Minimalist Change Model

The song ‘Advance Australia Fair II’ is presented as an example of a ‘minimalist change’ model. There is a strong emphasis on maintaining tradition, which is recognised as having particular value for many.

The first verse of the present National Anthem is retained, but with a single and important change to line 2. The inappropriate and now outmoded word ‘young’ is removed and replaced with ‘proud’. So the first two lines are sung: ‘Australians all let us rejoice, For we are proud and free’. This is the only change to Verse 1.

Use of the word ‘proud’ in combination with the phrase ‘Australians all’ celebrates pride in our unity in diversity and our inclusiveness as a society, something in which we can truly rejoice.  The word ‘free’ references our basic freedoms and democratic institutions which are protected by the rule of law. As a Nation we find unity in our support for these principles and strength in our respect for them.

Verse 2 of the present National Anthem is rarely sung, and few know the words. This model does not include the second verse. It is replaced by the second and third verses from ‘Beneath the Southern Cross’, but with the added traditional refrains. This creates an Anthem which is more relevant to the Australia of today, while retaining Verse 1 virtually unchanged except in a minor and positive way.

The new Verse 2  pays  respect to our First Peoples, inclusion of all of our people, whatever their cultural origin, and celebrates our journey towards reconciliation.

The new Verse 3 reflects the Australian values of Mateship, Freedom and a Fair Go.

All three verses are anchored with the traditional refrain concluding with Advance Australia Fair”.

Minimalist Change Model

Advance Australia Fair II

(a Patriotic Song to the tune of Advance Australia Fair)

Australians all let us rejoice

For we are proud and free

We've golden soil and wealth for toil

Our home is girt by sea

Our land abounds in nature's gifts

Of beauty rich and rare

In history's page, let every stage

Advance Australia Fair

In joyful strains then let us sing,

Advance Australia Fair.


For sixty thousand years and more

First peoples of this land

Sustained by Country, Dreamtime told

By word and artist’s hand.

Unite our cultures from afar

In peace with those first here

To walk the dreaming tracks as one

Respect for all grows there.

In joyful strains then let us sing,

Advance Australia Fair.


 In times of drought and flood and fire

When all but hope is gone

True mates bring shoulders to your side

And wattle blooms again.

Tomorrow when this timeless land

Falls to our young for care

May fortune bless beneath her stars,

Our country free and fair.

  In joyful strains then let us sing,

Advance Australia Fair.


Based on the first verse, refrain and music by Peter Dodds McCormick (1878);

New lyrics for the 21st century by Peter Vickery (March 2019) ©