Susan Aglukark: 5 songs that changed my life

The Inuk artist and activist reflects on the formative songs that shaped her.

The Inuk artist and activist reflects on the formative songs that shaped her

"What's A Highway?!" - Susan Aglukark | 5 Songs That Changed My Life

5 months ago
Duration 5:42
What's a highway?! Susan Aglukark reflects on how songs by Tom Cochrane, Buffy Sainte-Marie, Bruce Cockburn, and Peter Gabriel changed her life.

Inuk artist and activist Susan Aglukark is receiving the Humanitarian Award at this year's Juno Awards on May 15. Part of the three-time Juno-winning singer-songwriter's legacy is her work supporting Northern Inuit, First Nations and Métis youth through her Arctic Rose Foundation. The organization focuses on bringing arts-based cultural programs to youth in Nunavut. 

CBC Music recently caught up with Aglukark and asked her to reflect on five songs that changed her life. In the video, she shares her journey of transitioning from poetry to songwriting, and the song that got her first played on CBC Radio. From learning about power and conviction from Buffy St. Marie ("I wanted to be like her... I wanted to be as touched by something as she was") to learning how to hold on to hope through hard times from Bruce Cockburn ("That song really, truly saved the last little bit of hopefulness I had"), she shares how these formative songs came to her at pivotal moments in her life. Watch the video above to take a journey through the five songs that shaped Aglukark. 

Wherever you are in the world, you can tune in to the 2022 Juno Awards on Sunday, May 15. You can watch live on CBC-TV and CBC Gem, listen on CBC Radio One and CBC Music and stream globally at Use the code CBCMUSIC to access presale tickets on Ticketmaster starting Thursday, March 3, at 10 a.m. ET.

Simu Liu will host the 2022 Juno Awards. (CBC)