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Old 02-02-2004, 06:39 PM   #1
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What straight dance is to me

Well i was taught about straight dance from my uncles. THe late browning Pipestem and others like Henry Collins and Tim Grant (omaha). And as far as i know the dance is supposed to be an interpretation of the songs. There are no songs out there telling u to look for rabbit tracks but they do tell of taunting the enimy. You dance straight up cause you are proud to have won your battle and now your braggin in a sence. That staff is supposed to be used and not jus held cause it was an honor to get it. It was also used for pokin at dead bodies and dont forget about stakin yourself to the ground. If a dancer goes in circles then he may have a reason for it. Jus ask him. Trot songs as from what im told and from translating them are a type of memorial song that was sung for the dead warriors upon their return home. They powerful songs with powerful meanings and ther is maybe one that refers to horses. straight dancin is a dance that is tribally specific too. The Osages have their own way of dancin as the Poncas have their way. Its always better to see different styles out in the areana than to jus see a bunch of robots all out there doin the same thing.
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Old 02-02-2004, 08:22 PM   #2
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Very good post. I knew (KNOW) all the men you mentioned (except Grant)) I do not know how or what people think during competition, but at InloNshka , hethushka or just a tail dance If you know what the song says it is much easier to dance. Most have words, all have stories that go beyond the words. I do not dance to Sioux songs, etc, I don't know what they are saying.
That is why southern songs are for this dance.
WE are told The trot dance songs are also called wounded warrior songs. You dance in that particular step like you are coming home, beat up. It is not really trotting. They are the only songs you can dance backward on ( few people do it anymore). I have had folks say no you cannot dance backward, well you can on those,only on those... (have not seen it at inlonshka for many years)
At Ponca I saw it many times, Uncle Owen Walkingsky, grandpa Abe Conklin, J. Steele, these men knew straight dancing. Today I think things are changing too fast.
Too few people understand what this dance comes from, or why they wear the articles they wear,... otters, roach, even how to wear scalp feathers. last year I was at a dance, they interviewed the head straight dancer (a cherokee guy) nice fellow, decent dancer, they asked him how he is inspired.. he tells the paper, and they print it "I am looking for a animal, I am bringing game home...." I wanted to puke. Someone will read this and think it supposed to be that way....
again, good points , Angelo. Dance with passion.
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Last edited by storm; 02-03-2004 at 09:09 PM..
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Old 05-07-2004, 08:40 PM   #3
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Thanks for the info

Thank-you for the information that was given about straight dancing. I was curious on how the style of dancing originated and who is allowed to dance this certain style, is it just the southern tribes or if someone from a northern tribe can dance this stlye of someones teaches them???
Also, do the veterns have a certain way of dancing or is it their own style of dancing that they choose??


Are you still singing with your uncle's drum group or have you gone a separt way??

If any one has any information, can you please post it??

Last edited by dakotaproud7; 05-07-2004 at 09:17 PM.. Reason: I wasn't finished my post
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Old 05-08-2004, 11:57 AM   #4
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This was the best thread I've read in powwows.com. The most informative and I consider myself lucky to have read this. But in a couple of days I bet you this thread will disappear and only we'll be the fortunate ones who've been enlightened.
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Old 05-08-2004, 02:31 PM   #5
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What Straight dance is to me !

In regards to the 1st & 2nd post. Are you speaking for all tribes or just the Ponca's? Each southern tribe such as Otoe/Missouria, Kaw, Pawnee and I think Tonkawa have their own songs pertaining to each tribes customs and way's.
I know of two that do not put their dance stick to the ground nor do they dance backwards on any song. That's why I asked if your were speaking in general. I don't mean any disrespect just asking.
Why do straight dancers, on honor beats and at any given moment when they feel it, bend down as they are looking at someone or something. I have heard many times that straight dancers do dance straight as you said and I hate to say it but I just walk off and shake my head.
The Distinguish Gentlemen you both mentioned danced very well and bent/leaned forward as though they were looking for something. I too, had the prividege of knowing these men and was able to talk and visit with them.
I agree with the point of being staked to the ground but I was never told that any or anyone made a complete circle, maybe they did but like I said, I wasn't ever told that in all my years. Any comments "pawtoeman"?
Again, I mean no disrespect to you saying's or writing's, just questions, along with my 1 1/2 cent.
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Old 05-09-2004, 02:14 AM   #6
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In responce to Uppit. All the tribes mentioned had and have the Hethuska(Endonska, Inlonska, Eruska) what ever you call it. It is all linked cause each tribe had to recieve it from somewhere to perform it. But like thw kiowa O'ha ma they added there own flair to the dance. One tribe might do something that another tribe does not, like the Poncas at there dance go clock wise, but at the Osage dances they go counter-clock wise.

I can not speck for the Pawnees or the Otoes, I have never been to there dances. But I hope this post helps some. If not thanks for your comments. And a thank you goes out to Storm and Angelo for there fine post...
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Old 05-10-2004, 10:29 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by travelingmocs
In responce to Uppit. All the tribes mentioned had and have the Hethuska(Endonska, Inlonska, Eruska) what ever you call it. It is all linked cause each tribe had to recieve it from somewhere to perform it. But like thw kiowa O'ha ma they added there own flair to the dance. One tribe might do something that another tribe does not, like the Poncas at there dance go clock wise, but at the Osage dances they go counter-clock wise.

I can not speck for the Pawnees or the Otoes, I have never been to there dances. But I hope this post helps some. If not thanks for your comments. And a thank you goes out to Storm and Angelo for there fine post...
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You are ALL right.

I have recently interviewed leaders of all the man dance tribes (including the 3 Osage districts - minus the Omaha and Comanche).

In reviewing the tapes I have learned when at White Eagle you do it their way, likewise with the other man dance tribes.

Each tribe is "extremely proud" of their tribal man dance traditions and will be offended if you impose your own tribal dance styles in their man dance ceremonials.

Am I preaching to the Choir? *L
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Old 05-10-2004, 10:43 AM   #8
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There are questions and problem created by the nature of these cyber discussions. YOu have to be so brief, and sometimes what I leave out I think is common knowledge, and the next post asks about it. Like dancing backwards/sideways a few steps on trot songs..I believe to be Ponca style as they are who taught me that.
Of course there a general forms of straight dance and then each is influenced by the specific tribe. I guess i have attended and/or danced at every ceremony and its derivitives in OK!, Ponca,Pawnee, Oto, Osage, Sac and Fox,Shawnee etc.and countless tail dances...many folks down here visit back and forth like that. WHO ME is right you just learn how each group does its thing...
Only at powow does it get confusing cause there is no ceremonial structure.
uppit:The looking down on honor beats is a part of the dance, I think it is universal. and been going on all my life..but planting the tail stick and going in circles is less than 25 years old!
Since this dance is all over the US now, the farther from home the more it will change!
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Old 05-11-2004, 02:00 AM   #9
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I want to thank all of you for your comments. I really do appreciate the civil communication.

I learned the dance many years ago. Some of my relations helped me with my clothes. I just learned by watching many of my elders such as Woojie, Charlie Chibitty, Henry Collins, Abe Conklin, John Hughes( my Uncle Arthur said they weren't related), Harry Sky, Francis Sweetwater, Sagana Grant, Roughfaces and many others. These gentlemen aren't of the same Nations but they are all great dancers.

We are a Society of dancers and gentlemen (hopefully). Most every Straight dancer that I have ever meet are very curtious and are very humble gentlemen. The families that sit with and behind these Gentlemen are the greatest.

The only ceremonials I've ever attended was at Pawhuska district and the Apache Formal in Lawton, OK. The rest of my dancing is at Powwows mostly in OK. I have traveled to Tx, Ks and danced here in MO. I once even went to Wolf Point/Ft Peck area Res., that year I attended a Native Amer. Ed. Association Conf.. I enjoy the dance and will dance 'til I no longer can make it around the Drum. Thank you for your time and patience.
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Old 11-12-2007, 04:25 PM   #10
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some people should reread this

i was on some other threads and i think some people askin questions should just come here to this thread, lol. remember straight dance is tribal spacific, but its also how u as the individual dancer interprets the dance. even with triditions attached you should enjoy what was left to us from the old ones and just have fun and dance.
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Old 11-12-2007, 08:17 PM   #11
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Thumbs up

This is a very good thread, Two thumbs way way up. LOL!!!! :)
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Old 05-06-2008, 01:14 PM   #12
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