Drummer brings First Nations beat to lunch break

A stop at Way Surfshop Café yielded a lunchtime cultural treasure -Jeff Charleson of the Hesquiaht First Nation, on his lunch hour from working at the welcome centre on the rest stop side at the Junction, singing a Hesquiaht Party Song composed by his greatgrandfather, Pat Charleson Sr.

“I didn’t really do this too much when I lived in Victoria, but around here it just feels more natural -I’m so close to my traditional territory, and it’s the kind of thing tourists like to see,” Charleson said.

He performed on a hand drum made of deer hide, sinew and antler by his father, Edward Johnson Jr. On its leather surface, etched in red and black inks, a wild man design. “It’s not very typical of drums,” Charleson said.

Performing with elders Charlie Lucas and Victor Mickey, Charleson said the music feels good.

“I’m most proud to be First Nations, I’m proud to sing our songs, to say I know something. I can’t make art with my hands yet, but I am always happy to sing songs,” he said.

When he plays his guitar, on the other hand, Charleson’s music takes on a different tone altogether.

“On the guitar I like to play Johnny Cash,” he said.

Just Posted

Foul play not suspected in man’s death in Chemainus

Long attempt made to revive unidentified person on the dock

Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation celebrates new water system

Environment Minister Catherine McKenna cuts cedar ribbon at Ty-Histanis event.

Reflecting Spirit offers tapestry of West Coast stories

Gallery showcases Tofino and Ucluelet artists.

Campfire ban coming into effect across West Coast

The Coastal Fire Centre says bans will begin on Wednesday

‘Beauty amongst such tragedy:’ B.C. photographer captures nature’s trifecta

David Luggi’s photo from a beach in Fraser Lake shows Shovel Lake wildfire, Big Dipper and an aurora

Social media, digital photography allow millennials to flock to birdwatching

More young people are flocking to birdwatching than ever, aided by social media, digital photography

Spokane man enlists 500,000+ box fans to blow wildfire smoke back to B.C.

Spokane man Caleb Moon says he’s had enough with smoky skies from B.C.’s forest fires blanketing his city

Forest fuel work needed to slow wildfires, B.C. premier says

Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan joins John Horgan for tour

Liberals unveil poverty plan with lofty goals, but no new spending

Government’s goal is to lift 2.1 million people out of poverty by 2030

PHOTOS: Prickly porcupine rescued after hitchhiking down Coquihalla Highway

BC Conservation Officer Service members were able to grab the porcupine and move it to safety

New trial ordered for James Oler in B.C. child bride case

Appeals court dismissed Emily Blackmore’s appeal of guilty verdict

Convicted murderer still missing after escaping B.C. prison 2 weeks ago

Mission RCMP are continuing to search for escaped inmate John Norman MacKenzie

Smoky skies trap B.C. man inside for days

Air quality warning issued for Metro Vancouver and Fraser Valley

Surf’s up in California, where it’s now the official sport

Grab a board, catch a wave and find yourself, ‘sittin’ on top of the world’

Most Read