Tanya Tagaq Pushes US band Eskimeaux To Change Its Name

Canadian Inuit throat singer Tanya Tagaq has persuaded Brooklyn indie band Eskimeaux to swap its name for one deemed more culturally sensitive.

Richard Gin
– Eskimeaux

The Polaris Prize-winner called out singer-songwriter Gabrielle Smith on Twitter last week for “using slurs to sell music.” She says the word Eskimo is a slur for many Inuit people.

The band responded to tell her they’d decided to rename themselves “O,” like the letter.

Smith says she never set out to upset people.

She says she settled on the name Eskimeaux after searching for information about her heritage. She knows only that her father was a member of the Tlingit indigenous group from the Pacific northwest.

Tagaq said in a statement Tuesday Smith taught her that people can be open and respectful when mistakes are made.