“Our sun is shining on you”

This morning, my Colombian friend Eduardo posted the following to his Facebook wall.

Ever heard of the band “Nanook”? Well, they are from Greenland and I don’t understand their lyrics… But man do I enjoy their music… Definitely recommend it.

As soon as I saw his status, I couldn’t help playing the Nanook* on. I was in fact working on a Greenland assignment. Couldn’t be more perfect.

Listening to “Seqinitta Qinngorpaatit (Our sun is shining on you),” one of my favorites, I realized I’ve never talked about Greenland’s music here.

When I first listened to the songs of Nanook, one of the most popular bands from Greenland, I have to confess, I was very surprised at its modern musical style. You couldn’t tell it’s Greenlandic at all, if you just heard the music. It was a shock in a way. Please bear with my ignorance, but I had kind of expected that Greenland’s music would be igloo-y, if that makes any sense. But instead, it’s like, what, Coldplay, to some extent (and with a bit of exaggeration). Yet, it still has Greenland’s own sentiment in it. I became a big fan of their music and gave their CD to Eduardo when I visited D.C. last year from Nuuk. (Your FB status made my day, mi amigo! Gracias!)

Later I expanded my experience in Greenlandic music not just to such young musicians, as Simon Lynge and Nive, but also to some old bands like Asuki from the early 1970s. In fact one of the Asuki’s members is an older brother of the father in my homestay family. (Well, it’s not surprising. In this small community, almost everyone is related somewhat to each other.)

Okay, no more words from me. Listening is believing.

Here are some of my favorites. Enjoy!

Nanook—Seqinitta Qinngorpaatit

Simon Lynge—Love Comes back to You

Asuki—Inuulluarna Mattaliit

So, how do you like them?

*Nanook literally means polar bear in Greenlandic. You can probably see the band members at Atlantic Music, the only record shop in Nuuk, if you’re lucky. I particularly like them because they insist singing only in Greenlandic.

For more information about Greenland’s music, visit here.


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