The Story

HIawatha screen grab

The Song of Hiawatha is a feature-length documentary film project about Hiawatha Bailey, a gay political activist and musician of African-American and Native–American (Creek) ancestry who is among the first black hippies and black punk rockers.  The second of twelve children born to a family in Georgia and transplanted to Detroit in the 1950s to escape Jim Crow and to live in “Motown,” Hiawatha was part of the “great migration” of African-Americans moving to northern cities.  In 1965, he took his first hit of LSD, joined a commune, and never looked back….until now.

This is the story of the American rocknroll counterculture from 1965 to the present as lived though Hiawatha’s fifty year odyssey from the South to the New Left to prison to his rebirth as a Cult Hero and beyond.