by Pamela Vernaus | APTN Communications Coordinator

There are many Peoples living under the Canadian tent, and for one day, the first day of summer, we will come together to celebrate “One Great Gathering.”

On June 21, 2017, National Aboriginal Day, Aboriginal Peoples Television Network (APTN) will bring Aboriginal Day Live (ADL) to eight cities: Halifax, Montréal, Ottawa, Toronto, Winnipeg, Yellowknife, Edmonton, and Vancouver.

Year after year, APTN has set the stage for the evening concert to provide an opportunity for Canadians to gain awareness of our cultures through the energy and elation of music and performance.

In 2007, the first celebration was an hour long concert held in a park outside APTN headquarters in downtown Winnipeg. Fast-forward to 2017, and you’ll be able to experience this upcoming edition from coast to coast to coast and beyond. An array of daytime celebrations reflecting the regions will lead to the evening. APTN will livestream the concert pre-shows featuring emerging artists and the evening concerts will make for a special 7-hour live multi-platform broadcast.

We caught up with LightningCloud veterans at ADL – having performed in Edmonton and Winnipeg. They are excited as ever to perform in Edmonton again.

It’s your third performance at ADL, how have you seen it change or evolve over the years? What do you hope for this year?

(Crystle) – It’s one of our favorite events. The energy levels are always high, and we expect this year to be as electric as ever! Every year we strive to reinvent ourselves and put on an amazing show. It’s a challenge that is well accepted. This year will be our most theatrical performance to date! We have some tricks up our sleeves. 

ADL is going to make broadcast history with live concerts from coast to coast to coast, reaching an unparalleled audience, both Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal. What is the one message you want to share with this audience? What do you want to tell all eight cities?

(Crystle) – First of all, congratulations, that’s GROUNDBREAKING! Eight stages in eight cities all over Canada is going to show the world the level of talent that we have. My message to the audience is there is Power in Numbers! When you are at this gathering – look around. Imagine the kind of unity for Mother Earth. Let’s be quick to assemble in masses as Indigenous brothers and sisters and friends who stand in solidarity.

What role does your culture play in your music? What do hope people will gain from it? 

(RedCloud) – Our culture impacts a lot of our music, from lyrics to our shows, workshops and our events. I hope people gain pride and love in their hearts from our work, that they see it’s a couple of LA Natives that are winning these awards, rocking these shows with Kendrick Lamar and touring the world. It’s a couple of natives that are breaking world records- and I hope that inspires our people and our youth.

What is LightningCloud working on right now?

(RedCloud) – Crystal Lightning and I are finally wrapping up our 3rd and best album to date ‘Hummingbird Slang’. Ready to set it loose on the world! We will be debuting two new songs during our show!

What can we expect from you guys?

(Crystle) – Fire effects and Indigenous dancers will be new to our performance at Aboriginal Day Live. Prepare for the illest hip hop show!

What should people come out and celebrate National Aboriginal Day?

(Crystle) – It’s an amazing celebration! The feeling you get dancing and singing with your people is riveting.

What is your favorite thing about ADL?

(RedCloud) – Being with the fans, performing for the people and building with our family. They are the reason why we do this without them; there wouldn’t be any LightningCloud.



So, who else is part of the lineup?

With over 70 star-studded acts, including Grammy, JUNO and Gala de l’ADISQ award recipients among others. The 11th edition of ADL will make broadcast history along the way.

Here’s a sneak peak at some of the artists performing on stages across the nation:

Pat Vegas (Los Angeles, California) and his son PJ will bring their unique and innovative sounds to the East Coast. Halifax Main Stage.

Daniel Lanois (Hull, Québec), one of the finest sonic experimenters of the 20th and 21st centuries, and sure to please with his soulful and truthful expressions. Montréal Main Stage.

Florant Vollant (Maliotenam, Québec), Originally was part of folk music duo Kashtin, one of the most important groups for Aboriginal music history. Ottawa Main Stage.

Classified (Enfield, Nova Scotia), award-winning producer and recording artist will bring his East Coast beats and rhythmical lyrics. Toronto Welcoming Stage.

Nelly Furtado (Victoria, British Columbia), Grammy Award-winning, Portuguese-Canadian singer, and songwriter will perform her hits to the centre of the nation. Winnipeg Main Stage.

George Leach (Lillooet, British Columbia), Three-time winner of Aboriginal People’s Choice Music Awards will be crossing the 49th parallel to rock out with the rest of the nation. Yellowknife Main Stage.

LightningCloud (Los Angeles, California), Collaboration between Crystle Lightning from Hobbema, AB and MC Red Cloud from L.A. This will be their third performance at ADL! Edmonton Main Stage.

Taboo (Los Angeles, California), Mexican and Native American rapper will spin out all the West Coast jams. Vancouver Main Stage.

You’re also invited to join the conversation anytime on Twitter or Instagram by tagging your posts with #ADL2017, and the network will share them with its followers, Noteworthy posts that honour the celebration and its happenings could be added to the live broadcast.

Wednesday, June 21 will be the One Great Gathering. Aboriginal Day Live will broadcast live on APTN at 7:00 p.m.ET.

You can livestream the concert pre-shows at and watch the concerts on APTN and the Aboriginal radio waves.

Complete programming and broadcast details for each city are available at