This album has been a return to roots, labor of love, and advanced lesson in channeling. It's homage paid to my Grandmother, who sang in the original Broadway and traveling cast of Jerome Kern's Showboat, before marrying my grandfather and leaving the stage. She lived wild and large I am told, could play the ukulele, dance the charleston and sing 'Red Hot Mamma' simultaneously. She battled alcoholism and died tragically in her early 40's. Though it was another 40 years before I was born, I have always felt closer to her then other relatives. I have been developing that relationship with her through creative work, shifting through the stories of idealism from my father, to discover a complicated woman, who has passed to me a love of beauty, art, passion, song, and very curly hair.
This album is also a return to my performative roots, exploring the beauty and horror of America's jazz standards and musicals, using sound to dissect and transform the beliefs about women, love, land, colonialism, patriarchy, power, masculinity, language, race, and human worth presented in them.
I encourage everyone to develop deeper relationships with their ancestors, we are the dreams which existed in our Grandmother's wombs.
released August 12, 2017
Cover from Maya Deren's The Very Eye of Night, 1958. Meredith Monk, Maya Deren, Marikki Hakola
All lyrics by Jerome Kern, except for poem on 'Crumbling Earth Gripped and Denied ( Can't Help Lovin Dat Man)'
All composition, instrumentation and singing by Faith Carol
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