The multitude of historical truths in this book made me proud that my Cree ancestors contributed to the foundation of Manitoba.
—Desiree Dorion, singer
When Desiree Dorion gets on stage, her songwriting and singing are never far from her roots.
In fact, the Dauphin born singer is just as comfortable crooning as she is cooing to her baby daughter.
Dorion recently landed a nomination for her song "Mama Got a Shotgun" in the country category at the Indian Summer Music Awards. And she's in the running for Best Country CD at this year's APCMAs for her album, Small Town Stories.
She'll also be in Winnipeg to perform during Aboriginal Music Week.
SCENE wanted to know what this busy musician has been reading:
"Churchill Hudson Bay" by Lorraine Brandson (Churchill Eskimo Museum)
The book I am currently reading is Churchill Hudson Bay: A Guide to Natural and Cultural Heritage
, by Lorraine E. Brandson. I bought it when I played a show up in Churchill in mid-July.
Whenever I visit a community, I try and explore as much of it as I can. My mom used to live in Churchill and she would occasionally tell me stories about it when I was growing up.
I was so excited to be hired to perform in Churchill, because it was on my bucket list of places to see.
When I was there, I visited their local museum. I wanted to purchase something 'local.' So the lady working there pointed me towards their locally made jam and jelly selection. I grabbed three jars.
Each jam was interesting because they were made with berries that do not grow in southern Manitoba.
I asked her if she could show me anything else that was local. She was having difficulty thinking of what to show me, so I suggested a book. She directed me to Churchill Hudson Bay
I asked her if the author was still residing in Churchill. She humbly looked down, smiled, and pointed to herself. She was the curator of the museum! I bought the book on the condition that she would autograph it.
When people think of Churchill, polar bears are the first thing that come to mind. Since I visited in the summer, I had the privilege of going on a beluga whale tour, which is one of my top life experiences to date.
I have really enjoyed learning about the history of Churchill and how much Churchill has contributed to Manitoba's overall growth as a Province. In her book, Ms. Brandson acknowledged the contribution that Aboriginal people made to the fur trade. She writes that many settlers would not have survived the harsh living conditions if it were not for the good will of Aboriginal people.
The multitude of historical truths in this book made me proud that my Cree ancestors contributed to the foundation of Manitoba. Hear Desiree Dorion on Friday August 16 at the Pyramid Cabaret at 9 p.m. and on Tuesday August 20 at the University of Winnipeg front lawn, 11:30 a.m.