A legend in the making : Tia Wood on Salt Spring Island
RAVEN is about to welcome Tia Wood — fresh from Rifflandia — to Salt Spring.
Though only 23, Tia Wood is a seasoned entertainer, having toured the pow wow trail extensively with her family (many of whom are members of Grammy Award-winning group, Northern Cree). Audiences at Tia Wood’s show at Fulford Hall on Wednesday September 20th will be treated to a studio show of unreleased music from this rising star and her band. (tickets – https://fundraise.raventrust.com/tia).
A singer-songwriter from Saddle Lake Cree Nation in Alberta, Tia left her rural Alberta home at the age of 20 and made her way to Los Angeles, where she became part of a phenomenal cultural and spiritual movement led by Indigenous creators. Comprising talents like Earth Arrow and Edgar Hernandez, this vanguard of progressive voices are bringing together decolonizing messages with a passion for revitalizing ancient traditions.
“I have been singing ever since I could talk,” says Wood, in a profile in Vogue magazine. “I grew up in a family of singers. When we were little, it was normal to hear powwow, peyote, handgame, and poetry in the background, whether we were crafting, eating dinner, or playing outside. We also would do a lot of shows as a family, as a way to practice and put food on the table as a tribe of six.”
The young Indigenous singer and activist has gained an enormous audience on Tik Tok (2.3 million and counting) for her hot takes and cool refrains about Indigenous realities and culture. Wood champions her Cree and Salish cultures on the app, using it as a platform to educate others about her people’s history and traditions, through singing, informational videos, and doing Indigenous takes on popular trends. Now, her many followers and fans (3% of North America follows her on social media) are keen to support her first album, part of which she is recording on Salt Spring Island ahead of the RAVEN show.
Tia has an iconic sound that pulls from her grounding in traditional Cree medicine songs, ‘rez life’, and the craft of using pop culture and media to call people into deeper understanding of Indigenous struggle, and wisdom traditions. With songs like “Dirt Roads”, Tia strings timeless sounds with modern realities, crafting a new vision for Indigenous youth and lovers of authentic soul sounds alike.
Tia and her band will play a set of songs from the new album, with an intro set by Vancouver based hip hop artist HK aka Higher Knowledge. Fresh from Rifflandia, TD Music Hall in Toronto, Winnipeg Jazz Festival and North American Indigenous Games, islanders are in for a huge treat as Tia brings her rawly beautiful voice and message for an intimate studio show at Fulford Hall.
Tickets are being released on a sliding scale ($25-$50): proceeds support access to justice for Indigenous Nations. Islanders are encouraged to get tickets early to hear this medicine singer as she stands on the brink of fame. Get tickets – https://fundraise.raventrust.com/tia.