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Canku Ota

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(Many Paths)

An Online Newsletter Celebrating Native America


May 17, 2003 - Issue 87


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by Red Vinyl Records

Happy LitefootLitefoot is an Actor, the first Native American Rap Artist, a motivational speaker and President and Founder of three successful corporations. Litefoot first gained notoriety through his music career. In mid 1992, he released his first album "The Money" on his own Red Vinyl Records. In October of 1992 he began to receive radio play and won the Rap Search Contest with the title track from "The Money." This Song soon became a regional hit and paved the way for his second release "Speciality." In September of 1993 Litefoot released the single "Native Tongue" and launched the first international tour by a Native American Rap Artist. In June of 1994 while on tour, Litefoot released the album, "Seein' Red." This album carried Litefoot's message of cultural pride and strength home throughout Indian Country. The tour came to an end in October of 1994 and saw the birth of Litefoots second company, First Nations Entertainment which was responsible for taking Litefoot to hundreds of cities/reservations and two foreign countries. The tour also established Red Vinyl Records as a major player in the Native music world.

Litefoot made his major motion picture debut in July of 1995 as the star of the Paramount/Columbia film entitled, "The Indian in the Cupboard." This Internationally acclaimed film earned him his first "Best Actor" award from First Americans in the Arts. It was also at this time that he established his third business venture, Litefoot Entertainment handling all theatrical performances and film productions.

In April of 1996 Litefoot toured Indian Country performing numerous concerts in the United States and Canada and finished his second starring role as "Hiawatha" in the Canadian Showtime release, "The Song Of Hiawatha." In July of 1996 he released the album "Good Day To Die," which received international exposure and among fans became his most popular CD.

At the end of October, Litefoot completed filming his third motion picture for Universal Pictures in Europe entitled, "Kull, The Conqueror" with Kevin Sorbo and Tia Carrere. This allowed him to be present in San Francisco, California on November 9th to accept his second "Best Actor" award from the the American Indian Film Institute for his role in, "The Song of Hiawatha." In December, Litefoot closed a very busy year by recording national television and radio commercials as part of his new position as spokesperson for Job Corps.

Litefoot kept busy in 1997 by starting off the year in Thailand filming his fourth motion picture , a New Line Cinema release, "Mortal Kombat, Annihilation." Once filming was complete Litefoot returned to record four new albums for artists on Red Vinyl Records and started a rigorous schedule of concert touring which included filming his first "Live Concert Video" in Oklahoma with a crowd of over 10,000. Litefoot spent the end of 1997 touring and recording songs in Los Angeles for his own upcoming projects.

"Tribal Boogie" CD CoverThe beginning of 1998 brought Litefoot his third "Best Actor" award from First Americans in the Arts for his role in the film, "Kull The Conqueror." However, that was not the only recognition Litefoot would receive in the year. At the 1st Annual Native American Music Awards Litefoot would see over six years of making music in Indian Country be honored by his receiving the award for "Rap Artist Of The Year" and by also having three Red Vinyl Records artists receive nominations. By mid year, Litefoot had toured Indian Country extensively and completed the filming on his fifth motion picture, "Picture of Priority. In a 1998 poll of Indian Country regarding prominent Native persons, conducted by Oklahoma Indian Times Newspaper found Litefoot to be "Best Indian Role Model" and "Favorite Indian Performer." By year end, Litefoot had added to his spokesperson duties by recording a television commercial for American Indian Business Leaders, a new thirty minute infomercial for Job Corps featuring heavyweight boxing champ George Foreman and released the CD, "The Life and Times."

In 1999, Litefoot released four of his own albums including "Rez Affiliated", two Native rap compilations and received his second Native American Music Award for "Rap Artist Of The Year."

In 2000, Litefoot toured to over forty-five Native Communities, starred alongside Richard Harris in the feature film, "The Pearl" and won his third Native American Music Award.

Litefoot began 2001 with the release of his eighth CD, "Tribal Boogie," starred in "Adaptation" with Nicholas Cage and Meryl Streep, Twenty -Nine Palms with Chris O'Donnell and Rachel Leigh Cook and guest starred on the television shows, "Family Law" and "Any Day Now."

Litefoot began 2002 with the release of his ninth CD, "The Messenger" and a new year long fifty-five city tour filmed as a documentary chronicling his travels throughout the United States and Canada motivating and empowering Native people.

"Native American Me" CD CoverOn May 8th, 2003, Litefoot reached a milestone in his 12 year career and accomplished a historic feat towards achieving mainstream recognition for Native American musicians. Litefoot performed at the All Star Jam in Uniondale, NY at The Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum with hip hop icons such as Busta Rhymes, Ludacris, Nas and Jadakiss from the rap group The Lox. The event promoted by Lance Gumbs, Chairman of The Shinnecock Nation in Long Island, NY drew nearly 15,000 excited New York area rap fans to attend the five hour long event hosted by radio personality and legendary female hip hop MC, Monie Love.

After Def Jam Records artist Ludacris completed performing, Litefoot was introduced by author and hip hop Photographer Ernie Pannicioli (Cree). Litefoot took the stage dressed in full Grass dance regalia alongside two Northern traditional dancers and three Aztec dancers who all danced together to a song by Eyabay. The crowd was in awe from the start as they witnessed the blending of traditional dance and Litefootís brand of Hip Hop. Litefoot was joined on stage by tour sidekicks Bear and Koz, New York City DJ, J Smoke and the world renowned break dance group, The Rock Steady Crew. Rock Steady leader Pop Master Fabel excited the crowd with popping, locking and spectacular floor work while Litefoot rapped songs from his four Native American Music Award winning albums and his brand new release "Native American Me"

Litefoot performed for more than twenty minutes and managed to deliver a message of empowerment to the crowd in the process. After Litefoot performed, Busta Rhymes took to the stage to close the evenings festivities with a 30 minute performance.

Litefoot said that he, "savored the evening because it took me12 years to get on that stage tonight. Most important to me was that we presented the traditional aspect of who we are first and then my music. It's the most important thing to me to never forget, no matter how big I get, to always be humble to my culture and to our ancestors. Tonight everyone in the coliseum felt that power."

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  Canku Ota is a free Newsletter celebrating Native America, its traditions and accomplishments . We do not provide subscriber or visitor names to anyone. Some articles presented in Canku Ota may contain copyright material. We have received appropriate permissions for republishing any articles. Material appearing here is distributed without profit or monetary gain to those who have expressed an interest. This is in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107.  

Canku Ota is a copyright © 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003 of Vicki Lockard and Paul Barry.

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