For Shina Nova and her mom Kayuula, singing together isn't just a hobby; it's an important part of their Indigenous culture. Since April, Shina, who is Inuk, has used her platform on TikTok — where she has 900,000 followers — to share a glimpse at her Inuit culture. The Inuit people are indigenous to the Arctic regions of Greenland, Canada, and Alaska in the US. In Inuit culture, throat-singing is a communal form of singing which uses a vocal technique that involves "short, sharp, rhythmic inhalations and exhalations of breath."
The singing style, which is practiced almost exclusively by women in groups of two or more, was traditionally used to sing babies to sleep, but can also be performed as a game with two Inuit women standing face-to-face to see who can outlast the other. The songs themselves often focus on themes of nature, animals, and love, making them a meaningful and heartfelt representation of the Inuit culture. Watch Shina and her mother's traditional throat-singing videos here.