Aboriginal DJ Group “A Tribe Called Red” Drops Their Debut Album…and it’s FREE!

Photo courtesy of Exclaim.ca

Ottawa-based Aboriginal DJ group, A Tribe Called Red, released their debut alum for FREE today!  The best way I can describe their sound is a modern, electronic remix of traditional Native pow wow drumming and singing.  Whatever you want to call it, you can’t deny how incredibly awesome and talented these guys are.  Some of my favorite tracks include: “Native Puppy Love,” “Woodcarver,” “Red Skin Girl,” and “Look At This.”  All the tracks are good, though.  But, don’t take my word for it, go check it out for yourself!  Download the album here…and be sure to spread the word!

Here’s a piece I did about A Tribe Called Red’s music and their “Electric Pow Wow” while visiting Toronto last year for ImagineNative.  Enjoy!

-NativeJournalist

UNL’s new magazine aims to tell the untold stories of Native American women

A colleague of mine from the Tow Knight Center for Entrepreneurial Journalism just alerted me to a post on Ms. Magazine’s blog about a University of Nebraska-Lincoln College of Journalism and Mass Communications project.  The school has created a new magazine called Native Daughters along with a companion curriculum for educators.  I am so thrilled to learn about this new project!

According to their site, the magazine is made up of:

a collection of stories, profiles and multimedia projects about a diverse group of Native American women. They are healers and warriors, story tellers and law makers, leaders, environmentalists and artists. It is our intention that these stories are just a starting point to learn about Native American women and we hope women across the country will join in and share their voices.

The original purpose for creating the magazine stems from:

[the] belief that one cannot understand America without understanding Native Americans. One cannot understand Native America without understanding the historical, political and cultural role that Native American women have played and continue to play in indigenous life.

Native Daughters is a two-year project from the first meeting to the finished magazine and website, involving five University of Nebraska-Lincoln professors and about 30 students. The idea stemmed from several brainstorming sessions among professors looking for a new way to tell an older story about indigenous America.

The magazine is still looking for contributions.  If you would like to submit something, contact them here.

I hope to read some of your stories in the magazine and watch some of your videos on their website soon!

-NativeJournalist

Wab Kinew’s “Surviving the Survivor” for CBC News

I just stumbled upon another great piece of journalistic work by Wab Kinew for CBC News. I’m a huge fan of Kinew’s work and I hope to collaborate with him one day (soon). I’m sure I could learn a great deal from him.

Take a look at this video. Though our experiences in the US aren’t identical to what Canadian Aboriginals faced, there still are many similarities. Can you or your family relate to anything you saw here? Please feel free to share your story.

-NativeJournalist

Openly Gay Native American Woman Elected to State Legislature

A friend just alerted me to this article posted on Jezebel.com by Erin Gloria Ryan – It’s definitely worth a read!

According to Allen’s campaign site, Susan Allen is “Lakota, Dakota and Anishinabe. She is an experienced tax and tribal law attorney. She is public spirited and community minded as seen by her considerable nonprofit and pro bono work. As a Native woman and a lesbian, Susan has faced barriers and overcome discrimination throughout her life. She is ready to be a strong voice at the State Legislature.”

#NativeGirlPower!

I’d love to interview Ms. Allen one of these days and post a Q. & A. here on NativeJournalist.  What do y’all think?

-NativeJournalist

“Kickass Openly Gay Native American Woman Elected to State Legislature

Nine Native Americans have served in the Minnesota state legislature since the state’s founding, and all of them have been men. But on Tuesday, The Land of 10,000 Lakes chose via special election its first ever Native American woman to serve on its state legislature, and the first Native American lesbian to ever serve in any state legislature anywhere.

Susan Allen (not to be confused with the wife of Republican Virginia Senator George Allen) is the polar opposite of her fellow Minnesota countrywoman Michele Bachmann. She’s a progressive rather than a Tea Partier, she lives in a mixed income Minneapolis neighborhood rather than a McMansion in the exurbs, and she’s a lesbian rather than a lesbian-fixer. Additionally, Allen has vowed to fight for defeat of Minnesota’s constitutional marriage amendment, which would effectively make same-sex marriage illegal in the state. Michele Bachmann is one of the leading architects of a previous failed attempt to legally define marriage as between one man and one woman.

Allen’s credentials are the sort of thing that makes the average privileged person living in comfort feel like a slouch. MPR reported back in December that Allen, now 48, grew up on South Dakota’s Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, one of the most poverty-stricken swaths of untenable land in the US. Her father was an Evangelical priest, and the family frequently moved. When she was a single mother in her early 20’s and on government assistance, she relied public transportation to get to and from her law school classes. She’s got experience working in tribal and tax law, and as of last year was a partner in her firm. By all accounts, she’s an all-around intimidatingly kickass, groundbreaking lady.

She doesn’t get to rest on her laurels for long, though. Allen’s up for reelection already in November.

If Michele Bachmann and Susan Allen are ever in the same room at the same time, they’re fated to an epic arm wrestling match. My money’s on Allen.”

 

Artist Profile: A Tribe Called Red

Check out my work-in-progress…

Ottawa-based DJ Trio, A Tribe Called Red, holds what they call “Electric Pow Wows” in various cities around Canada and the U.S. in an effort to celebrate and preserve their culture. We recently caught up with the group during a performance in Toronto. Here is Amy Stretten with the story.

-NativeJournalist

I’ll be at this year’s ImagineNative film + media arts festival next week!

I can’t wait to attend this year’s ImagineNative film and media arts festival in Toronto next week (October 19-23)!  It’s my first time going and I’m really looking forward to what’s in store. 🙂  I really miss Canada and my Aboriginal peeps up there!

While in Toronto, I’ll be filming the amazing DJ trio “A Tribe Called Red” during their performance at the opening night party for a project I’m working on.  I had the privilege of working with these guys on a package I did for APTN National News this summer about the controversy over an Irish showband called “The Indians.”  They really are incredibly talented!  Don’t take my word, though…check them out for yourself on soundcloud.

More to updates on ImagineNative to come!

-NativeJournalist

“Hidden America: Children of the Plains” – New ABC Special

ABC's Hidden America: Children of the Plains

I know I’ve been M.I.A. for a while.  Please forgive me.  I’ve been working really hard and have been extremely busy with graduate school work and my internship at CNN/HLN’s “Issues with Jane Velez-Mitchell.”

I have a lot of wonderful things in the works and so much to catch you up on.  But, I can’t do it at this moment.  lol

I’ve come out of hiding to let you all know about (what looks to be) an amazing special by Dianne Sawyer and ABC News.

According to their website, the program will introduce you to “the dreamers and survivors of the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.”

Take a look!  And, check it out this Friday on “20/20!”

-NativeJournalist

My Report for APTN National News on Summer Camps for Young Flood Victims

Courtesy: APTN National News

Hundreds of families — and their children — are living in Winnipeg hotels after spring flooding ruined their homes. Summer vacation has become a distant hope, as they wait for news of home.

Now, the University of Manitoba and University of Winnipeg are working together to create a camp for kids stranded in Winnipeg as a result of the floods.

APTN National News reporter Amy Stretten has the details.

[Cick here to watch.]

Here’s how you can help:

The coalition is actively seeking public donations from organizations, corporations, and caring individuals to help fund summer activities for evacuee families.  Some examples of contributions include:

CASH: to offset the cost of camps and transportation, healthy snacks, and other supplies Tax receipts are available 

VOUCHERS/FREE TICKETS: for families to attend festivals, art, music or sporting events

GOODS-IN-KIND: donations such as arts and craft materials

VOLUNTEERS: to train or teach an activity, for example beading or knitting 

DONATION LINE: 

The University of Winnipeg
(204) 789-1460  
 
-NativeJournalist

My first day at APTN!

APTN headquarters in downtown Winnipeg, Manitoba

I landed in Winnipeg early this morning, about 10 hours after I was supposed to thanks to issues with United Airlines [groan].  As you may have seen in my tweets yesterday, United was canceling, rescheduling and even booting people off of flights left and right!  One flight was supposed to seat 50 passengers, but the gate agents made an announcement saying they could only take 22! 

So, as you can imagine, I was happy to have finally touched down in Canada, though it was the next day and I had only had 3hrs of sleep the night before!

Because I didn’t have as much time as I would have liked (none at all, actually), to check out the town and figure out the bus route to my internship, I called a cab. 

$20CAN later and I arrived at the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network office in downtown Winnipeg.

Thus far things have been great!  Everyone is beyond friendly and equally excited about my being here (especially when they hear from my supervisor that I turned down 4 summer internship offers from CNN to work here…how did she find that out?!), which is nice.  🙂

I’m looking forward to giving you more updates and content as the summer goes on.  Keep checking back…or just subscribe!  🙂

-NativeJournalist