Monday, October 11, 2010

Drums and Hearts Pounding in South Dakota Today!

Disagreement surrounds Columbus Day, just like disagreement surrounds everything else these days.  The Native Americans have a good point when they take their could Columbus "discover" America when the Native Americans were already living here.  Kudos to South Dakota for celebrating "Native American Day" today instead of Columbus Day. 

Crazy Horse Mountain
There's no place I'd rather be today than at the Crazy Horse Memorial as the South Dakota Symphony Maestro Delta David Gier conducts a 35-member Chamber Orchestra and the Porcupine Singers, led by Melvin Young Bear of the Pine Ridge Reservation.  Traditional Lakota drums will beat along with other Euro-classical orchestral instruments.  Now, how positively rich and inspiring would that have to be! 

The statuesque mountain carving, the prayerful sacredness of the music echoing through the hills, and the Native American energies will have to reach up to the very heights of heaven and stir the Great Spirit into a pow-wow of his own. 

Each year the day includes educational programs for the public, Native American singers, dancers, artists and storytellers, hands-on activities for children, a "blast" on the mountain carving (weather permitting), and a free buffalo stew lunch for all visitors.  Man alive, would I love to be there!

Today's Trivia:  For the Native American, song is traditionally the chief means of communicating with the supernatural powers, such as for the bringing of rain, success in battle, or curing of the sick.  Singing is nearly always accompanied at least by drums.  Various types of drums and rattles are the chief percussion instruments.  Wind instruments are mainly flutes and whistles.