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WAR PARTY FOUND REX SMALLBOY ON FINDING INDIGENOUS IDENTITY IN HOP HOP, CORRUPTING INFLUENCE OF GANGSTA RAP, BURDEN OF BEARING OTHER PEOPLE’S AGENDAS (MF GALAXY 133)

WHEN AND WHY HE’D PRAISE A SETTLER FOR WEARING A HEAD DRESS, USING CREE SLANG ON WAX, REPRESENTING WOMEN WITH RESPECT IN VIDEOS, HIP HOP INNOVATION TO CHALLENGE YOUTH AND ELDERS ALIKE

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Hip hop at its finest is a poetical, political voice for those whose voices have been silenced; it speaks to the anger, the dignity, and the triumphant joy of the oppressed. If hip hop is the music of the dispossessed, then no one in North America should have a greater claim on it than the First Nations. Combine that revolutionary rage and cultural crucible with artistic passion and power, and you have what was Canada’s finest hip hop band—WAR PARTY.

Formed in 1995 under the leadership of Maskwacis Cree artist, lead vocalist, and executive producer Rex Smallboy, and co-vocalists Cynthia Smallboy, and Thane Saddleback, War Party won the Canadian Aboriginal Music Award for Best Rap Album in 2001, and were the first Indigenous crew featured on Canada’s Much Music channel. The video for “Feeling…

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