Tag Archives: John Trudell

Tara Trudell on “Make No Bones About It.        September 24, 2017 at 5pm

Tara Trudell- Poet/ Filmaker / Activist

Tara Evonne is an artist who is passionate about combining poetry and film to create a visual art form of her own. Her art focuses on being socially aware and conscious of the injustices that plague our society. Social conscious is a top priority as a she rediscovers her own word in a world that only attempts to silence the Indigenous spirit. Her goal is to illuminate the Indigenous spirit through performance art. She is of Mexican, Spanish, and Santee Sioux descent and cultivates a vision which includes representation of her ancestors and earth. She is a student of the Media Arts with a concentration in Film and Audio. 


Marcus Grignon on “Make No Bones About It.” August 6th, 2017 at 5pm 

Marcus Grignon is Campaign Manager of HEMPSTEAD PROJECT HEART. 

This project is apart of John Trudell’s work on hemp. I hope you like the site. Marc will bring us up to date on this project and how we can help. 

Marcus’ professional career includes service as an advocate in the public sector. Marcus served the Obama Administration as a staff assistant for the Small Business Administration’s Office of Native American Affairs and as an AmeriCorps member for the Santa Fe Food Policy Council and Earthcare International. He began his federal career as a legislative intern for U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow in 2009. He is an enrolled member of the Menominee Nation in Keshena, Wisconsin. He is a recipient of the 2010 Brower Youth Award from the Earth Island Institute. 

Marcus holds a double associates degree in Tribal Law and Sustainable Development from the College of Menominee Nation and a Bachelor’s degree in Democracy and Justice Studies with a minor in First Nations from the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay. He holds various certificates in political management, lobbying, Indigeous Entreprenurship, and the Federal Budget Process from George Washington University, the Institute of American Indian Arts, and American University.


4 hr Remembering and Honoring our Brother, John Trudell only on KAOS 89.3 FM, December 4th, 2016 4-8 pm


“Make No Bones About It” & “View from the Shore”
December 4th, 2016, 4 -8 pm
4 hr Remembering and Honoring our Brother/ Uncle JT
Remembering John Trudell
“A Powerful Voice of Indian Country”
Only on KAOS Radio 89.3 fm

Standing with Standing Rock Fundraiser



Monday September 26
Come show your support for Standing Rock as “Olympia Food CO-OP” and “Make No Bones About It.” Present the film “Trudell”!

6:30 pm doors / 7pm show
at the door time of the film

@Capitol Theater
206 5th Avenue SE -downtown Olympia, Wa.

In this documentary filmmaker Heather Rae the engaging life story of Native American poet-prophet-activist John Trudell and his heartfelt message of active, personal responsibility to the earth, all of its inhabitants and our descendants.

Director: Heather Rae
more about John Trudell and the film –http://www.johntrudell.com/

Red Warrior Camp Legal Fund- Relatives we are actively working to get our brothers and sisters out! We appreciate all of your support! If you are able to continue supporting, please do so at:

This event is sponsored by the Olympia Food Coop.Olympia Food Co-op logo






More information contact:
Raven Redbone -ravenredbone@gmail.com

Screening of Trudell

Screening of Trudell Facebook Page

Mark Shark on “Make No Bones About It.” 2-28-2016 5 pm


In His Own Words

Born in St. Louis Missouri some years back, to a musical heritage, my earliest memories include watching my parents practice on the beautiful black Steinway piano in our living room.

Both my mother Mary Bray, and my father William Schatzkamer, were concert pianists who met at Julliard.

After graduating they played many concerts together, then my father spent years on the road recording for RCA, touring with Paul Robeson, then onto Professor Emeritus and Conductor of both the Washington University and the Gateway Symphonies of St. Louis.

Both high achievers, my mother graduated from Smith College, received a masters degree in Ed. Psych from Washington University and her Ed.D from U Mass in Amherst. In addition to having four children she also enjoyed educating with the Head Start program, teaching music, and writing. Mark Shark, playing guitar for John Trudell I started most of my days listening to my father practice Brahms, Scriabin,  Bach, Beethoven and ended most days singing Pete Seeger folk songs with my mother out of the Fireside Songbook as she played along.

I believe all of us, my brother Bill and sisters Laura and Nina at some point attempted to learn piano, but we were quickly intimidated by either our lack of innate ability or the fear of the bar that was set before us.

I clearly remember the first time I heard an electric guitar.  I was riding in the car with my dad when Chuck Berry came on the radio “ugh” he exclaimed “what dreck!”  and he quickly turned the radio off.

I quickly turned it back on desperate to learn more about this exciting new sound!

My father glanced suspiciously over at me, his menacingly high arched brow raised the question before he spoke “You like this noise Mark?”

“I do like it Pi, it’s great…it’s exciting!”

His large shoulders slumped heavily and I could feel the distance starting to take shape between us but neither of us said more.  He indulged my desire for the radio as we drove on.  One mans poison…

About this time my older brother Bill brought home his very own record player and broadened my musical horizons with John Lee Hooker, Muddy Waters, Sonny Terry and Brownie McGee.

He invested in an electric guitar and started teaching himself to play.  I loved watching him figure it out and wanted to play too, but he was left handed and switching the guitar around was not convenient.

I would have to get my own.

I started singing in bands around the eighth grade with my friends and after a while bought a guitar and started taking lessons with Doug Niedt.  Even then Doug was freakishly good and completely disciplined and driven to  know his instrument.  Naturally, he expected me to be as committed as well, and sadly, he was quickly disappointed.

I was interested in playing songs.  I didn’t care about knowing the intricacies of the instrument.

I did not practice scales, chords, and modes as instructed, and he immediately showed me the door.  His time was valuable and he couldn’t waste it.  (Doug was then a freshman in high school.)

I was shocked and shamed into promising him I’d go through Sal Salvador’s’ Single String Studies and Mel Bays’ chord method  books if he would give me another chance and teach me songs by the Animals and the Lovin’ Spoonful!  He agreed, and I continued to play and learn throughout  high school.

Playing the Bar Mitzvah circuit and school dances was fun and a chance to put a sound together.  I spent hours practicing scales and chord patterns and I didn’t necessarily enjoy that, however I am eternally grateful to Doug for insisting that I do it.  He was absolutely right…it has made me a better musician; thanks again Doug.

At seventeen I attended Webster College in St. Louis for two years and eventually tired of that and took a job with a show band.

I was restless, and being on the road seemed exciting.  Not to mention the money was… well, seductive.

It didn’t take too long for me to realize that although fun, and certainly exciting on some levels, playing in a show band was inevitably a dead end street.

I wanted to create on my own and knew I didn’t have the depth of knowledge I needed in order to do what I wanted to on the guitar.

I noticed that Jerry Hahn (a favorite Guitar Player magazine columnist of mine) was teaching at Wichita State University.  I called him on a whim and told him that I wanted to know how chords and scales all fit together, and that I wanted to learn how to play “outside.”

Jerry chuckled and said quietly that he could help me with all that, but first I should learn how to play “inside!”

I moved to Wichita at twenty one and began taking music theory and guitar classes with Jerry.  Learning from him was a life changing experience and I still use his book “The Complete Method for Jazz Guitar” when I teach today.  My time at Wichita State was inspirational, but brief, and after completing one year the road called again.

If my choice of music was disappointing to my parents, my decision to leave school before earning a degree was the proverbial icing on the cake.  Nevertheless, I packed up and moved out to California.  We lost my brother Bill in December of 1978 and I couldn’t spend one more cold chilling winter in St. Louis.

California was the promised land then — the place where it was all happening — and I wanted to be part of that scene.

The year was 1979 and L.A. was all I had heard it would be, both good and bad.

Fascinated by the palm trees, the girls, and the music scene I took every job I could find in every hell hole imaginable.

My playing continued to broaden as it must when you’re trying to pay the rent.  One night I’d be playing Jobim at a wedding, another night would be Kool and the Gang at the Hacienda Lounge, another found me rising from the basement of Disneyland on the Tomorrowland stage wearing an electric blue tuxedo and playing disco, another would be covering George Jones at the Stetson in Garden Grove, and yet another would be doing Lightning Hopkins at the Lighthouse in Hermosa Beach.

Some were enjoyed more than others, but all of them prepared me for life as a musician.

In the summer of 1982 fate smiled kindly when my friend Gary Ray brought guitarist Jesse Ed Davis to the Lighthouse.

Jesse was larger than life.  He had enjoyed a spectacular career playing with Conway Twitty, then through fellow OKC musician Leon Russell he moved to L.A. and never looked back.  Jesse had played with the incomparable Taj Mahal, John Lennon, Gene Clark, George Harrison, Bob Dylan, Jackson Browne, Eric Clapton, you name it — he did it. I was thrilled (to say the least), and the first song we played together was Willin’ by Lowell George.

The moment Jesse hit the first note of that beautiful song I was done.

Jesse Ed Davis

Nothing I had ever played could compare to the soulful longing he expressed, seemingly effortlessly, on his guitar.  It was pure magic.

My guitar playing ability exists in pre-Jesse and post- Jesse realism.  Everything I had done up until that point was centered on the technical and musical concepts I was attempting to master.  Jesse showed me how to channel emotion into the guitar not necessarily by playing lots of notes, or even complex chordal tonalities, but rather through the simple yet profound concept of  sustained beauty through the music.

More often than not, less was more, what he edited out of his playing was genius.  He had plenty of country, blues, and jazz chops for sure, but he also had something more.

Every note he played had meaning, and an emotional depth and soul that few musicians ever achieve.  He never played a note just to play it…he chose very wisely and because of that was able to channel the emotion of a song in an unbelievably meaningful and beautiful way.

As luck would have it I had begun to play slide guitar in G tuning by then and was hoping to meet someone who could shine a light.

Jesse was that light.

What I learned just from watching him play in E tuning those first few months at the Lighthouse was life changing.

I continued playing with Jesse till we lost him in June of 1988, and while I wish we had had more time, I am and will always remain, grateful for everything he was…and everything he inspired me to be.

…Which leads us to the wonderful world
of alternate tunings.

It’s hard to say how long it would have taken me to master some of these tunings without Jesse’s help, but suffice it to say he shortened my road quite a bit.

In those days there were few books or videos on the subject.  It wasn’t taught as part of a music program in schools, and finding a journeyman to show you the way was a long shot.

People like us just sort of “felt” our way through.

You learned what to play (or what NOT to play) by falling on your face and doing it differently next time you got the chance.  Jesse not only showed me HIS way but introduced me to many other like minded people who shared the same passions I do.

It eased my path as a guitarist who is always hoping to find the right balance between the neck, the bar, the note, the string, and the finger.

This book is my version of the light Jesse, and so many others, generously shared with me.

The Tao of Tunings focuses on an in depth analysis of seventeen of the most widely used and unusual tunings.

Tuning maps to help guide your way, along with tablature and standard music notation, cd examples, and a comprehensive view of perceiving and navigating your way around these strange new lands.

You are not alone.

Among the artists I have admired and studied most are:

  • Jesse Ed Davis
  • John Lee Hooker
  • Bonnie Raitt
  • Lowell George
  • Jackson Browne
  • David Lindley
  • Ry Cooder
  • Muddy Waters
  • Leo Kottke
  • Taj Mahal
  • Joni Mitchell
  • Michael Hedges
  • David Crosby
  • Stephen Stills
  • Neil Young
  • Martin Simpson
  • Debashish Bhattacharya
  • Robert Johnson
  • Leonard Kwan
  • Keola Beamer
  • Duane Allman
  • George Harrison
  • Eric Clapton
  • Keith Richards
  • Sonny Landreth
  • Daniel Lanois
  • Ali Akbar Khan
  • Pierre Bensusan
  • Alex de Grassi
  • Jimmy Page
  • Elizabeth Cotton
  • John Fahey
  • Robbie Basho
  • Robbie Robertson
  • Lightnin’ Hopkins
  • Bach
  • Mississippi John Hurt
  • Julian Bream
  • Roscoe Holcomb
  • Ali Farka Toure
  • James Burton
  • Elmore James

I could go on but…

This book and the information in it is the culmination of the last forty years of my life spent in every dive from here to Tucumcari, Tehachapi to Tonopah.

There have been quite a few nice surprises along the way, most of which I’ll never forget.

I‘ve had the pleasure to have played and recorded with many of my own personal heroes:

  • Jesse Ed Davis
  • Jackson Browne
  • Bonnie Raitt
  • Terry Evans
  • Crosby, Stills, and Nash
  • John Trudell
  • Taj Mahal
  • George Harrison
  • Bob Dylan
  • John Fogerty
  • Jennifer Warnes
  • Bob Weir

I am eternally grateful for each and every experience, and I hope you enjoy the journey as much as I have.

Peace and Gratitude,

Mark Shark
Los Angeles, California
November 2008

Tao of Tunings In His Own Words

Cheyenne Randall shares about his artwork on Make No Bones About It, Jan. 3rd, 2016 at 4pm


“Coyotes Lair” mixed media on panel piece of art that Cheyenne made for John and his family “Celebrate Love. Celebrate Life” damn what an amazing dude.
-Cheyenne Randall

(art created by Cheyenne Randall)

The 36-year-old Seattle artist, who has been practicing Native American artwork for years, brings a special brand of creativity to classic images by Photoshopping uniquely American tattoos onto whatever skin is visible on the subjects. A Tumblr page called Shopped Tattoos showcases the artwork, as does an Instagram feed that includes more of Randall’s work and photographs. Cheyenne Randall, has created a bundle of iconic personalities from a parallel universe. One of his lates is Coyotes Lair in honor of the John Trudell.

Other sites to learn more about Seattle based artist, Cheyenne Randall.





This Sunday, at 5 pm we will be tuning into Radio Free Alcatraz, cira 1970 with John Trudell.


Would like to express my deepest thanks to Pacifica Radio Archives for providing both December 15, 197o and December 19th, 1970 segments for our listening. So tune in this Sunday at 5pm and listening to Free Radio Alcatraz with John Trudell.

Tune in to KAOS Radio



John Trudell – Thank you! We love you! Grateful for you being!

This gallery contains 15 photos.

Trudell Full Documentary


Trudell is a 2005 documentary film about the life of author and American Indian activist John Trudell. The film traces Trudell from his childhood in Omaha, Nebraska, to his role in the American Indian Movement, and finally to his rebirth as a musician and spoken word poet. Heather Rae produced and directed the film, which took her more than a decade to complete.



by John Trudell

There’s me, there the other me
There’s another me, an then
There are the moremes
We’ve all got a domino to play so
We’ve been trying to work it out

We don’t know whos your life turned
Or what all that means
But me and the mes
We’re not going back
We’ve already seen
What we couldn’t do

Any skeletons in our closets
Are our own private stash of bones
That scream with no choice, there’s
No scream like the next scream
Reducing the present into nothing
While eternity is now not then

Who’s divided into what
And how many does that make
There’s love that loves, loves that fears
Love that possesses, love that needs proof
Where’s the love that accepts
Love that likes that cares

There’s no forgetting some realities
Destiny threw at us
And fate wasn’t much help
With its way of loading the load
When we didn’t have any say
And it was up to us to carry it

In the land where the lie is king
Using fear like glue, pretending
Pretending isn’t pretending
At least one of the mes have seen it all
Each and every one of is want the glory
But not a one of us likes the way we fall

Straying is away of walking
When staying isn’t an option
Because we’ve been accused
Of some things we did and
Sometimes we didn’t do and
We heard I forgive yous that lied

Me and the mes are looking
For a me that will answer to me
So far there’s no me who will.