Mansil Fiddler’s First Nation YouTube Song Challenge

When I was visiting Solomon Ratt today in his FNU office, Mansil Fiddler from Waterhen  dropped by to tell Sol about the First Nation YouTube Song Challenge he’s extending all across the prairies. Mansil (also known as Medicine Dog) is a Cree language learner who has decided to use music to help himself and others reclaim their language one bite at a time (sort of like eating an elephant!)

Here’s the video he let me record to show everyone that it doesn’t need to be difficult. I think he’s got definite star power: I hope others will take up his challenge!

Mansil has a number of great examples on his Medicine Dog YouTube channel, but he sang his coffee song for us:

pihkahtêwâpoy (x5) aha
miywâsin ôma (x2)
pihkahtêwâpoy ahca!
miywâsin ôma (x2)

Here’s the challenge that he gave to Sol and me:

I challenge you and everyone in a FRIENDLY MANNER to sing in your Native language in any style of music on the list at

No Powwow, no Round Dance or Traditional songs – but it has to be sung in your Native tongue. It does not have to be perfect as long as it is appropriate, even if you only know a couple of words that’s fine.

Mansil is asking participants to make a video, put it on YouTube, and send him the link. You can contact him by leaving a message on one of his videos, or email him at (and let him know you’re going to send a song!)

He wants to find a champion from each reserve in Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Alberta – and from all nations that are willing. He says his true intent is to make First Nation languages necessary in our day-to-day lives. His next list updates will be 30 April and 31 May. And he’s planning to run a new challenge each month.

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