Kiowa 49 - War Expedition Songs
17 Kiowa 49 songs
Singers: Gregory Haumpy, Billy Hunting Horse, Ralph Kotay, Bill Koomsa Jr., Barbara Ahhaitty, Pearl Kerche, Angeline Koomsa, Nan B. Koomsa, Wilda Koomsa
Recorded at: Carnegie, Oklahoma, April 29, 1969.
Format: CD-R, Cassette
About this recording:
Forty-nine is a social dance which is popular today among young Indians of the Plains and Southwest tribes, and at inter-tribal gatherings in big cities where thousands of Indians have relocated in order to find employment.
Among the Kiowa, 49 is traditionally held after 11 PM or midnight until about 3 AM. Sometimes a dance will go until sunrise. The dance starts when a group of men gather around a drum, and with a roll of the drum, start the first song. As the songs get underway, those who wish to dance form a close circle around the singers and drum. As more people join the dance, a second circle is formed closely around the first, then a third around the second, and so on. A big dance may have seven or eight concentric circles of dancers moving clockwise around the drum.
Kiowa 49 was originally a war ceremony performed on the eve of a war expedition or war party. A war leader would go through the camp singing war expedition songs, called guu dawgya in Kiowa, and those who wanted to go with him on the expedition would join him in the singing. The group would continue through camp, singing as they went, to the leader's tipi wherin they would sing throughout the night.
Although most 49's today are strictly social, a 49 will occasionally be held for a Kiowa serviceman who is about to go overseas, and many of his family and friends take part, much in the tradition of a century ago. We are very happy to present the fine singers in this album, and a few of the many 49 songs sung by the Kiowa today.