Published on March 26, 2014 by Amy
Nagwetch-Little Sun, a singer-songwriter, musician and cultural producer from Quebec, is a Wabanaki born on Gesgapegiag reservation in Gaspesia Peninsula. In the 1960′s, he spent his early childhood in Mi’kmaq and Cree/Inuit territories before moving to Montreal where at an early age he starts writing songs and learning guitar on his own. At that time, family friends includes French Canadian artists Felix Leclerc, Gilles Vigneault and Pauline Julien.
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Following his father, a Native activist and traditionalist who travels the world, Nagwetch moves to France in the middle of the 1970′s. In Paris, he takes part in various local bands while touring with his own ensemble in Germany, Belgium, Switzerland and Denmark. He also takes singing lessons with Klaus Blasquiz, ex- singer of the French progrock band Magma, and learns African percussion with great masters like Henri Samba, Lucly Zebila and Gwem. This is an exciting period where Nagwetch is discovering and exploring various musical genres. After recording a demo of his French repertoire in Barclay Music’s studio in Paris, Nagwetch decides to walk his own path. He returns in Quebec where he is working as cultural producer in Montreal and spending time researching Native American and Wabanaki music.
On a tour in Scandinavia, he ends up in Finland in the middle of the 199’0s. It is here that he meets with a bunch of young rock musicians interested by his musical ideas. Together they found Wabanag, a musical band that blends Native American contents inspired by Nagwetch’s Canadian Aboriginal roots with contemporary styles – mainly rock and blues. This is Nagwetch’s first foray into writing songs in a Mi’kmaq dialect taught to him by his father.
In 1999, a first demo titled “Indian Rock”is recorded and the band starts touring locally. While the band has adopted a rock & roll mood, Nagwetch is interested by experimenting with traditional instruments, including flutes, drums, musical bows, stones, rattles and whistles. It is on that experience that ULODI album, which is released in 2004, is based. The nomination of the ￼￼￼ Canadian Aboriginal Music Awards comes as a surprise in 2005. The album is well received in Europe, especially in the Nordic and Baltic countries, where the band is often on tour.
After a break of several years, the band is back on the net and on the road with a new album in 2013. BEMIA is an invitation to walk in beauty, a Native/Aboriginal and Wabanaki way to say that the purpose of life is to learn to live in harmony with all our relations. It is about a journey, both in physical and spiritual terms, a call to return back home to Creation and Evolution, ready to show love and care for the people around us and, more generally, for all life forms.