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  • Giving to the Drum?

    My family and I were told at our first powwow so many years ago that it is customary to bring a gift for the drum to a powwow. Now, I know that there are gifts given to the drum, and often they get paid as well as donations from the visitors. But, I always bring a box of bottled water or some other drinks to give the the drum. Nothing major in the grand scheme of things, but something I think is important. After all, you try singing for hours at a time and see how dry your throat gets! ;)
    My questions are these: Was I misinformed about giving to the drum, because I don't see many others doing it? And is there a specific method that this should be done?
    I don't interrupt them while singing. I try to have the Arena Director give it to the Drum for me, but sometime he's real busy. When I give the water to the drum, I usually just bring it over, say 'thank you' for what their doing for us, try not to make a big deal out of it, and leave it at that. Sometimes I'll get a handshake and more often a 'thank you' in return. I don't want recognition or anyhting like that, I just want to make sure I'm doing this the right way...

    Scott Lollar
    Trad. Dancer from Dallas, TX
    Scott

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Quick to judge,
    Quick to anger,
    Slow to understand
    Ignorance and prejudice
    And fear walk hand in hand.
    --Neal Peart(from the song Witch Hunt)

  • #2
    giving to the drum

    Well here it is from my understanding of these kinds of things. You give what you can, when you can, for the most part those singers that have any kind of traditional teachings (usually most of them) will appreciate whatever it is that you give. I have been singing since i was 14 and i am now 32 (EW).
    And the usual protocol for giving to the drum is to bring the gift to the drum, whether you want recognition or not, it is always more respectful to bring the gift yourself.
    the way i was taught was to bring the gift to the drum and depending on the intent -- do you intend it only for one singer or the whole group, if for an individual then you would go to that person and give in that way, if meant for the entire group then you would place the gift on the drum (but if its heavy like a case of water, i would just touch the gift to the drum and then hand it to the head singer or the drum keeper)
    Then it is considered polite to shake the hands of the singers who happen to be present at the drum.
    That's what little that i can help you with, i dont know all things and for the most part, drum protocol is the same whether they are southern or northern.

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    • #3
      Keep it up Iknow the Singers Would say Aho many times. You are showing respect for the songs that those singers bring with them to the pow wow. I sing and when someone brings somthing for the Drum it makes us feel really goooood and want sing harder for all the people.


      got a halls

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      • #4
        You have been given some good sound advice. Tobacco is always a good gift to give as well.

        One thing I've notice that has pretty much died out and I see it once in a great while. During competition pow-wows and winners are called up, no one gives part of their winnings to the singing drum of their contest. I've seen Ralph Haymond do this and is the only one I've seen do this in the last 5-7 years. He gave probably something like $50 of his $1200 prize money to the drum who sang his group's contest song.

        It's been known to older people that your competing against the drum and some songs maybe trick songs and others may just be a good song to dance too, making you "bust a move", giving your best moves. In other words, if the drum sings a "kick azzz" song for you during competition, they are the ones maiking you dance.
        badbraids

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        • #5
          Thank you all! I guess I'll keep doing what I've been doing. I don't compete - I'm not really certain why, but I don't feel it's my place, so I can't give part of winnings. But, I will keep bringing water and snacks to the drum. I don't like making a show of it, but I'll make sure I speak to someone when I drop off the gift. I'll ask about touching the gift to the drum - some may be a bit touchy about that, understandably. So, I'll keep it up and recommend it to friends and family as well. I figure, without the drum playing it's wonderful music, my dancing would look a bit goofy, and I certainly wouldn't dance as well, so it's the least I can do to give something back to the drum.
          Thank you again,
          Scott Lollar
          Scott

          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
          Quick to judge,
          Quick to anger,
          Slow to understand
          Ignorance and prejudice
          And fear walk hand in hand.
          --Neal Peart(from the song Witch Hunt)

          Comment


          • #6
            thats a good point,about winners giving some money to the drum,or even donating for next years events i can rember when i was little (not like im an old man either) you know 15-20 years ago there would be people lined up at the mcs stand to give to the drum donate first prize for next year donate trophys for next year but u dont see it any more i seen a woman at iicot two years ago who one walk out and put money on the drum and i thought that was just to keen nobody does it any more and its somthing else i guess that we are losing i dont know not shjowing appraition or sharing in your wealth with others but it is a good way that isnt bieng practiced to much anymore
            john arkeketa

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            • #7
              Doing good with Contest money

              [i] i seen a woman at iicot two years ago who one walk out and put money on the drum and i thought that was just to keen nobody does it any more and its somthing else i guess that we are losing i dont know not shjowing appraition or sharing in your wealth with others but it is a good way that isnt bieng practiced to much anymore [/B]
              As i grew up I remember my mom making me compete. I hated that; Dancing for money. That isn't why i dance. That is why it is funny that i will one day inherit IICOT Pow-wow ( a contest pow-wow in oklahoma). Even now when I dance it is for fun. The only contest I love to compete in is switch dance contests. It is fun and i guess winning is a bonus. But every year i try to give my money to someone other than my pocket. Usually the person's outfit that i was wearing. But tha is how i was taught and that is how i feel.
              "Deep Thoughts" By Jack Handy

              "It takes a big man to cry, but it takes a bigger man to laugh at that man."

              "I wish I had a dollar for every time I spent a dollar, because then, yahoo!, I'd have all my money back."

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              • #8
                Depending on my financial situation at the time and number of drums at a dance I try to get them something. Tobacco, tapes, and hand towels. I steer away from water and driunks cause the committee should be handleing that.

                if it is a big competition powwow (for example SCHEMITZUN) and there is drum there who i really appreciate i will try to give them something. But i dont think they expect it at big powwows (or at least they shouldnt)
                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.

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                • #9
                  It always makes the singers feel really good when you offer them something, whatever it is (i.e. money, water, snacks, towels, tobacco). AS X49er said, it makes you want to sing harder! And it is very appreciated when you do come to the drum, to tell the singers why you are giving - (i.e. good song, thank you, good drum, etc.) just coming to the drum and telling them about how their music made you dance harder, or how it made you feel is awesome! Those are just words, but so appreciated. Especially when the drum sings their own songs - that makes the songwriter feel really honored, as well as the singers.

                  If you have something that you would like to give to single singer, you might want to ask him to step away from the drum and give it to him in private. Just my opinion.
                  Everything is gonna be alright!

                  Be blessed - got love???

                  This b me.....

                  www.myspace.com/akayo

                  Comment

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