September 12, 2008

Wampanoags produce cable news

Mashpee tribe reaches out to its own, greater communityKeisha Peters is about to report on "News from Indian Country," but Gayle Andrews is not convinced that the young woman's glossy tresses are quite ready for the camera and she grabs a comb and hair spray. Meanwhile, Paul Mills is making sure the teleprompter is properly keyed up for the segment, while executive producer Damien Pocknett adjusts a banner emblazoned with the Mashpee Wampanoag logo.

The September edition of "Native Voices" is officially in production.

A news show with items of interest to members and non-members alike, "Native Voices" is the cable television show that is produced monthly by the Mashpee Wampanoag tribe. The half-hour show premiered in February in Mashpee and is now seen all over the Cape as well as in New Bedford and the Middleboro-Lakeville area on public access channels.

The entire cast is made up of Mashpee tribe members, including a group of young people who produce their own segment each month and also do the camera work for remote location shots. The August episode, showing now on local cable, features an archaeological excavation in the Middleboro area that has uncovered remnants of native occupation dating back thousands of years. There's information on the Indian Health Service and on job opportunities available to tribe members, a segment with Tribal Council Chairman Shawn Hendricks discussing tribal government, and one on the new Pow Wow Princess, Talia Landry.
Comment: Can we please have a moratorium on Native programs and services called "Native Voices"? There must be hundreds of them. "Native Voices" may be the most overused name since "Smoke Signals."

For more on the subject, see Native Documentaries and News.

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