Gary Farmer and the Troublemakers
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Gary Farmer and the Troublemakers

Santa Fe, New Mexico, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2005 | SELF | AFTRA

Santa Fe, New Mexico, United States | SELF | AFTRA
Established on Jan, 2005
Band Blues Jam

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Sep
12
Gary Farmer and the Troublemakers @ Crash Music

Aztec, Colorado, United States

Aztec, Colorado, United States

Aug
22
Gary Farmer and the Troublemakers @ El Farol

Santa Fe, New Mexico, United States

Santa Fe, New Mexico, United States

Aug
21
Gary Farmer and the Troublemakers @ Cowgirl

Santa Fe, Texas, United States

Santa Fe, Texas, United States

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Wednesday, April 7, 2010
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Entertainment Music
Talent cultivated at UWO
CONCERT
By JAMES REANEY, THE LONDON FREE PRESS
Last Updated: April 3, 2010 2:00pm


Gary Farmer
Not many aboriginal bluesmen learn to act in the dead of winter in the college on the hill at UWO.

Gary Farmer is one. No let's say, Gary Farmer is the only one.

Long before he starred for film director Jim Jarmusch opposite Johnny Depp and Forest Whitaker and even before he was on TV's Littlest Hobo or The Rez, you could have seen Farmer learning to act.

In London. At UWO. On a cold winter's day.

"I was just like a kid with big eyes," Santa Fe-based Farmer says of the winter of 1977 stint when he was part of a theatre workshop at UWO. "For the most part, I was the green actor without much training."

The workshop at the old drama space at University College eventually led to an adaptation by my late father, Canadian playwright James Crerar (Jamie) Reaney, of a mad, thrilling 19th-century novel The Canadian Brothers.

Farmer and other future stars, playwright Tomson Highway, and Oscar-nominee Graham Greene, were part of the proceedings. Farmer, who grew up at the Six Nations reserve, and Greene are cousins. Among the accomplishments Farmer recalls is Highway's writing of a speech in Cree for the character Pontiac, an aboriginal warrior and chief in a Major John Richardson saga.

Farmer says he still uses methods about community involvement learned during the workshop in his own theatre education projects with young actors.

It's a long way from The Canadian Brothers -- aka Richardson's wild War of 1812 novel -- to singing the blues. Or maybe it isn't.

Farmer is back in London on Sunday for his first visit since he retired as an actor -- despite continuing credits -- to concentrate on being a bluesman.

Gary Farmer and the Troublemakers play Aeolian Hall's Native Blues Harp Summit II.

The summit is organized by London-area singer and harmonica player Robbie Antone. Farmer knows Antone through visits to the Oneida Nation of the Thames and the two have jammed together.

Like Highway and Greene, Farmer has done so much since those winter hours spent re-creating Richardson's tale set along the old Canadian frontier, something will always get missed.

Farmer has been in dozens of films and many TV shows. He was in Jarmusch's 1996 Dead Man with Depp and 1999's Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai with Whitaker.

"The three Indian films that seem to work for everyone are Smoke Signals, Powwow Highway and then Dead Man with Johnny Depp. Even a lot of the communities haven't seen that one," Farmer says in surveying his film career and Dead Man's role in it.

Filmed in black and white, Dead Man stars Depp as a nerdy 19th-century anti-hero named William Blake, who finds himself a fugitive from justice. Farmer plays an Indian named Nobody who often quotes the verse of 18th-century English poet, artist and visionary William Blake.

"They killed it. They didn't like it," Farmer says of the reasons Dead Man was not widely distributed. "You can't go around saying, 'stupid . . . white man' and expect to have a career after that. It was artistically the height, but in terms of my career it probably did more to kill it than anything."

There had been many TV roles in there, too.

"I did work with the dog," Farmer says of Littlest Hobo. "I did Seeing Things with Louis (Del Grande)."

He was also Chief Tom on CBC-TV's The Rez, a comic role. In One Dead Indian, CTV's dramatization of the 1995 police shooting of Dudley George, Farmer was Judas George, a cousin of the slain native protester.

Angered by the shooting at Ipperwash and disillusioned by Canadian reaction to Dudley George's death, Farmer eventually moved to the U.S.

Among his allies was California performance artist James Luna. A 2004 Luna-tied music project led to Santa Fe. As others returned to California, Farmer stayed in New Mexico.

Farmer has always been a blues fan. He had been a harmonica player as a teen and matured into a jammer with bands in towns across Canada and the U.S. His influences include John Lee Hooker, Howlin' Wolf and Little Walter.

"I'm fascinated by that relationship between our traditional music and the blues. I think it was a melding. We certainly were in the fields when the blacks got put there," Farmer says.

The Troublemakers gathered around him. The band plays about 120 dates a year.

Jaime Bird Yellowhorse on guitar and vocals, Johnny Longbow on bass and vocals, Logan Nix on drums, and Farmer on harmonica and vocals have a guest on this tour. He is Manitoban turned Memphis guitar star Clyde Roulette.

Aeolian Hall is the last tour date for the Troublemakers, but on the road back to New Mexico, they'll likely check out Roulette's Beale St. haunts in Memphis.

Beale St. will not be the only legendary blues locale wh - By JAMES REANEY, THE LONDON FREE PRESS


Santa Fe band, Gary Farmer and the Troublemakers, will bring its high-powered blues act to Taos, Saturday (Jan 9, 2010) 9 pm., at Shadows Lounge and Grill, 330-A Pseo del Pueblo Sur. To band leader Farmer, the blues is good medicine. "It's like many medicines are derivatives of the acturall virus that is causing the harm.".
Farmer, a member of the Iroquois Nation, is also well known as a film actor. - Tempo Magazine\The Taos News


Gary Farmer and the Troublemakers perform at the Mother Earth Father Sky Music Festival held the first weekend of April at the Dooda Desert Rock camp. (lead photo is the band on a cold day on an outdoor stage with hats and mitts on) - Navajo Times


GALLUP — Most locals know Gary Farmer only through his movie roles.

Philbert Bono in "Powwow Highway." Cowboy Albert Dashee in "The Dark Wind." Captain Largo in "A Thief of Time." And the unforgettable Arnold Joseph in "Smoke Signals."

But local audiences will have the opportunity to learn more about the award-winning actor and his multi-faceted career in a series of personal appearances in Gallup and Window Rock this weekend.

Farmer, who is also a musician, director, producer, writer, and art gallery owner, will be performing with his blues band, the Troublemakers, at three different venues, and he will also be talking about his 30-year career in a free, public interview.

Farmer's appearances this weekend were coordinated by Norman Patrick Brown, a Navajo film maker. Brown, who has established two companies, Dinetah Productions and Rezwood Films, joined with longtime educator Gloria Begay, the founder of the Indigenous Institute for Native Arts.

Brown and Begay, who recently opened offices in the newly established Gallup Performing Arts Center, plan to work on a number of joint creative projects to promote Native American talent, such as actor and comedian Ernest Tsosie III's one act play, "Danny Boy and Bonnet/A Native American Tragedy."

Farmer, a longtime friend of Brown, consented to come to Gallup to help Brown and Begay launch their new joint ventures. And Tsosie, a friend of both Brown and Farmer, is also lending a hand, along with his comedy partner, James Junes. The following is a listing of Farmer's appearances this weekend:
Friday, Sept. 8, from 6:30-8 p.m.: "A Friday Evening with Gary Farmer" Brown and Tsosie will host this public interview, which will feature Farmer talking about his career, answering questions from the audience, and showing clips from his numerous acting roles. After Farmer's interview, Brown will show his recent film, "Rez Hope" at 8 p.m. This free event will be at the Gallup Performing Arts Center at 1500 S. 2nd St. in Gallup.

Friday, Sept. 8, from 9 p.m.-midnight: "Friday Rocking Blues Night I" Gary Farmer and the Troublemakers will perform, along with a special comedy guest appearance by James and Ernie, at the Gallup Performing Arts Center. Tickets are $10 per person or $15 per couple.

Saturday, Sept. 9, at 1 p.m.: Farmer and his band will perform at the NHA Tent on the Navajo Nation Fairgrounds.

Saturday, Sept. 9, from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m.: "Saturday Rocking Blues Night II" Farmer and his band will perform at Wowie's, also located at 1500 S. 2nd St. Chocolate Helicopter, an alternative band from Santa Fe, is Farmer's special guest. Tickets are $10 per person or $15 per couple.
"We want the public to come and get to know Gary on a personal basis," said Brown of Friday evening's interview.

Farmer's musical performances on Friday and Saturday night were organized to help celebrate Brown and Begay's creative vision. According to Brown, he and Begay would like to see Gallup become the premiere center for Native American film, theater, and art, and they would eventually like to establish a Navajo film and theater institute that would promote the Navajo language in the arts and help produce a generation of Navajo writers, directors, producers, and performers.

Brown believes the entertainment business is one of the next big areas of economic growth for Navajo people. And as more Native Americans become involved in the entertainment business, he explained, they need to "claim ownership" over their own stories by writing, directing, and producing them.

Begay, who said she has worked in the field of Indian education for 30 years, is particularly interested in promoting Navajo language and culture through educational programs as well. She is currently planning the Fourth Annual Regional Indigenous Bilingual Education Conference in October, a Navajo Astronomy Conference in November, and a December conference that will feature Navajo string games, moccasin games, and coyote stories.

In addition to helping support Brown and Begay's work, Farmer said the idea of performing here with his band appealed to him. Originally from Canada, Farmer now lives much of the time in Santa Fe, where he recently opened an Indian art gallery. "I'm also interested in reaching the Navajo audience," he said in a telephone interview on Wednesday. Referring to Native American audiences, Farmer added, "That's where I want my music to be heard."

Farmer said he plays the harmonica with the Troublemakers, a blues band that plays both cover tunes and original music. "Sometimes we just make up songs on the locale," he said of the seven-member group.

After his brief stint in Gallup, Farmer said he will fly to Canada to do six days of filming for two different movie projects before returning to New Mexico to perform with the Troublemakers at the State Fair on Friday, Sept. 15.

For more information about this weekend's events, contact Gloria Begay at (505 - By Elizabeth Hardin-Burrola, Gallup Independent


Gary Farmer, who is Cayuga of the Six Nation Iroquois Confederacy or Haudenosaunee and lives in Santa Fe, is best known for his roles in the TV and film adaptations of Tony Hillerman’s “The Dark Wind,” (1991) in which he played Cowboy Dashee; “Coyote Waits,” (2003) and “A Thief of Time,” (2004), in which he played Capt. Largo. Farmer plays harmonica and sings in Gary Farmer and the Troublemakers.
Farmer has been playing the harmonica since he was a teenager.
“I’ll be playing with various musicians there,” he said. “Unfortunately, I’m not able to take my own band. I’ll probably just be sitting in.”
Self-taught, Farmer plays both originals and covers, especially the music of classic blues artists like John Lee Hooker, Taj Mahal, Etta James and Howlin’ Wolf.
When he was working as a touring actor, he would stop at clubs and sit in with the musicians.
“I was on the road all my life as an actor and the harp became my friend,” he explained. “The harp has always been my voice.”
Most recently, Farmer has been touring through the Seminole Tribe of Florida, sponsor of the Jan. 20 inauguration show with Hard Rock International.
“They’ve been promoting Native American talent around the country,” he said, adding, “I’m just so honored, especially by this election.” - by Kathaleen Roberts • Journal Santa Fe


SANTA FE — In some American Indian tribes, when important matters are being discussed a "talking stick'' is handed around. Whoever holds it is the only one who may speak, while the others listen.
Hence the name of a newcomer on the American Indian moviemaking scene, the Talking Stick Film Festival.
"I look at each film as each person's time to hold the talking stick, to tell the story in their way,'' said festival director Karen Redhawk Dallett.
More than 100 films are scheduled to be shown during the inaugural event, which will be held Saturday through June 26 in Santa Fe.
There will be panels and workshops as well, with such notables as actor Wes Studi, director Chris Eyre — whose supernatural thriller "Imprint'' will show during the festival — and actor Gary Farmer, who'll do double-duty leading a workshop and playing with his bluesy band, "Gary Farmer and the Troublemakers.''
The films were largely written, directed or produced by Indians from the U.S. and Canada, with some offerings from indigenous people of Australia, New Zealand, Mexico and Samoa.
"I was surprised how much work is out there — and how much brilliant, really stunning, work is out there,'' said Dallett, who had envisioned finding 20 to 30 good films for the festival and was blown away when the entries poured in.
That's a huge change from three decades ago, when Michael Smith, a Sioux working with the United Indians of All Tribes Foundation in Seattle, set about to find films — no matter who made them — that rebutted the stereotypical portrayal of Indians.
He scrounged up 17, and the American Indian Film Festival was born in 1975.
Relocated to San Francisco in 1977, the festival is still going strong, with this year's event scheduled Nov. 7-15. The American Indian Film Institute, which Smith heads, also holds digital training workshops and traveling film festivals for Indian youth on reservations and in rural communities.
"Video really opened up doors for American Indian artists; film is such a costly medium to work in. ... Now, with the growth of digital video, it's really exploded,'' Smith said.
As much as film has created stereotypes that have eroded the self-image of generations of Indians, it's also a powerful tool for healing and strengthening and for reshaping those perceptions, according to the institute.
Navajo filmmaker and screenwriter Norman Patrick Brown of Gallup has made about a dozen films over the past 20 years, many in the Navajo language with English subtitles.
He co-produced a 37-minute documentary to be shown at the Talking Stick festival called "Poison Wind,'' about the effects of uranium mining. Jenny Pond was the director and producer.
"For many of us, it's not really about the glamor or the high-end production values,'' said Brown, who has made films about diabetes and drug and alcohol addiction. "It's mostly serving our community, educating the community.''
According to Smith, there are about a dozen Indian and indigenous film festivals in North America. Among them: events at the National Museum of the American Indian and the Heard Museum in Phoenix; Sundance Film Festival's Native Forum; the imagineNATIVE film and media arts festival in Toronto; and Dreamspeakers Film Festival in Edmonton, Alberta.
Dallett, who is Catawba and Scottish, has organized the Talking Stick festival for the SEED Graduate Institute in Albuquerque, an educational organization. The festival plans to move to Albuquerque for next year's event.
This inaugural year features 78 recently completed films in dramatic feature, documentary and animation competitions. Works by students and classic films also will be shown.
The festival opens Saturday with the U.S. premiere of "Older Than America,'' a Canadian film directed by Georgina Lightning, who is Cree, about atrocities at Indian boarding schools. Also on tap opening night: the world premiere of "Paatuwaqatsi — Water, Land, Life,'' by Hopi director Victor Masayesva.
Panel discussions and workshops during the six-day festival cover topics such as women in film, cultural responsibility, humor, financing and film sound.


- By Deborah Bake..rAssociated Press


SANTA FE, N.M. – In some American Indian tribes, when important matters are being discussed a "talking stick" is handed around. Whoever holds it is the only one who may speak, while the others listen.

Hence the name of a newcomer on the American Indian moviemaking scene, the Talking Stick Film Festival.

"I look at each film as each person's time to hold the talking stick, to tell the story in their way," said festival director Karen Redhawk Dallett.

More than 100 films are scheduled to be shown during the inaugural event, which will be held Saturday through June 26 in Santa Fe.

There will be panels and workshops as well, with such notables as actor Wes Studi, director Chris Eyre — whose supernatural thriller "Imprint" will show during the festival — and actor Gary Farmer, who'll do double-duty leading a workshop and playing with his bluesy band, "Gary Farmer and the Troublemakers."

The films were largely written, directed or produced by Indians from the U.S. and Canada, with some offerings from indigenous people of Australia, New Zealand, Mexico and Samoa.

"I was surprised how much work is out there — and how much brilliant, really stunning, work is out there," said Dallett, who had envisioned finding 20 to 30 good films for the festival and was blown away when the entries poured in.

That's a huge change from three decades ago, when Michael Smith, a Sioux working with the United Indians of All Tribes Foundation in Seattle, set about to find films — no matter who made them — that rebutted the stereotypical portrayal of Indians.

He scrounged up 17, and the American Indian Film Festival was born in 1975.

Relocated to San Francisco in 1977, the festival is still going strong, with this year's event scheduled Nov. 7-15. The American Indian Film Institute, which Smith heads, also holds digital training workshops and traveling film festivals for Indian youth on reservations and in rural communities.

"Video really opened up doors for American Indian artists; film is such a costly medium to work in. ... Now, with the growth of digital video, it's really exploded," Smith said.

As much as film has created stereotypes that have eroded the self-image of generations of Indians, it's also a powerful tool for healing and strengthening and for reshaping those perceptions, according to the institute.

Navajo filmmaker and screenwriter Norman Patrick Brown of Gallup has made about a dozen films over the past 20 years, many in the Navajo language with English subtitles.

He co-produced a 37-minute documentary to be shown at the Talking Stick festival called "Poison Wind," about the effects of uranium mining. Jenny Pond was the director and producer.

"For many of us, it's not really about the glamor or the high-end production values," said Brown, who has made films about diabetes and drug and alcohol addiction. "It's mostly serving our community, educating the community."

According to Smith, there are about a dozen Indian and indigenous film festivals in North America. Among them: events at the National Museum of the American Indian and the Heard Museum in Phoenix; Sundance Film Festival's Native Forum; the imagineNATIVE film and media arts festival in Toronto; and Dreamspeakers Film Festival in Edmonton, Alberta.

Dallett, who is Catawba and Scottish, has organized the Talking Stick festival for the SEED Graduate Institute in Albuquerque, an educational organization. The festival plans to move to Albuquerque for next year's event.

This inaugural year features 78 recently completed films in dramatic feature, documentary and animation competitions. Works by students and classic films also will be shown.

The festival opens Saturday with the U.S. premiere of "Older Than America," a Canadian film directed by Georgina Lightning, who is Cree, about atrocities at Indian boarding schools. Also on tap opening night: the world premiere of "Paatuwaqatsi — Water, Land, Life," by Hopi director Victor Masayesva.

Panel discussions and workshops during the six-day festival cover topics such as women in film, cultural responsibility, humor, financing and film sound.

___

On the Net:

Talking Stick Film Festival: http://www.talkingstickfilmfestival.org
- By DEBORAH BAKER, Associated Press Writer Deborah Baker, Associated Press Writer – Fri Jun 20, 8:52


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Established 2005