BRANTFORD – Music lovers gathered to listen to music full of indigenous influence at the Woodland Cultural Centre on Saturday, February 4, to hear songs from Gail Obediah’s Let the Eagle Fly album.
Obediah posted to Facebook one day before the release of her album to let listeners know that her work is for healing; calling the work a piece of ‘the resurgence of our people’.
“Let the Eagle Fly became a project that directed me into following Creator’s path. It has been a journey of trust, faith, intuition and patience. This was created with the intention to help out in whatever way I could for the healing and wellness of our people that have suffered the effects of the residential school system,” wrote Obediah.
With a hand drum, rain stick and horn rattle in-hand, and backed by percussionists, guitarists and background vocalists Obediah brought forth powerful rhythms and forceful lyrics.
“[Creating this CD] has been a life-long journey for me,” said Obediah. “The title track ‘Let the Eagle Fly,’ [was written] in response to the National Apology. There was a lot of conflict around that, but to me what the apology meant was that the doors were opened for all of us to start doing healing. And it brought the truth to the general public, not just nationally but internationally.”
“I have friends that never knew anything about residential school until they heard that song and they were asking me about it, then they went to the computer to check it out and they’re like ‘oh my god’.”
Obediah dedicated her CD launch to the Save the Evidence Campaign and many of her songs were inspired by the National Apology for Residential Schools. This can be heard especially within her song “Children Warriors”.
“This one,” said Obediah. “I went to ImagiNative Theatre and the feature movie for that one was ‘We Were Children’, and at that movie they had the two main characters in the movie,” she said, as she explained that one of the main actors passed away after the movie was released.
“So, it was a story of these children and the experiences that they went through,” she said. “Everybody in the theatre was crying. I went home that night and I got up the next morning and I was thinking ‘oh my god, that was only [two effected children].’ I mean I heard stories before but nothing ever hit me like that movie hit me,” she said.
“I really felt strongly that I needed to write a song thanking the children and expressing my gratitude, because that movie really showed and demonstrated how they persevered and were watching out for each other’s backs and if it wasn’t for that, where would we be today?” she said. “The government could have totally been successful with what they were trying to do, and we’re still here. So, I felt that I needed to write a song to express my gratitude for that.”
If you would like to check out her work, Obediah has a Facebook page under Let the Eagle Fly, and has several music videos under the CeeItVideo host on YouTube.