In this interview for the Mariposa Talks series, ukulele maestro James Hill tells us why he chose the ukulele over the violin (it was more fun), talks about some exciting new directions he’s taken in his latest album, and addresses the question of whether the name of his instrument should be pronounced “yuke-a-laylee” or “ook-oo-laylee.”
Here’s some live performance videos of James Hill for your enjoyment:
The Delta Lady, Rita Coolidge, Making Her Mariposa Debut
After honing her craft singing jingles and background vocals, Rita Coolidge went on to a solo career that reached stratospheric heights, and saw the release of more than a dozen albums including the multi-platinum, Anytime… Anywhere.
Rita Coolidge has performed and collaborated with pals Joe Cocker, Eric Clapton, Jimi Hendrix, Bob Dylan, Leon Russell, Stephen Stills, George Harrison, Roger Waters, Robbie Robertson and Jimmy Buffett. During her eight-year marriage with Kris Kristofferson, the pair teamed up for a number of hits and twice won a Grammy Award for Country Duo of the Year.
Rita Coolidge’s recording, All Time High, was the theme song for the 1983 James Bond thriller Octopussy. Love Came For Me appeared on the soundtrack of the movie Splash. Heart Don’t Fail Me Now (with Lee Greenwood) was the recurring theme music for the CBS daytime drama As The World Turns. Other singles such as We’re All Alone, Higher And Higher, and The Way You Do The Things You Do, have also earned their places as enduring classics of popular music.
By the time the 1990′s rolled around, Rita Coolidge had begun devoting more time to other interests including her Cherokee heritage, co-founding the acclaimed musical group, Walela (hummingbird). She was honored with a Lifetime of Musical Achievement Award at the First Americans in the Arts Awards, and is a recipient of a Native American Music Award for Lifetime Achievement. Her memoir, Delta Lady, published by Harper Collins (release date April 5th, 2016), is a story of music, stardom, love, family, heritage, and resilience.
Rita Coolidge’s unmistakable voice is as pure, sweet, and powerful as ever. Mariposa Folk Festival is very proud to present her a to a new generation of audience, as well as to legions of fans spanning nearly five decades, as our Friday evening Main Stage headliner.
Rosanne Cash is our Sunday Evening Main Stage Headliner
The very first artist we are announcing for Mariposa Folk Festival 2014 is Rosanne Cash. We couldn’t think of a better way to begin unveiling what’s shaping up to be one of our best ever line-ups than with this iconic musical figure whose music crosses the genres and the generations.
During her diverse musical career, Rosanne Cash has topped the music charts, gathered loads of accolades and awards, performed or recorded with a veritable who’s who of international stars, and released fourteen albums, with one the way. Though the daughter of a folk-country legend, Rosanne Cash charted her own path in song, drawing upon the folk, pop, rock and blues traditions, and earning a loyal fan base with every step.
With a career in high gear, in the 80s Cash curtailed her work for childbearing and to raise four daughters. She left Nashville and its country music establishment in the early 90s, settling in lower Manhattan with then husband, Rodney Crowell. Cash later married her current musical collaborator, the producer/songwriter/guitarist, John Leventhal, with whom she has one son.
For two and a half years in the late 90s, Cash was unable to sing due to a polyp on her vocal cords. Her musical career was disrupted again in 2007 when she underwent brain surgery for a rare condition. During these musical down times, Cash pursued other creative pursuits including writing, with several books published and numerous articles in prestigious periodicals and collections.
In recent years, Cash released a highly acclaimed album, The List (2009), comprised of twelve songs from a list of the 100 greatest country and American songs given to her at the age of eighteen by her father, Johnny Cash. That album, which features vocal duets with Bruce Springsteen, Elvis Costello, Jeff Tweedy, Rufus Wainwright and Neko Case, was named Album of the Year in in 2010 by the Americana Music Association.
Cash’s highly anticipated follow-up album due in January 2014, The River & The Thread, has also received critical, pre-release praise. Inspired by swampy Delta blues, gospel, Appalachian folk, country and rock, it tells the stories of a colourful, multi-generational cast of characters from the south through a collection of contemporary songs.
In addition to her own recordings, Rosanne Cash has made guest appearances on albums by the likes of Guy Clark, Vince Gill, Lyle Lovett, Mary Chapin Carpenter, The Chieftains, and others, as well as on children’s albums. She has also appeared on tribute albums to The Band, Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan, Woody Guthrie, Jimi Hendrix, Yoko Ono, Tammy Wynette and more. Recently, Cash was featured in a global Americana tourism promotional campaign performing her composition, Land of Dreams.
Rosanne Cash with be the headlining act on Mariposa’s Sunday Evening Main Stage, closing the festival with what promises to be one of those concerts that sticks in your mind long after its over. Staring in January, we will begin announcing a few artists per week until the whole fantastic line-up for Mariposa Folk Festival 2014 is unveiled.