Sharon Burch

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Sharon Burch of Navajo and German origin is a founding advisor of First Nations Composer Initiative [1]. Sharon Burch is an organizer, composer, teacher of general music, author of educational music-books, singer (English and Navajo language) besides being a recording artist.


Sharon Burch, born of a Navajo mother and a German father, was raised in the traditional Navajo culture in New Mexico and spoke only Navajo until she began school. After high school in California, she attended Navajo Community College in Tsaile, Arizona and later the University of New Mexico. Sharon Burch's music is the contemporary expression of traditional Navajo ways and living. Many of her songs are in Navajo language and capture the sacredness of Mother Earth and Father Sun and the importance of family and place to the Diné.

Sharon Burch’s music express contemporary traditional Navajo ways of living. Of the three albums that Burch has released, the third, “Touch the Sweet Earth” (published on Harmony Ridge [1]) was awarded the 1995 INDIE Award in the “North American Native Music” category[citation needed]. Sharon Burch performs regularly at folk festivals, fairs, schools, universities and has appeared in concert at the Kennedy Center and the Smithsonian in Washington D.C., the Palace of Fine Arts in San Francisco, The Heard Museum in Phoenix.

Sharon Burch has also concerted in Japan [ref].

One Sharon Burch concert activity is mentioned on and Washington Post, a concert at the 32nd Smithsonian Folklife Festival as early as 1998 in Washington Post, June 26, 1998, author Larry Fox, and in PDF/printed material at The concert was held at the 32nd annual Smithsonian Folklife Festival, at the National Mall, Washington D.C.:

Some of the artists featured on a new Smithsonian Folkways recording of Native women's music will be presented in a concert that celebrates both the release of the album and the half-century that Folkways Records and Smithsonian Folkways Recordings have been introducing wider audiences to community-based music. The program will feature Sharon Burch (Navajo singer/songwriter), Joy Harjo and Poetic Justice (contemporary poetry and jazz), Judy Trejo and her daughters (Paiute traditional songs), Mary Youngblood (Aleut-Seminole flute player), Tzo'kam (traditional Salish songs), and Sissy Goodhouse (Lakota traditional singer).


  • The Blessing Ways (1984) (with A. Paul Ortega)
  • Yazzie girl (1989)
  • Touch The Sweet Earth (1995)
  • Colors of My Heart (1999) (P)(C) Canyon Records 1999 CR-536
Contributing artist


  1. ^ "Sharon Burch". Résume. Retrieved 2009-12-04.