Recording Studio: Inuit Music

Recording Studio: Traditional Inuit music was used as entertainment, as a game, as a means of story telling, as well as during certain ceremonies.  The music is mainly based on the sound of drums and the singing and chanting of Inuit themselves.

Recording Studio: Pisiit

Pisiit songs tell of things that have happened in the past. They are expressions of events or times, a history that is put into song.  Pisiit helps to explain how we got to where we are. They are the songs that sing to tradition and traditional ways, they are a living tradition. They are sung only with the drum as the dominant instrument, modern Pisiit songs do not allow a guitar.

Recording Studio: Ayaya

Ayaya songs are personal stories put into song form. Ayaya is an expression of longing.  Every Inuit person had a personal song, something they had memorized for feast time, a time of gathering to sing, laugh and eat. There was no use of paper and pen to write down your song – it was locked away in your head and you had to be ready to sing it when your name was called.

Recording Studio: Iviutiit

Songs are songs of embarrassment. They are meant to make fun of others. Inuit people do not express anger. It is believed that anger is meant only for very small children and as one grows anger is expressed through an Iviutiit song – the funnier your song about another person, the harder people laughed, the less chance the bad spirits had to come into your home and your heart and take root and take over.

Recording Studio: Katajjaq

Katajjaq (throat singing) is performed almost exclusively by women, it requires years of training and practice to achieve its characteristic “sound.” Two women stand face to face at close proximity; the voice of one establishes the beat, and the voice of the other, the melody. Imitating nature – the sound of a river or a sea-gull for instance – singers make guttural, breathy, and humming noises from their chests and throats. Many women learned the art of throat singing from their mothers or grandmothers. Usually, girls begin singing together when they are very young.