Dena’ina music remains a source of community pride and holds great potential in bilingual education. There are at least seven types of Dena’ina song: funeral songs, potlatch dance songs, paddling songs, hunting songs, good luck songs, gambling songs and love songs. Recently there have also been a number of English songs translated into Dena’ina. You can read more about Dena’ina Song Tradition by reading Music of the Tanaina Indians of South Central Alaska - found in the Dena’ina Qenaga Digital Archive.
Below is a small collection of both new and old recordings. Click on a song title below to listen to a song and view the lyrics.
If you have a song you'd like to submit, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Two recordings: a.) Translated and led by Harry Balluta in August 1974 b.) Sung by Donita Peter in June 2004
Choral singing in Tyonek. Translated and led by Harry Balluta in 1975. The first verse of the song is in Tyonek dialect and the second in Nondalton dialect.
Choral singing in Nondalton. Translated and led by Harry Balluta in 1980.
Composed and Sung by Shem Pete at Nancy Lake, AK. Recorded October 7, 1978.
Composed and sung by Peter Kalifornsky. Recorded by Sondra Stuart in 1989.
Song led by Alexie Evan in Nondalton in 1976.
Sung by Maggie Jones and Wanda Reams.
Sung by Pauline Hobson.
Materials on this site are copyrighted by the original authors, the speakers whose voices are recorded, and the Alaska Native Language Archive. Materials may be used freely for non-commercial, educational purposes as specified in the license agreement. Alaska Native Language Archive materials made available through the Dena'ina Qenaga Digital Archive may be subject to more restrictive conditions of use as specified by the original depositors.
Dena'ina Qenaga website copyright © 2004-2017. Suggestions for future development are welcome. If you have questions or comments about this site, please contact the DATA Project: denaina [dot] qenaga [at] gmail [dot] com