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Journal Article

The Native American Flute: Convergence and Collaboration as Exemplified by R. Carlos Nakai

Paula Conlon
The World of Music
Vol. 44, No. 1, Indigenous Popular Music in North America: Continuations and Innovations (2002), pp. 61-74
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/41699400
Page Count: 14
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The Native American Flute: Convergence and Collaboration as Exemplified by R. Carlos Nakai
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Abstract

This article will trace the history of the Native American flute with external block, looking at its traditional function, construction, distribution, decline and rejuvenation, culminating with the multi-tiered use of the Native American flute at the dawn of the twenty-first century. Recent developments in the evolution of the Native American flute from a private courtship ritual to a more public expression of Native identity allow for an interaction of musical styles. Ute/Navajo flutist R. Carlos Nakai describes his music as "contemporary traditional," stating that he builds on the memories of his heritage, utilizing the experiences that surround him to revitalize the ancient stories. The efforts of Nakai as an emissary connecting the Native American flute to a myriad of other cultures will be examined.

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