‘PAWN IT’ COMMENT PROMPTS INDIGENOUS ARTIST TO CALL OUT DISCRIMINATION IN SASK. COUNTRY MUSIC INDUSTRY

Indigenous artist Jarrid Poitras sparked a public conversation after witnessing hurtful remark

Jarrid Poitras (stage name Jarrid Lee) is a musician currently based in Saskatoon, Sask. (Laurel Sapp Photography)

A comment about Indigenous artists pawning trophies prompted a Saskatoon musician to speak out about what he sees as ongoing discrimination in the country music industry.

Jarrid Poitras says he was hurt by a colleague’s comment during a meeting last week on the absence of the Indigenous Artist of the Year award at the Saskatchewan Country Music Association’s (SCMA’s) awards show.

“Somebody made a comment about ‘why should we give them an award when they’re just going to pawn it off anyway?'” Poitras said.

“I left the meeting in anger knowing that that comment was directed toward First Nations people, basically stating that we would pawn off our award for money.”

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