Frank Waln Collection

Identifier: MUSIC-086

Collection Overview

Scope and Contents

Collection consists of audio files files for Frank Waln's solo discography, 2017-2022, including albums and singles, as well as digital album art. Taken together, the albums document the work of one Lakota creative and offer insight into intersectional, indigenous musical activism in the 2000s.

Albums and singles included

  1. The Bridge (album, 2017)
  2. Wokiksuye (stereo and live verions) (single, 2018)
  3. Olówan Wétu (Spring Songs) (album, 2020)
  4. Born Ready (album, 2020)
  5. NDN Chant, (single, 2021)
  6. In the Key of Lakota (album, 2021)
  7. Bad Medicine (single, 2022)



1.34 Gigabytes


Biographical / Historical

Frank Waln or Oyate Teca Obmani is a Sicangu Lakota hip hop musician and activist born on August 9, 1989. Waln grew up on the Rosebud Indian Reservation where he began listening to hip hop as a teenager. Waln graduated from Columbia College Chicago with a B.A. in Audio Arts and Acoustics where he received a Gates Millennium Scholarship.

Waln's first solo album, The Bridge, was released in 2017, followed by several other albums, EPs, and singles. He has been awarded three Native American Music Awards and received five nominations, both individually and with his group Nake Nula Waun.

Waln’s other awards include the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development 2014 Native American 40 Under 40, the 2014 Chicago Mayor’s Award for Civic Engagement, and the 2016 3Arts Grant for Chicago Artists. He has been featured in Buzzfeed, The Fader, Playboy, Vibe, NPR, ESPN, and MTV’s Rebel Music Native America. Waln has written for various publications including Decolonization: Indigeneity, Education, and Society and The Guardian.

In addition to his recording work, Waln also speaks and performs regularly in educational contexts. Waln visited BGSU in 2022 as part of the In The Round series featuring Native American creatives.

Conditions Governing Access

Time-limited streaming access available by request. Please contact a librarian in the Music Library and Bill Schurk Sound Archives for more information.

Conditions Governing Use

Researchers using this collection assume full responsibility for conforming to the laws of libel, privacy, and copyright, and are responsible for securing permissions necessary for publication or reproduction.

Language of Materials

Sung in English and Lakota

Existence and Location of Copies

Content also available for purchase from Frank Waln. Audio is available on most streaming platforms as of summer 2022.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Purchase from Frank Waln, August 2022

Location of digital files and streaming copies

Streaming audio available in BGSU's Avalon instance; preservation copies stored in Z-DAM, August 2022.


Guide to the Frank Waln Collection
David R. Lewis
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description