DeMarco performs at Shiprock Chapter House

DeMarco stands before microphone, arms outstretched.

Navajo Times | Donovan Quintero
Lead singer and guitarist Mac DeMarco performs Oct. 4 at the Shiprock Chapter House in Shiprock.


From outside the Shiprock Chapter House, it looked as though a country-western or hip-hop dance was going on to match the Northern Navajo Fair festivities. Colorful lights flashed from within and made silhouettes of the crowd that was gathering inside.

But rather than rap or country, the crowd enjoyed the sounds of Navajo, New Mexico, band The Flossies, an indie rock group, in a break away from the metal that has been the dominant form of rock music on the Navajo Nation for years.

The Flossies was one of three local bands asked to open for Canadian performer Mac DeMarco. “Within the Navajo Nation, the genre of independent music is largely overlooked and not considered to be the norm,” said Kenton Kaulaity, lead singer for The Flossies. “I hope that Mac DeMarco will see and appreciate the extent of his fan base in the Navajo Nation and the Four Corners area, as well as seeing the talented bands from Dinétah.”

And that he did. Once Manuelito Wheeler, director of the Navajo Nation Museum, posted online that DeMarco would be making a stop in Shiprock, the feedback was a mixture of disbelief and confusion.

Demarco, only a week prior to the announcement that he would perform on the Navajo Nation, had sold out his concert at Radio City Music Hall in New York City. He also has a slew of other concerts in Europe, not to mention his new album “This Old Dog,” which has received rave critical reviews.

But, once invited, DeMarco couldn’t pass up the opportunity to play a few songs for his fans on the Navajo Nation.

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Categories: Music

About Author

Arlyssa Becenti

Arlyssa Becenti reports on Navajo Nation Council, Business, Fort Defiance Agency, New Mexico State politics and Art/fashion. Her clans are Nát'oh dine'é Táchii'nii, Bit'ahnii, Kin łichii'nii, Kiyaa'áanii. She’s originally from Fort Defiance and has a degree in English Literature from Arizona State University. Before working for the Navajo Times she was a reporter for the Gallup Independent. She can be reached at