Emma Stevens has taken her vocal Mi'kmaq wings, learning to fly and basking in this moment when her cover of the Beatles "Blackbird" has garnered nearly 100,000 views on YouTube.
The Grade 10 student and her fellow students at Allison Bernard Memorial High School recorded Paul McCartney's "Blackbird" in their native Mi'kmaq language. The school, which is located in Eskasoni First Nation, N.S., supplements the provincial curriculum with courses in Mi'kmaq language and culture.
The students recorded the song to bring awareness to the International Year of Indigenous Languages. This United Nations initiative raises awareness of Indigenous Languages across the world in the hopes of helping to keep them alive.
The beautifully arresting cover was produced by Allison Bernard Memorial High School music teacher Carter Chiasson. Mi’kmaq language teacher Katani Julian and her father, Albert “Golydada” Julian, translated the lyrics into Mi’kmaq, Global News reported.
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“Those lyrics kind of make me feel more hopeful, more inspired to, like, learn my language more than I already know, and to show non-Mi’kmaq people the beauty of the song in our language,” Stevens, 16, told “As It Happens” host Carol Off.
She was only waiting for this moment to be free. And heard.
UPDATE: And heard she was, by Sir Paul McCartney himself, who talked about her cover during a concert. Stevens is more than willing to consider a duet.
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