A music review: Grammy artist Joanne Shenandoah

Posted on 16 April 2014 by admin

Native American artist, Shenandoah performs at Meramec, answers questions

Joanne Shenandoah performs in Humanities East room 102 for and audience of students, staff and other spectators. The performance lasted about two hours. | PHOTO: DAVID KLOECKENER

Joanne Shenandoah performs in Humanities East room 102 for and audience of students, staff and other spectators. The performance lasted about two hours. | PHOTO: DAVID KLOECKENER

Staff Writer

Making music and being able to share your music with the world, have it be loved and embraced is one of the unsurpassed accomplishments any artist can ask for. Or maybe even winning over 40 Grammy’s and sitting next to Beyonce.

Joanne Shenandoah is a Native American artist who loves to promote peace, human rights and encourage universal peace with her unbelievable musical talents. Her music includes traditional songs and melodies, with blends of traditional and contemporary instrumentation.

Sponsored by the Global Studies Program, which is led by Dr. Lisa Martino Taylor at Meramec, and with the help of Dean Yvonne Johnson, students were able to enjoy Shenandoah’s voice and music on April 9.

Asking Taylor how this event will benefit students she continues, “Music is a universal language and in global studies we talk about multiculturalism and this is something that transcends boundaries in terms of how people connect to each other.”

With a packed audience of students and professors, they seemed to be blown away by Shenandoah’s performance. She did not only share her music with us, but life lessons and experiences as well.

A certain occurrence Shenandoah mentioned was how she was invited by Hilary Clinton to attend the unveiling of the Sacajawea coin and had that great honor in front of all their tribal leaders.

She jokingly added how Louis and Clark were lucky to have Sacajawea along on their journey for we all know how men hate to ask for directions, causing uproar of laughter amongst the crowd.

Going on about the impact of music, Shenandoah said, “I think life can go by so seriously and there’s so many things to focus on, but if we can use music as a way to celebrate life, what a better place it is, right?”

Continuing to tell the audience of when she was a little girl, she was taught that music was always a healing force.

Shenandoah was always told to be proud of who she was and where she came from, illuminating the truth that there are enough unhappy people in the world so we should do what we love and be happy with ourselves; words to live by.

Speaking on the topic of treatment of kids and her opinion on parenting, an audience member disagreed with her view that if a child does wrong, the child is given the silent treatment and the family acts like they simply do not exist. Shenandoah explains that every parent has their own way of doing things, and that is just how she grew up.

Playing the guitar and piano, she showed the audience her extraordinary talents, also explaining that piano is her favorite instrument.

At one point in the event, she told the audience to close their eyes and go to their happy place whether it be in the arms of someone they love or sitting beachside listening to the waves, and established a meditation-like atmosphere. She proceeded to play a melody that was very easy on the ears.

Speaking to some students from STLCC-Florissant Valley and asking about their experience, Laura Brown and Julie Robertson, they shared that they were very glad to come and the event was beautiful. They were excited that STLCC offered this new exposure to them, and were able to learn so much from Shenandoah.


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