Bush Lady is the only recording ever made by Alanis Obomsawin, a member of the Abenaki First Nations and best known as one of Canada’s most accomplished and decorated documentary filmmakers. Less well known is that Obomsawin began her artistic career as a singer-songwriter in the 1960s, part of a broad movement of Indigenous artists from across North America rallying in new assertions of cultural consciousness, political rights, and reckonings with oppressive colonial history.
The diaspora haunts the work of Duval Timothy, the multidisciplinary artist and pianist who splits his time between England (where he was born) and Sierra Leone (where his relatives reside). On his 2018 EP 2 Sim, Timothy blended WhatsApp voice messages and interviews from “family, friends and peers in Freetown, Sierra Leone” into minimal, piano-focused compositions [Pitchfork review]
Matana Roberts is one of the leading lights of contemporary African-American experimental music, combining her widely recognized gifts as an alto saxophone player and improviser with an intensely engaged re-definition of American Jazz traditions.