November 23, 2022
This Native American Heritage Month, we’re honored to share music from the Seattle-based Indigenous band
The Tlingit, Haida and Blackfoot languages are all endangered, according to the United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organisation. But the traditional words of these peoples are alive and well as they find new power through the songs of Khu.éex’.
“We’re singing in our Indigenous languages that were threatened with extinction,” says vocalist and band member Sondra Segundo. “And it has been so powerful for the community to hear our songs being sung in our language from people of those tribes.”
The 11 members of the Seattle-based band Khu.éex’ offer contemporary interpretations of their cultures through funk, jazz and experimental music alongside spoken word, storytelling and beat poetry. Themes of water and oceans are woven throughout many of their songs. “What the music does — what Khu.éex’ does — is such a great foundation for how you can really touch the spirit of the people and facilitate the healing of this land and the people and tribes and the oceans,” says Khu.éex’ vocalist Gene Tagaban.
Khu.éex’ generously shares their music with Washington Sea Grant to introduce our radio show, Coastal Café. Find clips from our interview with the band members and a show at High Dive in Seattle below. Khu.éex’ will be playing at High Dive again on November 25.
Washington Sea Grant, based at the University of Washington, helps people and marine life thrive through research, technical expertise and education supporting the responsible use and conservation of coastal ecosystems. The National Sea Grant College Program is part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce.