Tanya Tagaq Wins Polaris Music Prize, Urges Fans To “Wear And Eat Seal”
Independent artist Tanya Tagaq has won the 2014 Polaris Music Prize for her album Animism, beating out nine other albums on Canada's Polaris Short List. The Inuk throat singer performed her song “Uja” accompanied by a 40-member choir during the Polaris Gala. “We’ve been doing it our own way without backing down artistically or conforming, so to be recognized in this way and have so many people latch on makes me feel the world is tolerable,” said Tagaq in a statement.
“There’s so much hurt in the world and within indigenous cultures with colonialism,: she continued. "Canada is in a desperate need for repair and I think a lot of people are tired of living this way and just to have people understand where we’re coming from makes me have hope that we can move forward and expose the true history of Canada.”
On stage at the awards ceremony Tagag said, "“People should wear and eat seal as much as possible because if you can imagine an indigenous culture thriving and surviving on sustainable resource, wearing seal and eating it, it’s delicious and there’s lots of them. I really believe that if hipsters can make flower beards in, then you can do it with seal.”
The Prize, which goes to the best Canadian album of the year based on “artistic merit without regard to genre, sales history or label affiliation,” was determined by a Grand Jury of 11 music media professionals drawn from the greater Polaris jury pool of over 200 writers, editors, broadcasters, DJs and personalities from across the country.