Andrew Martinez, the Mescalero Apache hip hop artist known as Wake Self, died on November 5th after being hit by a drunk driver.
Wake Self was a young artist making real waves on the hip hop scene. He performed and interacted with a flurry of Native artists to include Supaman, Nataannii Means and others. He was set to release his newest album “Ready to Live.” It was due two days after he died.
Martinez’s brother Eric Martinez posted to Facebook, “Please remember what he stood for. Remember him at his best … Rest easy now little bro.”
Nataanii Means, a hip hop artist who worked with Martinez, posted on Twitter that he had discovered Wake Self had been hit by a drunk driver and that he was fighting for his life. Wake Self died from his injuries.
“Journey well to the next life my friend. @WakeSelf you were on the path to great things, just signed a deal, album release party at meow wolf this Thursday. Wake inspired so many people with his music. Prayers for his family in this hard time. He was coming for the world.”
Rep. Deb Haaland from New Mexico also posted a message in support.
A young life taken too soon. @WakeSelf inspired young people to think positively about where they're from & where they're going. I’m praying for his loved ones & the whole community -- I know he impacted the lives of so many. Rest in power.
Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller also remarked on the passing of the artist.
“With the passing of Wake Self, ABQ lost a powerful voice. His music was about resilience and respect for young people, elders, and women – and his legacy won’t be forgotten. We’re thinking of his family & friends today, and those he touched with his music.”
After the accident on Sunday, police charged Diego Pichardo a 24-year-old male with aggravated driving under the influence and other related charges. Pichardo has a considerable history of DWI-related arrests going back to December 2017. Charges were dropped due to an officer losing bodycam footage. He was later arrested in June pulled over with open containers in his car. He reportedly violated court-ordered terms of not blowing into an alcohol monitoring device.
Martinez was scheduled to perform at an album release party on Nov. 7 and on Saturday in Taos.
He was 30-years-old.
Aliyah Chavez contributed to this report