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Canada’s Snotty Nose Rez Kids and Skinny Local Rampage on ‘Screaming Indian’

The Native American-origin duo and Indian-origin producer team up for a resounding showcase of solidarity

Anurag Tagat Nov 29, 2020

Canadian Indigenous hip-hop duo Snotty Nose Rez Kids (left) and Indo-Canadian producer Skinny Local. Photos: Matt Barnes (Snotty Nose Rez Kids), Gurman Khera/GSK Photography (Skinny Local)

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The Indigenous hip-hop duo of Snotty Nose Rez Kids — Yung Trybez and Young D of Haisla ancestry living in British Columbia, Canada — have got a lot to say about multiculturalism on their latest single, “Screaming Indian,” but it’s not the same old stuff. Teaming up with Vancouver-based Indian-origin producer Skinny Local aka Bhaveek Makan, there’s a hard-hitting aural (and an arresting visual) experience with “Screaming Indian.” 

Released via Canadian label Snakes x Ladders (who’ve previously worked with Indo-Canadian artists such as Cartel Madras), the song might just be the first ever hip-hop collaboration between Indian and indigenous artists. Snotty Nose Rez Kids say in a statement, “It seems like an obvious choice that Indigenous people and Indian people would collaborate as their histories are intertwined in one colonial historical moment where, thinking he’d reached India, Columbus dubbed the people he sought to conquer and eradicate, ‘Indians.’” 

Although the track was originally created in 2018 during a jam session by genre-hopping group Delhi 2 Dublin’s producer Tarun Nayar, Skinny Local came in to “pick up the reigns” earlier this year. Snotty Nose Rez Kids explain that the song takes off right where their 2019 album Trapline concluded, in terms of “building bridges to other marginalized communities.” They add in a statement, “It’s a joyous and rowdy celebration of solidarity that feels timelier with each passing day.” 

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Put together with a video directed by Vancouver-based filmmaker and photographer Alfonso Chin, “Screaming Indian” takes an unabashed look at communities, Indigenous dance forms and features a nod to Skinny Local’s Gujarati lineage with garba dancers. At the same time, Yung Trybez and Young D have plenty of wordplay to knock out — from digs at corrupt lawmakers to the criminalization of Indigenous practices and lines like “My people drumming/Indian summer/We run it run it.”

Watch the video for “Screaming Indian” below. Stream on more platforms here.

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