Mama C has been performing professionally for more than twenty years and exhibiting her art work extensively since 1987. Her work is featured in several art books and numerous magazines, galleries, museums and traveling exhibitions. Mama C was greatly influenced in her early years by the jazz, blues and gospel that Kansas City is famous for and integrates elements of that experience in both her music and the rhythm of her poetry along with the African beats and vibe of her spirit.
She explores the reality of her life as a Diaspora born African who has lived most of her years in Tanzania, in many of her poems, one of the most famous being “I Almost Lost Myself”.
Her song writing and performing talents have been showcased on stage, television and radio in many cities in Africa and in America. She launched her book of poetry, Warrior Woman of Peace in 2008 and plans to launch her second book of poetry titled Life Slices…a Taste of My Heaven in 2013. Mama C debuted several of these poems during the Poetry Africa Tour 2010 to Cape Town, South Africa; Harare, Zimbabwe and Blantyre, Malawi and the 14th Annual Poetry Africa Festival in Durban, South Africa, all sponsored by the Creative Arts Center at University of kwa Zulu Natal. She recently completed her 4th music/spoken word album produced at Peace Power Productions studio at UAACC and she has directed and appeared in several music videos featuring East African artists.
Mama C was one of the East African based artists selected to participate in the MDGfive.com project initiated by Emmy Award winning film maker, Lisa Russell and Grammy award winning vocalist Maya Azucena in conjunction with the United Nations Maternal Health project.
Mama Charlotte was recently selected for an artist residency in Egypt for the Nile Project, a unique collaboration of artists and environmentalists from the Nile region.
Mama C and Pete O’Neal are the subjects of two award winning documentaries about their lives and activism including American Exile narrated by Hollywood actress Alfre Woodard and the PBS multi award winning documentary, A Panther in Africa by Aaron Matthews.
She is one of the featured artists along with M1 of deadprez, Umi of P.O.W. and several top East African artists, in a newly released documentary on art and activism by Michael Wanguhu and Russell Kenya titled Ni Wakati.
Mama C recently completed Obokano Blues…Reflection of the Creator’s Smile, a documentary filmed entirely with Flip camera, about her journey into the world of Obokano, an African lyre from the Gusii community in Kenya that was traditionally taboo for women to play.
Mama Charlotte Hill O’Neal is currently working on her first Obokano album and writing her autobiography, Life between the Blessings, that parallels her life and that of her husband of 43 years, Pete O’Neal.