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Elisapie Revisits Her Inuit Roots In 'The Ballad Of The Runaway Girl'

Elisapie's latest album, <em>The Ballad of the Runaway Girl</em>,<em> </em>is out now.
Elisapie's latest album, <em>The Ballad of the Runaway Girl</em>,<em> </em>is out now.

At the northern tip of Quebec, tucked in a valley and hugging the ocean, is the Inuit community of Salluit where the singer-songwriter Elisapie grew up. At age 19, she left to settle in Montreal — a decision she's still grappling with 20 years later.

She examines her connection to the land and people of her birth, and the traumas they've endured over the last half-century, on her latest album, The Ballad of the Runaway Girl.

"I never really knew how to make peace with the fact that I left," Elisapie says. "Not only did I leave my community, I left my family, I left my mother who was sick, I left my brothers and sisters who were younger than me. So I think this album is based on the fact that I want to find those traces of my childhood in order to really understand a little bit more who I am."

Elisapie spoke with All Things Considered about the cultural baggage behind The Ballad of the Runaway Girl. Hear more at the audio link, and watch the new video for "Una" — which explores her relationship with her biological mother who gave her up at birth — below.

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