Aboriginal hip hop artist and comedian Ricky Ogima has created the "Idle No More Song," and it's a catchy ditty that combines imagery from the protests with Ogima's own summary of the message, in which he name-checks Attawapiskat First Nation Chief Theresa Spence:
Some are waiting for the world to end
We come alive with a message to send
One Heartbeat across the land
Moving together to make a stand
Have you heard about Theresa Spence?
Some people think she got no sense
Sacrificing life for the people's cause
All because Government broke our laws
The benefit is to take place Saturday night (January 5) at Zaphod Beeblebrox in Ottawa. Also on the bill are Digging Roots, Melody McKiver, Jasper, and comedian Don Kelly. Comedian and podcaster Ryan McMahon, who has been an enthusiastic advocate for Idle No More on Twitter (@rmcomedy) and elsewhere, was initially slated to appear, but due to transportation issues will not be able to make the trip to Ottawa.
The clip was directed by Dave Wilson, a music-video director who has worked with Brother Ali, Frank Ocean, Atmosphere, Yelawolf, and Evidence. It was produced by Tulalip tribal member and musician Brodie Stevens, aka "Redskin," who also provided music for the film, from footage shot by Ben Hampton. ICTMN contributor and Thing About Skins ringleader Gyasi Ross provides narration, and elder Ramona Bennett gives a moving speech.
“I feel Idle No More is a change of consciousness within all of us, especially for Native people, to stand up for ourselves, not play the victim,” said Beach.
He’s reached out to Chief Theresa Spence multiple times and visited her over the holidays. He said he sympathizes with Spence who has been on liquid only hunger strike since Dec. 11.
“My friends are taking care of her and they’re letting me know how she’s feeling,” he said. “I visited her at Christmas to bring that Christmas cheer and peace and harmony in the world we live in. I wanted her to know that someone, like myself, is watching and cares and I want to help in any way.”
For more on Idle No More, see Harper to Meet with Chiefs and Arguments Against Idle No More.