Curtis Clear Sky and Constellationz are Vancouver based with global backgrounds who create Indigifunk music and culture and it consists of Hip-hop, Funk, Latin-Funk, Soul, Ska, Reggae and Blues.
Curtis has been incrementally professionally developing music for several years. Curtis received two Emerging Artist grants from First People’s Cultural Council (FPCC) to record the album.
The songs are recorded with a talented diverse collective of Vancouver based musicians from global backgrounds who create Curtis Clear Sky and the Constellationz. The music culture and the title of the album is INDIGIFUNK. It consists of Hip-hop with Latin-Funk, Soul, Ska, Reggae and Blues.
The INDIGIFUNK album was recorded at Absolute Time Studios, 1907 W 5th Ave in Vancouver BC with recorder Kat Hendrix who co-produced the album. Kat Hendrix contributed the drumming on the recordings and has over 50 years of music experience including drumming for the Incredible Bongo Band’s -Apache the famous foundational Hip-hop break-beat. The funky bass is by Peter “Rusty” Beach (Jamaica). Latin congas by Wilson Mendes (Brazil). The beautiful female vocals are by Tia Taurere-Clear Sky of Indigenous Maori descent (Aotearoa-New Zealand). Professional singer extraordinaire Jennifer Kreisberg of the Indigenous women’s singing group Ulali contributes her powerful harmonies. Session player Leroy “Andy” Pierpont (Belize) is on trombone. German Cantillo (Nicaragua) leads with the Latin-funk guitar. DJ Su Comandante (El Salvador) provides the Hip-hop scratching. Juno award winning bluesman Murray Porter sings and plays keys on the song Turtle Island.
Artist and Entrepreneur Curtis Clear Sky had immersed himself in music industry development. Over the past several years he’s attended workshops hosted by BC Touring Council’s On the Road Touring workshops and On Stage Success with Tom Jackson. He’s attended numerous Talking Stick Festival Professional Music Development workshops. He’s attended the FPCC’s Indigenous Music Industry Retreat in BC May 6-11 2018 where he received an abundance of knowledge from Indigenous music industry professionals and established artist’s. The retreat provided an incredible amount of valuable music industry information that’s provided insight into the album release.
Curtis Clear Sky was also recipient of the FPCC’ Professional Music Industry Development grant and received mentorship from Robbe Hardnette of Vancouver based Streetbeat Entertainment from April- July 2018. Robbe is a former background singer for Motown Records’ Marvin Gaye who shared valuable teachings from Berry’s Gordy’s Motown Records but also from his own journey of business endeavors that he has formed from Houston to Portland to Vancouver. Through the mentorship he subsequently developed and registered an independent Indigenous record label Dignified Records a platform where the debut Curtis Clear Sky and the Constellationz INDIGIFUNK album will be released. The record label will also support potential future Indigenous artists.
In 2018 Curtis Clear Sky and Constellationz were recipients of Creative BC Career Development Grant that has supported the Marketing and promotion of the album release. Subsequently Indigenous photographer Billie Jean Gabriel was contracted to conduct the album photography. Award-winning visual artists Nelson and Xochitl Garcia-Leal who are Nomadic Alternatives have created the Curtis Clear Sky and Constellationz logo and album cover artwork.
Recently in 2019 Curtis Clear Sky and Constellationz were recipients of the Emerging Artist grants from First People’s Cultural Council (FPCC) to support marketing and the launch celebration set for May 18 2019.
Curtis Clear Sky and Constellationz recognize the growing momentum in the Indigenous music industry with amazing talented artist’s leading the way with successful artist’s including Buffy Sainte-Marie, Tanya Tagaq, Jeremy Dutcher and A Tribe Called Red. It is a momentous time for Indigenous voices, stories and songs to be heard and recognized. Curtis Clear Sky and Constellationz intend to contribute to the stories, songs and voices with their album INDIGIFUNK. The empowerment of the messages is amplified by the funky rhythms that invite engagement and participation in healing, growth and recognition of Indigenous peoples of Turtle Island.
Curtis Clear Sky (Blackfoot and Anishinabe) was born and raised on Coast Salish territory-Vancouver BC.