Article Contributed by SRO | Published on Wednesday, September 13, 2023

MICKI FREE— the Grammy-winning musical artist, 5X Native American Music Award-winner, 2022 The Native American Music Awards Hall of Fame inductee, and member of Shalamar USA—has been chosen to be an official “Envoy” for the World Culture Festival, the Olympic-scale, free-to-the-public (with website registration) unity celebration. Founded by Indian guru Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, it is taking place September 29-October 1 at The National Mall in Washington, DC. On the event’s opening day, FREE will lead the “1,000+ Guitar Ensemble” in a performance of his new single, “We Are One,” on September 29 at The National Mall in Washington, DC. See further details HERE.

“We Are One” was written, produced, and arranged by FREE specifically for the World Culture Festival. He performs lead vocals and lead & rhythm guitar with assistance from longtime friend and collaborator Cindy Blackman-Santana (drums), Ken Riley (bass, backing vocals) and Lila Gale (backing vocals). It’s out digitally on Spotify (HERE) or Apple Music (HERE) along with a serene, picturesque lyric video seen streaming below or directly via YouTube HERE.

FREE, who recently relocated to Las Vegas, NV and has a monthly residency every first Monday at Backstage Bar & Billiards, will perform “We Are One” live on the “Morning Blend” show on Vegas’ ABC Affiliate KTNV (Channel 13) on September 13 (the show airs from 9:00-10:00 AM).

“I met with Sri Sri Gurudev Ravi Shankar and his message moved me to want to join him in getting our human beings to understand ‘We Are One,’ shares FREE. “That all peoples of the world are united as ONE...we should love and care about each other, and there's no cosmic meaning, my message is in the lyric; simple; ‘WE ARE ONE.’”

FREE elaborates on how the World Culture Festival performance came together, stating: “A good friend of my manager, Heather Loren, invited us to meet Gurudev, as they wanted my help inviting Native American Tribes across our country to join the festival in song and dance. The committee then asked if I would lead the guitar players in song, and I accepted, then I did one better and WROTE them the song we will all be performing! We as indigenous peoples need to take the stage on opening day and show the world our positive energy!”

“We are honored we were asked to be part of such a worldly, heartfelt positive joining of cultures from all parts of the globe,” says FREE. “I'm excited to perform on the global stage and see other performers as well! It will be like a world love & peace party, sharing peace and harmony, asking the world to please come together as one.”