Martha is known for her music gumbo of folk, blues, and gospel from her childhood in coal country Harlan County, Kentucky, infused with the eclectic grit of pre-gentrified New York City. Inheriting the powerful vocal range of her gospel-singing African American father and the resilient spirit of her mother’s southeastern Cherokee/Choctaw culture and heritage, Marthabroadens the boundaries of American Roots music. With songs and storytelling that share her life experience as an Afro-Native American woman and mother navigating in the new millennium, Martha gives voice to issues of social justice, connecting cultures, and celebrating the human spirit. Her latest album “The Garden of Love-Songs of William Blake” is “a brilliant collision of cultures” (The New Yorker).
Martha’s works are under her own indie label shared with longtime collaborator/husband Aaron Whitby. Recent composer commissions include “A Mother’s Love” “Black Mountain Calling” and “Composers” for the upcoming Broadway revival of “For Colored Girls”, a choreopoem by the late Ntozake Shange. A 2020 Drama Desk Award and 2020 Audelco Award recipient for Outstanding Composer in a Play for “For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuff” (Public Theater), other works include “Bone Hill: The Concert”, a multidisciplinary theatrical concert touring nationally and “Black Mountain Women”, currently in development at The Public Theater in NYC. Martha is also a 2022 United States Artist Fellow. She is based in Brooklyn, NY, and lives with her husband, their son Zach and COVID puppy Maggie. martharedbone.com