Diné Ba'Aliil of Navajoland, U.S.A.

Canyon Records
Singers: W. Dean Wilson, Roswell Bennett, Bill Sunrise, Paul Mason, Pearl Sunrise, Evelyn Becenti. Grinders - Dancers: Mary L. Wilson, Edith Bennett, Betty Mason, Evelyn Becenti, Pearl Sunrise, Edward Atcitty, Harold Dechilly, Evangeline Bennett.

This colorful song and dance troupe was organized in the early 1960's by W. Dean Wilson, of Shiprock, New Mexico. They have been performing for over 10 years at events throughout the United States-at national folk festivals, the Smithsonian Institution, state fairs, rodeos, arts and crafts shows, schools, universities, Indian Pow-wows and other celebrations.

Their repertoire includes songs and dances adapted from the Mountain Chant or Fire Dance, Yei-Be-Chai, Squaw Dance or Enemy Way, Corn Grinding Ceremonies and solos by individuals. The performers are dancers and singers from the Navajoland and off-reservation areas. Dine' Ba'Aliil translated into English means "The Songs and Dances of the Navajos."

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Performed by


Native Words



Flag Song A song to honor the flag of the U.S.A., and used to open dances, celebrations, or special occasions. This particular song was composed by W. Dean Wilson in 1967. 1- Nihé dah na t'áá léí t'óó nizhónigo; Baa dzol nigo dah na t'áá;
2- Só zigai bini sinizgo day na t'áá; zichíí dóó zigai bee noodóózgo dah na t'áá
3- Dah na t'áá, Dah a t'áá;
4- Nihé day na t'áá léí t'óó nizhónigo; Baa dzol nigo dah na t'áá;
5- Nihé siláago ´adah wiis´áágóó bich´ ááh nijizii;
6- Nihé ánááííh léí ´ayóogo biizooza!
7- ííyáá ádahwiis´ áágóó dah na t'áá doo.
8- Só zigai bini sinizgo, etc.
9- zichíí dóó zigai, etc.
1- Our flag, how beautiful; So proudly it waves!;
2- White starts setting within, it waves,
3- It waves, it waves it waves;
4- Our flag, how beautiful; So proudly it waves!
5- Our soldiers everywhere are protecting it!
6- Our enemy sure dislikes it!
7- Hopefully, everywhere it would wave.
Corn Grinding Song Listen to the sounds of a typical Navajo Corn Grinding, accompanied by songs. According to the legend, the father was left to baby-sit, while the mother performed the corn grinding chores. In the song, the father becomes impatient when the baby begins to cry, and tries to hurry the mother with her grinding. Verse 1 - No words
Verse 2 -
1- Iló ashiih 'awéé´ shá daa lá?
2- Áwéé´ bimá, Áwéé bimá, Áwéé´ yicha!
Verse 3 -
1- Áwéé´ mo, Áwéé´ cho!
2- Haash diilizgo ni k´á?
3- Jó aaz at´éndi saaz nihíké ááh!
4- zeesh díí ááz dah sah, shah díí dah sah?
Verse 4-
1- Na díí shooh, na díí shooh, na díí shooh!
2- Tsíízgo. ni k´á!
Verse 1 - No words
Verse 2 -
1- What have you done to the baby?
2- Mother of the baby, the baby is crying!
Verse 3 -
1- Mother of the baby, the baby is crying! (Contracted form)
2- What are you going to do with it, grinding?
3- You could possibly chew it, grinding (your) talking!
4- Are you going to put it in the ashes? Are you going to give it to me?
Verse 4 -
1- Sweep it up, sweep it up, sweep it up!
2- Hurry (and) grind it!
Fire Dance - Ribbon Dance This is the dancing part of the Fire Dance or Mountain Chant Curative Ceremonies. It is sometimes called Ribbon Dance because of the various colored ribbons used on the wands held by the dancers, and the ribbons on their costumes. In the actual ceremony, a wedding basket is used as a drum, with the yucca plant as a drum stick. Teams of dancers and singers perform throughout the night. Dine
Direction Dine
Round Dance Dine
Back And Forth Round Dance 1- Ch´ikééh diyin
2- Bik´ee hózhó
3- Tsé ah nighááh.
1- The Holy Maiden
2- Following the blessed way
3- Everlasting walks.
Love Song Pearl Sunrise & Evelyn Becenti Two love songs used during a Navajo Round Dance, sung here by Pearl Sunrise and Evelyn Becenti. 1- Ts´hootsooíanii shá nahó ´ááz! 1- The Fort Defiancian is making plans for me! Dine
Love Song Pearl Sunrise & Evelyn Becenti 1- Nikéyah nízaad ndi
2- Nich´íla hóyéé´ndi
3- Shi gi kodóó yéé´ taa doo.
1- Even though your land is far away
2- (And) There are hardships
3- We shall go toward it.
Yei-be-Chai A nine day curative ceremony performed during the winter months for a patient afflicted with a sickness which requires this type of ritual. During the first seven days, the medicine-man administers and conducts the various phases of the ceremony. During the last two days, dancers and singers participate by invitation and conclude with all night singing and dancing by teams, with spectators watching. For the purpose of program performances and recording of songs, the sacred words to songs, paraphernalia and certain routines are omitted.
Escort Song This is also a curative ceremony lasting three days and nights performed during the summer months for a patient. Each day certain rituals are performed by the medicine-man, either inside the hogan or brush arbor and not open to the general public.

The singing and dancing are held outside. They are a part of the ceremony but anyone can participate. The songs are sung appropriate to the various stages of the event such as Warm-up, and the actual Dancing. Among actual dancing songs are found: Escort songs, Skip dances, Circle dances, Round and Back and Forth dances.
Escort Song Dine
Escort Song Dine
Circle Dance Song 1 Dine
Circle Dance Song 2 Dine
Circle Dance Song 3 Dine
Circle Dance Song 4 Dine
Circle Dance Song 5 Dine
Circle Dance Song 6 Dine
Warm Up Song 1 These are the songs of the Squaw Dance known as Warm Up Songs. They are for listening, not for dancing - and are sung in the early part of the evening during the three day healing ceremony. Both men and women take part in the singing. Dine
Warm Up Song 2 Dine