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Old 06-09-2009, 09:41 PM   #1
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When are you no longer the "water-boy"?

I was at a dance this past weekend sitting out at the center and noticed a few "young men" out there with us.

So, this got me to thinking..."At what age did/do you begin sitting at the center drum"?

One tiny one even belted out his dads 3rd & 4th lead...I was like keen!
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Old 06-09-2009, 11:58 PM   #2
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Lightbulb Interesting......

I have much respect for singing in general. Southern, Northern and so on.....Looking at it from a Northern perspective it took me a good few years to "evolve" from waterboy status. I was 10 when I actually sat down at a drum, mind you practicing. My Uncles and older Brothers took me under their wing. Well I had several responsibilities and was very curious to say the least. I travelled with them to Powwows but never sat at the drum in public. As much as it drove me crazy not to.....I was fetching coffee and you name it I was doing this and that.....The teasing at times was brutal and by the time I was 13 it seemed to make sense....by that time I was no longer a practice singer. I sat at the drum at powwows and other doings.....The one thing I did learn was that we are always doing just that....learning.....I've sat with men well into there 70's and 80's who shared that value with me......Humility is a big pill to swallow these days, but I like to see younger folks practice that quality. I suppose if things happen too fast, well where is the value or worth? Earning ones keep or the rite to belong or participate is important in the world of singers. I was fortunate to have that oppurtunity and my relatives were patient enough to put up with my spoiled azz.....I like to live that way now and share music with others.....Again it is a process....Some of our young people are not afforded that oppurtunity and at times i've said it comes easy for them.....Off late you see from time to time a cockiness among younger singers.....Sure young people are capable of that (older too), but the pace the world is moving at these days it seems to resonate a lil louder.....So coming easy for them may be an extreme way of looking at it.....Considering the juggling young people have to do today.....The actual love for singing is what counts. Each person has a different experience. There are young people out there who do the best with what they have.....It boils down to encouraging and sustaining the music. Realizing we will always have something to learn when we sit with our Grandfather will open our hearts and minds to those values......
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Old 06-13-2009, 02:24 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Coyot_In_The_House View Post
I have much respect for singing in general. Southern, Northern and so on.....Looking at it from a Northern perspective it took me a good few years to "evolve" from waterboy status. I was 10 when I actually sat down at a drum, mind you practicing. My Uncles and older Brothers took me under their wing. Well I had several responsibilities and was very curious to say the least. I travelled with them to Powwows but never sat at the drum in public. As much as it drove me crazy not to.....I was fetching coffee and you name it I was doing this and that.....The teasing at times was brutal and by the time I was 13 it seemed to make sense....by that time I was no longer a practice singer. I sat at the drum at powwows and other doings.....The one thing I did learn was that we are always doing just that....learning.....I've sat with men well into there 70's and 80's who shared that value with me......Humility is a big pill to swallow these days, but I like to see younger folks practice that quality. I suppose if things happen too fast, well where is the value or worth? Earning ones keep or the rite to belong or participate is important in the world of singers. I was fortunate to have that oppurtunity and my relatives were patient enough to put up with my spoiled azz.....I like to live that way now and share music with others.....Again it is a process....Some of our young people are not afforded that oppurtunity and at times i've said it comes easy for them.....Off late you see from time to time a cockiness among younger singers.....Sure young people are capable of that (older too), but the pace the world is moving at these days it seems to resonate a lil louder.....So coming easy for them may be an extreme way of looking at it.....Considering the juggling young people have to do today.....The actual love for singing is what counts. Each person has a different experience. There are young people out there who do the best with what they have.....It boils down to encouraging and sustaining the music. Realizing we will always have something to learn when we sit with our Grandfather will open our hearts and minds to those values......
Dude that was cool. It appears that way with everything. We spoil our young. We don't want to hurt their feelings nowadays. Our old people tell us that when they were young, people would give them heck and lecture them in very public places, especially if you were a close relative. Now you can't even look at a young person the wrong way and everybody is protecting them. I just think how come nobody remembers that we got talked to harshly like that. We tend to have more respect for our Elders and the teachers as a result. You say really good things.
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Old 06-13-2009, 05:20 PM   #4
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I think it take the right people and group for some to get out of the status of Water Boy. I was one myself and the group that I was water boy "
gopher" never gave me the chance to show my stuff until I left them and got it somewhere esle. I can not stop thinking and blessing them for the opportunity they gave me as a singer.
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Old 06-15-2009, 02:36 PM   #5
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LSS,

There was a time that only older "seasoned" southern singers were allowed to sing at the center drum. During this era, there were no outside drums in southern dance arenas.

Most older noted southern singers today learned to sing in the darkness of a country road after a powwow. Once they honed their skills, they earned their place at the big drum.

Today, we have drum groups. The lead singer determines who sits at their drum and no one has to pay their dues at these drums as a waterboy.




Times have changed.
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