Yesterday, Assemblymember Jim Frazier (D-Oakley) honored Chuck Billy, an Antioch resident and the vocalist for Bay Area thrash metal legends TESTAMENT, on the State Assembly floor for the positive influence he has made in the Native American community and on the general public.
On January 14, 2013, Chuck Billy earned the distinction as the first Native American entertainer to be permanently featured in the memorabilia display at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Chuck was also among those recognized in the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian’s exhibit, Up Where We Belong: Native Musicians in Popular Culture.
“The world of music is inhabited by creative and talented individuals whose work enhances the quality of life for all who are fortunate enough to have entered their sphere of influence,” said Jim Frazier. “Not only does Chuck Billy embody all of these admirable qualities, he also personifies the strength and enduring spirit of Native Americans.”
Chuck Billy, a descendent of the Pomo Native Americans, was born in Oakland and spent much of his youth on the Hopland Indian Reservation north of San Francisco. He is best known as the vocalist for TESTAMENT, where he plays several songs including “Trail of Tears”, “Allegiance”, and “Native Blood”, in honor of his ancestral lineage.
TESTAMENT, recently took home the award for “best music video” at the American Indian Film Festival for their clip for the track “Native Blood!” The song, whose lyrics are about vocalist Chuck Billy’s Native American heritage, was filmed at the Hopland Indian Reservation in Hopland, CA. The clip was directed by Mike Sloat (MACHINE HEAD, STAIND).
The American Indian Film Festival recognizes outstanding Indian cinematic accomplishments from Native media makers and talent. The Festival also provides an opportunity for filmmakers, tribes, media and public audiences to come together and share in the creative experience and celebrate cinematic accomplishment. For more information visit http://aifisf.com.
TESTAMENT scanned 20,720 copies of their new album Dark Roots of Earth in its first week of sales in the United States according to Nielsen SoundScan. The album debuted at No. 12 on the US Billboard Top 200 chart, making it their highest first week sales since the inception of SoundScan. This also marks the highest first week sales for a Nuclear Blast artist yet.
Dark Roots of Earth was produced, mixed and mastered by acclaimed British producer Andy Sneap (ARCH ENEMY, NEVERMORE, ACCEPT, EXODUS). Special bonus tracks were recorded, mixed and mastered by Juan Urteaga (MACHINE HEAD, EXODUS, TED NUGENT, NIGHT RANGER) at his Trident Studios. Eliran Kantor, who has previously worked with ATHEIST, SIGH, ANACRUSIS and GWAR, among others, provided the cover artwork.
Chuck Billy – Vocals
Eric Peterson – Guitar
Alex Skolnick – Guitar
Greg Christian – Bass
Gene Hoglan – Drums
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