hard not to recognize Lucie Idlout or her music.
this doesn't bother the rising Inuk rock singer, who's been nominated
for two prestigious Canadian aboriginal music awards: Best Female
Artist and Best Rock Album. She also shares a nomination for Best
Single Song, with the True Rez Crew.
will be announced Nov. 28, at the Canadian Aboriginal Music Awards,
to be held at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. She's the only
Inuk to be nominated this year.
in Iqaluit but now living in Toronto, Idlout says she's happy when
she visits her home town, where people rush up to tell her how much
they like her music.
can be seen every Thursday night across Canada as host of Buffalo
Tracks, APTN's talk and music show. She's also known for her driving
straight-ahead rock music - music that's attracting a lot of attention.
is the first aboriginal woman to see an album receive a nomination
in the rock category within the five-year history of the aboriginal
I walked away with the rock award, that would be a killer,"
Idlout said in a telephone interview from her home in Toronto.
CD is called E 5-770: My Mother's Name, distributed by Arbor Records.
Every track on the CD was written in Iqaluit.
song is a story based in on an experience of my own, something I
learned or something I've seen," Idlout says.
Idlout doesn't see herself writing about Inuit traditional life.
She's doesn't see herself as a traditionalist, and she doesn't want
to be considered as an Inuk "ambassador," even if she's
proud of her heritage, and she says her music isn't intended to
isolate or alienate anyone.
think we're stuck in the Stone Age," Idlout says. "We're
not stuck in a rut
we don't have to be pigeonholed."
doesn't want to limit herself to just music and broadcasting.
winter, Idlout acted in Two Words for Snow, a play about Matthew
Henson, the Inuktitut-speaking African-American who accompanied
Robert Peary on his expeditions to the North Pole and his Greenlandic
lover, Akatingwah, played by Idlout.
says she finds live theatre nerve-wracking but "hugely challenging."
who spent her high school years in Ottawa, moved to Toronto last
year - and it was the "most miserable year of my life,"
is such a big place."
Idlout says she now appreciates the "endless" opportunities
in Toronto, where the Canadian music industry is centred.
put together a new, highly experienced band to back her up next
week at the legendary El Mocambo club on Spadina Avenue in Toronto,
as well as at the aboriginal music awards next Friday.
is working on another album and when she gets 20 new songs finished,
she'll go into studio to cut a new CD.
this month, she taped seven shows for Buffalo Tracks, which, among
other musicians, featured Charlie Panigoniak and his wife, Elisapie
Isaac, and Angava.
try to get as many Inuit on the show as I can," Idlout says.
a television show isn't easy. Idlout says she does "tons of
research" before a guest comes on, so she can keep the conversation
into her second season on APTN, Idlout thinks she's becoming more
relaxed on camera.
thankful to the Canada Council, the Inuit Broadcasting Corporation
and Nunavut's Department of Culture, Language, Elders and Youth
for supporting her first projects.
don't recognize that without the support of councils and organizations,
it is near to impossible to get into music."
family also offered - and continues to offer - support.
mother has always encouraged me to pursue my passion," she
work and determination have also played a big role in Idlout's success.
on, she was inspired by such diverse performers as Simon and Garfunkel
to Elvis, Harry Belafonte, Charlie Panigoniak, Charlie Adams and
the Pixies - but she managed to create a sound that's all hers.
a musician, Idlout stands on her own feet. She plays the guitar,
piano and trumpet and writes her own music.
tried writing with a partner, but the end result didn't work for
couldn't play the songs with conviction."
her first album is now heading off for sale in the U.S., Idlout
is also looking south. She'll be playing in New York City on Dec.
5 - solo, an experience she describes as both awesome and scary.
has already played in Norway at the Riddu Riddu festival as well
as in Germany, Italy and the U.K.
says she likes to play for an audience. This year she performed
in Inuvik at the Great North Arts festival. She's played in Greenland,
in Kuujjuaq at the Aqpik Jam, and also at the Iqaluit's 2002 Arctic
rush of an audience's appreciation feeds Idlout's creative energy,
and she's still buoyed by the memory of a crowd in Newcastle, England,
where people stood in the rain to listen to her play live.
not all about CD's," she says.
is how Idlout describes the welcoming reception she says people
offer her everywhere she's played.
if there's one word to describe how Idlout is looking to her promising
future, at the beginning of an exciting week, it's optimistic.