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Henry Nukon says the pandemic has made him realize his purpose – playing music

Nukon has been playing guitar since he was a kid, but he just now realized how much it means to him.

Henry Nukon visited CHONfm today.

Henry Nukon is Vuntut Gwitchin born in Old Crow and after theCOVID-19 pandemic caused him to reflect inisolation, he has realized his true calling, playing his guitar.

A picker since he was nine years old, he was inspired to pick up the instrument after hearing others play in the community hall. He remembers buying his first guitar from Nita Benjamin for $10 when he went to the goose camp.

Nukon popped by the CHONfm studio this morning to talk with Charles Eshleman on “Indigenous Connections” and strum some songs.

He reminisced on listening to Beatles records with his brother in Old Crow back in the day. There would be a quarter on the needle to weigh it down, though he admits he would often steal it because 25 cents could get 50 pieces of bubble gum at Joe Netro’s store.

It was his brother who helped him realize his skills as a musician, by gifting him a guitar.

“He handed it to me and he said ‘here, now show the world your talent,’ and I didn’t know I had a talent at that time,” said Nukon.

“I was taught by our Elders a long time ago, if somebody older tells you something, well you listen to them whether they make sense or not,” he added.

Nukon said he has recently realized he has a lot to give and he feels obligated to do what he is here to do and share his music.

He hopes to one day put together an album to show the world what he is capable of.

Written by: CHON

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