Bone Hill: The Concert
Presented in partnership with KLRU-TV
This performance is made possible by a generous grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
Singer-songwriter Martha Redbone’s music flows equally from her own unique, award-winning blend of Native American elements and her deep roots in Appalachian folk, and Piedmont blues.
Presented as a dramatic musical work with a cast of eight actor/musicians, this epic journey covers 200 years of Redbone’s native family history in the Appalachian Mountains–traveling back in time and spanning four generations of women in a Cherokee family, exploring their lives and stories. Bone Hill is a story about the family’s commitment to the land, to the simplicity and sacredness of that connection, and the ruptures that threaten to extinguish it. The music is radically wide-ranging, from traditional Cherokee chants and lullabies to bluegrass and blues, country, gospel, jazz, Rock & Roll, Rhythm n Blues, and funk.
Martha Redbone’s voice held both the taut determination of mountain music and the bite of American Indian singing.
– The New York Times
- Bone Hill is inspired by creator Martha Redbone’s own family and life.
- The song, “You Caught My Eye,” is a waltz describing the day Redbone’s grandfather, a sharecropper from Mississippi, migrated to Kentucky to work in the coal mines and met her Cherokee grandmother.
- Redbone and her long-term collaborator, pianist Aaron Whitby are called “the little engine that could” by their band.
- Redbone’s album Skintalk, is recognized as an example of Contemporary Native American music in the Library Collection at the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian.
- Commissioned by Joe’s Pub and the Public Theater NY Voices, Redbone is a recipient of the NEFA National Theater Project Creation and Touring Grant and National Performance Network Creation Fund and Lincoln Center.