Indio Saravanja

Indio Saravanja


Singer-Songwriter in the vein of Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Tom Petty, Mark Knopfler, Ron Sexsmith. The Toronto Star printed that Indio is "a poet of the finest water, a keen observer with finely attuned literary sensibilities and a thinker of considerable substance."


Indio Saravanja’s self-titled debut album is the real deal. Troubador Texas meets the Lower East Side, via endless miles of snow-covered Canadian highway. Whether plugged or un-plugged, Indio’s songs are poetry first – timeless, honest stories that speak to everyone. Equal parts rock’n’roll troubador and Greenwich Village folk singer, Indio Saravanja is a prolific singer-songwriter and impressive multi-instrumentalist.

Though his music has deep roots, for years now Indio’s life has been all about the freedom of the road. Born in Argentina and raised in the quiet cold of the Canadian north, by the age of 15 he was playing in Montreal subways for change. A stint in Spain was followed by a move to New York at the age of 19.

After almost a decade on the road, Indio returned home. In the Northwest Territories he found the peace to reflect and to write, and he sharpened his skills in run-down bars, often playing six nights a week. “I spent 15 years making a living playing other people’s tunes,” he says. “That’s why it feels so great to finally focus on my own words and music.”

Indio is currently based in and around BC’s Gulf Islands, but he continues to travel the world. His only destination is wherever the songs lead him.


First Communion

Written By: Gaston 'Indio' Saravanja

I haven't seen Mama since my first communion
That's the only memory that i really have
It'd been a long time since i heard my language
it smelled like whiskey and it sounded sad
when she pulled me close and said we'd be together
i said don't cry Mama i'll see you soon
when i turned 18 the sisters pulled me over
said your mama died one summer in the month of June

My daddy was a dime-store drunken 'Indian'
they said he served the country in the second world war
fighting for the freedom in the old Dominion
came back a hero without knowing what for
they sent the white boys back to the girls they'd marry
to to the towns they lived in to their farms and fields
but his plane touched down on a childless prairie
and a broken woman who had to work for her meals

And it was twenty years later when i tried to find him
the social workers told me that he'd probably died
given me up on account of his drinking
i'll never know how hard they really tried
i was living with a man who hit me once too often
on the edge of Green River in a one-room shack
to this very day i don't remember what happened
but he never go up the time i hit him back

There were lots of women like me when i went to prison
we were from different places and we broke the same rules
we had all lost our families, languages and children
we were middle-aged orphans from the residence schools
i don't believe in justice like i do in healing
don't believe you can heal a person with a lie
but you can't heal a person doesn't know he's human
and it was in that prison that i learned to cry

Tonight i'll light a candle and i'll pray for my mother
i'll pray for my people i'll pray for their dreams
sit beside that candle with my son and my daughter
pray they never have to see the things i've seen
when they moved a people like they'd move some cattle
from the land of the rivers to a fenced-in dream
generations of people stolen from each other
well i'm living for them now and i'm doing it clean
i'm living for them now and i'm doing it clean.


2005 - Indio Saravanja
Steady play on CBC national radio, Galaxy Satellite Radio (adult alternative), Village 900, and a myriad of other college stations

Set List

Sets from 45 minutes to 1 hour and 45 minutes. Enough material for endless sets. Indio can take requests until the cows come home.