National Treasure #45: Buffy Sainte-Marie

I’ve been traveling around the world for a long time, finding songs in my head like snapshots of how I feel about what I see and the people I meet. I’ve had the blues now and then, but I’ve had all the other colors too; what’s remained consistent is my conclusion, which has always inspired my songs, that life is precious, diverse and worth protecting. – Buffy Sainte-Marie

Born on a Plains Cree reserve in the Qu’Appelle Valley in Saskatchewan.

Adopted by an American couple, grew up in Massachusetts, now living in Hawaii.

Earned a PhD in Fine Art. Shared an Oscar for Best Song, for Up Where We Belong.

Appeared on Sesame Street for five years, doing Native American programming for kiddies.

Native American activist; anti-war protester.

Writer of songs that others covered to more fame, like Until It’s Time for You to Go.

Writer of songs that you know, but sung by someone else if only you could think of who it is, like I’m Gonna Be a Country Girl Again and then it turns out it’s a guy, changing the lyrics a tad. Or maybe it was this guy.  Or this English guy.  Or this Irish guy.  Yikes.

Song writer with a talent for lines that put a shiver down your back.

He’s all of 31 and he’s only 17
He’s been a soldier for a thousand years.
Universal Soldier

Sharing is good . . . Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

2 Comments

Filed under Through Canada

2 Responses to National Treasure #45: Buffy Sainte-Marie

  1. Tom Watson

    Isabel
    I’m sure you know that Buffy Sainte-Marie is a member of the Canadian Music Hall of Fame and an Officer of the Order of Canada. One of her great songs reminded us of the spirit that has made this country great—a spirit willing to climb over the steepest mountains, a spirit willing to be lifted up to places far from the world below, where the eagles fly and the clear winds blow. The song is “Up Where We Belong.”
    Tom

    • Isabel Gibson

      Tom – Yes, I was astounded to learn that she had written that song. That’s one of the best things about this project – I’m learning about Canada all over again!