Kevin Chief, aka Flying Down Thunder of the Juno-nominated duo Flying Down Thunder and Rise Ashen, speaks on the origins of their cross-cultural collaboration and inspirations.
I got a chance to pick the brain of Ottawa-based artist Kevin Chief aka Flying Down Thunder about his inspirations for his musical process, how the group Flying Down Thunder and Rise Ashen formed, and his words of advice for youth.
Cee Ancheta and Rise Ashen Present: Flying Down Thunder
If there was ever a beautiful marriage of contemporary two step EDM and Indigenous music culture, this was it. Viewers of this video should be prepared to inhale both the driving, rhythmic bass line with haunting trails of Algonquin chanting and eagle songs as though they were wisps of smoke. Shot and Edited by Cee Ancheta, and produced by Cee Ancheta and Rise Ashen, this video makes incredible use of visual poetry with a dynamic soundtrack that brings you to the edge of the clearing in the woods in your imagination. A must watch, and a must have.
"Ottawa, Canada duet Flying Down Thunder and Rise Ashen blend traditional Algonquin chanting with globetrotting dancefloor mixology. On Kijigog Nimiwan, the chant summons the listener to come together into a community. This community is all of Creation. Birds, trees, grasses, all respond to the rhythm and Flying Down Thunder is connected to them, dancing with their spirits and dialoguing with the beauty of the forest. Anishnabe people view us as keepers of the land, and these images are an expression of deep interconnectedness in our natural world, a reminder that Creation is ours to cherish and protect."