For a collection of music made by Native artists, look no further: KCPR’s Indigenous Voices Playlist has it all. From folk to hip-hop to thrash metal, there’s something for everyone. Check out the profiles below to learn more about some of the artists featured on this playlist while listening along.
Black Belt Eagle Scout
Katherine Paul, better known by her moniker “Black Belt Eagle Scout,” is of the Swinomish Indian Tribal Community in Washington state. Her 2023 album “The Land, The Water, The Sky” is an ode to her ancestral lands and her journey back to them. It paints a story of Indigenous pain and healing, love and connection to land and relatives and pride in her heritage.
Buffy Sainte-Marie is a renowned Indigenous singer and songwriter, receiving numerous accolades throughout her long, successful career as a folk musician. With her debut album, Sainte-Marie was named “Best New Artist” by Billboard in 1964. She then went on to win an Oscar (making her the first Indigenous Oscar winner), Golden Globe and BAFTA for co-writing a song used in the drama film “An Officer and a Gentleman.” She has also acted in numerous television projects, founded the Cradleboard Teaching Project (an education program using an Indigenous perspective to teach students core subjects), and created visual art displayed at museums and private exhibitions throughout North America.
Two Anishinaabe artists – Daniel Monkman (moniker Zoon) and Adam Sturgeon (moniker Status/Non-Status) – combine forces to form the alternative rock group “OMBIIGIZI,” which translates to “this is noisy” from the Anishinaabe language. They released their debut album “Sewn Back Together” in 2022, which explores Anishinaabe history and culture, as well as Monkman and Sturgeon’s relationship and commitment to each other as members of the same tribal nation.
Anthrax is a New York City based band who was essential to the formation of the trash metal music genre in the 1980s. They’re considered to be part of the “Big Four” players in this niche, accompanying Slayer, Megadeth and Metallica. Joey Belladonna, lead singer of Anthrax from 1984 to 1992, descends from the Haudenosaunee/Iroquois Confederacy.
Winner of the Indigenous Artist of the Year award at the 2021 Felix Awards, Kiki Harper (also known by her stage name Anachnid) is known for her indie and electro-pop sound. Harper is based in Montreal, Canada, and is of Oji-Cree and Mi’kmaq heritage. She notes that her moniker “Anachnid” is a mix of her real Indigenous name and the term “arachnid,” as her spirit animal is a spider.