-Their Debut Self-Titled Album Drops April 22- 

(March 16, 2022 – Phoenix, Ariz.) – After much anticipation the Earth Surface People released the official music video for their EP single “500 Years” today. Filmed primarily on Yavapai-Apache tribal lands in Arizona and directed by Cheyenne Weston, the black and white video matches the haunting lyrics that ask, “How many years is it gonna take to see my sisters being stolen away from here?” WATCH IT HERE.

Earth Surface People (ESP) is an Indigenous-led music collective created by Diné musician and singer/songwriter, Dakota Yazzie. The new single is performed by both Yazzie and Zachary Dominguez, and features Comanche/Otoe multi-instrumentalist Olivia Komahcheet, aka ‘Liv the Artist’. Their first full length album will be released April 22, via Underwater Panther Coalition and available on streaming platforms May 6. 

Earth Surface People’s first EP release “Juniper” came out in 2019 and explored stories of immigration, global climate change, and resilience. They followed up that effort in November 2021 with the “500 Years” EP,  which provided a beautifully cinematic articulation of Dakota’s emplacement. The EP delves into tribal history and the effects of colonization in an empowered way that is sad and uplifting simultaneously. “500 Years” ushered in the use of electronic drums, 808s, and more R&B influences, which are fully fleshed out in their incredible upcoming debut self-titled album. The upcoming full length album, produced by Dakota Yazzie and Matthew O’Neill, features killer hooks, funky beats, and fruitful collaborations that tie Diné cosmology into a narrative that rides waves of emotions in a freshly relatable way. 

About Earth Surface People

Earth Surface People originally started in 2015 by multi-instrumentalist Dakota Yazzie and jazz saxophonist Jai Ram Rideout. Today the band includes Ken Chavez on bass, Zach Dominguez on the keys and drums, and Cochise Yazzie on synthesizer. The musical collective melds influences from soul, R&B, jazz, hip-hop, psychedelic, and art rock with Dakota’s unique talents as an artist and songwriter. Dakota’s voice and worldview is distinctly Diné and does the work of representing the community in a contemporary way that inspires. 

About Underwater Panther Coalition

Underwater Panther Coalition is an independent record label created to amplify and support  Indigenous artists and musical traditions. UPC produces music for decolonization. Music culture that reconnects and regenerates. UPC seeks to improve people’s connection to Mother Earth through curated musical projects and embraces the importance of spirit in music making. Founded in 2017 by Matthew O’Neill, the label is multi-genre, and honors the central role of music in the original instructions across Turtle Island and beyond. Underwater Panther shares 50% of its profits with Indigenous groups affiliated with each project. 

In 2019, UPC released the first ever album of ancestral music from the Kogi, Wiwa, and Arhuaco tribes of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta in Colombia, what they consider to be the heart of the world. The music of the mamos and zagas has been passed down for thousands of years as a way to fulfill their spiritual obligations and inform each new generation. It is a sophisticated form of musical ‘TEK’ that honors and respects our relationships and place in the world. This approach is completely in line with the Underwater Panther project. Being able to present this music for the first time in this way has been an honor. Theresa Bear Fox and Matthew O’Neill are currently collaborating on an album project focusing on her music’s role in cultural resilience and restoration in Akwesasne and beyond. For more information about UPC, visit www.underwaterpanther.com.# # #

Candace Hamana (Hopi)
Owner, Badger PR www.hellobadgerpr.com (480) 790-3011 candace@hellobadgerpr.com

By Editor