Two-Time Nammy winning Cherokee folk artist Michael Bucher will perform and speak to residents and community members on the Lac Courte Oreilles (LCO) Reservation in Hayward, Wisconsin on October 6. The free concert and presentation is dedicated to Native youth who are battling their struggle with suicide.
Bucher's most recent album "Believe," similarly in honor of children throughout Indian Country fighting against suicidal thoughts, won Best Folk Recording at the 12th Annual Native American Music Awards. The CD had been nominated in five categories for this year's Nammy's, which was held on November 12 at the Seneca Niagara Casino in Niagara Falls, New York.
As an artist known for his performances that combine reactionary folk music and informative storytelling, he will also be telling Native Youth and other members of the LCO community about the You Are Not Alone Network (YANAN), a new online social media and suicide resource website founded in part by Bucher and created to help put a stop to Native teen suicide, reported Schilling Media, Inc.
“I'm looking forward to traveling to the LCO Reservation to speak and play a few songs and for the opportunity to talk about the You Are Not Alone Network," Butcher said.
“As co-founder, I'm happy to say that we launched our inter-active website on September 10, 2011: www.youarenotalonenetwork.org. It’s still in the tweaking stage but all in all is ready for our Native youth who are struggling with taking their own lives. As you know, in Indian country, we have a suicide rate three times higher in kids 19 and under, than any other race in the country. The website will grow with time, but here and now, we tell our kids across the country, Alaska and Canada, you are not alone with your struggle.”
The Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwa Community College is postponing classes and opening the concert to the entire community. Afterward, Bucher will stop at the local radio station WOJB, which first played his music soon after he released his first album “Seven” in 2007.
“WOJB is the first station to ever play my music," Bucher said in a press release. "To say I respect and love that station is an understatement. I will never forget that or them. Nor do I take it lightly or for granted. I've never played at the college and don't know what to expect, so I try to take away as much of the 'unexpected' as possible. I don't find it a coincidence that WOJB is the first station to play my music and LCO is the first tribal college that I'll be speaking about YANAN to. I am truly honored.”
Watch Michael Bucher perform songs from the album "Believe" and discuss the message of this CD dedicated to Native youth: