Indigenous hip-hop artist Dakota Bear plays Spirit Square July 28. Photo contributed

Indigenous hip-hop artist Dakota Bear plays Spirit Square July 28. Photo contributed

The voice and strength of Dakota Bear’s Hip-Hop artistry at Spirit Square Thursday, July 28

Free concert at Spirit Square as part of the River Concert Series

Dakota Bear is a hip-hop artist, activist, father, entrepreneur, poet, consultant, speaker and role model. The 27-year-old from Treaty 6 Territory in Saskachewan has many titles that are all part of his journey and mission to inspire and empower Indigenous youth.

On Thursday, July 28, he’ll perform a free concert at Spirit Square as part of the River Concert Series presented by the City of Campbell River and 99.7 the River.

Bear became hooked on hip-hop through Eminem’s film and album 8 Mile. It wasn’t until later when he started to apply that storytelling to his own experience as a young Indigenous man that he found his voice and strength as a performer.

Now based in Vancouver, Bear has shared the stage with legendary hip-hop artists like Bone Thugs n Harmony, Redman & Method Man, and has toured and performed for youth in remote northern communities as well as rallies of more than 30,000 people.

His online videos have collectively amassed more than one million views sharing his message of love, justice and peace and driven by melodic rhymes and iconic beats.

Earlier this year Bear launched Land Back Records along with his partner in business and life, Casey Desjarlais.

The new record label aims to amplify the voices of Indigenous artists and bring a culturally informed approach to the music business.

Desjarlais, who will also perform at the upcoming show in Spirit Square, is Nehiyaw & Anishinaabe (Cree & Ojibway) from Treaty 4.

She shares Bear’s multi-faceted approach to celebrating her culture and values and inspiring others. In addition to being mom to their two children, Desjarlais is a performing drummer and singer, and operates their clothing line and business, Decolonial Clothing. Their website describes the company as a business that “increases social visibility and representation through clothing. We inspire action and promote collective decolonization.” The same could be said about their music.

Dakota Bear and Casey Desjarlais will take the stage at Spirit Square shortly after 7 p.m. on Thursday, July 28, 2022.

The concert is free and everyone is welcome and encouraged to attend.

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