To celebrate Black History Month, I’m profiling some of Canada’s amazing contemporary musical heroes. Children and teens relate to music, and feel connected with singers. I hope knowing some of these talented stars will inspire your kids, as well as mine, to express themselves and walk with confidence. As my favourite singer Nina Simone exclaimed “Oh but my joy of today, is that we can all be proud to say… To be young, gifted and black, is where it’s at!”
New Brunswick-born Measha Brueggergosman, with her flowing hair and effervescent personality, is a larger than life figure. She’s tall, vivacious, and can sing the hell out of anything.
Traditionally trained, you hear Measha mainly singing opera songs. But for this month, she’s worked on an amazing collection of spirituals, “Songs of Freedom,” that celebrate “that emerged from Africa via the slave trade to America, then to Canada via the United Empire Loyalist migration and the Underground Railroad.” There is even a miniseries about her life, her journey, and this gorgeous music on Vision TV this month.
Measha is also passionate about causes we love, an volunteers as an ambassador for the African Medical and Research Foundation, Learning Through the Arts and the World Wildlife Foundation. Even though I had heard her sing at the Olympics, my first real introduction to Measha was when she appeared on the Rick Mercer show, to sing to the whales and promote the Bay of Fundy as a wonder of the world. My kids love this video!
And last but not least, my favourite video of Measha’s… singing “Misty” with Martin Short at the Windsor Arms Hotel in Toronto. Note this is for you, adults… perhaps not so much for the kiddos.
OMG, her hair is so fabulous, and there is something so amusingly Canadian about the whole thing. Love love.