Grammy Award Winning Flute Player Passes On


Posted By Toyacoyah Brown July 17th, 2017 Blog


Sad news for the Native community this week. Joseph Firecrow Jr., award-winning Northern Cheyenne flute player, has passed on.

Please read more below from his family on his life and accomplishments:

Joseph Firecrow Jr., Northern Cheyenne Flute Man, has completed his circle in life and is gone to meet his creator, passing through nature on July 11, 2017.



Joe was born in Crow Agency, Montana on March 29, 1959. Born as one of ten children to Joseph Firecrow Sr. and Elva Stands in Timber.

Joseph loved fly fishing, downhill skiing, and the Buffalo Bills. He shared a love of the UConn Huskies with Joann and always glowed when he was preforming and sharing his Native American Culture with anyone who was interested. He was a very humble man who had music simply flow through his flute sharing his soul through his talents. His generosity showed in all that he did working with children and performing in every school he was allowed. His accomplishments include being a Grammy Award Winner, 7-time Native American Music Award Winner, and NAMA Lifetime Achievement Award, and other awards in excellence for his gift and craft.

Joe was an accomplished flute man, and he was gifted and highly sought after for the flutes that he made by hand through the wood that spoke to him.

Joe’s gifts and talents are able to be seen not only through the materials of his world, but through the spirit of nature which was always so important to him. Anyone who was ever around Joe could not help but smile when he spoke or played. Anytime that he smiled, you had to. His love of life was simply contagious. Joe truly transformed nature into music and had a very loving and compassionate soul which always exuded a positive influence even when just talking with him.

Feeling it a duty, Joe made sure to maintain and record his heritage through his music of both family and tribal songs. He added himself into his music to make sure their traditions would be kept alive for those who are to come.

He is survived by his wife Joann Moore, his children; Brandon, Karrie, Joseph III, Damian and Jared. His grandchildren, Dylan, Sylvia and Genevieve. His siblings, Josephine, Alvina, Ron, Jon and Ivan. His foster Mother, Marrue Simmons, his mother in law Joyce Cartelli, his foster siblings, many nieces, nephews and close friends.

Predeceased by his parents; his foster father, Boyd K. Simmons; his father in law; Carmen Cartelli; and his siblings, Ira, Sheila, Marian, and Louella.

His family will receive relatives and friends at the Maloney Funeral Home, 55 Walnut Street, Winsted, CT on Saturday, July 15, 2017 from 2 to 6 PM, followed by a service and celebration of his life. Burial will be private.

May his journey now continue and be blessed by the creator. In Lieu of flowers please send contributions and donations to: Northern Cheyenne Girls and Boys Club, P.O. Box 309, Lame Deer, MT 59043-0309

To leave online condolences, please visit www.maloneyfuneral.com



About Toyacoyah Brown

Toyacoyah Brown is an enrolled member of the Comanche Nation, currently living in Chicago. She received her B.A. in Journalism from the University of Oklahoma and an M.A. in Media Studies from the University of Texas at Austin. When she's not scouring the Internet for fun things to share with PowWows.com readers you can find her digging for vinyl in her local record store or curling up with a good book.

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