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Cloud Dance Songs of San Juan Pueblo

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Catalog No: IH 1102

Now Available on CD-R
6 cloud dance songs (2 wasa, 4 powinshare)


Joe M. Abeyta, Cipriano Garcia, Jerry Garcia, Peter Garcia, Carpio Trujillo, John R. Trujillo

Recorded at:

San Juan Pueblo, New Mexico, February 27, 1972


San Juan Pueblo


CD-R, Cassette (Soundclips)

About this Recording
About this Recording
At the beginning of each year in San Juan Pueblo, in January or February, a dance is performed for the newly elected pueblo officials. Traditionally it is the cloud dance, basket dance, or other appropriate winter dance, depending upon the preference of the officials. If the cloud dance is selected, new songs are required, and the composers of the pueblo are promptly notified. Also, the officials must select eight ladies who are to take part in the dance.

The cloud dance, called pogonshare (pumpkin or gourd dance) or powinshare, derives its English name from the feathered headdresses of the ladies, the feathers representing clouds, and the red angora fibers symbolizing the sunís rays. The dance represents the coming of Spring, and getting ready for planting.

Six new songs must be composed each year that the cloud dance is performed. There are four dance songs and two wasa, songs for a weaving type entrance into the three plazas on the first and fourth dances. Sometimes an old tune or rhythm might be used, but the words are newly composed.

We are very happy to present these songs which were composed for the cloud dance in 1972, and we are indeed grateful to the fine singers who have agreed to perform them for this recording.
Wasa (Entrance song)

Powinshare #1

Powinshare #2

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