Up Where We Belong

Joe Cocker and Jennifer Warnes: Up Where We Belong

Quiz by Sharon Michiko Yoneda

artists:  Joe Cocker and Jennifer Warnes

songwriters:  Buffy Sainte-Marie and Jack Nitzsche 

date released:  1982 for the film, "An Officer And A Gentleman"

Update:  November, 2023

****Recently there has been a lot of new information published by the CBC about the real origins of Buffy Sainte-Marie and her fake indigeneity.  Personally, I am interested in her music and not her narratives.  I will not change these notes as I am unsure what the real truth is.  I don't think anyone really knows, including Buffy herself.  In any event, enjoy her music and keep on building those listening skills.

Born Beverly Sainte-Marie in Qu'Appele Valley, Saskatchewan, in 1941, Buffy would grow to be an influential musician, composer, educator, activist and visual artist for the First Nations people.  

Orphaned as a child, Buffy was adopted by a couple in Maine whom she came to regard as her real family.  She earned a degree at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, in Education and Asian Studies.  The Emily Carr School of Art and Design in Vancouver awarded Sainte-Marie an honorary doctorate degree for her work in the visual arts as did the University of Regina for her efforts towards the education of the First Nations people.

Sainte-Marie began her musical career by teaching herself how to play the piano and guitar.  This led to singing in coffeehouses, folk festivals and other venues in Canada, the U.S. and Europe alongside contemporaries such as Joni Mitchell, Leonard Cohen, and Neil Young.

Her talents in songwriting invited others to record hit songs. Donovan recorded her top-selling song, "Universal Soldier" whose message is still relevant today.  Most notably, Sainte-Marie won an Oscar Award for Best Song in 1982 for co-writing the theme song for the film, "An Officer And A Gentleman".  

In her lifetime, Buffy Sainte-Marie would receive many honours and awards.  France awarded her with the Best International Artist Award in 1993.  She received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Aboriginal Achievement Foundation in 1998.  Also in 1998, Canada's highest citizenry award was bestowed upon her as Officer of the Order of Canada.

Watch this film trailer on the life of Buffy Ste. Marie