Bringing music, learning and a culturally safe environment to the community has been the driver behind a First Nations music festival since 2015.
Singing Up Country returns to Terrey Hills on Sydney’s Northern Beaches as part of the larger Gai-mariagal Festival on May 29.
A number of local businesses support the grassroots event with prize packs from local designers and artists available to attendees.
Musician and Yaegl man Michael Birk founded Singing Up Country after organising a number performances during his studies.
He said bringing an expression of his culture to an area that rarely hosts these kinds of events was something he felt he had to do.
“It’s still is a struggle here on the north side,” Mr Birk said.
“People assume that there’s not many aboriginal people (here).
“My mum thought it was such a good thing.”
The local church provides the space that squeezes in 200 people from around greater Sydney for an afternoon of music from some of NSW’s best known Aboriginal artists.
The Stiff Gins, Uncle Johnny Nichol and Radical Son are amongst those on the line up.
Mr Birk will also jump on stage and said the afternoon is as much about community as it is about the music.
“Lots of people have walked away saying it’s like a modern ceremony and there was a lot of healing going on,” he said.
“I describe it as cultural safety.
“It’s a good place to just turn to whoever is next to you, introduce yourself and have a yarn.”
Organisers are planning to take the festival to other regional settings around the state.
Tickets are available to purchase online.