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My Countrytown: Crystal Robins – Darwin NT

23 March 2022 | 10:39 am | Mallory Arbour

We caught up with singer-songwriter and music therapist, Crystal Robins to find out what she loves about Darwin, Northern Territory.

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Regional towns are in our blood here at CountryTown! From Tamworth to Toowoomba, Ballarat to Noojee, we love the pubs, the people and the places that make Australia tick. But most of all, we love the amazing country musicians our regional centres produce, but have a soft spot for those from the city too, like Crystal Robins

Crystal grew up within Sydney’s vibrant music scene, leading her to play with numerous bands and supporting artists like Wendy Matthews, Toni Childs, Boney M, Daniel Champagne and Karen O on national tours. Now based in Darwin, her focus has been on going solo, bringing to the stage a sweet upbeat mix of indie folk and alt country stylings.

She released her debut single Wildfire in January 2021, which made it to #6 on the AMRAP Community Radio Charts, and was also shortlisted in Listen Up Music’s Songwriting Prize 2020. She released her debut EP of the same name in July last year, an independent release, which was recorded in Darwin, featuring local and interstate collaborations.

Produced by local engineer, Danny Christie and mastered by Sam Moses in Nashville, Tennessee, Crystal’s latest single release, Fragment was written during the first Australian Covid-19 lockdown in 2020. She says, “It’s about suddenly having the time and space to slow down, reflect and re-assess. A chance to look at things from a different new perspective.”

We caught up with Crystal to find out what she loves about Darwin, Northern Territory.

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1. Darwin is like a country town in a city.

I grew up in NSW, but my hometown is now Darwin NT. I love living here because it’s remote enough to maintain that small town charm, even though it’s the capital city of the Northern Territory. When you go out, you’re bound to run into familiar faces, and it’s also the kind of place where strangers still smile and say hello.

2. It has a very vibrant and close-knit music and arts community.

Darwin has a small but lively music community, and I really felt welcomed when I arrived here 5 years ago. For a small city, it hosts more than its fair share of live music – cafes, pubs and clubs around town have regular live music, local markets, a multitude of community and cultural festivals, as well as dedicated venues for live original music.

3. Darwin is closer to Asia than to Australia’s other capital cities.

It is a very remote city, the entire NT population is a tiny 200,000 people, with half of those living in the capital city Darwin. Indonesia is a short flight away, a handy weekend trip prior to Covid, and often cheaper than flying within Australia. Darwin has a very multicultural community, rich in culture (and amazing foods!) from the NT locally, our Asian neighbours and around the world.

4. It’s like summertime all the time.


Darwin doesn’t have the typical four seasons as in southern parts of Australia. The year is roughly broken in to wet season, dry season and build up, although local Indigenous cultures note up to 7 seasons. The warm weather allows us to have outdoor music festivals in the winter months of June, July and August. The humidity can be hard to handle for some, but I love the endless summer.

5. There is so much natural beauty and abundant wildlife.

My songwriting is often inspired by natural elements of the Territory. Darwin has tropical beaches, palm trees and an array of birds and wildlife. A short drive away are waterfalls and swimming holes, and of course Kakadu National Park. We also have crocodiles, so swimming is only for the brave. But watching the sunset light up the sky from the beach each night is a bit of a daily ritual for Darwinites!

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Keep up to date with Crystal Robins via her Facebook page here.

For more of our My CountryTown series, check out here.