Artist Profile: Michael Shaugobay-Hirsch
Thursday, January 09 2014
Written by Brianna Skildum,
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Michael Shaugobay-Hirsch put up a flyer one day, saying that he was looking for musical artists in the Native community. He said, “I’m interested in everyone with talent but definitely aim for my Native peoples and their success and I would like to provide them opportunities that were not there for me or my friends.”

That was in the 1980s and from there came the company, Native Joint Productions, based in Cloquet, Minn. It features such collaborative talent like Darrell “Deebo” Shabaiash and Derek Delille. Shaugobay-Hirsch says on his Web site that after managing Deebo's sons group from Pine City, Minn., booking shows for them and watching them perform he realized he was tired of Natives waiting around for a chance to show their skills. “So here I am trying making a difference and to make it really happen for my Natives and yes everyone with talent is welcome to come to Native Joint Productions.”

Shaugobay-Hirsch wasn’t specifically looking for younger people and he tries to please a broad audience: anybody who loves Native made music. His goal is to provide opportunities to those who may not have had them before; opportunities like performing and writing music of their own. Hirsch also wants to show his apprentices how to promote themselves, “because we are a self-empowering group sharing all we know for a common goal, success.”

Shaugobay-Hirsch is working with two of his colleagues, Darrell “Deebo” Shabaiash and Derek Delille, as well as all of the willing participants, to make this music production a reality. In 1997, these three released an album, beginning their career as music artists. He started writing music in 1985 and played the piano, drums, clarinet and marimba when he was 10 years-old. In 1992, after years of playing in the school band, he began making beats and took off with his dreams when he met Shabaiash and Delille.

When asked what he believed his chances were of success, Shaugobay-Hirsch said, “I have odds on my side. This is more of a gateway to bigger things for now until we grow and gather fanbase.” 

Native Joint Productions is based on the Fon Du Lac reservation, in Cloquet, Minn, but Shaugobay-Hirsch has reached out all over the surrounding area, including Minneapolis, to try to recruit musicians to join himself and his two collegues.

He credits his friends in the industry for his success, Thurd Wurld, MN Sage and Crew, D-Hog, Rez Rap Records, Knox, Chase Manhattan, Coley Gang, Tall Paul, C-Dub and others for “keeping hip hop alive in our communities.”

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