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Chief Rock Twelve years ago in the dingy reaches of Canada's most industrialized centre, Chief Rock began his performing career. What was once a sprawling Iroquoi heartland of the Six Nations, Hamilton now seems the most unlikely setting to re-cultivate the trampled Native culture... but this hasn't stopped Rock from donning his head dress.

His earliest high school performances were rough. He hadn't yet received any formal training, but the experience of playing to a live audience proved immediately addictive. Consequently, Chief Rock joined the Kanata Native Dance Theater where he mastered, not only 4 different styles of traditional Native dance, but also stage awareness and physical 'storytelling'.

Shortly thereafter the internationally renowned Red Thunder dance group invited him to join their tour. Since this time the Hamilton native has been bringing his flair to most parts of North America and even far away lands such as Guyana and Taiwan. Above and beyond his touring accolades, Chief Rock has also danced in three music videos for EMI, including Tom Cochraine's "I Wonder" and Susan Aglukhark "One Hand Turns Another".

As strong as his background in traditional Native culture may be, Chief Rock will be the first to declare that his passions extend far beyond the ancient rituals of the pow wow. Long before he had dawned the traditional beads and feathers, Rock was scuffing his sneakers as a B-Boy. With thousands of hours logged on the cardboard in Powell Park, his moves now attest to an authentic breed of break dancing. And he owes his well-earned break dancing reputation in the Hamilton and Toronto hip-hop club scenes largely to his proficient footwork.

Albeit that Chief Rock can tell a compelling story with his body, his current mission is to spread a message with his voice. A founding member at large of S -n- S Steel Squadron, Chief Rock writes and produces all of his own material. The beckoning aura of his instrumental arrangements, overlaid with his sobering lyrics offer an intriguing primer on Canada's immediate cultural climate.

If the momentum this young man has enjoyed to date is any indication of his future direction, commercial success is within his grasp. Having recently been nominated for a Native American Music Award, in the Best Rap/Hip Hop category, and a Canadian Aboriginal Award, Chief Rock is likely to be in contention for a Juno Award in the coming year. His clever blend of traditional Native culture with the hottest contemporary musical genre could easily be the new combination to catch the attention of today's young people.

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