Native hip hop at TCA

Supaman and Wake Self join Taos Pueblo’s Po.10.Cee at ‘Prayer Supply Tour’


It’s called “The Prayer Supply Tour,” a title Native American hip-hop artist Wake Self explains by saying, “We just want to be bring love, laughter, inspiration, healing and connect with our audiences. The type of vibe we’re giving is just for people to enjoy themselves and feel uplifted.”

The show, headlined by Christian Parrish Takes the Gun, also known as Supaman, hits the stage tonight (July 27) at the Taos Community Auditorium, 145 Paseo del Pueblo Norte. Starting at 7 p.m., artists in addition to Supaman and Wake Self set to rock the house include Taos Pueblo’s Po.10.Cee, DJ Stigmata and Jisk.

Supaman is an Apsáalooke rapper from Seattle, Washington, as well as a Native American Music Award winner. “The child of struggling alcoholics, he spent part of his childhood in foster care before being raised by his mother,” a press release states. “He began DJing in the [1990s] after hearing a Litefoot song (with the two touring together in 1999), taking the name ‘Supaman’ at the spur of the moment in a DJ competition. He almost signed to a label in Seattle before a religious experience led him to return to his family on the reservation and begin writing Christian-oriented hip-hop.”

Hailing from Albuquerque, Wake Self is known for his rhymes “against misogyny and materialism,” a press release states. His latest album, “Malala,” was released in August of 2016 and is dedicated to Malala Yousafzai.

In an email interview, Wake Self was asked what inspired him to choose “Malala” as the title for his album.

“Women/girls are powerful, we need more leading the revolution and evolution of society,” he stated. “We also need to acknowledge and support the ones we have, such as Malala. I believe her story is important, she is what so many People say they are or strive to be. Someone who 100 percent authentic to what they believe in, and takes action no matter what. We have a society that mostly lives on hyperbole, desires, and made internet personas. Very few actually become the person they see themselves as.

“Our potential to impact the world is blocked by fear, laziness, doubt, distraction, pleasure etc. I value her life, for not being afraid to act, and really go all in to help better humanity. I figured I would do my part to honor her with a rap album. The title song from my album is about breaking stereotypes, and calling out the injustices in the music and entertainment industry that perpetuate gender inequality. I’m just tired of seeing our youth grow up being conditioned by misogyny and disrespect towards women, and these industries profiting from it. Plus, it’s such a beautiful name.”

The album’s namesake is a Pakistani activist for female education and the youngest ever Nobel Prize laureate. In 2012, she was seriously wounded after a Taliban gunman attempted to murder her. The murder attempt sparked a national and international outpouring of support for her.

Wake Self was also asked which social issues are uppermost in his mind right now. He wrote, “Where do you begin, how do you create a hierarchy to say what atrocities are more important than others. Around every corner struggles are apparent, and situation are in dire need of solutions. Every plight of injustice deserves the spotlight. From gender inequality, police brutality, failing political-economical-educational systems, environmental issues, the invisible hands, corporate greed, animal rights, the disconnect between mind, body, energy, spirit. I feel a large role in all these issues stems from human brains oppressing out of male dominance, an obvious imbalance between the feminine and masculine brain. Our society wants to conquer, profit, capitalize. Instead of nurture, connect, and evolve.”

Respect for life, for women and children are important themes in his work. Why? Was there something specific that formed this focus? Wake Self responded by writing, “I feel like these themes should be common sense. What does it [say] about the current state of entertainment when just being a respectful human makes you stand out? I just say what I feel, I enjoy utilizing the platform of songwriting as an extension of my thoughts. A lot of themes become important at different times, but truth is always relevant. I understand that Justice, and equality should be a universal right, and I will stand up and do my part when the spotlight is on.”

Po.10.Cee is a hip-hop crew from Taos Pueblo that began producing beats, writing rhymes, recording and promoting Native rap and hip-hop in 2004. Through comedic raps and melodic vocals, Po.10.Cee’s Native rap style conveys political and controversial messages, while also promoting a movement of truth, art and unity.

Miles Bonny, who will also perform at the event, says he loves reality. His music is described in a press release as “a warm blanket that hugs you while exploring life’s bed of nails. Social Awareness filters through microphones and computers to represent itself as a creation that will be experienced by soulful people around the world.”

Tickets are $15 in advance, $20 at the door. Advance tickets may be purchased by calling (575) 758-2052 or by stopping by the Taos Center for the Arts office, 133 Paseo del Pueblo Norte (behind Caffé Renato).