Review of ‘AKA’ Grafitti Man – Rykodisc Catalog

John Trudell is a Native American songwriter/poet, and an outspoken activist for human rights and environmental issues. AKA GRAFITII MAN showcases his remarkable spoken-word brand of rock & roll, praised by musicians such as Peter Garrett, Bob Dylan, Kris Kristofferson, and Jackson Browne.

AKA Grafitti Man, by John Trudell

In the mid-80’s, Trudell came together with legendary Kiowa Indian guitarist Jesse Ed Davis and formed Grafitti Man; their first cassette, AKA GRAFITTI MAN, was produced in 1985. While the tape was sold only by mail order, a copy reached Bob Dylan, who called it “album of the year” and played it over the PA before concerts.

Following Davis’ death, Trudell enlisted guitarist Mark Shark as the musical backbone of Grafitti Man; the band spent part of 1988 touring the US with Midnight Oil.

AKA GRAFITTI MAN includes material dating back to Trudell’s work with Jesse Ed Davis and the cassette of the same name; as well as more recent material, much of which was co-produced by Jackson Browne, who also serves as the album’s Executive Producer.

The album features Trudell’s powerful personal and political statements, as well as his method of incorporating indigenous themes and musical traditions into a rock context.


“AKA Grafitti Man will shake you up and make you dance; it challenges your commitment to justice, and above all else, it rocks. (4 stars – Excellent) – ROLLING STONE

“A spell-binding performer… One of this year’s bravest albums. (Disc of the Month)” –CD REVIEW