Musical shakers like the one featured here are more than just a kid’s toy, you know. Shakers have played a huge role in not only musical composition, in general, but also serve as a part of the foundation of an entire Native American culture! Greetings – I’m Loki Karuna, and on this edition of Noteworthy you and I will celebrate the Chickasaw tradition of shakers, as brought to the orchestral stage by composer Jerod Tate.

Jerod Impichchaachaaha’ Tate was born into the Chickasaw Nation of Oklahoma in the late 1960s. After earning piano degrees from Northwestern University and the Cleveland Institute for Music, he turned his focus to composition, where he’s dedicated his energies to promoting the musics and cultures of Indigenous peoples, or the American Indian, as he prefers to say.

In 2006, he wrote THIS work, titled Lowak Shopalla’, or “Fire and Light”, highlighting, among many things, the significance of the musical shaker to his cultural heritage.¬† Since 2006, Jerod has continued his very unique work, with other compositions including an Indian Cantata and a bassoon concerto titled “Ghost of the White Deer”. The spirit and culture of American Indians both past and present shine (and shake) brilliantly thanks to the work of Mr. Tate, earning him the honor of being among today’s most Noteworthy composers.

Noteworthy is a production of WDAV classical public radio.

Pictured: Jerod Impichchaachaaha Tate/©ALANAROTHSTEIN.COM