Oklahoma Music Artist Turns Chief Choctaw’s Long-Ago Poems Into Songs | Music

Oklahoma music artist Scott Hutchison released a collaborative project that spanned almost 200 years.

“Peter Pitchlynn: Poems to Songs” features poems written over 191 years ago by Pitchlynn, who was the Principal Chief of the Choctaw Nation during the Trail of Tears.

The songs on the CD were inspired by three poems found in the book “Peter Pitchlynn: Chief of the Choctaws”, written by W. David Baird in 1972.

Hutchison, a member of the Choctaw tribe, read the book and it motivated him to do a musical project with the poems, which were set to music with voice and guitar.

Hutchison said he was inspired by the Choctaw people of the past – their vision and stamina to keep the Choctaw Nation alive and build a future. He wanted to use the wisdom of Pitchlynn to create songs to share with the Choctaw tribe and all people today.

The tracks feature Hutchison’s daughter, Norah Hutchison, on vocals with Tanya Maksood, as well as Gareth Laffely on Native American flutes (treble and bass), Native American drummer and Irish drummer.

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Hutchison plays guitar on all tracks with Hank Charles on bass.

The art on the outside and inside of the CD cover is by renowned Choctaw artist Jane Semple-Umsted.

Hutchison said the CD can be purchased at the Pierson Gallery, 1313 E. 15th St., Suite A, the Choctaw National Museum in Durant and through a Facebook page, Peter Pitchlynn Poems to Songs, Hatchootuckee.