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“If intimacy intrigues you and makes you into a skittish peeping tom, then be sure to catch Bue at her next performance.” – Alan Sparhawk, Low
Holy Bones is an indie-pop, musical commentary regarding a frazzled & hungry society. Written primarily on electric guitar with thick bass & rock ‘n roll drums, her new sound is fresher and lighter even when exploring the shadows of the modern American psyche. Mary Bue’s 6th studio album is a creative shift from her typical piano-driven singer-songwriting, funded in part by a career development grant from the Arrowhead Regional Arts Council of Minnesota.
The impetus for Holy Bones sprang out nightmares of cleaving a grand piano in half with a table saw. Sassy and full of fire and joy, the songs explore themes like simplicity, following your bliss, mindfulness and love as well as darker shades of human experience – addiction, family disfunction, mortality and the inhumane treatement of animals. Pop-punk track Cheribum sings of a child angel digging around in the dump for love letters, Veal is sung from the perspective of a calf confined and going to slaughter, to “certainly never jump over the moon.” Archaeology is a wistful, country-esque love song about the history told by examining a troubled couple’s recycling bin.
Holy Bones is a reflection of the shattered attention spans which swirl in modern American life, the enormous pressure we carry to attain wealth and success, and the ultimate bliss of letting go.
“There is a curious power in the ability to view one’s life with an unjaundiced eye. It’s not about being fearless, although that doesn’t hurt, it’s about the ferocity of spirit required to accept the world as it is and move forward from there. Singer/songwriter Mary Bue’s songs crackle with this power, mixing piano and guitar, folk and pop, and redolent with private tragedy and shared elation. Her voice, described as “marvelously sultry and cool,” lends her vivid, sometimes existential lyrics a texture that is both intimate and expansive. This intimacy is Mary’s calling card. Her lyrics invite you in and you’re right there with her as she sings, barefoot in the sand or walking along the Mississippi, heart pounding from your chest, letting go, hanging on, vibrant, alive. She brings you into her adventures, trials, and triumphs through her lyrics, and keeps you engaged with melodies you’ll find yourself humming to yourself long after the music has ended.” – Aaron Richner
Mary describes her own work as the retellings of adventures, mishaps, and pains-in-the-ass. Which is simply to say that through her experiences touring the country, studying yoga from 2008 to 2011 in Seattle, attaining a Bachelors degree in psychology and falling in and out of love, she has a lot of wisdom to retell. The songs are a map she has drawn through the depths of the ocean of human experience; and even though the lyrics are often pulled from secret, dark places, Marys presence is a positive one, full of laughter and light. – Amy Clark, KAXE
An accomplished recording artist and touring musician, Mary’s 4 studio albums manage to capture her electrifying stage presence. Mary’s last album, Apple in the Ocean, was 100% fan-funded via Kickstarter. She has been awarded the “Escape to Create” Artist in Residence in Seaside, FL, and the Big Cypress Nature Preserve Artist in Residence in Ochopee, FL. Over 16 years, 38 states, hundreds of thousands of miles and countless venues from tiny coffee shops to large outdoor festivals, Mary has shared the stage with many talented musicians, including Erin McKeown, Johnette Napolitano (Concrete Blonde), Emm Gryner, Kathleen Edwards, Alan Sparhawk from Low, Marissa Nadler, Rose Polenzani, Jess Klein, Sarah Borges, Mason Jennings, Haley Bonar, Jack Johnson, Vetiver, Cory Chisel, Nicole Atkins, Jeremy Messersmith, Anaïs Mitchell, Audra Kubat, Vandaveer, Chris Bathgate and too many more to list here.
In 2014, Mary was awarded a career development grant from Arrowhead Regional Arts Council (ARAC) with the proposal to stretch & challenge her skills and release an album on her second instrument, the guitar (piano being her first instrument). This album will be electric, more rockin’ and available in early 2015. Mary recently stepped down from 3.5 years as Music Director at Duluth’s legendary folk venue Amazing Grace Cafe to pursue her musical dreams full time. In her local scene, she currently sits as the Vice Chair of the Board of Directors for the Duluth Homegrown Music Festival. Recent benefit/activist performances include Safe Haven Women & Children’s Shelter annual fundraising luncheon, “Blessing of the Farm Animals” to bring awareness to the detriment of factory farming and The Arrowhead Story’s environmental plea to stop the threat of sulfide mining in northern Minnesota.
Downloadable One Sheet (PDF): Mary Bue One Sheet
Press / Praise
Often compared to Sarah McLachlan’s, Bue’s songs have more weight, and more grit mixed in with the ethereal wisps.
- Michael J. Walsh, City Pages
Mary sings in a marvelously sultry and cool voice over a fusion of classical, folk, and ambient piano music. She began turing heads here at home (Providence, RI) and throughout the country.
- Bob Gulla, Providence Phoenix
When the show ended and she was leaning against the stage, zipping up her boots, I had the urge to run up, hug her and then immediately beg her to sing the soundtrack of my life. Mary Bue’s an amazing, must-see talent, and by far, one of the sweetest voices I’ve heard live in years.
- Zosia Blue, howwastheshow.com
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