Browsing: Indigenous

Joséphine Bacon is a major ambassador for Innu culture and a committed author, narrator and producer on the Indigenous arts scene. She gives a tremendous voice to her territory and inhabitants in few words. Territory: Centrepiece for Poetry “My wealth is called a salmon, my wealth is called a caribou, my fire is called a black spruce…” Ma richesse s’appelle [My wealth is called] highlights the importance of territory in Joséphine Bacon’s works, a vision deeply etched in the Indigenous mind; each life is related to the earth in which we live, where everyone must live harmoniously. Bacon hails from…

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Musique nomade promotes emerging Indigenous musicians from Quebec and Canada regardless of style or nation while seeking fair cultural representation within the music industry. Supporting talented and vigorous emerging artists, this non-profit organization has a positive impact on professional development production and workshops in communities. The organization also wishes to ensure the survival of traditional music through digital media and to encourage cultural exchange. Like the professionals from Wapikoni mobile, created in 2011 by film director and activist Manon Barbeau, Music nomade’s professionals visit communities in remote areas to meet their young people. How do they achieve this? The directors’…

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The powwow is among the most vivacious cultural practices of the North American Indigenous community. A collective activity, it also has a socio-political aspect. The combination makes the powwow (also spelt “pow-wow” and “pow wow”) an excellent path to arrive at an understanding of Indigenous relational identity – and a platform from which to watch First Nations make their stand. Be aware that at the end of the processions, there are drum circles and traditional dances. Catchy rhythms from groups like A Tribe Called Red take all the space. This trio’s two last albums were part of the Polaris lists.…

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The awards ceremony of the Indigenous Music Awards is a celebration of First Nations creativity. It is also an important event in the larger program of the Manito Ahbee Festival of Winnipeg, which is named after a sacred site for all peoples in the west part of the Whiteshell area of Manitoba. In Ojibwe, Manito Ahbee means “the place where the Creator sits.” The name of Manitoba finds its origin in this special place. The Manito Ahbee Festival, whose 13th edition just ended, celebrates Indigenous arts, music and culture at large. It presents international powwows, a conference on international Indigenous…

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Now residing in Montreal, Inuit singer-songwriter, film director and activist Elisapie will release The Ballad of the Runway Girl at the end of summer. About 30 concerts are already planned in connection with this new album. Elisapie launches her cross-province tour in Lavaltrie and travels to Val-d’Or. Montreal welcomes her on Sept. 27. Elisapie’s fourth album was inspired by the life of Willie Thrasher, an Inuit singer. “Sent to a residential school in the south, deprived of his language and traditional lifestyle, Willie Thrasher did not have an easy life, but this fighter gave me force and influenced my work,”…

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Singer-songwriter Buffy Sainte-Marie is a trailblazer, the first Indigenous musician to come to prominence in Canada. Her first album, It’s My Way!, was released by Vanguard Records in 1964. Last November, Medicine Songs, her 19th album, was released to critical acclaim. It contains some new material, like You Got to Run (Spirit of the Wind), in which she is joined on vocals by well-known throat singer Tanya Tagaq. Almost all the other songs have new arrangements. Overall, Sainte-Marie continues to have a remarkable career, enriched (although commercially hindered at one point) by her educator/outreach work and activism on behalf of…

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Last April, First Nations musician, composer and activist Jeremy Dutcher released his first album, Wolastoqiyik Lintuwakonawa. Bridging traditional music, pop and classical, it pays tribute to his beloved roots in the Wolastoqiyik reserve where he grew up. Can his style be described as Indigenous pop? “I prefer not to be labelled,” says the 27-year-old classically-trained tenor. “I’m more than an First Nation singer. I see myself as metamorphosing from pop to traditional music. A hybrid, if you like.” Dutcher is keen to point out that his pieces were written to be as accessible as possible to a young audience.…

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