Leanne Goose (Dene and Inuvialuit) is from the Northwest Territories of Canada. She grew up traveling with her father’s band and began her musical career at a young age. Leanne's voice mixes soft, sultry and soul into a sound like no one can. Her music can go from blues to rock to country. Leanne loves music and enjoys sharing it with an array of audiences.
Leanne has released two albums Anywhere in 2008 and Got You Covered in 2011. Both Albums have earned Leanne a number of nominations and notoriety. Leanne is an up-and-coming songwriter and the Native American music community has taken notice.
Recently, Production Assistant Tobias Grant (Omaha) talked with Leanne after her performance on Stage 49 during the Gathering of Nations Powwow. Tobias asked Leanne about her sound and experience as a Native musician.
If you’ve been following my blogs, of if you know me, you should know how passionate I am about Native media.In the recent years, I’ve taken a deeper interest in Native American Educational Media and decided to get yet another degree focusing on this subject.I’ve been involved with learning and teaching media for over 10 years now and I am starting to see the Native communities becoming more technically savvy, more involved in digital storytelling and more passionate about not only preserving traditional ways of life with video, but using technology as the new storytelling tool to pass on stories that were once only passed on orally.
Technology is becoming second nature in today’s society, but sadly, in a lot of Native communities, they tend to be behind the times or a few generations behind on the latest and greatest technological trends.It only took a few years, but my smart phone now works on the rez, albeit through roaming charges, but for Native-kind that is one huge step!Now that tribal nations have the access and ability to consume media through the Internet and cell phones, it is time for tribal nations to harness these gadgets towards educational teaching.Enter Shawna L. Begay.
With my dissertation, I hope to start developing educational media programming for tribal communities.Not only for my own Navajo Nation, but develop a model for other tribal communities to follow and perhaps use.When I think about educational media I always think of what I used to watch as a kid.Remember the days when we only had 13 channels?And we had to change the channel with a dial?I know I’m dating myself, but THE station to watch was PBS!Sesame Street, School House Rock, Mr. Rogers Neighborhood and Captain Kangaroo…. Awe… those were the days…Life was simple.
Being that PBS probably influenced my life in some small way, I thought it would be nice to see what they do and how they do it.After all, they are a non-profit station and they are kept in business only by the sole support of donations.Their goal is to educate everyone with programming for all ages.So it was very delightful to see that Native American Public Telecommunications (NAPT) offered a summer internship, partnering with national PBS stations.I was lucky enough to have already met some people at Vegas PBS during my studies at UNLV and was able to secure a summer internship with the help of NAPT with Vegas PBS’s Educational Media Services Department.
Working with Vegas PBS was very enlightening.I was able to meet people who work with educational technology, producers, directors, editors and educators.I sat in and helped with various productions.I was able get a fundamental overview of how the station is run and what kind of educational outreach they do for the community in Las Vegas.I was able to meet many different people with different backgrounds and educated them on the Native American population that resided in their backyard, so to speak.
Once I started working with the station I was given the assignment to work with the Vegas PBS American Graduate program and develop a short promotional video.American Graduate is a national program that uses public media to help students, parents and educators have access to resources to help deal with the drop out crisis with American high school students.I did a lot of research when I started with Vegas PBS to see what kind of promotional videos were available with American Graduate that were geared towards the Native American Population.There were none.
I started doing research on the Native communities that reside in the Las Vegas Area.The main tribes in the Vegas areas are theLas Vegas Paiute Tribeand Moapa Band of Paiutes.There are other tribes of course in Nevada, but I chose to focus on the area in which Vegas PBS does their outreach.Unfortunately, when talking to these tribal community members, they felt that they were left out from the rest of the population, they didn’t know that Vegas PBS has many resources to offer their youth in education.I hope that my presence with Vegas PBS and in the tribal communities will change the relationship in the future for the better.
I’m glad I got to work with NAPT and Vegas PBS.I was able to do a few things for the tribal communities and Native media.I was able to develop a short promotional video, having access to all the professional staff and equipment PBS uses.I was able to produce and direct the short piece and focused the American Graduate video on the Native American population.I was also featured in an article that pertains to the American Graduate initiatives across the United States.
As a Native American, I know I get all excited when I see another Native Americans on television or the big screen, even though it may be Adam Beach.I get excited because I know how hard it is to get placed in front of the camera.It is especially hard for Native American’s to get roles that are not stereotypical.Those roles are few and far between, but they do exist.So as a Native American woman, it was important for me to develop a video, geared towards the positive outlook of Native Americans, especially on a topic that is near and dear to my heart-educational success.
Although I have taught video production classes and been involved with several productions, this was one of the first that I was able to have full control over.I was actually surprised when Vegas PBS had the confidence in me to take a professional crew out in the field and produce a video using all their professional gear that the regular station uses for broadcast!Producing is a lot of work!And producing requires you to communicate effectively, because if you don’t, the whole entire system breaks down!But ultimately, what matters the most in media is to tell a story.Tell a compelling story.
PBS has been around since I can remember and has a great model to look at when developing educational media.I am happy to say that upon completing my summer internship, Vegas PBS has asked me to continue working with them part time in the future while I continue my Ph.D. studies at UNLV.Although the American Graduate video is complete, it has the potential to broadcast during November, Native American Month.Therefore, we are not planning on distributing the video until after it airs.So as of now, I am getting ready to go into pre-production for the broadcast segment for American Graduate, focusing on the Native American population.
The producers program that NAPT offers helps place Native Americans in public media spots.It is important for the Native voices to be heard.NAPT has allowed me to be in a public media position that can benefit the Native American population and for that I will forever be grateful.Thank you NAPT and Vegas PBS, I aspire to continue my work in educational media far into the future.
Shawna L. Begay is a Ph. D. student and graduate assistant at The University of Nevada, Las Vegas studying Educational Technology.She holds a Master of Fine Arts Degree from Chapman University in Film Production with an emphasis in Editing and Sound Design.She was also a faculty member at the Institute of American Indian Arts, College of Contemporary Arts teaching video production classes from 2007-2011.
I spent 10 weeks as a Native American Public Telecommunications (NAPT) Multimedia Intern at KVCR/First Nations Experience (FNX) public television station in San Bernardino, Calif.
I learned about the internship opportunity through NAPT's email newsletter, while I was finishing my graduate program at the University of California Berkeley. I was very interested in the possibility of being placed at KVCR/FNX, so when I submitted my application the channel was one of my top requests.
FNX is a channel that was developed out of a partnership between KVCR and the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians. The channel is housed in the KCVR public television station, which is on the San Bernardino Valley College campus. The channel has only been on air for a year.
Being that FNX is a brand new venture and features all Native American and indigenous programming I was very enthusiastic about the internship. The channel has a very small staff of less than ten people. The staff met at least twice a week to discuss strategies for programming, social media, networking, and program acquisitions. My perspective was always welcome during the meetings. I learned that a lot of decision making goes into what is broadcast to the public.
One of the primary assignments I was given when I started with KVCR/FNX was building the channel's YouTube site. I worked along with a small team of staff members who were developing a social media strategy for the channel. My job was to research the YouTube sites of other television network channels with similar niche appeal and see how they utilized their sites. I worked with the channel's graphic designer on getting a background template and an avatar photo for the YouTube site. For video content, I was able to get eight promotional videos from the channel's production manager. I posted a video every few days.
About two weeks into the internship, I was also assigned to contribute a weekly blog focusing on Native American youth for FNX Beat. During the course of the internship I posted eight entries. This task took me to Morongo, Soboba, Torres Martinez and La Jolla reservations. I also reported stories from events that took place in Los Angeles. I appreciated this assignment because it gave me the opportunity to interact directly with tribal communities. I was able to get a great deal of feedback about what people thought about the channel. Tribal people I spoke with were excited that someone was there to recognize the accomplishments of their young people.
As part of my deliverables for NAPT, I shot, edited, and produced a 3-minute video that focused on the 2012 Native Summer Pipeline to College. The program is hosted annually by Pitzer College along with Western University of Health Science. This year, 22 Native American high school students stayed in residence halls on the Pitzer campus for two weeks. During the course of the program the students attended workshops, visited reservations, and participated in cultural activities.
I could not imagine a better summer internship placement than at KVCR/FNX. Being that the channel is a start up, so much is needed. I was able to directly apply a lot of the technical media skills I had learned in graduate school. It also gave me the opportunity to learn about the day-to-day operation of a public television station and how monumental something like a 24/7 Native American program channel is.
I am pleased to report that I have been asked to stay and work under contract at KVCR/FNX for another six months as the channel's social media coordinator. Naturally, I am very honored. I am also grateful to NAPT for selecting me as an intern and placing me at KVCR/FNX.
This month, ChristianPost.com wrote a blog about the Apache 8 all-women firefighting crew.
The more commonly known Navajo firefighters specialize in "hot spots" and extend their expertise nationwide when needed. The surprising team is the women from Fort Apache--the Apache 8 Crew, who also answer the call when needed across the U.S.
Formed in the mid-1970s, the Apache 8 Crew was elite, particularly since jobs were scarce on the Reservation. For the past 30-years, these women have put their lives on the line and left their families for days, weeks, months, to face the wildland fires that beckon their expertise and skill.
The can-do attitude and strategic mindset of these women proved in an unprecedented time that these when women--especially Native women--could perform the same work as there male counterparts and do so with pride and courage. These women soon laid fears and doubts of their abilities to rest. They could do everything the job required including the intense training, the long hikes with intense equipment weight strapped to their backs, and daily maintenance of the Reservation grounds to keep it environmentally safe.
This is just a quick highlight of what these amazing women represent for all women, Native culture, and history. To find out more, watch Apache 8 on DVD!
The footage from the 24th Annual Canoe Journey in the Pacific Northwest has been processed. Here is a sneak peek at some of that footage as host Chris Eyre (Cheyenne/Arapaho) speaks to the indigenous people of the area about their culture and traditions.
In the teaser you'll see a traditional Tulalip Tribes' trade route and its restoration back to its natural beauty, harvesting of the plant, camas, traditional Tulalip carvings into thousand-year-old cedar trees, and images of the Lushootseed Language Camp, all to the sound of music from the Potlatch Protocol.
The Annual Canoe Journey takes place each spring and summer where the Tulalip Tribes join other coastal Salish tribes in the Pacific Northwest and British Columbia for a journey that brings friends together for weeks of connection with traditions, family bonding and physical, spiritual, and emotional well being. Preparation for this several hundred mile journey along the water highways of coast Salish ancestors include Spring meetings in which young and old share lifeways, values, and personal experiences and avoid non-productive pursuits such as substance abuse and domestic violence.
Here are a few tips for getting more people to watch your videos on YouTube.
Keywords are key. Save the ones that you will always use in a Google Doc, copy and paste the keywords into the keywords field. Then add all the words unique to that particular video.
Post a link to your website or a related website at the beginning of the description. Make sure the URL is short. This won't get you a whole lot more views, but it will get you more visits to your site as a result of posting your video.
Make sure that you have a nice and short description about your video in the first two or three lines of your description field.
Pick the best image for your YouTube video. If you sign up for Google for Non-Profits you can actually upload related images instead of just picking from the three random images that YouTube gives you.
Embed the video on your site and post it on Facebook and twitter.
Keep your videos short.
Promote your video in one big campaign. There is a rumor that if you get a big spike within the first 48 hours that you have a great chance of being selected as a YouTube featured video. While that may be a longshot. People are more likely you click on a video if they see it has been viewed a lot in a short period of time, so it doesn't hurt to follow this rule anyway.
Create playlists for series and link to that, so that people will just start watching all of the related videos, one after another.
Have a featured video on your homepage. Change it out when you can.
Use YouTube as a social media platform: subscribe to other channels, like other videos, etc. Remember the best way to get followed is to follow someone.
Look at your analytics and learn from them, including what sites are sending you a lot of traffic through video embeds, etc.
Use “Audience Retention” in your individual YouTube video Analytics to see at what points people are watching the most (or least), to get feedback on your video, so that you can post videos that get people watching your videos all the way until the end.
Cody Blackbird is Eastern Band of Cherokee of North Carolina and Dakota. Cody is the youngest recipient for "Flutist of the Year" by the Native American Music Awards. He travels throughout the year performing and as a motivational speaker for Native American youth. Cody is a rising star in Indian Country and is experimenting with new things by way of flute songs. Cody collaborated with Frank Waln (Rosebud Sioux) of Nake Nula Waun on their song, “Hear my Cry." And, their song was nominated for "Best Hip-Hop Song" at the Indian Summer Music Awards.
Cody feels blessed that he can travel and share his music. Cody does not consume drugs or alcohol and lives by his traditional values. Recently, Production Assistant Tobias Grant (Omaha) talked with Cody after his performance on Powwow Alley during the Gathering of Nations Powwow.
Submitted by bill.kelly on August 2, 2012 - 4:03pm
It's not easy to convince people at the Winnebago Tribe Powwow to talk about politics and the upcoming election. It's not only talking over the steady, infectious rhythm of the drum groups performing in the dance circle. There's often a sense that Native people get left off the radar of the people campaigning for office. In fact, if there's something everyone agrees on, regardless of political philosophy, it's that candidates need to make a swing through the reservation more often.
Just before dusk, the drummers accompanied singers on the long and mournful "flag song," performed as Native American veterans lowered and carefully folded nearly 100 United States flags surrounding the dance circle. For participants and spectators, it was a reminder that while tribes are independent, sovereign nations, their members are U.S. citizens and potential voters.
She's a member of the Oglala Lakota Sioux tribe. She said decisions are made in Congress concerning federal funding and other issues that "direct the everyday lives of Indian people out on a reservation, where they may have no idea that these things are affecting them."
Bear Eagle and five other members of the commission stayed after their quarterly meeting at Ponca State Park to take part in an NET News Campaign Connection: Voter Voices roundtable discussion. Representing different tribal nations and different regions of the state, they talked about issues candidates should address during this year's campaigns for the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives.
The last U.S. Census counted just short of 30,000 Nebraskans with some percentage of Native American ancestry, but few political polls target Native Americans. As a result, there's little solid data on the issues of greatest importance in the five tribes officially recognized in Nebraska. Nonetheless, tribal leaders are quick to point to the familiar and challenging problems that have faced Native populations for decades: Jobs. Health Care. Education.
"The candidates really need to understand that education is important to Nebraskans in general, but in particular to Native people," said Andrea Dawn Miller, a member of the Oglala Lakota Sioux living in Scottsbluff, Neb. She pointed out that even if the issues are familiar to non-Native people, they have come at them from a starkly different vantage point. The issue of education, for example, goes beyond merely addressing grade point averages.
"We have a high rate of suicide on Native American reservations," Miller said, "and a large part of that is a lack of education and being unable to fulfill themselves mentally and socially, and getting that self-confidence built up to where they feel they can succeed and move on."
She said she believes policy makers "are missing the bigger boat on the middle and junior high age, where you see a lot of the mental health problems."
As Miller spoke at one end of the table, Kenny Chapman sat nearby looking down at his aged, rugged hands and slightly nodded. A member of the Santee Sioux and the oldest participant in the discussion, he had shared why he felt education should be the highest priority for elected officials.
"I spent most of my life in and out of jails as a drunk," Chapman said in a quiet, rumbling voice. "I got my GED and went into junior college and then the University of Kansas," where he got a degree in psychology. Most recently he was the director of his tribe's food program.
"I realize there are two roads. You can go down the road of alcohol or the road of education," he said. "Life has been so much better for me since I graduated from college."
With the unemployment rate among Native Americans nearly twice as high as the United States as a whole, those taking part in our discussion also put a high priority on economic development. According to a 2010 study done by the non-profit Economic Policy Institute, Native Americans in the Midwest experienced the greatest jump in unemployment - 10.3 percent - which raised the rate to 19.3 percent for the region. Numbers released by the Obama administration late last yearput the unemployment rate within the boundaries of some reservations as high as 80 percent.
"If I was to give a message to the candidates, it would be to support anything and everything that gives support to the economy," said Alexcia Taylor-Boggs, president of the Ponca Tribe's economic development corporation, ONSI Ponca, LLC. The company is an umbrella for half a dozen tribally owned businesses, including a smoke shop and a tannery with a focus on job creation for tribal members.
Taylor-Boggs emphasized that any federal economic development push needs to include businesses on Native American land.
"Many of them are jobs we create that are not only tribal members but also non- tribal members," Taylor-Boggs said. "Whether you are tribal members or not, we are all residents of Nebraska and we need to support that."
"We have a commitment to help our Native people. We want to give them a hand up, not a hand out," added Mark Peniska, who also serves on the ONSI board. He has worked for Teledyne, a high-tech equipment company and promoting proposals that the Ponca tribe moves into casino gaming.
Peniska, a Democrat appointed to the Indian Commission by former Gov. Mike Johanns, a Republican, said political leaders could offer the most help by "not tying our hands."
"We are sovereign nations. We have the ability to put land in trusts. We have the ability for some tax exemptions. We don't want to have to go back to the government every year for grants, for education, for our health care, for our social services," he said. "We want to own (our own) economic development."
Peniska sees an opportunity if government agencies "stop fighting us" on development of initiatives, like allowing some of the tribe's land in trust to be given a tax exemption "just like some of those big businesses that get tax exemptions. We just want to do it on our own."
There were other issues raised during the discussion, including some that are deeply personal.
"There is a lot of domestic abuse victims who are Native women, and I don't think that gets enough attention," Miller said. She's a family practice attorney and said she witnesses firsthand how tangled local, state and federal laws applied on and off the reservation can delay protection needed for battered women and children.
"Enforcement of those protection orders across state lines and tribal lines; drawing up and getting uniform applications so that those are enforced uniformly would be a federal issue" in need of attention from Congress, Miller said.
Kenny Chapman added one other item to the discussion of important issues in this election. He said he believes the most important thing any candidate could do is to follow the strict interpretation of the United States Constitution advocated by some American conservatives, an interpretation as they believe the founding fathers intended.
"Most of the Constitution that was written and was adhered to was from the word of God, from our creator, and we need to stick to that, the old way," he said. "Christianity, preferably."
The quarterly meeting of the Indian Commission addressed items ranging from a youth empowerment program to the burial of potentially ancient Native American remains unearthed in Nebraska. It was held to coincide with the 147th annual Winnebago Powwow. To the best of anyone's knowledge, no one running for U.S. Congress campaigned there, one of the largest Native events of the year.
The more and more I use Vimeo the more I can see how it really caters to film producers. Here's just a few. If you have any that you think I've missed, let me know.
Gives you various options to share your work such as:
A portfolio for displaying your work to potential clients
A channel for sharing your work or the work of others
Playlists for specific programming that might not need a channel
Password protected review pages
There are a ton of tutorials specifically designed to teach people how to better create their creative works. Many of the manufactures of software used in video production actually have channels of tutorials that they either produced or curated and many times you won't find these same tutorials on the company's YouTube channel where they know that they are talking to a more general audience.
A freemium design that doesn't rely on ads and allows at certian levels to embed the video player without their branding.
A way to list multiple collaborators on a project. Vimeo understands that very seldom is a professional video the work of one person.
The ability to have people download your videos (whether it is a rough cut or your final product) and to give them the option to download at different stages in the compression process.