December 16, 2007

Navajo sings with choir

Navajo vocalist to perform with Rehoboth choir SundaySmiley, 34, a pastor from Black Mountain, Ariz., was in Gallup on Wednesday to rehearse with the choir. In a brief interview, Smiley talked about his love for music, a love that has taken him across the Navajo Nation to perform in small reservation churches and dusty camp meetings and also around the world. Earlier this year, Smiley performed in churches in Indonesia and China.

The first music he heard, Smiley explained, were traditional Navajo songs sung by his maternal grandfather, who was a medicine man. He began singing in a church choir when he was 12 years old, and about the same time he began selling recordings of his own music. According to Smiley, he has released a dozen CDs, most recently a Christmas album in 2006.

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