Buffy Sainte-Marie: Tiny Desk Concert (house)


The Tiny Desk is working from home for the foreseeable future. Introducing NPR Music’s Tiny Desk (Home) Concerts, bringing you performances from across the country and around the world. It’s the same spirit — stripped down decor, an intimate setting — just a different space.

“Tiny Desk at home? I live a bit down the road! the legendary Buffy Sainte-Marie exclaims a song in her fiery set recorded a few kilometers from Toronto at the start of the umpteenth tour of the 81-year-old man. Sainte-Marie has always been a wandering soul with a keen sense of direction. The four songs she performs here with her touring band span her nearly 60-year career, connecting her songs of righteous protest – including “Universal Soldier”, as relevant today as they were when they became a hymn during the Vietnam War – to love songs. who have recorded countless slow dances. This set is something of a Sainte-Marie primer, evoking her early days as the most brash innovator of 1960s folk revival and her mid-career turns penning country and pop hits as the sweetest of this together, “Up Where We Belong”, which won it. an Oscar for best original song in 1983.

Playing a Yamaha “Silent Guitar”, designed for road conditions where playing headphones might be a requirement on a tour bus, then switching to a small keyboard, Sainte-Marie is a laid-back bandleader. This occasion was, in fact, his first reunion with his touring band since the pandemic began, and their joy in playing these songs is palpable. Check out Matt Starr’s drum rolls on “It’s My Way” and bassist Mark Olexson’s tender pairing with Sainte-Marie’s guitar on “Until It’s Time for You to Go.” But above all, revel in the inimitable spirit of Sainte-Marie, one of the greatest sparks that popular music has ignited.


  • “It’s my way”
  • “Until it’s time for you to go”
  • “Universal Soldier”
  • “Where We Belong”

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  • Buffy Sainte-Marie: vocals, guitar, keyboards
  • Matt Starr: drums
  • Mark Olexson: bass, vocals
  • Anthony King: guitar, vocals
  • Kibwe Thomas: keyboards, vocals


  • Producer: Stephen Paniccia
  • Director of photography: Andy Hourahine
  • Cameraman: Blair Johannes
  • Cameraman: Jack Hourahine
  • Camera Assistant: Arani Muthucumarasamy
  • Sound Engine: Carm Milioto
  • Sound mixing: Chris Birkett


  • Producer: Bob Boilen
  • Video producer: Michael Zamora
  • Audio mastering: Josh Rogosin
  • Small production team: Bobby Carter, Kara Frame, Joshua Bryant, Maia Stern, Ashley Pointer
  • Vice President, NPR Music: Keith Jenkins
  • Senior Vice President, Programming: Anya Grundmann

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