Chippewa Song

Tru here.

When he started school, Dad was a young boy living on the Chippewa Indian Reservation near Mille Lacs Lake, MN.

Mom says that when they were courting he still remembered much of the Chippewa language.
But my memories only hold one song,
which we call “The Chippewa Song”.
If sung during the day, us kids would sing the background while Dad sang the verses overtop.
At bedtime Dad would sing it with many verses.

i only know one verse.  So, when it was my turn to sing my children their bedtime song, i only sang that one verse.


Almost 20 years ago,
i called the reservation where Dad lived, in efforts to get the song’s translation and other verses.
Spoke with someone knowledgable on Chippewa music at the Indian Reservation.
He said about the time Dad’s family left The Reservation,
the US government was dispersing the people, integrating them with US citizens.
Language mostly died, and even tho he is a music specialist has never heard this song.
Said the song is definitely Chippewa,
but MAYBE an elder would recognize the song.

With my dementia symptoms, i suspect at some time i will forget this song
and apparently it is now practically an unknown song.
Since i am now over 60 years old, with dementia symptoms myself,
i figured i had better get it recorded … to remind ME.
So here it is (even if first note is a “clinker”).

Dad’s Lung complications created difficulty singing, so he didn’t sing much after i was 11 or 12yrs old.
Then one Lung and the Lining of the other was removed when i was 13 years old.
So my memories of words, and timing of phrasing may be a little “off” from the original.

i only know one word of Chippewa;
Dad called Mom his “ninimonitay”.
in my recollection he said it meant “Sweetheart”.
But again, i believe Dad left the reservation when he was about 6 years old,
so even that may be a bit distorted.

Begins with background vocals, when others are available, then …

Dah-tuh Nih-nuh-mah-nih-tay.

Background vocals:
Hahl-uh Huh-Wah-ee-ah-nah.
Hahl-uh Huh-Wah-ee-ah-nah.


Mom says this song is about a wedding by the water, with a sweetheart and her Warrior/brave by the waterfall.


This song was recorded to support the #AliveInsideChallenge (which is to record yourself singing a song from your youth, or sponsor an elder at ).
Song only (without details about Chippewa Indian Reservation) at my YouTube channel >> .
Thank you Jeff Borghoff and Brian LeBlanc, along with neurologist Daniel C. Potts and teacher Teepa Snow for support of this project. You folks were the starter fluid.
Who else will sing a song ???
I am a Patreon and i challenge the singer Peter Hollens >>



Music is Connection >>

I am From TLK >> ;

Chippewa Song >> ;

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UPDATE:  ((Previously, i had a notice here at base of each entry with announcement and Logo for HealthLine 2019 Best Alz Blogs.  To my surprise, after HealthLine contacted me in January with fact that i was included in 2019 Best Alz Blogs, then announcing it publically on March 18, ten days later they decided against including writers with Mild Cognitive Impairment, and removed this blog from their listing, leaving only one first-person perspective.  Now i am deleting each of those announcements of my inclusion on HealthLine Best Alz Blogs for 2019.  i hope they soon decide to include at least one other first-person perspective in their “Best Alzheimers Blogs”.)) >>

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