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  • Grass Dancin W/ Cowboy Hat

    My son is changing from boys traditional to grass this August. He wants to use a cowboy hat instead of a roach. I've seen this a few times around at different powwows, and I was hoping to get some feed back from grass dancers on what you think about this. I think it's cool because he is doing it in honor of his Great Grandpa Harry who was one of our tribe's original, real, Indian cowboy.

    Also, if you could offer up some advice to my son, who is 8 years old, about how he should conduct himself, and how he should "see" himself as a grass dancer. He has his own little "game face" for traditional dancing, but he knows it's different for grass dancing.

    Any advice from you grass dancers out there would get a Wopila Tanka from my son, my family, and myself!
    Ipsica Waci
    Wicahpi Eyoyambya Olowan

  • #2
    I would go with a roach, i have never seen a dancer with a cowboy hat dancing....unless he is just out there hanging around. But when you are dancing you should be in the right clothing.

    although a little kid would probably be cute with the hat.
    There are 2 types of people in the world...
    Really stupid people who think they are smart
    and
    Really smart people who think they are smart.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by billyjoejimbob View Post
      I would go with a roach, i have never seen a dancer with a cowboy hat dancing....unless he is just out there hanging around. But when you are dancing you should be in the right clothing.

      although a little kid would probably be cute with the hat.

      Better have him bring his union card and security pass too.

      I don't wear a roach, never have - and probably never will. They're just not comfortable for me. I see quite a few pictures and even know a few guys who are traditional dancers and wear headgear that is a top hat/ cowboy hat / baseball hat / civil war infantry/cac cap/hat for a foundation and is then built up to look Indian enough for dancing.

      And before someone flips thier lid (hah) about ball caps - they're a pretty common foundation for headdresses made from coyotes/wolves and messy (and even clean) feather bonnets. I think maybe it's more about the implementation of the device that the actual device itself. If jingle dress dancers can carry fans as big as their torsos and fancy dancers can wear cds and Xmas tinsel and traditional dancers can wear bustles made from faked eagke feathers - then i think maybe JUST MAYBE that your boy could get away with a cowboy hat.

      Maybe bead a headband though - a beaded brim looks pretty choh too.

      As for his game face - I think the best grass dancers are always smiling. I've never seen a tough guy that i thought was in balance.

      Good luck to your boy!
      Mii iw keyaa ezhi-ditibiseyaan

      Comment


      • #4
        I don't see a problem with him wearing a cowboy hat at all. I see a lot of younger grass dancers wearing only bandannas on their head so I really don't see the difference.

        Personally, I like the pesa...the feathers and/or feather boings just look awesome!! I don't think a cowboy hat would flow as well with the outfit, but as for having a problem with him wearing one...nope...none whatsoever.

        Maybe you could get him interested in those old hat and boot specials they sometimes host? Those are too keen!
        I think everyone on this rez is addicted to Harry Potter...lol...

        Comment


        • #5
          I'll bet if he starts to win first at every powwow....


          all the other little boys in your area will also begin to wear cowboy hats.
          Powwows will continue to evolve in many directions. It is inevitable.

          Comment


          • #6
            This could be a new experiment. How long will it take for your son to make ALL grass dance evolve into cowboys hat wearers.

            how about a roach ON a cowboy hat!!!
            There are 2 types of people in the world...
            Really stupid people who think they are smart
            and
            Really smart people who think they are smart.

            Comment


            • #7
              Actually, this isn't anything new at all. Funny how things seem to make a full circle.
              Back in the day when certain Tribes would hold a Rodeo and a powwow the old cowboys would head over to the powwow and dance. They didn't necessarily have the "full" outfit-- they wore whatever they had to have a good time. Cowboy hat and beadwork included!!!
              Also, check out the "Cowboy Dance" in North Dakota

              Comment


              • #8
                This would be considered a major part of his outfit.

                Some powwows stipulate that if - the dancer drops any MAJOR part of his outfit , they would be disqualified for that round.

                Seems to me that a cowboy hat would fall off quite easily.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Well, our family isn't to much concerned about contesting only. My son is always been more about doing things for the honor of this or that relative, so we are totally going with the cowboy hat. And as Sookout says....we all agree that the beaded band and rim, matching hs outfit will definitely be CHOH!!!!

                  I was thinking about what you all were saying, and I think that what most of you are trying to say is that our traditions aren't so rigid and strict, and that we should all be free to honor old traditions, and introduce new aspects. If we were so concerned about what is right and acceptable (like I was), then we wouldn't have all the awesome new styles of dance and use of different, new clothes and other materials. Some of the tribes that do use Roaches, wouldn't because its not always part of their own heritage. Our family had and has cowboys, old time, real cowboys, and rodeo cowboys both. We also have dancers and singers, and I think we should all support and honor each other, no matter what what we choose to participate in. I'm really really happy I asked all you "experts" (aye!!), and I'm equaly happy you guys shared some really good advice and your opinions!

                  Doksa, look for the little Oglala Lakota boy from The Ridge out there dancing with his Choh cowboy hat on...and MAYBE, with his little boots, even! Josh!!

                  WOpila Tanka
                  Ipsica Waci
                  Wicahpi Eyoyambya Olowan

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I think he can wear whatever he wants. I have seen dancers wearing cowboy hats, including one at our local powwow that had a killer beaded buckskin shirt and beaded buckskin pants. He looked SHARP! And I had to look twice and twice again cuz he looked just like my ex.

                    And all the better for your boy since his grandpa wore one too!
                    ...it is what it is...

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      headgear

                      I agree that he should be able to wear darned near whatever makes you guys happy.

                      I am aware of this woman who wears her cloth dress and a big, HUGE, 7th Calvary hat. She looks great.

                      Initially, I was thinking, "what's up with this?" "Why would she wear such a thing?" "Where would an Indian even GET a 7th Calvary hat?"

                      Then it dawned on me.

                      Cool!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Lakota Wiyan View Post
                        Well, our family isn't to much concerned about contesting only. My son is always been more about doing things for the honor of this or that relative, so we are totally going with the cowboy hat. And as Sookout says....we all agree that the beaded band and rim, matching hs outfit will definitely be CHOH!!!!

                        I was thinking about what you all were saying, and I think that what most of you are trying to say is that our traditions aren't so rigid and strict, and that we should all be free to honor old traditions, and introduce new aspects. If we were so concerned about what is right and acceptable (like I was), then we wouldn't have all the awesome new styles of dance and use of different, new clothes and other materials. Some of the tribes that do use Roaches, wouldn't because its not always part of their own heritage. Our family had and has cowboys, old time, real cowboys, and rodeo cowboys both. We also have dancers and singers, and I think we should all support and honor each other, no matter what what we choose to participate in. I'm really really happy I asked all you "experts" (aye!!), and I'm equaly happy you guys shared some really good advice and your opinions!

                        Doksa, look for the little Oglala Lakota boy from The Ridge out there dancing with his Choh cowboy hat on...and MAYBE, with his little boots, even! Josh!!

                        WOpila Tanka
                        Who's Josh?

                        Josh!!!


                        I think your son will look great. And make sure you put a beaded or quilled hatband on it!


                        Why must I feel like that..why must I chase the cat?


                        "When I was young man I did some dumb things and the elders would talk to me. Sometimes I listened. Time went by and as I looked around...I was the elder".

                        Mr. Rossie Freeman

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          i think it would be awesome 2 see ur lil guy wear the cowboy hat!! my son wants 2 wear my old army hat with his grass dance outfit.. and i've been trying 2 work something out with that... i'll be lookin out for a little grass dancer gettin down w/ a cowboy hat on! woo hoo

                          You can't double team a Triple Threat



                          The Black Hills are NOT for sale



                          ps. i'm still the greatest~n i'm prettylol

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I agree with everyone on this board. Now I am a single mom with a 8 year old as a grassdancer. Although my son earned his roach and feathers in every way. I never really thought a roach should be worn just 'because' or because that's what grassdancers should have. There were certain things and ways that had to be done before he could wear one. He does belong to a grass society, elders have sat in lodge for him, and he was initiated in a proper way to the arena as a grass dancer, plus other thing. His roach was given to him by an elder, same with the feathers. So since your son is still young, it would be great to have him honor his elders with the hat. Mine danced for years before he was given the rights to wear a roach. I had a beaded headband for him that he just wore. Another cool thing would be to have a beaded band around his hat that matched to colors of his regalia. Actually my lil one likes to sing and dance in his cowboy hat, usually intertribals or when its really really hot outside. So let him have fun, I am sure he'll enjoy grassdance too.

                            As far as conducting himself, its no different than when he dances traditional. As long as he respects the arena, others dancers, and elders he'll have no problem. I always let my little one go, he ended up watching all the other grass dancers literally looking at their footwork while they danced next to him. The best way for them to learn is by watching. Plus I taught my lil one everything about grassdancing, since he didn't have a dad around. It takes alot of questions and research as he now knows the history, where its from, why there are grassdancers, what the moves represent, etc. Then I had to teach him bout the different styles, how to dance each style, how to listen to the drum, etc.

                            But all this takes alot of time, don't expect to know everything in one day. I still am learning stuff to teach my lil one. Keep him out there, in the arena, and make sure he knows its fun, not stressful.
                            You have crossed my path, You will never be forgotten......


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                            • #15
                              From Fort Totten North Dakota.....

                              He wore a cowboy hat and boots and carried a huge hoop.....Nobody danced or dances like him.....Mr. Ray Merrick Jr.

                              Hoka! Be original and creative at the same time.....
                              "She also has a very soft skin. The only trouble with snake women is they copulate with horses, which makes them strange to me. She say's she doesn't. That's why I call her "Doesn't Like Horses". But, of course, she's lying."

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