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Canada: Inuit Games and Songs CD

Canada: Inuit Games and Songs CD

  • $1529


From 1974 to 1976, researchers traveled to Arctic villages in Northeastern Canada to record the verbal games and songs of the Inuit people. One example, called katajjait, involves two women standing face to face, producing guttural, animal-like repetitions until someone runs out of breath and concedes in laughter. The lone instrumental track features a Jew’s harp and the tautirut (a violin-like instrument). As stated in the liner notes, this recording preserves the verbal game traditions of the Inuit and has stimulated a renewed interest in Inuit traditional culture.

This recording was supported by grants from the Canada Council for the Arts, the Quebec Ministry of Education, and the University Montreal.

This album is part of the UNESCO Collection of Traditional Music. More than 125 albums are being re-released by Smithsonian Folkways Recordings to make the series publicly available again, including a dozen never-released albums of musical traditions from around the globe.

Track listing

1 Three Katajjait from Baffin Land - 2:09
2 Illukitaaruti (Juggling song) from Baffin Land - 1:30
3 Katajjaq from Hudson Bay - 1:08
4 Two Katajjaq: Baffin Land / Ungava Bay - 1:20
5 About animals: Aqausiq (Ungava Bay) / Song accompanying a string game (Baffin Land) - 0:50
6 Katajjait on "hamma" and its variants: Baffin Land / Hudson Bay / Baffin Land - 1:37
7 Katajjait on "ulu-haa-hamma": Ungava Bay / Baffin Land - 1:37
8 Aqausiq from Baffin Land - 0:55
9 Extracts from thirteen Katajjait (Hudson Bay) - 6:29
10 Two Pisiit from Ungava Bay - 1:27
11 Imitation of the cries of geese (Baffin Land) / Katajjait with geese cries: Hudson Bay / Baffin Land - 2:55
12 Katajjaq from Hudson Bay - 2:09
13 Assalalaa from Baffin Land - 0:46
14 Katajjait melodies: Baffin Land / Hudson Bay / Aqausiq and Katajjait of Annahatak (Ungava Bay) / Aqausiq and Katajjait of Surpaluk (Ungava Bay) - 3:15
15 Brief sung narratives from Baffin Land - 1:53
16 Five Katajjait on "hapapa" from Baffin Land - 1:41
17 Shaman song (Ungava Bay) - 2:27
18 Katajjait sung by a solo voice: Hudson Bay / Hudson Bay / Baffin Land - 1:51
19 Two Aqausiit from Ungava bay - 1:28
20 Three Katajjait from Ungava Bay - 2:40
21 Instrumental pieces from Ungava Bay: Qanirvaluutik (Jew's harp) / "Now go and clean the seal skin" for violin (Tautirut) - 2:04
22 Two Katajjait melodies from Hudson Bay - 2:47


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