Monthly Archives: October 2023

First Nations Hip Hop Duo Snotty Nose Rez Kids Release ‘I Got Paid Today’

The Snotty Nose Rez Kids, a dynamic Indigenous hip-hop duo hailing from Vancouver, have recently unleashed a powerful and thought-provoking anthem, “I Got Paid Today.” This track is not just another song; it’s a rallying cry, a testament to resilience, and a vivid exploration of the Indigenous experience in today’s world.

Known for their unapologetic style and uncompromising lyrics, the duo have captured the attention of music lovers around the globe. Their rise represents not only the success of Indigenous artists but also a shift towards acknowledging the importance of Indigenous voices and stories in popular culture.

“I Got Paid Today” is more than just a song; it’s a declaration of empowerment. The track radiates self-assuredness, celebrating the accomplishments and resilience of Indigenous communities. With lyrics like, “I got paid today, I’m unapologetic,” the Snotty Nose Rez Kids send a powerful message to their audience and beyond. The song reflects a sense of pride, strength, and the unyielding determination to rise above adversity.

This track delves into the complex and multifaceted issue of identity for Indigenous people. It touches on the importance of celebrating one’s heritage and culture in a world where Indigenous voices have often been marginalized or silenced. By unapologetically embracing their identity, the Snotty Nose Rez Kids encourage others to do the same. As the Snotty Nose Rez Kids continue to make waves, their music remains a forceful reminder that diverse perspectives and powerful narratives have a place in the spotlight.

Dakotah Faye’s ‘hell was boring’ Takes Listeners on a Healing Journey

In the world of music, there are artists who break boundaries, challenge norms, and inspire listeners with their creativity and unique perspectives. Dakotah Faye has just released his latest album ‘hell was boring’ that covers topics ranging from addiction and incarceration to the journey of self healing.


Cannot thank anyone enough for the love. Releasing an album is always scary so I appreciate it. Maybe it can warm you up in this #NorthDakota weather! ❤️ #HellWasBoring #upcomingartist #dakotahfaye

♬ live & direct – Dakotah Faye

Faye is not just a talented artist, but also an advocate for the Indigenous community. Through his music and platform, he continuously sheds light on Indigenous issues and challenges faced within the community while also celebrating the beauty and resilience. “hell was boring” is a testament to the strength and creativity of Indigenous artists, and paves the way for greater recognition and appreciation of Indigenous voices in the music industry. This album is a reminder that music has the power to inspire, unite, and uplift, and it stands as a testament to the boundless creativity and potential of Indigenous artists.

Xiuhtezcatl & Mato Wayuhi announce new single ‘Veils’

Indigenous artists Xiuhtezcatl & Mato Wayuhi have announced their new joint single ‘Veils’ releasing on October 27, 2023. In a message shared via Instagram, Xiuhtezcatl stated, “We spent 10 days in my homeland Xochimilco, Mexico filming some of the most incredible visuals for this next album. This song is one of my favorite songs I’ve ever written.” You can pre-save the song here and find tickets here for his upcoming 2 THE MOON & BACK TOUR kicking off in November.

Indigenous Barbie Q&A: A Celebration of Alaska Native Heritage

Creating alongside her Mother, Angela Gonzalez, the two have gone viral on TikTok for their Indigenous Barbie creations, specifically the “Fish Camp Barbie,” which has garnered over 100,000 views on TikTok. Ermelina Gonzalez spoke with the RIVR and revealed more details behind the creations:

My name is Ermelina Gonzalez, my Denaakk’e name is K’ete ts’aayedaalno. I was born and raised in Anchorage, Alaska. My Mother is Koyukon Athabascan from Huslia, Alaska and my Father is Hispanic from El Salvador.

What led you to begin the creation of Indigenous barbies?

My mom first made a fish camp barbie for me when I was about ten years old. She used one of my barbies to make the scene. My mom’s late grandma, Lydia Simon of Huslia, use to make grass dolls at fish camp when she was growing up. Over the years, my mom began to make more for non-profit fundraisers. I received my first sewing machine at fourteen and the same year learned how to make a betsegh hoolaanee (qaspeq or summer parka). Over the years, I’ve helped my mom with sewing the clothing and accessories.

How much of an impact has Social Media had on spreading your content’s message?

Posted on my mom’s account, TikTok has spread our message of Indigenous representation to many Native and non-Native people across the United States and Canada. A couple of the videos have gone viral not only on TikTok, but other platforms as well.

What’s your favorite barbie you’ve made thus far and the biggest lesson you’ve learned?

My favorite Barbie is the moose hide tanning barbie. I like that Barbie because of what she is doing. Moose tanning is a practice being revived in Alaska and I think the process is just so amazing. The journey to processing hide is beautiful and the end result is so rewarding. The biggest lesson I’ve learned is that Indigenous representation is important. I can tell from the shear amount of comments from Native people that they’ve loved it and how healing it is for their inner child.

What do you think about there being a hunger for Indigenous representation in pop culture?

We first started making the barbies with the things we had at home. We encourage anyone to do the same and represent their culture and heritage. We had people comment that they would like to see a whale hunting, dog mushing, and ribbon skirt barbie. Overall, many people are reconnecting and have a hunger for learning and practicing our culture and way of life. There is definitely a hunger for learning Alaska Native crafts, many people are disconnected and social media is a way to share our knowledge for these activities.

What about Indigenous Ken? Any plans to make a version soon?

Yes! We recently bought a Ken barbie doll and have plans for him in the making so stay tuned!

Indigenous Peoples Day: A Year in Reflection

In 2022, we asked prominent Indigenous community member Rochelle Adams to reflect on Indigenous Peoples Day. Check out her responses from a year ago and see if they resonate with how you feel on Indigenous Peoples Day in 2023.

“This year Indigenous Peoples Day was Monday, October 10th, 2022. After being apart since 2019 due to the pandemic, it made coming together so much sweeter! I was excited to attend the APU celebration at the Moseley Sports Center in person to be with our community, share great food, important messages and feel the drum beats together. The last couple years have been online, which I’m grateful for the opportunity. But there is nothing like being in person and sharing hugs and our love for our beautiful, vibrant cultures with one another. We also kept the online component for accessibility and to share with our relatives and friends outside of Anchorage. 

I have been a part of the planning committee for several years. I look forward to the time of year when the lead organizer Kristel Komakhuk, APU reaches out to pull us together to plan the year’s Indigenous Peoples Day celebration. The co hosts this year were Alaska Pacific University, Alaska Federation of Natives, Alaska’s People, Alaska Native Professional Association, Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium, Alaska Native Heritage Center, Alaska Native Sisterhood Camp 87, Alaska Native Village Corporation Association, Cook Inlet Tribal Council, First Alaskans Institute, Native Peoples Action Community Fund and Native Village of Eklutna. 

This year our theme was “Honoring Our Ways of Life: Celebrating Who We Are.” We had guest speakers from around the state including Janelle Vanasse, APU President, Curtis McQueen (Tlingit), myself, Rochelle Adams (Gwich’in) and Crystal Leonetti (Yupik). We also were so honored for the performances by Alaska Native Heritage Center, Ida’ina Keljeshna (Dena’ina), Alaska Native Cultural Charter School choir. We also had an amazing buffet of soup and frybread and it was so much to have the Molly of Denali walk-around! 

My message was about stewardship and how Alaska Natives have been the stewards of these lands and waters since time immemorial. I also shared how this stewardship is a little different. Nowadays, in order to stand up and protect our ways of life this means to show up at the polls and to vote! Vote your values for candidates whose values align the best with your own. This also means to show up in spaces where decisions are being made on behalf of our hunting and fishing rights. Because Alaska Natives are the experts as the ones that have lived here for thousands of years in balance with these lands, water and animals relatives. If we do not show up in these spaces, these decisions will be made for us and this is usually not in our best interest.. 

That being said, It is so important that we celebrate together! It is so important that we acknowledge our history and the knowledge that we hold as the first people of Alaska. If we can all come together to take a stand to protect our ways of life, we can ensure our ways of life for the next generations. It is our responsibility to speak for our relatives that cannot speak for themselves. As we face the Salmon crisis along the Yukon River and our hunting and fishing rights are continuously being under attack, now more than ever it is vital that we stand up. I’m honored to share this message with our community.”

Rochelle Adams is from the Interior Alaskan villages of Beaver and Fort Yukon, and her parents are Angela Peter-Mayo of Fort Yukon and the late Cliff “Tuffy” Adams Jr. of Beaver.

17 year old Indigenous singer songwriter DeeDee Austin releases pop single, “Stay Dancin'”

DeeDee Austin is a 17-year-old Indigenous singer-songwriter from Fall River, Nova Scotia. She has recently been nominated for Nova Scotia Indigenous Artist of the Year 2023 and Nova Scotia Music Video of the Year 2023, and previously garnered Indigenous Artist of the Year 2022, Best New Artist Recording of 2022 and many more accolades. She has been making notable strides on the East Coast with the release of her debut EP, Stepping Stones, and now her newest single Stay Dancin’ available on all streaming platforms.