Piikani musician inspiring and giving back through song
More than just his music, Ira Provost is quickly sharing a message and empowering other proud Aboriginals.
“Being a First Nations person it’s really important to convey a positive message that change is possible, and that working together and working for the right cause we can do good things,” said Provost.
Provost is celebrating the release of his second CD, ‘EverMore’, an 11-track album with deep cultural significance.
“My songs are about family, about community, about my community the Peigan Nation, as well as Aboriginal awareness, and some political issues,” explained Provost. “Things that I care about I tend to write about.”
A man with as much heart as his background, Provost was born and raised on the Piikani Nation reserve, where his roots remain.
“The song is really about the Piikani Nation, [it’s] about being proud about who I am and where I come from,” said Provost.
Provost has been sharing his talents for 30 years and with this CD, the self-taught musician is using his gift to pay it forward. A portion of sales are going back into his community to help fund the Mary Ann McDougall Memorial Elder’s Centre.
“In our culture, the elders are central to our community and it’s important to pay that respect,” said Provost.
“If you have a talent, or a way to help a worthwhile cause, such as an elder’s community, you definitely should.”
But his music reaches far beyond the confines of the reserve. Provost has been inspiring others and spreading First Nations awareness through his songs for years.
“He bridges cultures and he does it through music,” said University of Lethbridge professor Michelle Hogue. “That’s really critical because he gets the message out in a medium that everyone understands. It’s a lot different than sitting in a classrom and having someone tell you how to do that, he actually demonstrates that.”
Provost has been writing the album for years but produced it in only one year, working day and night so the release would coincide with Native Awareness week.
“I felt it was the right time to coincide with some of their activites, I’m a student myself so it really combines a lot of the efforts,” said Provost.
Efforts with an enormous reach, riding on the power of Provost’s music.