Show to commemorate National Native American Heritage Month
Mon, October 31, 2022 10:40 a.m.
Saturday, November 19, Seneca Niagara Resort & Casino in Niagara Falls
√ Oren Lyons honored with a Living Legend Award
√ Shalamar’s Micki Free to be inducted into Hall of Fame
√ First ceremony since the pandemic
Logo courtesy of Native American Music Awards
The Native American Music Awards are back and ready to celebrate and honor their most powerful voices, while commemorating National Native American Heritage Month, Saturday, November 19, at the Seneca Niagara Resort & Casino in Niagara Falls. This will be the organization’s 20th awards event, and the first since the pandemic.
Hosting the ceremony will be actor Robert Mesa (Navajo/Soboba), who most recently played the character of James Chee, the first native doctor on “Grey’s Anatomy.”
A press release explained: “The awards will proudly recognize and honor Oren Lyons as a living legend. Oren, who is 92 years old, is the Guardian of the Faith of the Turtle Clan, Onondaga Nation. He is an artist, speaker, author and environmental activist for Indigenous peoples around the world and holds the title of Wisdom Keeper. He has advocated at the United Nations for the recognition of indigenous rights and addressed the United Nations General Assembly. He is also a member of the All-American Lacrosse Hall of Famer and Honorary Chairman of the Haudenosaunee Nationals Lacrosse Program.
“This year’s Hall of Fame inductee is Grammy Award-winning Micki Free, winner of multiple Native American, Comanche and Cherokee music awards. Originally discovered and managed by Gene Simmons of KISS, Micki was the guitarist for R&B sensation Shalamar, who boasted mega-platinum hit songs like “Dancing In The Sheets” from the movie soundtrack “Footloose.” , and won a Grammy for ‘Don’t Get Stopped In Beverly Hills’ from the ‘Beverly Hills Cop’ soundtrack. Micki is currently touring in support of her latest album, ‘Turquoise Blue’, which features members of the Santana Band, Steve Stevens of Billy Idol and Gary Clark Jr.
“The recipients of the Lifetime Achievement Award are Paul LaRoche of Brule/AIRO and Robert Tree Cody. Paul LaRoche is the founding member of Brulé, the Native American rock epic. Brulé has won eight Native American Music awards, released 20 CDs, and sold over one million CDs worldwide. Robert Tree Cody is a five-time Native American Music Award winner and a multi-talented flautist, singer, dancer, actor and educator. He has released 13 albums and is the adopted son of Hollywood actor Iron Eyes Cody.
This year’s awards program celebrates and showcases an overwhelming amount of talent and full albums, single recordings and music video releases.
Featured artists include multiple nominees Antoine Edwards Jr., Cody Blackbird, Earl Slick and the Fabulous Ripcords, Fawn Wood, Gunner Jules, Spur Pourier, Sten Joddi and The Halluci Nation. Guest nominees include Ava Rose, Blanca Iris Acuna, Blue Flamez, Blue Mountain Tribe, Crazy Flute, Darren Thompson, Dr. April Lea Go Forth, Faran Sohappy, Gera & TM Clark, JUQ, Julian Taylor, Kelly Derrickson, Kelly Montijo Fink , Irv Lyons Jr., Melody McArthur, Raven Flyinghorse, Sandra Sutter, Savelle The Native, The Johnnys, Shibastik, Shiloh Ashley, Tess Remy-Schumacher, Twice As Good, Two Shields and Yvonne St. Germaine.
Organizers also announced a new partnership with the BMI Foundation to create a career scholarship for a Native American songwriter or composer. Known as the BMI Foundation Rising Star Award, this new program will honor a music creator in the Rising Star category for emerging and promising artists. The recipient of this award will receive a career award of $2,500.
The Native American Music Awards were originally established in 1998 as a national organization committed to traditional and contemporary Native American music. Nominations for the Annual Native American Music Awards (NAMA) reflect the highest quality of recordings from music creators across North America and were selected by the combined votes of a national membership advisory committee.
The press release read, “From grief and celebration to protectors and protesters, this year’s nominees have embraced many issues facing tribal communities today, including missing and murdered Indigenous women, the return of land, the climate crisis and the devastating pandemic.
Tickets for the awards ceremony are available at Ticketmaster.com.
Voting for the Native American Music Awards remains open to the general public until midnight Friday, November 18 at www.NAMALIVE.com. All winners will be announced live at the event.