Published Feb 21, 2017In November of last year, Exclaim! cover star Tanya Tagaq revealed she was collaborating with fellow Polaris Music Prize victor Buffy Sainte-Marie on new music. Now, the pair have shared their recording of Sainte-Marie's "You Got to Run (Spirit of the Wind)."
A press release reveals that "You Got to Run (Spirit of the Wind)" was inspired by champion dogsled racer George Attla, who competed in the inaugural Iditarod dog sled race in 1973 and whose story was the subject of 1979 film Spirit of the Wind.
The two collaborators hope the song's message inspires listeners.
"It reminded me of growing up in Nunavut," Tagaq said in a statement. "Sometimes when things get difficult you have to pick yourself up, you can't let things bring you down. You could take it to be an anti-suicide message. I really appreciate its powerful lyrics."
Sainte-Marie added that the song wouldn't be out of place in a political setting.
"There are very important things going on in Indian country right now," she said. "This is a song I'd like to hand to any of our Aboriginal candidates who really are in a position, finally, to make a big difference."
The track was recorded last autumn at Toronto's Orange Lounge Recording Studio and was produced by Jon Levine (Drake, Nelly Furtado) and mixed by Howie Beck (Feist, Hannah Georgas, Jason Collett). A press release notes that a free digital download and a vinyl release of the song are both in the works.
Find a video for the two performing "You Got to Run (Spirit of the Wind)" in-studio in the player below. Tagaq and Sainte-Marie also discuss the song's creation in depth as part of the Polaris Podcast.
You can also read our November 2016 cover story with Tanya Tagaq here, and discover the best of Buffy Sainte-Marie's back catalogue with our Essential Guide to her work here.