As they enter a new cycle, Bear Witness & Tim “2oolman” Hill of A Tribe Called Red are reintroducing themselves as The Halluci Nation, to reflect the evolution of their music & mission. The Halluci Nation, takes its name from a phrase coined by John Trudell, to describe the vast global community of people who remember at their core what it means to be human. As a visionary artist & activist, Trudell recognized the connection between his accomplishments and what ATCR did intuitively through music & art. Trudell’s voice was the first heard scattered throughout the music. The Halluci Nation’s future revolves around collaboration. From hip-hop star, Yasiin Bey (AKA Mos Def), to the Indigenous Australian band, OKA, to the Wayuu-Colombian powerhouse, Lido Pimienta, the group has always sought out artists from around the world who would join the Halluci Nation family to form a like minded community as well as an international indigenous alliance. The Halluci Nation maintains focus on what they feel they can impact most: how Indigenous people are seen. Through groundbreaking stage shows & ever-changing visuals, Bear Witness & 2oolman are constantly working to create media that reflects today’s Indigenous identity. They see themselves simply as contributors to a necessary conversation around a subtle and complex representation of the contemporary Indigenous experience.
I am proud to say I had the chance to catch up with Tim “2oolman” Hill (Mohawk, of the Six Nations of the Grand River) and Bear Witness (of the Cayuga First Nation) ahead of the December 13th event at the High Noon Saloon. We get into what someone who may not quite know what they should prepare for will be preparing for. The collaborative spirt of The Halluci Nation is what always drives my ears and mind [and a good body shake] to the music, and the scene so we get into some of the going’s on and going downs when working with artists. The relationships, the family style and the understanding of where each other is coming from unites the people and the sounds as they’re being created. I found it real cool to hear how what they are doing with the music and the culture took on a responsibility – and just how that all clicked in and how they pay homage to those who came before and lend a hand to those on their way. Oh yeah, there’s also a set list built by 2oolman & Bear.