Nez Perce Drummers' Mix Of Old And New Earns Music Award Nod

Nov 12, 2014

The Native American Music Awards recognize indigenous musicians from the U.S., Canada and Latin America. It is considered to be the Grammys of Native American music.

And this year the debut album by a group from Idaho has been nominated for an award.

The members of Lightning Creek have been playing traditional drum music at tribal ceremonies and powwows for years -- mostly at home on the Nez Perce Reservation in Idaho and elsewhere around the Northwest.

Then last year the group released their first studio album, aptly named “Long Time Coming.”

The album includes traditional songs as well as their own, more modern compositions.“P.K. Serenade” is in English and jokes about meeting women at favorite reservation hang-out called “P.K.'s Place.”

The album earned Lightning Creek a Native American Music Award nomination for debut group of the year.

“It is a big deal,” said Tom Williamson, one of the lead singers. “There's a lot of talent that's nominated and we're humbled to go and be among them.”

The group will perform at the award ceremony in Salamanca, New York, on Friday. Other nominees in their category include a rockabilly band, a female singing trio, and a hip-hop group classified as “electric powwow.”

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