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Old 05-20-2004, 08:12 PM   #1
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Question for Pow wow's-using a rattle or any noise maker

When at a Pow wow sitting in the otter ring is it apropreate to use a rattle or clapper sticks to keep up with the beat of the drumming? I have never seen anyone do this but I often see the vendors selling theses items and wonder if anyone ever useses them out side the circle to "play" along with the drumming.
Does any one know if this is forbiddin or does it even matter?
Do you have to be in the circle to use them or not?

Tell mesa whatcha think about it.
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Old 05-21-2004, 10:44 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Defthong
When at a Pow wow sitting in the otter ring is it apropreate to use a rattle or clapper sticks to keep up with the beat of the drumming? I have never seen anyone do this but I often see the vendors selling theses items and wonder if anyone ever useses them out side the circle to "play" along with the drumming.
Does any one know if this is forbiddin or does it even matter?
Do you have to be in the circle to use them or not?

Tell mesa whatcha think about it.
What is a otter ring?
If you mean outer ring...That is for women singers usually. And I have never ever anywhere seen rattles at the drum for POWOW. That would be freaky goofy dumborama stuff.
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Old 05-21-2004, 11:10 AM   #3
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Hey Storm, you gotta come up to the Northeast powwoWs. Rattles galore!!! And Im not talking about Iroquois tribe who ACTUALLY use them in their songs. Im talking powwows. I have many wrecked tapes of drums because some wacko with a rattle was standing their shaking, not even in time with the drum in some cases!

This usually happens at some PA dances, and than up into MA and NH and especially Maine. They will say its part of their culture.

There was a lady that gave us $20 once becuase she "wanted to dance with her drum (handdrum)" She said "I wont beat it or anything I just want to dance with it"

Sure whatever.
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Old 05-21-2004, 10:58 PM   #4
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thanks

thanks for the reply but yes I ment outter ring as in the circle outside the dance area where people sit and watch. not in the area of the drums.

also far away from the drums so that it doesnt effect the drumming.

I dont think it makes any difference but that is why I am asking here. just in case.
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Old 05-21-2004, 11:48 PM   #5
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If you haven't seen it.. then there is a reason why. No, it is not how rattles were intended to be used.

If you want to rattle along with the drums.. then get a tape or cd and do it at home... or go to a tree hugging ~ crystal squeezin' seminar. ;)
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Old 05-22-2004, 01:26 AM   #6
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Defthong

Sitting where you are talking about (as a spectator) if you look around you will often see different folks tapping their foot on the ground or their hand against the arm of their lawn chair in time with the beat of the drum, and you will even see a few folks singing along. I have even seen folks standing in line for an NDN taco 'busting a move' (dancing) to a rocking song. I can't say I have seen anyone shaking a rattle (well except maybe an 'air rattle' to a killer gourd song) to the beat but then I am not sure you could even hear one above the sound of the popguns, Karate kid spin drums and snaps being thrown around by the kids that have just bought them from the vendors.

Just my personal opinion here, but where you are talking about sitting I do not think it would be a problem. I will also say though, that I personally wouldn't and that in my opinion you might get fussed at by the folks sitting around you cause they hear you and not the drum...or they may just move away from you and suddenly you look around and no one is within 20 ft of you at a packed powwow. Not to mention folks walking by and mumbling under their breath and 'lip pointing' at you and then giggling. I won't tell you it is okay to do what you are talking about, because every area has their own ways of doing things and reasons rattles may be used for, but I have seen some stranger things from spectators before so if you must do that...don't be surprised if the things I mentioned above happen.
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Old 05-25-2004, 01:16 PM   #7
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Rattles

The use of Rattles has been discussed on this site a few times according to the Archives.

And Yes, the use of Rattles is an integral part of Native America used by many Tribes from the Atlantic to the Pacific and from the Artic and Tundra to the Rain Forest.

And Yes, this use was in both Ceremonial and Social Music and Dances.

Unfortunatley, most only think of Ceremonial Dances and Stomp Dances using Rattles but that is incorrect thinking.

While it is not as commonly seen and heard today, you can still find both Ceremonial and Social Dances of Tribes that use Rattles to a great degree.

I grew up with Social Dances in the Arena like the Gar Dance, Alligator Dance, Owl Dance, and others with the use of both Drums and Rattles. Not to mention some Social Dances that are accompanied with Rattles only.

It has been metioned by many Exploreres that the Natives of America Danced accompanied with both Drums and Rattles.

Prince Wied writes that Two Ravens (the Warrior in the famous Dog Soldier painting) was perforiming a dance for him accompined by the rhythmic sounds of both Drums and Rattles.

Early recordings (wax and tin cylinders from the 19th Century) also indicate that both Ceremonial and Social Songs and Dances used both Drums and Rattles.
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Old 05-26-2004, 01:47 AM   #8
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Thanks again

Egeryone has given good information here...ya know ya can allways count on this place for some good stuff thanks again all.
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Old 06-15-2004, 05:10 AM   #9
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The last powwow I was at I was dancing during an intertribal and I heard a loud whistle. Needless to say I looked over at the drum and the lead man was looking all over too. Turns out the whistle blower was just a little kid who got a whistle at some Peruvian guys stand. After all was said and done though we told the guy and he agreed to not sell the little dollar whistles at powwows no more. Not really anyone's fault but you can picture the confusion.
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Old 06-16-2004, 09:32 AM   #10
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I find that hand-clapping is a fun and easy way to express yourself to the beat of the drum. Especially when someone like Cozad is singing a southern fancy dance song. You can really get going clapping your hands like a mad-person. You'd just be going a hundred miles an hour clapping your hands like "Special Ed" from Crank Yankers. "YAAAAAAY! Now you go...lady!"
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