Nashville heavy rock duo Friendship Commanders have released a pair of new singles on Indigenous Peoples’ Day, “Stonechild” and “Your Reign Is Over.” While the latter is a song written in frustration about some of the regressive actions regarding women’s autonomy in Tennessee government, “Stonechild” was written about the death of Stonechild Chiefstic, a Chippewa Cree man, in 2019, and features txʷəlšucid (Lushootseed) lyrics written by txʷəlšucid Cassy Fowler (Suquamish), Zalmai Zahir ʔəswəli (Puyallup), and Chris Duenas (Puyallup).
Friendship Commanders’ Buick Audra says in a press release, “Through a friend of mine who lives on the Port Madison Reservation, I connected to articles in local publications about his death, all of which I read with horror. My brain kept going back to the facts of the story: He was murdered by a white police officer . . . At the location where the community was gathered to enjoy the 3rd of July fireworks, at a waterfront park . . . Families with kids were everywhere and witnessed his death . . . And they still held the fireworks after he died. The song was written to acknowledge a life, question a death, and stand in solidarity with a community that has lost someone. We, alongside the people who knew him, demand justice for Stonechild. With this song, I am also asking questions to all of us about how we’re actually moving through this world, injustice all around us, systemic racism normalized and ignored. Are we helping, or are we hurting?”
Hear the two new tracks below.