COYOTEMON STEVEN DAVID POWELL, “The Human Didgeridoo”, is also a native of Ohtahku (Great Falls), Montana. He’s a founding member and Ghost Town Sound utility ‘mon’, providing a vital range of sound colors for the group with juice harp, vocals, congas, bongos, timbales, xylophones, and so forth as well as the basic drum kit-driven solid back beat. Powell’s career spans a tradition of being the face, voice and sound of Montana. He was seen for years all over the Eastern Coastal States in an award-winning Travel Montana commercial series (c.2002-5). In addition, he is the voice of Meriwether Lewis in a self-guided tour of Ohtahku offered by the Great Falls Historical Society in the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center (c. 2001). Currently, as the “Human Didgerido” of Ghost Town Sound, Powell is being broadcast as a part of National Public Radio’s “Sound ID” series, produced by KGLT radio in Bozeman. He is truly an international multitalent and interested in art of all kinds. His paintings and sculptures were also a major part of GTS’ debut at Alley Galleria in 2009. He has been featured in Friday Art Walks in both Bozeman, and Great Falls, and his portrait commissions hail from as far away as China.
“One early Spring day, during a dedication of First Peoples’ Buffalo Jump near Ulm and Ohtahku, Doug Wendt and the Ghost Town Sound project were given the go ahead by native elders during a peace pipe circle. To seal the deal, the native elders, who roamed the Ohtahku prairie in times past, blessed one and all with a sudden burst of lightning and thunder – as if from nowhere. It was like a late summer squall delivered five months early.
Moments later, several miles down river after The Great Falls of the Missouri, I saw the storm and headed for shelter, but alas there was none to be had in the Missouri River Breaks. Within mere seconds of Doug’s blessing by the spirits, I was blasted with hard rain and wind on my bare skin, which only minutes before had been soaking up bright Spring sun. The hard rain tickled and buffeted me at the same time. The wind lifted each step I took and added a good three feet to my gait as I ran for cover. It was an uncomfortable barrage that lasted for several minutes. However, I never laughed so hard in my life while being beaten by the elements.
I had been invited to the Pipe Ceremony with Doug but declined and went hiking instead. Now I know that when the Great Spirits call, do not run. They are mightier than any man and one should never give them reason to seek you out and make their will known in such a manner. I am grateful to them for being so merciful, and teaching me how to stand.
‘Grandfather says; The fiercest storm is not trying to knock you down, it is teaching how to stand.’ -anonymous
It is because of this founding mystical experience that I carry the message of Ghost Town Sound alongside the two Dougs.”
For a peek at some of Coyotemon’s fine art work, and more Ghost Town Photos,