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Great Lakes

The GREAT LAKES ODYSSEY Radio Hour – The Boreal Forest

Adrian V 14 January 2024 2036 128 4

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The Great Lakes Odyssey Radio Hour is broadcast on National Public Radio (WCMU-NPR)

s1.e3 GREAT LAKES ODYSSEY Radio HourThe GLO Odyssey takes a deep dive into the boreal forest and its relationship to the human experience and how it affects the Great Lakes.

The Canadian boreal region is the largest area of wetlands in the world’s ecosystems. The north shore of the world’s largest fresh water lake, Superior, is home to the boreal. It is a vast land of magnificent wildlife, inland lakes and rivers, and forests of deciduous and coniferous trees that serve as lungs of the planet. It is in this area where the largest number of Indigenous First Nations make their home. And it is in these forests where industry, once unchecked, has put the ecosystems in danger.

Joanie McGuffin, Canadian explorer, conservationist, writer and motivational speaker on the Boreal Forest. Owen Neill, late Canadian poet performs Walking In Forests. Dean Sayers on Indigenous industry and asserting the land and forests of Gargantua. Joe Reilly, singer, songwriter, social worker, and educator from Michigan who writes tree songs from his heart.
MUSIC: Ellson Graywell. Don Charbonneau. Ontarians. Julian Taylor. Dreyam.

s1.e3 GREAT LAKES ODYSSEY Radio Hour Music & Art Credits

Photo Credit: Gary McGuffin

Title – Big Five Water
Artist/Composer – Ray Bonneville

Title – St. Mary’s River Fantasy
Album – Nocturnes
Artist/Composer – Rusty McCarthy

Title – A Forest
Artist – Ellson Graywell
Composer – Laurence Andrew Tolhurst / Robert James Smith / Simon Gallup / Matthieu A. Hartley

Title – The Dead Forest
Album – The Zombie Zone
Artist/Composer – Trappa Skunk

Title – A Guide’s Tale
Album – Gitche Gumme Songs From the Lake
Artist/Composer – Don Charbonneau

Title – The Weird Woods
Album – The Zombie Zone
Artist/Composer – Trappa Skunk

Title – (Nothing) Like They Said
Album – Frank Deresti & The Lake Effect
Artist – Frank Deresti & The Lake Effect

Title – Forest For The Trees
Album – The Greatest Short Story Never Told
Artist – Ontarians

Title – Walking In Forests
Album – Circles In The Sand
Artist/Composer – Owen Neill & Music by Jeff Neill

Title – Dirt River X-ing
Album – The Zombie Zone
Artist/Composer – Trappa Skunk

Title – Seeds
Album – Beyond The Reservoir
Artist/Composer – Julian Taylor

Title – Ancient Stories
Album – Superior
Artist – Dreyam

Title – Ancient Voices
Album – Superior
Artist – Dreyam

Title – Tree Hugging Song
Album – Children Of The Earth
Artist/Composer – Joe Reilly

Title – If I Could Be Any Tree
Album – Children Of The Earth
Artist/Composer – Joe Reilly

Title – Tree Meditation
Album – Touch The Earth
Artist/Composer – Joe Reilly

This program is produced by Great Lakes Odyssey Radio Partners in venture with The Borderline.











Great Lakes Odyssey World

Inspired by the 50th anniversary of the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement, the Great Lakes Odyssey World is a multi-national effort to strengthen and explore our relationship with the natural wonders known as the Great Lakes.

In this part of the project, we have created a multi-part audio series looking at the way the Great Lakes shape our lives, our livelihoods, our health and our culture.

50 years ago, folks in the media and elsewhere were ready to declare the Cuyahoga River and Lake Erie “dead.”

The thought so appalled citizens in Canada and the United States, they forced their national governments to act.

Because, of course, the Great Lakes shape the life of both Canada and the United States. And, of course, the Great Lakes are a single system stretching from Duluth to Ottawa and down the St. Lawrence seaway. What happens to any of the Lakes will soon happen to the others.

So, the politicians of 50 years ago negotiated the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement, “for the purpose of restoring, protecting and enhancing the Great Lakes and the Great Lakes basin.”

50 years later, we can see the agreement worked. We see more fish, cleaner water, and less pollution. Unlike the early settlers and colonials, who mostly saw the Lakes as a resource to tap, we now recognize, like the First Nations, the Lakes are part of our identity. They shape our relationships, our songs and celebrations of place, the way we eat, how we play, and what we make, or sell, or harvest.

50 years since the wake-up call of a burning river, Great Lakes Odyssey wants to learn how we live and love, hurt and restore the incredible gift which is the Great Lakes.

We will explore Great Lakes art and artistic expression, and meet the artists, writers, musicians who make it. We will also dip into Great Lakes history and lore – and learn from the people who have been here the longest and know it the best: The People of the Three Fires, the Anishinaabek.

On our Odyssey around the Great Lakes, we will also hear from people working to prevent poisonous algal blooms or stop the spread of invasive species. We will meet visionaries undoing decades of development that hardened shorelines, emptied marshes and wetlands, and destroyed critical spawning grounds. We will talk to people working to ensure all beings have access to pure drinking water.

Because none of us can live without pure drinking water.

In this wondrous place we call the Great Lakes, we know we are blessed by these Sweet Water Seas. We claim them as our H.O.M.E.S. as the emotionally accurate mnemonic says. They are Huron, Ontario, Michigan, Erie, and Superior, and they are our HOMES.

As long as humans have lived in, and of and through the Lakes, people have told stories about them, sung about them, and gloried in this great gift of the long departed Ice Age. Left by glaciers thousands of years ago, they are the World’s storehouse of fresh water. If they are drained… or ruined… or damaged, they can never be replaced.

So, as we travel around the Great Lakes basin, we want to see how we are doing – what we are doing – how we’re feeling and what we’re learning as we try to live as lovers and restorers – and children and family – of the being whom the Anishinaabek call Nayaano-nibiimaang Gichigamiin, the five freshwater seas.

We hope to galvanize, inspire, and motivate you to strengthen, support and steward the Great Lakes to a beautiful and healthy future.

So please join us on this magical, dare we say “magical mystery tour” of the Great Lakes basin and Great Lakes culture.

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