Don’t trust anyone who isn’t angry..
Born and raised on the Santee Sioux Reservation, on the border of Nebraska and South Dakota, Native-American poet and activist John Trudell spent the majority of the 1970s as the national chairman of the American Indian Movement (AIM). Trudell left Native-American politics in 1979 after his wife, mother-in-law, and three children were killed in a fire at their home on a reservation in Nevada. The fire, which Trudell was convinced was no accident, came just 12 hours after he had set fire to the American flag on the steps of the FBI Building in Washington D.C.
Trudell began reciting his poetry in public appearances and eventually, encouraged by musician friends like Jackson Browne and Bonnie Raitt, released a cassette of his poetry backed by traditional Indian chants and drums. When he met guitarist Jesse Ed Davis, Trudell found the collaborator he had been looking for to compose music to back his poetry.