‘River to the Sea’ by 380 Crew

Maclean High School, in collaboration with Desert Pea Media, has released its second song and film clip by the group 380 Crew.

380 Crew is a group of incredible young First Nations artists from Yaegl Country, Northern New South Wales. The group has evolved from a storytelling project with local Elders from Maclean and Yamba, funded by The Yulgilbar Foundation, hosted by Maclean High School and facilitated and directed by the charity organisation Desert Pea Media.

The song ‘River to the Sea’ was filmed in December 2018 around Yaegl Country in places such as Angourie, Brooms Head and Red Cliff as well as Whiting Beach and Illarwill.

The students in this track sing about their identity and what it means to be connected to the land and the sea, and about being Yaegl descendants. There are some wonderful harmonies as well as individual funk. The Yaegl Nation is unique in language and culture, existing between two larger nations, Bundjalung and Gumbaynggirr. Its people are custodians of the Lower Clarence, the largest coastal river in NSW.

About this track

The song line is reflective and emphasises the importance of identity and who you are, and the connection to country. The students were supported throughout the project by the Yaegl Elders, who gave their time and stories to the students, which were the foundation of the lyrics. The Elders also came and watched the filming, keeping a watchful eye on the students, as well as offering their advice and support to staff and the film crew.

Much of the area in which the film was shot has great significance to the Elders as places where they played and fished as children, and places they have taken their own children in passing on their knowledge. Again, this is another great example of the intergenerational collaboration, storytelling and community that makes Yaegl Country what it is: a special place for everyone who is lucky enough to live here.

Contributed by Liza Hamilton from Maclean High and Desert Pea Media. Published in 2019.