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Alaska Native Artist - Accentuating Tlingit Traditions
Updated: 14 hours 40 min ago

Bernie Worrell “Walks Into the Forest”

Fri, 06/24/2016 - 2:23pm

Bernie Worrell – rehearsing with Native-inspired jazz funk band “Khu.eex” — June 2016

Bernie Worrell “walked into the forest” today.  Pretty much a whirling wizard since he began playing piano at 3 years old, It’s hard to describe the feelings of loss.  His musical influence reached vast and wide; even Stevie Wonder learned new styles of riffs from Bernie.  Yet what I remember most about Bernie was his natural gracious humility.

Bernie Worrell — June 2016

Bernie was our keyboard artist in our Native-inspired jazz funk band “Khu.eex” which was formed in December 2014.  Our first double LP’s will be released during our performances in Seattle (July 9th) and Bellingham (July 10th); little did we know our band and the recordings would be the last musical sounds with Bernie Worrell.

Bernie Worrell and Stanton Moore — rehearsing with the band “Khu.eex” — June 2016

Read more of Bernie Worrell’s musical genius, please check out his website at:  www.bernieworrell.com ——  So many in the musical world will miss you, Mr. Bernie Worrell…!  Big hugs and lots of love to all who knew him and especially to Bernie’s family!

 

Categories: Arts & Culture

Singing Tlingit Songs With Harmonies

Mon, 06/20/2016 - 9:00pm

In the early 70’s I learned the songs from the Mt. St.Elias Dancers in Yakutat, Alaska via Harry K. Bremner, Sr.  As a teenager, I sang with many of the elders at that time.  At the time, I didn’t know they were singing two and sometimes three-part harmonies.  By the early 80’s all those elderly singers were all passed on.  Since then, I have always felt all the songs of the Tlingit need to include harmonies.  In this way, we can truly hear and feel the meaning of the songs.  The many drums in the dance groups of today is okay for those songs that just have vocables, however, the songs that have actual verses with meaning and history, need to be listened to, and what better way than the beauty of harmony.  In this way, the beauty leads the way to retention of the story and the tune.

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For nearly 15 years, my sister Irene Jean Lampe has taken it upon herself to learn the Tlingit songs of our T’akDeinTaan Clan songs.  Like Chilkat weaving has served me well, I believe her learning the songs is what carried her through some very tough times in her life.

Here’s an example of a song composed by one of our clan relatives John K. Smith.  One early evening in a moment of spontaneous combustion, Irene sang the melody and I sang the harmony in the lobby of the Walter Soboleff Building in the presence of our cousin, Miranda Belarde-Lewis.

Categories: Arts & Culture

My Father’s Day

Mon, 06/20/2016 - 3:22pm

Asiatic lilies and 5 red roses grace the headstone of my parent’s graves; William and Irene Lampe — June 2016

A few weeks before my father passed in December 2008, he requested that when I visit his grave, I put 5 red roses in the vase.  I asked why?  He told me:  “In WWII, 4 of my childhood friends were blown up in a tank; we all grew up together, we were best of friends.  I would have been amongst them in that tank had I passed the qualifications of joining the army; I was 1/2 inch too short…”

For Father’s Day this year, I placed 5 red roses to his grave.  In honor of my Mother, I added the fragrant, Asiatic Lily.

Alone in the afternoon misty rain, I stood wondering if I had ever visited graves alone before:  No.

The headstone of my maternal grandparent’s: Juan and Mary Sarabia — June 2016

 

Categories: Arts & Culture

Video Clip of Clarissa’s Chilkat Mask Dancing Celebration 2016

Sun, 06/12/2016 - 9:17am

Clarissa Rizal’s Chilkat mask in the making; no eyeballs were woven for the allowance of the black warp to be cut so the wearer of the mask can see out — April 2016

Initially I wove this Chilkat mask with the intention of putting it in the Stonington Gallery’s show of Northwest Coast masks which opened on June 2nd; however, due to attending to immediate health issues this past Spring and other significant deadlines, I did not complete the mask in time.  Yet, I was determined to have the mask at least dance during Celebration, so during my few hours manning our booth at the Art Market, I finished the second part of the mask which was the headdress.

Click on the video clip (below) showing the dancing of the mask/headdress during David Boxley, Sr.’s dance group singing a great song and beat of their Exit song during Celebration 2016, June 11th.  Thank you, Stephanie Maddock for the video clip!

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Categories: Arts & Culture

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