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Blues-Rock Band Indigenous
To Perform at UW-Eau Claire
MAILED: April 5, 2002
EAU CLAIRE — "Blues-rock elevated to spectacular heights" is how The New York Times described the sound of Indigenous, an on-the-rise band that will perform in concert Friday, April 19, at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.
Doors will open at 8 p.m. for the show in the Council Fire Room of Davies Center.
Indigenous is a band of four siblings who grew up on the Nakota Nation reservation in South Dakota and spent their adolescence creating their signature "wall of sound" without ever having the benefit of seeing another band perform. They have spent most of the last five years performing across the country, establishing a reputation as one of rock's premier live acts.
The group's prime drawing card is guitarist Mato Nanji, whose electrifying style draws consistent comparison to that of Stevie Ray Vaughan, Jimi Hendrix and Carlos Santana.
"What I wasn't prepared for was the experience of Indigenous live," wrote a reviewer for the San Francisco Examiner, "especially the scorched-earth assault by guitarist Mato Nanji.... Fluid as hot mercury, note-perfect, howling, Nanji was seemingly possessed by ghosts."
"It's too early to tell if the present crop of young, talented musicians will ever attain the prestige of Johnson, Waters, the Kings or Hooker," wrote the Pittsburgh Post Gazette. "But if you had to anoint one guitarist as a possible successor to these legendary figures, it just might be Mato Nanji of Indigenous. With siblings Pte (bass), Wanbdi (drums) and cousin Horse (percussion), Nanji has left an indelible impression on audiences since the band started touring nationally five years ago. His style is reminiscent of Jimi Hendrix and Stevie Ray Vaughan, but to hear his explosive, incandescent playing is to know one is in the presence of an original."
Indigenous received three top honors at the Native American Music Awards after releasing its debut album, "Things We Do" (1998). The title song's video, from celebrated director Chris Eyre ("Smoke Signals"), won the American Indian Film Festival award and was shown three times at the prestigious Sundance Film Festival.
"'Things We Do' may be the most brilliant blues album of the year," wrote the New York Post. "The band from the Great Plains has crashed the big time by doing the Ghost Dance with Jimi Hendrix and Stevie Ray Vaughan."
Indigenous broke into the top ten of America's music and radio charts, and was one of the first Native American bands to do so. The band's impact began to be felt heavily on the Internet - notably, by the traffic at their popular Web site www.indigenousrocks.com and by being named Amazon.com's blues artist of the year for 1999. Indigenous was featured on National Public Radio's "All Things Considered" and on national television on "Late Night with Conan O'Brien," "CBS Saturday Morning," and "Austin City Limits."
B.B. King invited the band to join him on his Blues Festival Tour of 1999, stating that "Indigenous is a band America and the world should hear."
Released in late 1999, "Live from Pachyderm Studios" won the album of the year award at the 2000 Native American Music Awards, where Indigenous was also honored as best musical group.
That recording was followed by the band's second full-length studio album, "Circle" (2000), which hovered in the Billboard Top 10 of blues albums after its release. Indigenous' new EP, "Fistful of Dirt," features six new songs.
Tickets are $7 ($5 for UW-Eau Claire students) at the University Service Center, (715) 836-3727, and will be sold at the door. The show is open to all ages.
Patrons may charge their tickets to MasterCard or Visa when they order by phone. Call the University Service Center, (715) 836-3727 - or, outside the immediate Eau Claire area, call toll-free (800) 949-UWEC. A $3 handling fee will be added to all telephone charge orders.
The concert is cosponsored by the American Ethnic Coordinating Office and the University Activities Commission of the UW-Eau Claire Student Senate.
UW-Eau Claire News Bureau
Updated: April 5, 2002