Verdell Primeaux is of Oglalla/Yankton Sioux and Ponca heritage and was born in Scottsbluff, Nebraska. Verdell represents the Seven Council Fires of the Lakota and the Eagle Clan of the Ponca Nation. Verdell’s mother, Delores Arapahoe, an Oglalla Lakota, is a descendent of Chiefs Many Horses, Red Cloud and Crazy Horse.
At the age of two, Verdell received Holy Baptism which was performed by his great grandfather, Solomon Red Bear, Sr. By the time he was five, Verdell began singing and learning Lakota culture and tradition. When he was thirteen, Verdell recorded four albums with his father and at the age of sixteen he began composing lyrics and rhythms.
Johnny Mike is a Dine (Navajo) from Kitsili, Black Mesa, Arizona. His maternal clan is Near the Water People and on his father’s side he represents the Salt Clan. He has two children, Rachael and Shane, and resides in Chinle, Arizona. Both sides of his family have been prominent in the Native American Church. Johnny’s grandfathers and grandmothers were some of the first the use peyote within the Navajo nation and at a time when people went to jail for using peyote as a part of the worship of the Native American Church.
Primeaux and Mike’s fourth recording, Walk in Beauty, was a finalist for a 1996 NAIRD India Award. Their sixth recording, Sacred Path, was a finalist for a 1998 AFIM Indie Award. Their seventh recording, Peyote Songs of the Native American Church, was the winner of the 1998 New Age Voice Music Award for Traditional Native American Music and the 1998 Native American Music Awards for Best Traditional Music. Gathering of Voices was a 1999 finalist for an AFIM Indie Award. In 2002 Bless the People won the Grammy for Best Native American Album.