The first time I heard of Brian McDonald was in 2005 when he and others developed an immersion school in Onion Lake. I was working as a web developer for the Gift of Language and Culture website, based in La Ronge. The first song I ever heard from Mr. McDonald was tânisi, it was, and still is, a very popular Cree song. It is one of the best Cree songs I have heard, right up there with many Winston Wuttunee tunes and Carl Quin.
There is a GoFundMe page organized by Belinda Daniels that states:
This action for fundraising is for Brian MacDonald; for all the years, his songs were used by family members, teachers, schools, the community & artists across the Cree country.
It is a very worthy cause and I happily donated what I could to help out Brian McDonald for all his contributions to the Cree music universe.
Link to GoFundMe page: https://gofund.me/2ad596d2
I have typed out the lyrics of the song, tanisi, line-by-line, and included audio clips for whoever wants to practice saying the phrases. I took the lyrics from our dear friends from the Cree Literacy Network and added them to my website. Be sure to check out their great Cree website: https://creeliteracy.org/
tānisi Song: Brian MacDonald
Hello! – tānisi!
How are you? – tānisi kiya?
I am fine. – namōya nānitaw.
Come on in. – pihtikwē.
Sit down. – API.
Have some tea. – maskihkiwāpoy minihkwê.
It’s nice that you’ve come to visit. – tāpwê miywāsin ê-pê-kiyokawiyan.
Where have you been? – tānitê ê-kî-itohtêyan?
Please tell me what you’ve been doing. – mahti ācimo kîkway ê-osihtāyan
Please tell me a story. – mahti ācimostawin.
I am trying out a new microphone but it is not the greatest. I have a new mic in mind and I might purchase it in the next month or so. Check out the link, maybe you can use one too. If you have a suggestion, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for visiting.
Fifine USB Recording Microphone – Amazon.ca