Holly McNarland helped co-create a compilation album to support Idle No More (Vanessa Heins)
Maybe watching mainstream artists get behind it will encourage those people to find out more about the movement.
—Holly McNarland, musician
Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal artists have come
together to release a compilation album of songs to show their support for the Idle No More movement.
Métis singer-songwriter Holly McNarland is one of the co-creators of the compilation, and said the idea behind Idle No More: Songs for Life Vol. 1 is to spread the word and gain more allies -- both native and non-native -- for the movement.
"Some people are still on the fence and aren't sure what [Idle No More] means or how they feel about it yet," McNarland said. "Maybe watching mainstream artists get behind it will encourage those people to find out more about the movement."
The album features 14 previously released songs from indigenous artists like Derek Miller, A Tribe Called Red and Digging Roots and non-indigenous artists like John K. Samson, Whitehorse and Jenn Grant.
"It has challenged the often unacknowledged strain of racism that infects Canadian culture and history, first off, and I doubt that I'm alone in finding it has also made me think of my individual identity as a settler Canadian in a different and useful way," said Samson, who donated his song "www.ipetitions.com/petition/rivertonrifle" about Ojibwa hockey hero Reggie Leach.
"It made sense for me to include [this] tune from my solo record Provincial, which came out last year," he explained. "It is a song in the form of an online petition to get the great First Nations hockey player Reggie Leach inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame." So far the petition is halfway to Samson's goal of 5,000 signatures.
McNarland thought that bringing Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal artists together on one downloadable album would show how different cultures can work together. "As musicians, we have a built-in crowd and can use our collective voice to find more ears," she said.
A second downloadable compilation is currently being curated.