When Ottawa electronic act A Tribe Called Red (ATCR) opened the 2017 Juno Awards broadcast, it wasn't just an important moment of mainstream recognition for the band, it was also a sign, a spark that showed the indigenous musical renaissance happening in Canada was real and here to stay.
Perhaps just as symbolically crucial as Tribe's performance, though, was the fact that Buffy Sainte-Marie was the one who introduced the band that night. A 10-time Juno nominee and a seven-time winner, Sainte-Marie is about as good a moral compass as you can find in this world.
According to Bear Witness, one-half of A Tribe Called Red along with 2oolman, Sainte-Marie took a moment to share a valuable observation with him at the side of the stage.
"We were waiting to go on stage to do our performance," he tells Samaritanmag, "and when she walked back down from introducing us, I was quietly thanking her and saying it means so much that you're here to introduce us and she squeezed my hand and looked up at me and said, 'Bear, it used just to be me here.'"
– Continue reading Aaron Brophy’s Q&A with Bear Witness on the SamaritanMag website.