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Forum Home - Go Back > General > Native Life Performing for a living: Educating or Selling out? Performing for a living: Educating or Selling out?

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Old 08-11-2013, 07:52 PM   #1
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Performing for a living: Educating or Selling out?

Here is a article that addresses the subject of Natives who perform full time. Is this a good thing or a bad thing?

You decide.

Do the Sweetwaters blur the lines of Native American culture? - Page 1 - News - Denver - Westword
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Old 08-11-2013, 10:53 PM   #2
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I posted this:

I don't know the Sweetwaters at all. I do know that the final sentence of the story describes them as "entertainers." Given that, their only measurement criteria should be whether or not they are entertaining.


If some folks, Native or not, find their acts offensive? Then don't frequent their show.


Any bets that the loudest Indian whiners here -- and elsewhere -- have been paid to perform during their lives? What the Hell do you think a contest powwow is?
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Old 08-12-2013, 12:01 AM   #3
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I don't think I should say anything about The Sweetwater Family as we are sort of related and even then, what they do is none of my business.
I will say this in regard to Zeke's post. I agree and I have taken my share of contest money, and been on more than my share of newspapers. I'll also say , and I know there are many that have done this, If someone calls me up and says "hey , I got this gig that will pay each of us $xxx.xx to come and dress out and jam a couple songs , are you in" ? When it's all said and done , I'll have some bucks !Right or wrong it will happen. I think if I don't do it , the next guy will !
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Old 08-12-2013, 04:34 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WhoMe View Post
Here is a article that addresses the subject of Natives who perform full time. Is this a good thing or a bad thing?

You decide.

Do the Sweetwaters blur the lines of Native American culture? - Page 1 - News - Denver - Westword
That leads to the question - do NDN's want to be recognised better as who they are in the eyes of non natives or do NDN's rather like to stay away from non NDN's generally? - I think they have a great selfesteem performing and showing pride in a good sense - in who one is - by just doing this adhoc performance - can't be wrong.
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Old 08-12-2013, 07:46 AM   #5
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Setting aside the facing painting and playing Indian for the moment....

I guess I'm having trouble seeing were we draw the line between selling beadwork, silver or other visual arts and paid performers. I get that there are spiritual powers associated with and invoked by dance and song. But there are with other arts too.

If we're going to have problems with people making money off our cultures then we're going to have assimilate. I don't see how we can damn the dancer who preforms an Native dance for money and not a cook who makes wojapi and fry bread for sale. Are we going to have hordes of unemployed Native studies and language instructors roaming Indian Country? They all make money off our cultures. In fact, please tell me what activity is separate from the culture/cultures in which we're embedded. I see this as no different from a traditional artist developing a set guidelines about what items he/she will and will not make.

We've already done this. We may not have viewed the exchange through Adam Smith's eyeglasses, but we have always gifted and supported those who preformed various functions in our societies. The first order of life is the support and protection of our relatives. We've "paid" for our own cultures by structuring our societies to permit people who fulfill roles not directly involved in production of food to survive.

Last edited by OLChemist; 08-12-2013 at 07:47 AM.. Reason: Not all words spellcheck likes are created equal.
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Old 08-12-2013, 10:23 AM   #6
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There are Native performers that make a living on the road year round. There are top powwow dancers that do local shows and go on tours when they are available. Native performers are seen at tourist destinations like the Black Hills, the Grand Canyon, Niagra Falls, the Great Smokey Mountains, etc. Several performers even live in Europe as Native performers!

During festivals and performance venues, lot's of performers are given the option to face paint, pose for photographs, sell Native arts and crafts and cook Native foods as a part of their performance contract - and get paid extra for doing so.

But like any other artform, there are different degrees of excellence in Native groups and individual performers. In my opinion there are some groups that give inaccurate information during their performances and other things that invite criticism from the Native community. But there are also groups that rehearse, are great ambassadors and conduct themselves professionally when they travel and perform in some of the finest concert halls in the world!
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Old 08-13-2013, 11:16 AM   #7
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I guess you gotta do what you gotta do to feed your kids and keep the lights on. some areas that people do this there is not to much work around there.same thing at indian city in Anadarko dance prefomances everyday. they get paid and make tips off pictures. its fine its just dancing its not ceremonial in any way. that's how fancy dance started anyways cause the old school dances was not flashy enough. so whats wrong with it? nothing to me. sure your always gonna have crazy people that don't know what they are doing or trying to explain things wrong or have no idea what they are talking about, just gotta smile and go on and just worry about your own family
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Old 08-13-2013, 12:15 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OLChemist View Post
Setting aside the facing painting and playing Indian for the moment....

I guess I'm having trouble seeing were we draw the line between selling beadwork, silver or other visual arts and paid performers. I get that there are spiritual powers associated with and invoked by dance and song. But there are with other arts too.

If we're going to have problems with people making money off our cultures then we're going to have assimilate. I don't see how we can damn the dancer who preforms an Native dance for money and not a cook who makes wojapi and fry bread for sale. Are we going to have hordes of unemployed Native studies and language instructors roaming Indian Country? They all make money off our cultures. In fact, please tell me what activity is separate from the culture/cultures in which we're embedded. I see this as no different from a traditional artist developing a set guidelines about what items he/she will and will not make.

We've already done this. We may not have viewed the exchange through Adam Smith's eyeglasses, but we have always gifted and supported those who preformed various functions in our societies. The first order of life is the support and protection of our relatives. We've "paid" for our own cultures by structuring our societies to permit people who fulfill roles not directly involved in production of food to survive.
Yes Indeed!! The damage was done when the first performers went off to the Wild West Shows over a Hundred Years Ago!!

I think what some get riled about this whole issue is one of the greatest Human shortcomings: Envy
I hear people tear down others cause they only contest powwow and travel for the summer.
That is a Hard road that powwow trail, you certainly don't get rich doing it!! I don't see those "Professionals" Driving Huge motorhomes and staying at the best Hotels that money can buy LOL NOPE!

Ceremony is for the spiritual
Powwow is and always has been for the entertainment and education of the public and for us the fellowship and the joy of competing!

If your spirits need refreshing go to a ceremony!
Otherwise dance till you can no longer dance cause you can't or your Dead!!!
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Old 08-27-2013, 11:59 AM   #9
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i see this family at alot of powwows....

i dont care.....its not like they are getting rich.....they make a few bucks for gas and food and have a good time.........i dont think they misrepresent us that i know of

they dont do ceremonies that i know of...just exhibitions....when i was a kid dr chuck ross had me and my brother exhibition dancing at things like this......we didnt get paid though but im sure we wouldnt have.minded
the pueblo tribes have some dancers that do exhibitions at pueblo cultural center or at the kachina inn motel, they do more "social" dances and hoop dance so who cares......as long as theyre one of us

joe tohonnie has a crown dance "troupe" and guess what.....some kids that never would otherwise see outside white mountain did themselves some travelling and saw what some other places have to offer......GOOD FOR THEM......and for this joe t is heavily criticized

as far as THIS family goes though i see them at non-contest powwows all the time......and to me that shows some integrity because we all know indians that wont even pull the regalia out of the trunk to look at it unless there was a chance they may win $500
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Old 05-27-2017, 09:20 PM   #10
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Definition of Money

In the cosmos, the concept of money is officially defined as "crystallized power."

For example, if you dream about receiving cash/money, the cosmos is saying you are receiving crystalized power. The same applies in awake life.

Pertaining to this thread topic: since the official cosmic definition of money is "crystallized power," then the person who posted the question is inquiring whether it is ok to receive crystallized power for performing.

Hope this helps!
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Old 05-27-2017, 10:03 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toltec Nagual View Post
In the cosmos, the concept of money is officially defined as "crystallized power."

For example, if you dream about receiving cash/money, the cosmos is saying you are receiving crystalized power. The same applies in awake life.

Pertaining to this thread topic: since the official cosmic definition of money is "crystallized power," then the person who posted the question is inquiring whether it is ok to receive crystallized power for performing.

Hope this helps!
It doesn't ! Welcome to powwows.calm. On a more personal note , your hocus pocus posts are crap ! Nobody wants those types of posts here. This is for social gathering discussions , not spiritual bull chit ! Thanks. Oh yeah , you posted something in another thread that sounded pretty racist. We don't like that here. Just a friendly warning !
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They say blood is thicker than water ! Now maple syrup is thicker than blood , so are pancakes more important than family ?

There are "Elders" and there are "Olders". Being the second one doesn't make the first one true !

Somebody is out there somewhere, thinking of you and the impact you made in their life.
It's not me....I think you're an idiot !





There's a chance you might not like me ,

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