Band members               Related acts

- Tom Bee -- (1973)
- R.C. Gariss Jr. -- guitar, keyboards, vocals (1971-73)
- Leeja 'Lee' Herrera -- drums, percussion, backing vocals

- Tyrone King -- (1973)
- A. Michael Martin -- vocals, guitar (1971-73)
- Jomac Suazo -- bass (1971-73)
- Obie Sullivan -- (1973)
- Chili Yazzio -- (1973)



Lincoln Street Exit


Genre: rock

Rating: *** (3 stars)

Title:  Plight of the Redman

Company: Rare Earth

Catalog: R5 361

Year: 1970

Country/State: New Mexico

Grade (cover/record): VG / VG

Comments: gatefold sleeve

Available: 2

GEMM Catalog ID: 5102

Price: $25.00


Following the collapse of New Mexico's Lincoln Street Exit (see separate entry), Tom Bee, guitarist R.C. Gariss Jr., drummer Leeja Herrera, singer A. Michael Martin and bassist Jomac Suazo continued their musical collaboration as Xit (the name apparently Sioux for 'Crossing of the Tribes'). While this may sound cynical, in the wake of Redbone's early-'70s success, perhaps it wasn't a major surprise that other labels would start searching for their own native American Indian acts (okay, okay, we know Redbone weren't native Americans, but in the music industry image counts). While it may have been one of the year's odder collaborations, give Motown credit for signing the real thing (all four members being native Sioux). 

Produced by Russ Terrano and Mike Valvano, 1972's "Plight of the Redman" wasn't bad. Musically the set bore little in common with their earlier bluesy work. In it's place material such as "At Peace", "I was Raised" and "Nihaa Shil Hozho (I Am Happy About You)" found the band trying to find a balance between social commentary/Indian rights and more commercial efforts. While the lyrics were occasionally clunky ("End?"), Martin had an attractive voice and the band could certainly rock (check out the blistering "The Coming of the White Man"). Ever heard The Raiders' "Indian Reservation"? Imagine an LP worth of similar material and you'll get a feel for this set. (The album was originally released with a gatefold sleeve.)

"Plight of the Redman" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) Beginning   (Mike Valvano - Tom Bee) - 4:27
2.) At Peace   (Mike Valvano - Tom Bee) - 4:22
3.) I was Raised   (Mike Valvano - Tom Bee) - 2:56
4.) Nihaa Shil Hozho (I Am Happy About You)   (Mike Valvano - Tom Bee) - 7:04

(side 2)

1.) The Coming of the White Man   (Mike Valvano - Tom Bee) - 3:55
2.) War Cry   (Mike Valvano - Tom Bee) - 2:44
3.) Someday   (Mike Valvano - Tom Bee) - 4:11



8.) End? (Mike Valvano - Tom Bee) - 3:49

Genre: rock

Rating: *** (3 stars)

Title:  Silent Warrior

Company: Rare Earth

Catalog: R 545L

Year: 1971

Grade (cover/record): VG/VG

Comments: original inner sleeve

Available: 1

GEMM Catalog ID: 5103

Price: $15.00


Released in the wake of a personnel shakeup that saw the band expanded to a seven piece with the addition of Tyrone King, Obie Sullivan and Chili Yazzio, 1973's "Silent Warrior" wasn't a major change in direction. With Bee and Valvano again responsible for most of the material, like the debut the sophomore set found the band espousing an agenda heavy on Indian rights ("We Live" and "Anthem of the American Indian") and environmental concerns ("Awakening", "Cement Prairie" and "Color Nature Gone"). While a couple of tracks were worth hearing (the blazing "Reservation of Education" and "Young Warrior"), the combination of heavy orchestration (way too many string arrangements) and a more radical lyrical stance made this far less entertaining. Like the debut, it vanished without a trace.

"Silent Warrior" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) We Live   (Tom Bee - Mike Valvano - Mac Suazo) - 
2.) Awakening   (Tom Bee - Mike Valvano) -
3.) Birth   (Tom Bee - Mike Valvano) - 
4.) Reservation of Education   (Tom Bee - Mike Valvano - Mac Suazo) - 

(side 2)

1.) Color Nature Gone   (Tom Bee - Mike Valvano) - 
2.) Cement Prairie   (Tom Bee - Mike Valvano) - 
3.) Young Warrior   Tom Bee - Mike Valvano - Mac Suazo) - 
4.) Anthem of the American Indian   (Tom Bee - Mike Valvano) - 



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