July 17, 2013

2013 Living Earth Festival headlines the museum's summer webcast season

The National Museum of the American Indian in Washington D.C., museum is hosting many excellent public programs this summer for audiences of all ages and a wide range of interests. Here is a schedule of upcoming programs available on the Internet via webcast. 

Live webcasts can be accessed though the NMAI webcast page.

Not free during a program you'd like to see? Wish you had seen an earlier program? Most webcasts are archived on the NMAI YouTube Channel within a few days of the event.

Please note: Times for live performances and webcasts are given as Eastern Daylight Time.

July 19 through 21

The museum’s annual Living Earth Festival celebrates Native contributions to protecting the environment, promoting sustainability, and using indigenous plants to improve health and nutrition. Such a celebration entails much fun with art, music, dance, and cooking, as well as reports from Indian County on how Native peoples are developing solutions to protect public health and the environment.

On Friday, July 19, at 1 pm and 2 pm, the museum will webcast a fun hands-on activity for children of all ages from the imagiNATIONS Activity Center.  Muscogee Creek sculptor Lisan Tiger Blair will lead a workshop in creating animal and human forms from clay and other materials.

Saturday, July 20, will be filled with music and dance. Enjoy these performances and mini-concerts broadcast from the Potomac Atrium:

11:15 AM | Ho`omau I Ka Wai Ola O Hawai`i, Hawaiian music and dance

Noon | Quetzal Guerrero, virtuoso violin and vocals

12:30 PM | She King (Six Nations Reserve), contemporary rock out of Toronto

1 PM | Pokagon Drum and Dance Troupe (Potawatomi), traditional and fancy dancing performed at many powwows throughout the United States

2 PM | Ozomatli, urban–Latin fusion from Los Angeles


Studying biotoxins in fish 07-16
Tribal ecoAmbassadors at work: A Northwest Indian College project studying biotoxins in fish. Photo courtesy of the EPA

Saturday from 2:30 to 4 PM
, the webcast will move to the Rasmuson Theater to present the Living Earth Symposium: Tribal ecoAmbassadors.  Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) scientists, tribal college and university professors, and Native students are conducting projects that help community residents become part of an environmentally conscious future. Learn how these Tribal ecoAmbassadors are developing innovative and locally relevant solutions to protect public healthand the environment—from creating carbon-negative and sustainable building materials to participatory air quality monitoring to exploring the impacts mercury and other toxics have on human health. 

Saturday from 5 to 8 PM,  the day concludes with an Indian Summer Showcase of musical concerts. If your musical appetite was whetted by the day's mini-concerts, be sure to tune in for the artists' feature performances. Quetzal Guerrero's music bridges many Latin and American cultures and styles. Pop artist She King from Six Nations Reserve captivates listeners with her power, passion, and seducing vocals. Ozomatli, a two-time Grammy Award–winning band, describes its sound as "urban-Latino-and-beyond collision of hip hop and salsa, dancehall and cumbia, samba and funk, merengue and comparsa, East LA R&B and New Orleans second line, Jamaican ragga and Indian raga."  

Quetzal Guerrero mini She King mini  




Clockwise from upper left: Quetzal Guerrero; photo courtesy of the artist. She King; photo courtesy of the artist. Ozomatl; photo copyright 2012 Christian Lantry; used with permission.

On Sunday, July 21, from noon to 4:30 PM, the museum will webcast the Living Earth Festival’s iconic cooking face-off, Native Chef Cooking Competition. This year the competition puts the heat on Don McClellan (Cherokee) and Freddie Bitsoie (Navajo) as they cook up their gourmet entrées for the title of NMAI’s Top Chef. Like the menu of the museum’s Mitsitam Café, the chefs’ innovative recipes will be inspired by traditional Native American foods. 

August 10 & September 21

Every summer the museum brings talented performers to the National Mall for free, public concerts. We webcast as many of these great evenings as we can. In addition to the triple-header during the Living Earth Festival mentioned above, the museum has two more concerts/concert webcasts coming up.

Rita_cooligde_flat mini+ C.J. Chenier










Rita Coolidge (left) and C.J. Chenier. Photos courtesy of the artists

On Saturday, August 10, at 5 PM, the legendary, multiple Grammy Award–winning singer Rita Coolidge (Cherokee) will perform some of her classic hits from the 1970s and '80s, as well as newer pieces.  

On Saturday, September 21, at 5 PM, just see if you can stay off your dancing feet as C.J. Chenier and the Red Hot Louisiana Band perform their infectious Zydeco music. The band received a 2011 Grammy nomination for their album Can’t Sit Down

August 2, August 9 & September 21

The imagiNATIONS Activity Center is the museum’s space dedicated to interactive exhibits and fun activities for children of all ages. In addition to webcasting the sculpting workshop during the Living Earth Festival mentioned above, the museum will be bringing three talented Native storytellers to our webcast audience in the next few months.  

Mokihana Traditional Hula mini Gayle-ross tall

Mokihana (left) and Gail Ross. Photos courtesy of the artists

On Friday, August 2, at 11 AM and 1 PM, Mokihana (Missy Scalph), a graduate of Halau Mohala `Ilima, a traditional hula school in Kailua, Hawai`i, will share traditional hula, songs, and stories in an interactive program created to entertain and educate visitors about Native Hawaiian culture.  

On Friday, August 9, at 1 PM and 3 PM, the museum invites you to spend some time with Gail Ross, a direct descendent of John Ross, who was Principal Chief of the Cherokee during the Trail of Tears. Gail is the author of five critically acclaimed children’s books, a distinguished lecturer, and a master of the age-old art of storytelling. Traditional Cherokee stories will be the focus of these programs. 

Grayhawk Perkins 2On Saturday, September 21, at 11 AM, Grayhawk Perkins (Choctaw/Houma), the well-known Louisiana educator, musician, and expert on Native American and Colonial American history, will take on his role as a “tribal storyteller” and share tales of ancient cultures. 

Grayhawk Perkins.
Photo courtesy of the artist


September 8 

Ulúa River vessel depicting dancers (rollout detail), AD 750–850. Honduras. 6/1259

On Sunday, September 8, from 10:30 AM to 4:15 PM, the museum will present Revealing Ancestral Central America, a symposium co-sponsored by NMAI and the Smithsonian Latino Center. The symposium features leading voices in the interpretation of Central America’s rich cultural heritage as revealed in the archeaology of the region. The exhibitionCerámica de los Ancestros: Central America’s Past Revealed is on view at the National Museum of the American Indian, Washington, D.C., through February 1, 2015.


Disappointed to Miss a Program?

The museum archives most webcasts within a few days of the live event. If you have to miss one of these programs and would like to view it later, look for it on the NMAI YouTube Channel. Programs archived recently include Wahzhazhe: An Osage Balletperformed on March 23; six programs from the 7th Annual Hawai`i Festival, celebrated May 25 and 26; and 13 programs from Choctaw Days 2013, a cultural festival that took place at the museum on June 21. 

—Mark Christal, NMAI

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Nice blog and pics shared by you. It may be helpful.

Great Post you have in here nice to know all of this! more blogs to come keep up!

July 09, 2013

Native Sounds Downtown! Derek Miller (Thursday, August 1) and Rita Coolidge (Thursday, August 8) rock the museum in New York


Derek Miller 2 Rita Coolidge

Derek Miller (left) and Rita Coolidge. Photos courtesy of the artists

Derek Miller (Mohawk) and Rita Coolidge (Cherokee) will rock the stage this August at the National Museum of the American Indian in New York. 

Songwriter, vocalist, and guitarist Derek Miller, known for his amazing live performances and expressive lyrics, will perform on Thursday, August 1, at 6 PM in the Diker Pavilion of the National Museum of the American Indian in New York. Later this season, the museum will publish a CD of Derek Miller singing hits featured in the exhibition Up Where We Belong: Native Musicians in Popular Culture. He will perform these songs along with his own music during the August 1 concert. 

Born and raised in the Six Nations of the Grand River First Nation in Ontario, Canada, Miller developed an interest in music during his early teenage years. His albums include Music Is the Medicine (2002), The Dirty Looks (2006), and Derek Miller with Double Trouble (2010). Miller has twice won the Juno Award for Best Aboriginal Recording of the Year, for his hit singles “Lovesick Blues” and “The Dirty Looks.” He performed with Eva Avila and Nikki Yanofsky at the closing ceremonies of the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

Grammy Award–winning artist Rita Coolidge will perform on Thursday, August 8, at 6 PM in the same venue—Diker Pavilion of the National Museum of the American Indian in New York.

Coolidge was born in Lafayette, Tennessee. She got her start as a professional musician recording station identifications and commercial jingles for radio stations in Memphis. She went on to sing backup vocals for rock greats, including Eric Clapton, Joe Cocker, Leon Russell, Graham Nash, and Duane Allman. Her duets with country singer Kris Kristofferson gained nationwide attention. Coolidge and Kristofferson twice won Grammy Awards for Best Country Vocal by a Duo or Group, for their hit single “From the Bottle to the Bottom” (1974) and “Lover Please” (1976). Coolidge’s solo album Anytime…Anywhere (1977) went platinum, selling over a million copies. Her single “All Time High” was the theme song for the James Bond movie Octopussy (1983).

In 1995, Coolidge teamed up with her sister Priscilla Coolidge and her niece Laura Satterfield to create the group Walela, which means hummingbird in Cherokee. Walela gave Coolidge an opportunity to foreground her Cherokee heritage in the lyrics of her songs, and the group released four albums, including Walela (1997) and Unbearable Love (2000). Coolidge has released 28 albums during her career. Her most recent solo album is A Rita Coolidge Christmas (2012). 

—Grant Moffitt, NMAI

To add Native Sounds Downtown 2013 directly to your digital calendar, visit the links below:

Derek Miller, Thursday, August 1, 6 PM

Rita Coolidge, Thursday, August 8, at 6 PM 

Grant Moffitt, a native of Franklin Lakes, New Jersey, is a Marketing & Community Outreach intern at the National Museum of the American Indian in New York. He works for the Museum Advancement group, on Public Affairs and Visitor Services projects. His internship is funded by Pace University, Wilson Center for Social Entrepreneurship. Grant is pursuing a BA in Marketing with a concentration in advertising and promotion from Pace.

The National Museum of the American Indian in New York  

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A longtime fan of Rita Coolidge bought her albums in the 70s when she was a solo act... Would love to see her again...

wow very nice will Derek Miller (Mohawk) and Rita Coolidge (Cherokee) will rock the stage this August at the National Museum of the American Indian in New York. so awesome

Very Good

April 04, 2013

Native Sounds Downtown! Saxophonist Sharel Cassity presents bebop and more, Thursday, April 11, at the museum in New York

Sharelcassity photo by Michelle Watt

Sharel Cassity. Photo by Michelle Watt, used with permission.

Saxophonist, composer, and bandleader Sharel Cassity will grace the stage of the National Museum of the American Indian in New York next Thursday, April 11, at 6 p.m.  Her phenomenal band will include Greg Gisbert (trumpet), Cyrus Chestnut (piano), Dezron Douglas (bass), and E. J. Strickland (drums). The concert is free and open to the public; invite friends to attend via the museum's Sharel Cassity event page on Facebook.

In 2010, Sharel and the Tony Lujan Septet performed an extraordinary, standing-room-only concert at the museum in Washington, D.C., in tribute to trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie and bassist Oscar Pettiford. Dizzy and OP performed together in 1943 and 1944 at New York’s Onyx Club on 52nd Street, and their fertile collaboration was characterized by Dizzy himself as “the birth of the bebop era.” In bebop, complex, asymmetric melodic lines performed on several instruments bracket improvisational, fast-tempo solos that highlight the superb musicianship of each player. Intentionally pursuing the difficult, beboppers freed the music from the page, inverting chord progressions, altering rhythm and scales, experimenting with changes in structure in a poetic display of musical fluency. 

Cassity and band

Sharel Cassity (saxophone), Edsel Gomez (piano), Conrad Herwig (trombone), Tony Lujan (trumpet), and Yunior Terry (bass) performing at the National Museum of the American Indian on the National Mall. 2010, Washington, D.C. Photo by R.A.Whiteside, NMAI.

Today’s jazz musicians continue to make history and push the music forward. Sharel Cassity is particularly known for her breathtaking improvisations, and ability to hold her own with the greats. She has performed with saxophonist Jimmy Heath and trumpeter Roy Hargrove, and recently toured Europe with the Dizzy Gillespie Afro Cuban Experience.  Sharel has released two albums to critical acclaim, Just for You and Relentless

Like Oscar Pettiford, Sharel Cassity grew up in Oklahoma, with a musical father of Cherokee heritage. Both Pettiford and Cassity are inductees in the Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame. Up Where We Belong: Native Americans in Popular Music, a current exhibition at the museum in New York, reveals the broad spectrum of Native musicians who have played transformative roles in many American musical genres. Pettiford is featured in the jazz section of the exhibition; Cassity is writing the next chapter in this moment we are so privileged to share with her. 

The concert on April 11 will give the museum's New York audience the opportunity to experience this exciting music firsthand through Pettiford standards, as well as to enjoy new music and new collaborations.

—Margaret Sagan

Margaret Sagan is Visitor Services manager at the National Museum of the American Indian in New York.

Native Sounds Downtown! with Rob Lamothe, Ryan Johnson, Ronnie Johnson, Zander Lamothe, and Rose Lamothe
Thursday, April 11, at 6 p.m.
National Museum of the American Indian in New York


RSVP & share the event via Facebook 

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Very Nice Thanks

April 03, 2013

Native Sounds Downtown! Rob Lamothe & his band pay tribute to American Indian musicians, April 25 at the museum in New York


Rob Lamothe

Rob Lamothe and the band, from left to right: Ryan Johnson, Ronnie Johnson, Rob Lamothe, Rose Lamothe, and Zander Lamothe. Photo courtesy of the artists. Used with permission.

Last summer singer, songwriter, and producer Rob Lamothe helped kick off the opening of the exhibition Up Where We Belong: Native Musicians in Popular Culture at the National Museum of the American Indian in New York. He and his band will return to perform at the museum Thursday, April 25, at 6 p.m. Supporting Rob are talented band members bassist Ryan Johnson, guitarist Ronnie Johnson, drummer Zander Lamothe, and vocalist and pianist Rose Lamothe. Together they will take the stage in the Up Where We Belong gallery and pay tribute to the artists featured in the exhibition with a set of iconic songs and some of their own personal favorites. The concert is free and open to the public; invite friends to attend via the museum's Rob Lamothe event page on Facebook

For the past 30 years, Rob has enjoyed an award-winning career with songs on the Billboard charts in the U.S. He has shared stages with everyone from Gun 'n' Roses to Ron Sexsmith. His songs are heard on hit TV shows like Melrose Place and the long-running Australian soap opera Paradise Beach. And Rolling Stone Europe has said he's got an "out-of-this-world soulful voice.” 

In the last several years, Rob has devoted much of his musical energy to working with some of North America's pre-eminent Native artists. Rob has recorded with award-winning artist David Maracle (Aboriginal Peoples Choice Awards, Canadian Aboriginal Music Awards, National Aboriginal Achievement Awards, etc). Rob teaches at Interprovincial Music Camp with Juno Award-winner Derek Miller from Six Nations Mohawk territory and internationally renowned guitarist, producer, and American Idol music director Stevie Salas (Apache). Rob's deep commitment to community is reflected in his work with young people from the Nimkee Nupigawagan Healing Centre in Muncey, Ontario, and in his job running the Emergency Housing Program for the province's Haldimand and Norfolk counties.

The band's up-and-coming young bassist Ryan Johnson has opened for musicians Derek Miller, Pappy Johns Band, and others on both sides of the U.S.-Canada border. Inspired by classic rock bands from the ’60s and ’70s, Johnson and his band earned a 2010 Canadian Aboriginal Music Awards nomination.

Guitarist Ronnie Johnson (unrelated to Ryan Johnson) hails from the Six Nations of the Grand River territory, where he grew up hearing blues and rock. By creating music that makes people dance—playing bass, rhythm guitar, and lead guitar with The Blues Brigade and Midnight Lightning for the past five years—Ronnie has “followed in the storied tradition of legendary Six Nations blues musicians.”

Named “Drummer of the Year” at the 2012 Hamilton Music Awards, Zander Lamothe has rocked in numerous Canadian and European tour shows. With his drumming featured behind artists City and Colour, Melissa McClelland, and others, this zealous artist has drummed his way from California to New York.

Beginning her musical career, 16-year-old Rose Lamothe accompanies the band with her singing and piano skills. Rose has been honored to be mentored by musicians such as Bernard Fowler from the Rolling Stones and Donna Grantis from Prince.

The music will kick off at 6 p.m. on the Up Where We Belong gallery stage at the National Museum of the American Indian in New York, located at One Bowling Green in Lower Manhattan. This show is guaranteed to be a crowd-pleaser and a real treat for visitors who want to experience a concert inside of a gallery surrounded by the history of Native icons of music.   

—Aimee Beltramini

Aimee Beltramini is an intern in the Public Affairs and Visitor Services Departments at the National Museum of the American Indian in New York. 

Native Sounds Downtown! with Rob Lamothe, Ryan Johnson, Ronnie Johnson, Zander Lamothe, and Rose Lamothe

Thursday, April 25, at 6 p.m.
National Museum of the American Indian in New York


RSVP & share the event via Facebook 

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It is overwhelming that singers pay tribute to Native americans which is really patriotic. Which others could do the same.

This was an amazing tribute! I was actually there!

February 25, 2011

Native Music for the Masses


If there are some visitors that are missing the Up Where We Belong: Native Musicians in Popular Culture exhibition that has left the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C. – relief has come in the form of the original playlist of music that was featured on the audio tour, courtesy of Rhapsody.com.

For those of you who are not familiar, Up Where We Belong opened in July 2010 in the Sealaska Gallery on the second level which featured 13 artists that influenced music over the course of a century covering various genres of music. The exhibition also featured an audio tour with excerpts from the curators as well as songs from the featured artists.

So all you have to do now is search your local search engine: “rhapsody nmai” or “music nmai.” Better yet, here is the link: http://www.rhapsody.com/member/nmai

I had so much fun re-creating the playlist (that has been so well received) so much that I have the privilege, no the pleasure of creating a few more based on the artists and themes. I have so many ideas, so who knows where this will go. So keep coming back and check up on what’s new.

1. Mildred Bailey - Rocking Chair, written by Hoagy Carmichael.
2. Oscar Pettiford – Monti Cello, by Oscar Pettiford.
3. Russell “Big Chief” Moore - Someday, by Louis Armstrong, with Russell Moore, trombone.
4. Johnny Cash - The Ballad of Ira Hayes, written by Peter La Farge.
5. Peter La Farge - Drums, written and performed by Peter La Farge.
6. Link Wray - Rumble, by Link Wray and His Ray-Men. 1958.
7. Rita Coolidge - Higher and Higher, 1972.
8. Walela - Cherokee Morning Song, Written and performed by Walela, (Rita Coolidge, Priscilla Coolidge, and Laura Satterfield.
9. The Band - The Weight, written by Robbie Robertson, performed by The Band, 1968.
10. Robbie Robertson - Ghost Dance, written and performed by Robbie Robertson.
11. Redbone - Wovoka, written and performed by Redbone. 1973.
12. Redbone - Come and Get Your Love, written by Pat and Lolly Vegas. 1974.
13. Jesse Ed Davis - Doctor, My Eyes, by Jackson Browne, with Jesse Ed Davis, lead guitar. 1972.
14. Taj Mahal (featuring Jesse Ed Davis, lead and slide guitar) - Statesboro Blues. 1968.
15. Buffy Sainte-Marie - Universal Soldier.
16. Buffy Sainte-Marie - No No Keshagesh.
17. Randy Castillo - No More Tears, performed by Ozzy Osborne, with Randy Castillo, drums. 1991.
18. Randy Castillo - Tattooed Dancer, Ozzy Osborne, with Randy Castillo, drums. 1989.
19. Stevie Salas - I Once Was There, by Stevie Salas. 1995.
20. Stevie Salas - Tell Your Story Walkin’ by Stevie Salas. 1995.
21. Jimi Hendrix - Voodoo Child (slight return). 1968.
22. Jimi Hendrix - Little Wing.1967.

Comments (12)

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Thanks for the track list.

Nice mix of familiar and lesser-known artists & songs in there... Gives me some research to do on some of the artists in the list, always nice to get new ideas for artists and songs!

Site Owner: Jazz Guitar and Vocals

I love Jimi Hendrix's Voodoochild.Now THAT's a classic.

Yes, I agree. I've heard of most of these artists and the tracks you specify. However, I'd not heard of Russell “Big Chief” Moore, Walela or Stevie Salas before. So, like Stan, you've prompted me to do some enjoyable homework getting to know the work of new (to me) artists.

John Murphey

When you love something you have a lot of fun doing it. Quite an interesting mix of musical artist list there.Surprised for me I could only recognise a few there, thumbs up to you.

That's a heck of a list. And definitely some I have not heard of. I always love some new recommendations for music!

Cool list. Some of these songs are new to me but I am going to give them a listen. Thanks

That's a heck of a list. And definitely some I have not heard of. I always love some new recommendations for music!

Great selection of music. I love Jimmy Hendix and the rest is reall cool too. Love the new music.

I am a guitarist myself and Johnny Cash is an inspiration. I have songs of my own on my website.

Great list. Some of them I've never heard of.
Thanks for the list, you should definitely post more list like this!

These songs are great.I am going to listen to all of them for sure .If any one wants to sing in a more professional manner then i recommend visiting How to become a famous singer.It has helped me a lot.

Thanks for the audio track list!