Indigenous in Music with Larry K – Phillip Blanchett of Pamyua in our Spotlight Interview (Inuit Soul Music)

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Welcome to Indigenous in Music with Larry K, this week we welcome from Anchorage, Alaska, Phillip Blanchett, he’s the the creator of the band “Pamyua” they bring their musical blend of Inuit drum and dance to the stage and they call it “Inuit Soul Music.” Pamyua is featured in our current issue of the SAY Magazine and you can read all about them and hear our interview at www.IndigenousinMusic.com/pamyua-interview.

Music from Pamyua, Freightrain, Thunderhand Joe and the Medicine Show, Irv Lyons Jr., Logan Staats, David Laronde, Latin Vibe, Celeigh Cardinal, Melody McArthur, Michael Franti, Nancy Sanchez, Raye Zaragoza, CHANCES, nehiyawak, Darren Geffre, Samantha Crain, 1915, Soda Stereo, Midnight Shine, Qacung, Byron Nicholai, Hayley Wallis, Leanne Goose, Tracy Bone, Indian City, JC Campbell and much much more.

Visit us on our home page at www.IndigenousinMusicandArts.org and find our all about us and our programs there you can take our Support challenge SAY Magazine Library with all our featured guests.

PAMYUA (pronounced bum-yo-ah) is a Yup’ik Inuit word meaning ENCORE or DO IT AGAIN


OUR INTERVIEW IS 30 MINUTES INTO THE PROGRAM


BIOGRAPHY

Pamyua was formed in April 1995 by brothers Phillip and Stephen Blanchett. The brothers stumbled upon a musical concept to blend Inuit drum/dance melodies with R&B vocal styling and arrangements. The duo immediately began sharing their performance around Alaska and collaborating with like-minded artists.

Later that year Ossie Kairaiuak permanently joined the group and in the spring of 1996 Karina Moeller permanently joined. Today the quartet works with world-class musicians from Alaska and Denmark and travels the world sharing their blend of cultural harmony.

Pamyua showcases Inuit culture though music and dance performance. The show is a platform to share indigenous knowledge and history. Their style derives from traditional melodies reinterpreted with contemporary vocalization and instrumentation.  Often described as “Inuit Soul Music,” Pamyua has discovered their own genre.  

Band members are proud to represent Indigenous culture.  The group believes unity is possible though music and dance. Together, each member works to interpret Inuit traditions masterfully with joy and sincerity. The response to this message is tremendous as the group is a symbol of pride for Alaska’s indigenous people and to all who see them perform.

Pamyua’s performances aim to honor and share indigenous traditions through ceremony, songs, and dance. If you would like to book Pamyua for your event, please visit our contact page.

BEGINNINGS

When Phillip (Kilirnguq) Blanchett was 15 years old, he was watching his mother Marie Meade perform traditional Yup’ik dance for thousands of guests at the Anchorage Museum of History and Art. As he stood alone backstage, he realized his future. It was in that moment that he knew he would lead a professional performance group and would call it, PAMYUA!

Since that memorable day, Pamyua has performed in countless concerts worldwide, sharing Inuit music and dance. We are proud to honor Indigenous traditions, history, and storytelling in each and every performance. Many of our songs honor animals that we live with and hunt while others, like Bubblegum, honor the Indigenous value of humor. Our performances celebrate our environment, our history, and our way of life.


RECENT PROJECTS

Pamyua is proud to have been one of many indigenous partners to contribute to the National Geographic reality show Life Below Zero: First Alaskans. Pamyua scored the music for the trailer in addition to many original pieces that are played throughout the show. We are extremely honored to be working with a project that is full of great intention and respect for our Inuit relatives.

We have also composed original music for Discovery Channel’s show Flying Wild Alaska and performed and co-wrote the theme song for the PBS Kids show Molly of Denali.

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