMA Music’s new Therrka label for grass-roots recording by community bands, following Desert Mulga and Running Water’s album, which were released earlier in March.

As one of the pioneering bands of the Desert Reggae sound, North Tanami Band has been hugely influential for the current generation of Central Desert bands.

Formed in the 1980’s, North Tanami Band first recorded with CAAMA Music in 1988. With five albums spanning nearly 20 years, the band has inducted many young musicians into the fold, encouraging many girls and women to sing with them in their live shows.

The new album is for sale from the CAAMA Music sales office in Alice Springs, or phone (08) 89519732.

Listen to their new single on Soundcloud.

New on IndigiTUBE

The Fitness Show

The Fitness Show is all about encouraging people to get up off their couches and get active while watching ICTV. Charmaine Patrick takes the viewers through some different exercise routines that people can do in their own lounge room.

Upcoming Events

Unlocking the Digital Potential of the Bush: Indigenous Focus Day 2015

As part of IRCA’s work in advocating for better telecommunications and ICT access for remote Indigenous communities, we are busy organising the next Indigenous Focus Day which will be held on 14 July 2015 in Darwin. 

Coordinated by IRCA and ACCAN, the Indigenous Focus Day will bring together people from remote Australia to explore the issues remote communities face when it comes to affordability, accessibility, awareness and appropriateness.
This event will be held the day before the Broadband for the Bush Alliance’s 4th annual Forum. There will be a close alignment between the two events with representatives from the Indigenous Focus Day contributing insights at various points during the Forum where linkages and connections are relevant.
If you want to get involved or find out more, contact Maor via or ring her on 0430 228 555.




Lens Flair Film Festival Workshops

23 May - 7 June, Alice Springs

Red Hot Arts is once again partnering with ABC Open and are offering multiple workshops catering to both beginners and established film makers. When taking place in these workshops you will have the opportunity to learn new techniques, improve your skills and connect with others with a passion for film making.

A new aspect being offered this year a speciality Youth Focused one day crash course designed to take aspiring film types ages 12 – 18 through script writing, storyboarding, shooting and editing. This will all be talking placed in one fully packed Sunday afternoon and the best part is that both the ABC Open and Youth workshops are FREE!

And for only $25 those who are more advanced are encouraged to attend our two Sunday Master-class sessions.

The workshops are held on Saturday and Sundays where you will be learning from an aray of successful film makers leading up to the 24 hour Film Festival.

All Lens Flair sessions will take place at the Charles Darwin University Media Labs, Grevillea Drive East Side – starting at 12 noon each session will typically run until around 5 pm.

Click here to check out what each workshop has to offer.


NT Song of the Year Awards

The NT Song of the Year Awards recognise the fantastic songwriting talent across the Northern Territory. The Awards were introduced in 2012 to promote and celebrate the original music songwriting of published and unpublished artists from all over the Territory.

Entry categories include nine genres including Rock, Pop, Folk, Urban/ HipHop, Blues & Roots, Country, Heavy, Dance & Electronic and School-Aged and is open to writers from all corners of the Territory.

The NT Song of the Year Awards is a MusicNT initiative. Past winners have gone on to receive national radio airplay, national festival performances and international songwriting accolades as well as many local opportunities.

Entries are open and close 1st June

More info


AFTRS Information Day: May 30

  • Talk to AFTRS education staff & teachers about Semester 2 study options for the specialist  Diplomas and Advanced Diplomas courses in areas such as: cinematography & camera, editing, documentary, screenwriting and script development, directing, editing, producing, screen design, screen music, sound, visual effects  and radio broadcasting.
  • Sit in on one of the Specialist Diploma/Advanced Diploma 'Taster Sessions' (also online)
  • Talk to BA in Screen teachers and current students
  • Find out how to prepare your application to study at AFTRS
  • Take a guided tour of the world-class facilities
  • Talk to AFTRS Student Centre staff about FEE-HELP and more

Full details and times of sessions will be posted here soon.



Call for contributions

If you have a news item or story you would like include in the next newsletter please email