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Our Native Daughters

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    I Knew I Could Fly - Leyla McCalla, Allison Russell
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    Polly Ann's Hammer - Amythyst Kiah, Rhiannon Giddens
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Our Native Daughters is a folk and roots music supergroup founded by singer, fiddler, banjoist, folklorist, and Carolina Chocolate Drops frontwoman Rhiannon Giddens.
Featuring the talents of Giddens, former Carolina Chocolate Drops cellist Leyla McCalla, multi-instrumentalist Allison Russell (Po' Girl, Birds of Chicago), and alt-country/blues singer/songwriter Amythyst Kiah, the quartet parses through the darkest pages of African-American history, telling stories of resistance, resilience, pain, and oppression from a black female perspective.
The seed for the project was sown after Giddens did a deep dive into historical accounts of slavery at the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture. Looking to confront the cultural stigma of talking openly about racism, slavery, and misogyny, the group turned to 17th-, 18th-, and 19th-century sources for inspiration, from Creole culture and minstrelsy to the abolitionist and suffrage movements. Filtering that complicated history through a contemporary lens, the quartet began collaborating, utilizing each performer's considerable talents and singular viewpoints to compose a set of modern roots and folk songs that merged the past and the present. Recorded with producer and longtime Giddens collaborator Dirk Powell at his bayou studio in Breaux Bridge, Louisiana, the group's eponymous 13-track debut was released via Smithsonian Folkways Recordings in February 2019. ~ James Christopher Monger, Rovi

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