Growing up, local rocker Chuck Haven listened to famed metal band Powerman 5000, never knowing he would one day sit down with the band members to eat posole and fry bread.
Weve played with them a couple of times, he said.The cool thing is that they remembered us the second time coming through. We had an after-show dinner with them, and actually spending time with them and having dinner with them was a trip.
A former Cortez resident, Haven is now the front man for the Farmington-based metal group Signal 99 a band recently nominated for two Native American Music Awards.
Weve been putting a lot of work, time and effort into the music project, Haven said.Going from it just being a hobby to something with a message behind it its a big deal for us.
Nominations include best debut artist for their 2010 album, The Gospel and best music video for Banner of Corpses.
Produced on a shoestring budget using a hand-held camcorder, the Banner of Corpses video features dramatic images referencing the historic genocides of Native Americans after the landing of Christopher Columbus and Jewish people during World War II.
A lot of people dont realize Hitler studied a lot of early American history and modeled his book, Mein Kampf, after it, Haven said. A lot of his policy in the extermination the Jews was drawn from American history.
The video also references a 2010 incident, in which a Navajo man was branded with a swastika by white supremacists in Farmington.
The music video we did brings an anti-hate message, Haven said. Basically its just saying that history repeats itself.
Nominees for the awards will be narrowed down by popular votes gathered on the website www.nativeamericanmusicawards.com through Sept. 7. The 2011 winners will be decided Oct. 7 in Niagara Falls, N.Y.
In the meantime, Haven hopes the group can work on recording new material and playing for upcoming shows, the first of which is scheduled for 7 p.m. Sept. 12 at the Top Deck, 515 E. Main St., Farmington. Signal 99 will play with all-female metal band Kittie, and tickets are available from the Copper Penny at 505-325-1563.
Haven advocates for the support of local bands.
Im glad that the supports there, he said. I like the area. I grew up in the Four Corners area. Its one of those things where you have to stick together as a community and get the word out, support each other.
More information on the band and upcoming shows is available at www.sig99.com.
Reach Reid Wright at firstname.lastname@example.org.