Gideon Smith The Temple of Gid

  Here is a link to the new interview with Gideon Smith. I really enjoyed my time sitting and speaking with him.

Suncoast Blues Society

 Tallahassee native Mary Everhart has released numerous CDs over her 30 year career, and the last one she was this excited about was her first one! She composed all the songs here, and quite a collection they are. The music runs the gamut from boogies to loves songs, to humorous numbers, to…bad-ass rants! In short, a lot of variety and a lot of fun.

The opening cut, “I Need You right Now”, features Ms. Everhart playing a boogie riff behind her own vocal and Ken Gemmer’s tasty lead guitar. Next on tap is “In My Heart”, a Blues ballad with just a taste of ‘classic rock” feel. “Hidey Hole” is another tune in the boogie vein, laced with some hot slide guitar to boot. This is a style that Mary and the band really find their groove on.

The title cut feels like a 21st Century torch song! It has an atmospheric feel and the guitar work reminds me of “Wish You Were Here” era David Gilmour!

Track number nine and ten come under that “bad-ass rant” heading I mentioned. “I’m Still Married But My Husband Ain’t” is that sad old story, but with an edge, and “Triple B” is a list of what that husband was into (they ain’t good), but you’ll have to buy the disc to find out what those “Killer B’s” are, because I’m not telling! I’m really fond of these two!

The set closes out with a Country-flavored earworm entitled “If The Devil Went To Georgia”. It’s based entirely on song titles, and Mary tells me she wrote at the beginning of her career but thought it was “too silly” to record. I, for one, love it!

Mary Everhart has a mellow alto voice with nice, controlled vibrato…Until that Blues kicks in! Then she can growl with the best of them. Guitarist Gemmer’s style and tone fit nicely with Ms. Everhart’s vocals, and the rhythm section featuring bassist Melvin Clemans and Mariano Rodriguez on drums underpin the whole thing seamlessly. I enjoy this disc a lot and I think you will too! (Oh, and a quibble…The black-on-dark red cover is hard on my old eyes!)

Cherokee Musician Mary Everhart Sings the Blues!!!

Many Dancers along Powwow Highway choose blue for their regalia color. Yet, for one musical talent, Blue has a totally different meaning.  Musician Mary Everhart blends her Cherokee heritage into her unique style of Blues music!

DK: What a mighty sound you have! We’d love to meet the Lady behind the music?

ME: First, let me say thank you to you for speaking with me today Dawn. It is truly a pleasure and you are very welcome. My name is Mary Everhart. I am a blues and rock musician, singer, guitarist and song writer. I am also a member of the Echota Cherokee Tribe of AL. I am from Tallahassee, FL and, I have just released my 3rd CD called. ‘Light Shines Through’ .

DK: Congratulations! How did you begin to perform?

ME: My journey in music began at a very young age. I can’t remember a time I didn’t sing. My Native culture and identity is extremely important to me. It is who I am and my music comes from my heart and spirit. The songs I write are about real events in my life and even if sometimes the event isn’t so nice, at times I will poke fun at it in a song because, laughter can get you through a lot and it sure beats crying. I have played professionally for a little over 30 years in the southeast and have 3 CDs I have released since 1998. My musical journey began when I was two years old. I was adopted as a baby but, lost my adoptive mother in a car accident she and I were in and my spirit took over. I began to sing as loud as I could in the following days and would look at the sky while swinging as high as I could on my swing set. I was 12 when I got my first guitar and would sit in the woods in the tall grass with a Mel Bay book and teach myself to play it. As the years went by, life was hard and I kept playing and writing music and it comforted me. I knew I had found what I needed to survive in a world that can be so harsh at times.

DK: Many people automatically think of Native flute or drumming when we mention “Native Music”. Yet, your survival story shows us why the Blues befits Native folks as well, especially those of us from the Southeast tribes. When did you know that music was more than a calling, but a career?

ME: I started performing to audiences besides just my friends at 17. I played some private parties and pretty much anywhere I could even if it meant not telling the club owner I was underage. I used to hitchhike all over the place and have impromptu jam sessions anywhere I saw someone who wanted to play. That is where I got my first real dose of Blues music. I met some old men on a porch one day who invited me to jam with them and I was hooked!


ME: Some of my favorite accomplishments are that I have never lost my passion for music. I have had the honor of playing music with so many other artists from local to national. I was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame in 2010 by Blues great Jimmy Lloyd Rea as a ‘Great Blues Artist’ and it was such a great honor. Jimmy is a fantastic Blues artist, and writer. In 2011 I was inducted again as the ambassador to Tallahassee, FL. Those two really stand out to me as well as standing on the Capital steps in Atlanta, GA on national radio and tv playing my music to help change the law in that state on paternity fraud. The law was later changed and it makes me happy to be a small part of helping to make it happen.

DK: Your tribal heritage seems to be a huge part of your life!

ME: My tribal heritage has always been a huge part of my everyday life even before I understood what it was. I was different than most people I grew up around and there has been a great deal of loss in my life but, my spirituality and heritage is mine and nobody can take it from me. I understand that everything is for a reason even if we don’t understand the reason. . I look for beauty in all that is around me and I do my best to share that with others. When it comes to song writing, I let my heart take over and allow the songs to write themselves. I have many what I call, spirit songs because the songs came to me and had to be written. I have a new song on my latest CD called. ‘Singing in the Wind’ and it came to me one morning when I found a hawk feather in my yard in a ray of sunlight. I gifted tobacco and sat on my porch with it and the song came. Another song on the new CD is called, ‘Let me be Myself’. I wrote it on a pad of paper as a non Native man was telling me how to be Cherokee. I meant all I said in the song but, I laugh now remembering when I wrote it. Sadly, I’m betting there aren’t too many of us who haven’t had to sit through something like that at some point .

DK: Have you overcome any obstacles that have given you the “Blues”?

ME: I would say that one of the biggest obstacles has been being one of the only Natives that I know of in this area and dealing with the ignorance and ugliness of some people. I have never felt comfortable but, it has helped me to write songs. It has also been hard to be taken seriously as a woman guitarist in a male dominated field. I kind of had the double whammy in this area being both Native and female.

I believe the best qualities an artist or performer can have is to be real. Be who you are and write what you know and feel and, the ability to convey that to those who listen to your music. You have to make your audience feel like they are right there in the situation with you. If they can feel the emotion of the song they are much more likely to relate to it. I think the ability to laugh at yourself is a good quality to have too. I think the most destructive qualities are to pretend to be someone you’re not and also, to let outside things knock you off your path like, drugs, drinking, or being full of yourself. Those things may seem like they help short term but, you are setting yourself up for a big fall or humbling.

DK: Are there any artists that influence YOU?

ME:  My favorite artists, I have so many but, I of course love Blues music from real Blues artists. I would say one of my favorites is, the late great John Lee Hooker. Nobody could boogie like he could plus, such primal and intense vocals that would reach right inside your chest and give your heart a little squeeze. Another one of my favorite artists was Willie Dixon. Such a fantastic bass player and deep songwriter. And also Sonny Boy Williamson. He was just so cool when he would come out on stage and could play his harp like nobody else. I also have a great fondness for powerful women vocalists. Like for instance, KoKo Taylor. I love her because her voice was a powerhouse and she always said what she was thinking in her songs and everyone who heard that knew it. She wasn’t taking any trash from anyone.

Aretha Franklin is another and because of her vocal control. Wow, she gives me goose bumps when I listen to her older music. And Sister Rosetta Tharpe. She is the mother to all of us female guitarists. Without her, I’m sure there wouldn’t be so many of us now. So many others also but, those come to mind right now. There are two Native flute players I love to listen to and would have to say are my favorites also. Jay Red Eagle is one because his music makes me feel my blood and it comforts me. He is also a dear friend of mine and such a talented musician. Many times when I have had a rough day I go to Jay’s youtube page and listen his flute music. I also really enjoy listening to Mark Thunderwolf. His music touched the heart of my autistic son and you can really feel his spirit in his music.

DK: How can we enjoy and hear your music?

ME: All of my CDs can be bought on CDbaby and their global affiliates like itunes and and many others. You can also hear my music on my website as well as Soundcloud, Reverb Nation and my videos on youtube. There is a link on my website with clips of the new CD ‘Light Shines Though’ with a link to buy the CD or a download of it.

I would like everyone to know that I feel each day is a blessing and I am very happy to have had this time to speak to you today Dawn. I would like for everyone to know that throughout this journey I have been knocked down many times but, I have not been knocked out. I am proud to be a strong Cherokee woman and thankful for all Creator has given me.

Read more:

Press Release


April 16,2015 | United States | Entertainment

After a long hiatus, blues artist Mary Everhart has released her new album LIGHT SHINES THROUGH.

Tallahassee, United States, April 16,2015/ -- After a long hiatus, blues artist Mary Everhart has released her new album LIGHT SHINES THROUGH, twelve new songs inspired by life, loss and love, and her personal struggle to overcome a series of life changing events.

The story of this CD is more personal than most. As Mary explained, "Like all my CDs, I chose to write songs based on real events in my life. I have always felt that if you write about what you know or have been through, you can reach more people because there’s no pretending. It’s real and when a song is real, people can relate to it on a deeper more personal level . This new CD Light Shines Through’ is my 3rd CD of 12 all original songs. It is a combination of Blues, Blues Rock, Southern Rock and even a silly Country song on the end."

The production of the recording was purposely kept honest and straight forward. " I wanted to record this CD with just my band and I wanted to keep it pretty raw without any fancy effects or anything that would take away from the feel of it. There’s no filler or crazy over processing. I wanted people to know if they heard us live, they would hear the same band they hear on the CD. The songs are about love, pain, humor and keeping the faith that no matter what comes, even in the darkest of times, there is always light that shines through if we choose to see it. It was also important to me to stay true to my heart by writing several songs on this CD from the perspective of an indigenous person in the 21st century. Some things never change both good and bad and my spirituality is very important to me. So is my right to live as I want to . I wanted people to have fun listening to this CD and have a laugh when they listen to how I poked fun at some serious situations in a few of the songs. I’ve found that laughter can be a life saver in bad times.

I am fortunate to have the musicians in my band and on the CD that I do. Each one is a very talented musician and friend. We had a ball recording this together and also have a blast playing the songs live. We just click together and we each know how rare that is and we thrive on it and have fun."

More About Mary:

Mary Everhart is a professional Blues, Southern and Classic rock (Vocalist, Guitarist , composer, and recording artist) and proud member of the Echota Cherokee Tribe of Alabama-Deer Clan. She was nominated and inducted in 2010 into the Blues Hall of Fame as a Great Blues Artist from Tallahassee, FL. The following year she was inducted again into the Blues Hall of Fame as the Ambassador to Tallahassee, FL.

Mary was born and raised in Tallahassee, FL and has always had a passion for music and has been performing for over 30 years with various local and regional acts.

The band members on LIGHT SHINES THROUGH are,

Mary Everhart- Guitar, Vocals, Ken Gemmer- Lead, Slide Guitar, Melvin Clemans- Bass, Mariano Rodriguez- Drums, Percussion

The album is available now on digital download and CD from and their distribution partners worldwide at

For further information, please contact:

Mary Everhart

RedBird Records

Email: redbirdrecords1@



LA Examiner



June 8, 2011...Girl's Rock

Whether in L.A. or elsewhere, girls DO rock . . . and sometimes they sing the blues, too. Witness Tallahassee-born-and-raised Mary Everhart. Mary Everhart (once known as Mary Thornton) is an indie artist out of Tallahassee, Florida. She is a guitarist, songwriter, studio musician and songstress. Everhart— is proud to be a member of the Echota Cherokee Tribe of Alabama Deer Clan. Everhart’s music is a mix of blues, Southern and classic rock with a pinch of humor thrown in for good measure.

But years before she began beltin’ out the blues, Everhart was singing  in the church choir as a young girl. Even back then though, Everhart already knew she wanted to play guitar too.
At the age of twelve she scored her first guitar (and has been addicted ever since). Using a now vintage Mel Bay Instructional Guide, Everhart would sit for hours teaching herself how to play. As time passed she would continue to practice, honing her skills and learning by observing other, older artists. Perhaps her biggest obstacle was being a left-handed artist learning to play right-handed.

Once Everhart mastered that skill, it was all downhill from there. In fact, she has been playing with various regional and local bands for over three decades now and ahs shared the stage with such musicians as Beverly ''Guitar" Watkins, Kingsnake’s own Charles Atkins, award-winning blues artist Lonnie Shields, Chick Willis, blues harpist Pat Ramsey, Bill “The Sauce Boss” Wharton, Theodis “Stand Up In It” Ealey, Blind Mississippi Morris, Blackfoot’s Charlie Hargrett and many other influential musicians.

In 1998 (under the name Mary Thornton) she released her debut disc, Rottweiler Blues on her indie label Redbird Records. The all original 8 track album received favorable reviews from several publications including Blues Revue Magazine and was more recently revisited in the Listen Again series here on which only features albums that are worth listening to again.

Everhart, who seems to have developed a love of live performances, has also played before such celebrities as former Florida Governor, Ruben Askew, and former Tallahassee Mayor, Steve Meisburg. In 2002 she was part of a political demonstration and performed on the steps of the capital in Atlanta, GA. She did two tunes—“Don’t Worry About A Thing” and “My Man Is More Than A Wallet”--which she personally penned in protest of paternity fraud where she was seen by both a local and national audience. “I worked with Carnell Smith and others and we were able to get the Paternity Fraud Law changed in the State of Georgia” Everhart explained.

2002 was also a landmark year because Everhart released her second selection, Distant Star. While the title and cover of this CD may give the impression Everhart has gone new age or at least is tipping her hat to her more spiritual Cherokee roots, the music contained therein remains the same signature blend of blues and Southern rock. This album features a backup band including: “Dangerous” Dave Messler (electric and upright bass), Jon Bailey (lead and slide guitar), Marty Mason (drums and percussion), with additional artistic aid from Charles Atkins (piano), Andrew Davis (drums) and Gee Baldwin (lead and twelve-string guitar).

The lead-in, “Second Hand,” is a blues boogie shuffle that sets the pace for the majority of the disc. Her versatile vocals all too soon lead us right into the second song, “Butt Kickin’ Mary.” “Butt-Kickin’ Mary” is perhaps an even better indication of what Everhart is about as her onstage persona growls away to Atkins’ backing barrelhouse piano.

The third cut here is “Popcorn Pimp”. The odd, eye-catching alliterative title initially hides what is essentially another example of Everhart’s original songwriting skills. She writes from her heart and her personal life experiences in an attempt to make something entertaining and sometimes even humorous out of a less than perfect life story.

“Thank You” is an obvious tribute piece. Here the listener may picture images of a large, smoky club filled with the smell of old blues and alcohol as Everhart slows it down a bit. Ah but not for long though as she is soon off again as she begins playing a song about an end—“Dotted Line”. This one is strangely both liberating and sad at the same time perhaps much as the actual experience which inspired the tune.

The title track, “Distant Star”, is next. With lyrics sometimes very vaguely reminiscent of the spirit of John Lennon’s “Imagine”, Everhart sings of both pain and a better place she imagines out there somewhere. Some may see this as a departure while others may consider it something Everhart had no choice in writing.

Critic’s Choice this time goes to “Sick and Tired”. This is a somewhat self-deprecating albeit exaggerated song about getting older. While this blues babe can still draw a crowd she makes it sound like it isn’t always so easy any more. It’s an appropriate piece for a blues album though since who wants to hear a blues musician sing about how sexy and perfect she is anyway? It’s easy to picture an entire bar filled with over thirty-somethings trying to drunkenly croon along to this one. (Your crusty chronicler’s warranty seems to have expired sometimes too but hey we aren’t dead yet!)

“I-75 to I-10” is another slice of Everhart’s life set to sound. Complete with background singers the track would perhaps sound even better live. Speaking of life and life lessons, “Live and Learn” quickly follows as Everhart heads towards the close of her 12-track tale. Of course, you really can’t have an album in this genre without the prerequisite song about trouble and Everhart inserts it right here aptly placing it before the more positive, revelatory “Things get Clearer”.

The closing cut is called “Bluesbird”. This has nothing to do with the Paul McCartney and Wings tune "Bluebird". This is yet one more of Everhart’s original compositions. While a few critics might claim true blues fans may find the material derivative, one must remember the entire popular music industry has its roots in the genre and that Everhart is simply playing what she loves and lives. Indeed, what makes her material truly unique is her voice and lyrical viewpoint.

The bonus track, perhaps, reveals a bit more about her oft’times subdued humorous side. As Everhart herself confessed recently: “That song was a joke and it is called ‘Other Hand Now ‘or ‘The Shoe's on the Other Hand Now’.” The song features some funny back and forth between a post-romantic couple with lines like “You're starting to smell like a sack of smashed @ssholes” as her man sits in front of the TV watching the football game. This must be even more entertaining live—no doubt.

In general, Everhart runs the full gamut from sultry songstress through growling blues babe reminiscent of the Billie Holiday era. Her guitar work is appropriately simple and effective and not overwhelming. Her band backs her efficiently complimenting her but not stealing the limelight and Bailey’s blues leads only add to the experience. Throw in a pinch of Joplin attitude and that 1970’s Southern rock electricity and you have the big blues picture.

Just last year Everhart was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame as a Great Blues Artist and more recently was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame as an Ambassador to Florida. Her current band includes: Ken Gemmer on lead guitar, Melvin Clemans on bass,Mariano Rodriguez on the drums. Finally, Everhart is also working with her “new band line up” and hopes to release a new solo CD “within the year and just play music!” No doubt her fans feel the new disc is long overdue!

My name is Phoenix and . . . that’s the bottom line.

Los Angeles Times

    Arts & Entertainment

Mary Thornton: Listen Again
William PhoenixLA Music Examiner

June 1, 2011

Once more your crusty chronicler felt the need to resurrect his old “Listen Again” series. For those of you just joining us, the “Listen Again” series is a series in which we revisit albums that for one reason or another did not receive the attention they deserved when they were originally released. Whether it was the recording was ahead of its time, broke away from the artist’s usual style, poorly publicized or initially misunderstood, the “Listen Again” series urges music fans to listen again. This edition we reconsider Mary Thornton’s Rottweiler Blues.

Rottweiler Blues on the indie Redbird Record label is the debut disc of Mary Thornton. Thornton (now known as Mary Everhart) is a Florida-born, blues-beltin’ babe with guts and a guitar. The album was produced and released in late 1998.

While several publications actually praised the platter, it probably never charted purely because the project was put out on a small indie label. Additionally, at the time of its release, marketing music on the internet was not as common as it is today.(Since the rise of MTV in the 1980s it has also become a d@mn sad fact of life that if an artist doesn’t have at least one music video in regular rotation some people never even learn of him/her.) In fact, as this goes to press there are still some websites that only have limited information on Thornton.

Now let’s consider the music itself. The disc contains entirely original songs. While some artists might very well have opted to include covers in this situation, Thornton chose to get right to her own music. The lead-in is a short shot titled “A Spot Just For Me” which features engineer Perry Nelson on cowbell. Clearly, this less-than-two-minute tune (and the fact that there are only 8 tracks to the disc) show that Thornton just might believe in the old adage: always leave them wanting more.

Thornton, who handles the vocals and guitar work, is backed by a small but effective and efficient musicians including: Scott Campbell (lead and slide guitar), Jim Graham (bass), Mark Russell (violin), Charles Atkins (piano and organ) and Jason Tenzur (drums and percussion). Thornton’s music seems to reveal bits and pieces of both her present personal life and her past potential influences such as Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin and Etta James. Witness the second selection “My Own Space” for example.

Critic’s Choice here, however, must go to the title track, “Rottweiler Blues”. (This is not the Warren Zevon piece, folks.) Honestly, there’s something sorta sexy about a gal wantin’ a guy like a growlin’ dog wants a big bone. Thornton’s performance clearly demonstrates her love of performing.

From there Thornton moves on to “Deep Inside My Heart”. This cut’s considered by some critics to be a special song by a songstress who generally sings from the heart. Her signature sound is a blend of blues, classic rock and southern rock as evidenced by such songs as “T-Town Blues” which takes the listener on a homesick hike from the noisy city to the cricket-filled country complete with clever sound effects in its intro and outro.

Thornton often comes off as a down home doll that is more at home on the porch playing for neighbors than in a high-tech recording studio. Songs such as “One Of The People” exemplify this quite well. Indeed, Thornton has a voice that ranges from pleasant and playful to a Janis Joplin-tinged bluesy belt as she hammers out her songs in a voice that is oft’times comparable to artists like Lu Ann Barton or Koko Taylor.

Her blues rock sound is evident on such songs as “Say Goodbye”. Why this cut isn’t the last song on the album mystifies your favorite record reviewer but more of Thornton’s unique and yet somehow familiar music is welcomed nonetheless . . . especially since the tracks make it seem like making the CD was enjoyable and effortless.

The closing cut is “Promised Land”. Thornton once again reminds her audience that her songs can be both emotional and expressive. Overall, Mary Thornton’s Rottweiler Blues includes a variety of music genres as she blends jazz- tinged southern rock with a ballsy blues base and a feminine point of view to turn out one-of- a-kind cuts. It’s something old and something new, something borrowed and something blues. If you've never listened to Mary Thornton’s Rottweiler Blues, listen to it. If you've already listened to it . . . listen again.

My name is Phoenix and . . . that’s the bottom line.