Jay Begaye,
Song of Colors
(Canyon, 2003)

Native American Music Awards nominee Jay Begaye was born and raised on the Navajo (Dine) reservation in Steamboat Canyon, Ariz. Song of Colors, a reflection of Begaye's traditional upbringing and his fifth CD, gives listeners some insight into the ancient Navajo culture.

Begaye performs round dances and traditional songs and blessings from family events, everyday life and the history of his people. The only instruments used on the CD are the native drum and rattles of the Navajo people, played by Begaye himself. Many of the songs contain no words, only vocables. The only English words heard on the CD are on "Birthday Song," on which Begaye wishes a happy birthday to his listeners; the remaining lyrics, even in his original pieces, are sung in his native Navajo.

Song of Colors displays the traditions that have been passed on from one generation to the next throughout the history of the Navajo people. Continuing in the family business, Begaye's daughter Tiinesha joins him on "Traditional Round Dance."

Begaye brings the sounds and traditions of Navajo music to the world, taking listeners on a trip to the reservation and through history.

by Sherrill Fulghum
9 September 2006

Buy it from Amazon.com.