Saturday, June 23, 2012

In Our Foremothers

My genetic motherline haplogroup is U5b, the haplogroup associated with the Saami of Northern Scandinavia. Given my current known mtDNA genetic markers, it is very likely that once the full sequence results come back from my ancestral genetic analyses, it will be confirmed that my subclade among U5b will be revealed to be U5b1b - a motherline subclade nearly exclusive to the Saami of Scandinavia (although a small number of North African Berbers (2%) and Central European Jews who have intermarried with and taken wives from among the Saami also carry U5b1b - so even in these cases, the subclade traces back to the ancient Saami people). The Saami are the indigenous people of Europe who now live in the Northermost parts of Sweden, Norway, Finland and the Kola peninsula of Russia (all four of these geographical areas are top matches on my genetic tests so far, as well - meaning that this people and these areas of Europe are the most ancient known genetic roots of my ancestral mothers "out of Africa.")

This video from the music artist Ulla Pirttijärvi is the second track of the CD album "Mattarakhu Askai: In Our Foremothers". Pirttijarvi, once a member of the trio Angelin Tytot, has slowly unrolled a solo career (this album, "Mattarakhu Askai: In Our Foremothers" her second solo disc, comes five years after her first), but taking her time has proven to be a good thing.

Ulla Pirttijärvi is regarded as one of the finest artists from Sápmi (Samiland). The joik is the vocal form of the Sami people, native to the far northern Scandinavia. It's often relatively free-form, with few rules, a song to describe a thing, place, person almost anything. Ulla Pirttijärvis joik (recorded in her own home) is emotive and haunting.

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