January 19, 2011

Shenandoah sings for peace

Native American singer Joanne Shenandoah performing at Mendelssohn

By Kevin RansomOne upcoming project that Shenandoah is excitedly involved in is the Project for Peace on Earth—a concert that will be held in Manger Square in Bethlehem on November 11 (11-11-11) to promote peace. Also participating are Sting, Bono, Sinead O’Connor, Robert Downey Jr and many others.

She also contributed a song to the upcoming CD, “Prayer Cycle—Path To Zero,” and has been writing songs for a new album that she says will be more of a “crossover” effort, in that the music and the themes will not be primarily Native American.

“They’re songs of love, and of pain, and peace,” says Shenandoah by phone from her home on Oneida, in central New York state. “I really do feel I have been put on earth to spread peace and hope and love, and I have to ask for the songs to flow through me. With me, I feel it is very directed. I often ask for divine intervention when I want to write these kinds of songs.”
And:On “Bitter Tears—Sacred Ground,” Shenandoah sang a version of “The Star Spangled Banner” that was muted and sorrowful. Given that it is a national anthem for a country that, in the eyes of many, was “stolen” from it native inhabitants—and sung by a Native American artist—one is tempted to hear it as a lament for the homeland that the natives “lost.”

“Many Native Americans do feel conflicted about the national anthem, but this is still our land, too—it’s a land that now belongs to all of us, both Natives and non-Natives,” explains Shenandoah. “So, the song, the way I do it on the record, really is a tribute, to honor to those Native American people who fought in our wars and gave their lives for our country. We buried our ancestors here, just like our (non-Native) neighbors did.”
Comment:  For more on the subject, see The 2009 NAMMY Winners and Native Performers at Seegar Concert.

1 comment:

Rob said...

For more on the subject, see:


Singer Joanne Shenandoah is serious about saving the planet