Jaaji pronounced (Yaa Yee)
Jaaji is the lead male voice and songwriter for the multi-award-winning, chart-topping Indigenous folk duo Twin Flames. Jaaji is also a public figure, published author, model, and actor. He has contributed to many community wellness campaigns and continues to dedicate his time to raising awareness about Canada’s past from an Indigenous perspective. Jaaji is a proud father and mentor.
“Jaaji” is an Inuit name derived from the English “George.” Jaaji grew up in a humble fly-in community called Quaqtaq in Northern Nunavik, QC. His grandparents raised him in the traditional ways of the Inuit. Much of his songwriting reflects this upbringing by depicting life on the land. Jaaji spent his childhood summers with his biological father in Kahnawake, a reserve of the traditionally Iroquoian-speaking Mohawk nation on the south shore of the St. Lawrence River. He was raised in two different worlds and cultures. He advocates for language revitalization and preservation, passionate about including the Inuttitut language in his songs.
In 2014, Jaaji decided to commit to music full-time. With his first album Nunaga, he won Indigenous Language Album of the Year at the 2015 Indigenous Music Awards.
Before his music career, Jaaji served as a police officer for 12 years in Quaqtaq, QC and Kuujjuaq in the Nunavik region of Quebec. After he retired from policing, he served as a behavioural tech at the local high school in Quaqtaq. He also took on the role of a cultural teacher, implementing projects that offered Inuit youth opportunities for land-based learning. He further worked for Makivik as the head of the Inuit Dog Slaughter compensation files. Jaaji lives a life of sobriety and shares his recovery story openly.
Chelsey June is the lead female voice and songwriter for multi-award-winning, chart-topping Indigenous folk duo Twin Flames. Chelsey is also a public figure, published author, poet, model, and actress. She co-hosts the Canadian Folk Music Award alongside Benoit Bourque and is involved in many community outreach programs and charitable organizations. She is fluent in both English and French. Chelsey is a proud mother.
Chelsey June grew up in Ottawa and Gatineau with her mother, who hails from Maniwaki, QC. Chelsey spent her childhood surrounded by music. This early introduction to a wide variety of music influenced her own unique sound and style. Chelsey is proud of her Indigenous heritage (Métis, Algonquin, and Cree) and openly shares her perspective on living as a Canadian with both Settler and Indigenous heritage. Chelsey also advocates for mental wellness, healthy relationships, and sober living. Her soulful voice and unique songwriting skills stand out. She released her first album (Seize the Day) in 2013 and her first EP (Finding Me) in 2014.
Before joining under the moniker of Twin Flames, Chelsey June and Jaaji had independently successful music careers. They met on set during the filming of APTN’s Talent Autochtones Musical.
Chelsey June and Jaaji have collaborated with many session musicians, but the band, at its core, is made up of Chelsey and Jaaji.