Join us in congratulating Oklahoma native Ken Pomeroy on her Reservation Dogs televised music debut! Pomeroy spoke with Pickin' Petals about the singles chosen for the Native American lifestyle show, the inspiration behind her songwriting, and her Indigenous work within the Cherokee Nation.
Pomeroy's songs "Cicadas" and "Pareidolia" debuted on Director Taika Waititi's Reservation Dogs Season 3 Episode 9: Elora's Dad this past week (September 20th). Pomeroy told Pickin' Petals she submitted three unreleased songs to Director Sterlin Harjo who chose the singles for the episode.
"I actually got to have two of my songs in one episode," said Pomeroy. "I got two really awesome placements in the episode [that include] Ethan Hawke which is SO sick."
Exemplary songwriter, Pomeroy's intentional words and soft finger picking style have a way of hitting the heartstrings with most songs she's written. "Pareidolia" is an ode to her favorite singer songwriter, Buck Meek.
"I took some of my favorite lyrics of [Meeks] and included them into one song," said Pomeroy. "Pareidolia is the phenomenon where you see faces or shapes in inanimate objects, like seeing things in clouds!"
Single "Pareidolia" officially makes its way to streaming platforms on September 27th, this Wednesday. Reservation Dogs viewers took a liking to emotional single "Cicadas," as well.
"I found out a huge group of people were trying to Shazam 'Cicadas' and have gotten so many sweet messages about how the song touched them and hit a very emotional spot," said Pomeroy. "This is why I write in the first place. I want to make people feel and tap into feelings they may not have felt in a while."
The acoustic driven track is about Pomeroy getting to really know herself and how she handles her emotions and actions in life and throughout social interactions with those she'd rather not care to meet.
Both singles were produced at Jean Pump Recording Studio by Colton Jean who is Pomeroy's sole engineer.
"The production was a group effort between myself, Dakota McDaniel, and Colton Jean," said Pomeroy. "The creative process and collaboration between the three of us has proved itself. I have never had a productive studio experience quite like this one."
In "Cicadas," Pomeroy fingerpicks the acoustic guitar; McDaniel on the high strung doubled acoustic part, lead guitar, pedal steel, and bass; Jean on percussion and piano; and Matt Magerkurth on the cello.
"Pareidolia" has similar instrumentation with Pomeroy on acoustic; McDaniel on pedal steel, banjo, and bass; Jean on percussion and mandocello; and Kyle Reid on pedal steel.
Beautiful musicianship and striking songwriting aside, it's no coincidence Pomeroy's artistry was chosen for this particular show. She is a member of the Tsalagi (Cherokee) Nation and part of a language revitalization album called "Anvdvnelisgi." Pomeroy told Pickin' Petals her song "Grey Skies" was translated to "Galvladi" with the help of Bobbie Smith and Pomeroy's cousin Kathy Sierra.
More about " Anvdvnelisgi:"
“Led by Cherokee citizens as part of a wide-ranging commitment to preserve and expand the Cherokee language, the album is produced by Cherokee filmmaker and creator, Jeremy Charles and distributed by Horton Records, a non-profit 501c-3 committed to providing support and tools for Tulsa-area musicians to broaden their reach. The project was funded in part through the Commemoration Fund, dedicated to supporting bold and innovative efforts to correct social, political and economic injustices that impact Black, Indigenous, Latinx and People of Color."
Congratulations again to Ken Pomeroy and her team for exemplifying singer songwriter and Native-written tunes on a nationally and internationally broadcasted program. You can listen to "Pareidolia" this week and "Cicadas" before the year is out.