Jewel spurns Discovery

Jewel Kilcher - prefers Bravo to Discovery

Raised off the grid in Alaska, singer Jewel Kilcher,  known professionally as Jewel, has sold tens of millions of records.  The multi-platinum-selling singer and songwriter also co-hosts a successful TV series.  But she is having nothing to do with her family’s latest venture – a low-budget reality show following their off-grid lives.

Her father and siblings are cashing in on her fame by allowing cameras from Discovery TV to follow them as they endure winter off the grid in Alaska. Jewel has not confirmed she is feeling betrayed by their decision to go for the series without her.  She says the roots of the family are more adventuring than ecological:  “”As a kid, we traveled by bush planes to Alaskan native villages. It would drop us off in the night, and dog sleds would pick us up in the village. I was probably about 6 or 7 years old.”

The simply titled, “Alaska: The Last Frontier,” is just the latest in the ever-expanding list of reality TV shows set in Alaska. Discovery were desperate for  a new show to capitalise on the unexpected success of Gold Rush (2010). Now they have two. “Man, Woman, Wild”, thew only show to tell you how to make acorns for breakfast,  returns from hiatus in a new time slot as Mykel Hawke, a wilderness expert and former Green Beret, and his wife, Ruth England, a city girl and television journalist, find themselves stranded on a glacier in Alaska. In “The Last Frontier” the Kilcher family takes center stage, though without the family’s most famous member.

Announced in March with the working title, “Mountain Men of Alaska,” the Discovery series focuses on patriarch Atz Kilcher, Jewel’s father. He and the rest of the clan live on a 600-acre homestead outside of Homer that was settled 80 years ago by Jewel’s grandfather, Yule Kilcher. That land is home to three generations, and the show’s first episode follows the Kilchers as they prepare for winter, highlighting their off-the-grid lifestyle.


As an adult Jewel has put down roots in Texas with husband Ty Murray. She debuted in 1995 with her album “Pieces of You,” which sold more than 15 million copies, thanks to her hits “Who Will Save Your Soul,” “You Were Meant for Me” and “Foolish Games.” Fittingly, she is the host of the Bravo TV singer-songwriter competition “Platinum Hit,” where she also serves as one of the judges.

“When Ty and I decided we wanted to start a family, I knew I needed to concentrate on work that didn’t require as much travel,” said the 37-year-old entertainer.

“My husband rodeoed his whole life and traveled quite a bit, so sometimes he’d rather sit at home than take another trip.”


121 Responses

  1. Jim Biggs, I’m curious, how do you know how much money the Kilchers make? You seem to know a lot about them. You seem very bitter and angry towards this family. I myself happen to know, indirectly, know someone that knows the Kilchers. Before you slander this family you might want to check your facts. If you feel you are correct I would be interested to read your facts.

  2. I had absolutely no idea Jewel was even related to these folks til today when a friend told me . I think the article is false regarding Jewel being upset because the family is cashing in on her name. Now I’ve watched this show since the beginning & haven’t ever heard her name mentioned, so that’s a false statement. And I didn’t even know it was Jewel & her dad singing the theme song so appearantly she’s not upset. I love both Jewel & her family!!!

  3. I was raised in Alaska and my folks were friends with Atz Kilcher and his wife who used to perform in Anchorage. In fact we went to watch them one time when I was a teenager and they had their baby daughter with them. I held her on my lap for about 15 minutes. I remembered they called her Jewel. Later after Jewel got famous I would tell people that Jewel Kilcher hugged me, of course omitting the fact she was about eight months old at the time. I had a cassette tape of songs by Atz Kilcher and they had two songs I rally loved. Matanuska Gold and Little Man. I would love the have a copy of those songs now. I enjoy the TV show just for life lessons and the ingenuity they show. If they made money off of the success of the show then good for them. That is the American dream.

  4. Why do people always feel “betrayed” when they figure out half this stuff is either untrue or exaggerated? It’s entertainment! I don’t like the ones that are total lies like that Alaskan Bush People show but I’ve liked Last Frontier since it started. It’s relaxing to watch, I don’t care if they have a Walmart 10 miles away or whatever, they show interesting stuff.

  5. This article pisses me off. If you watch Jewel and her Dad Atz Kilcher sing the theme song of Alaska the Last Frontier, it is obvious that she has no problem with them filming the show. As a matter of fact, she hooked them up with her own agent, to do the negotiating of their contract with Discovery. Listen to her and her Dad spin their tales and sing the theme song from Alaska The Last Frontier. Here’s the link

  6. wow! This article has been floating around since 2012! I too, think this article is crap. Jewel, when finding out the family was going to do the show, made sure they had an agent so that they wouldn’t be taken advantage of. I just wish I had the power to delete the darn thing!

  7. he show is mostly deception toward the naïve people who whatch and give them ratings and make the more money. Atz’s net worth is over 5$Mill, Brother Otto’s is over $4 mill. Atz lee and Jane don’t even live there with there two kids (Atien Boy and Girl ?). The Kilcher bush wilderness Home has a Beautiful custom Log lodge at the beginning of the property, min. 2 night stay at $495 with every modern amenity possible. The Kilcher the property farmhouse with outhouses has power, phone, cable and Internet. In a 20 minute walk from the beginning of Kilcher rd. Is a lovely restaurant and several bed and breakfasts, air strips. In a 15 minute ride your in a town. That 30 mile ocean shorey cattle drive is hilarious, it’s 12 miles to the Head of the Bay to the Fox River and guess what, from Kilcher Rd. you can drive onto East Shore Rd. all the way to the head of the Bay. Every thrilling adventure they attempt is just for footage to make a show. At’z really was a performer and spent the 50’s and 60’s touring and playing music with family all over Europe and Alaska. It’s all like watching wrestling BS. Keep watching and you know the old saying, “the rich get richer and the poor get poorer” oh , and Atz’s daughter Jewel famous singer songwriter who is net worth close to $100Mill, but in the show’s contract she made sure her name can’t be used. Rich Greedy People

  8. I get a kick out of this program. Don’t get me wrong people, but don’t confuse wisdom with plain old common sense. Yes, Atz and his family do some creative things, but so many people are 2 and 3 generations off of the family farm/ranch. Those folks just think differently. People who still make a living off of the land, even in the lower 48 have to use common sense to survive. Call it wisdom, but I call it everyday common sense….. (my only complaint is Otto and his cattle operation. Someone needs to teach him how to use the ear tagger!)

  9. I take issue with most of what this silly article says. Great show. I didn’t know who Jewel was until I Googled who the intro music was performed by. Jewel and her dad, Atz, wrote and perform the music. Didn’t sound like she is too upset with Discovery. The author of this article is clearly just trying to stir controversy to get people to read this article. It worked, I guess but what a load of *******.

  10. She did not spurn Discovery, she actually help to write the theme song for the show along with her father. Wow, what a totally inaccurate article. If the family wanted to cash in they would mention her name every episode. Please remove this dishonest article.

  11. ..This show makes me feel like I am home. I have never roped a cow, made homemade soap, raised chickens, gutted a cow, had a garden, etc etc. Wish I was in better health because I would go visit that family to tell them what joy they give me for the honest down to earth people they all are. Jewel is Atzas daughter and so what???? I watch the family because I enjoy the company. I am not bothered with the trivial facts of who gets along with who or what was said. Grow up people and if you can not say something nice, then do not watch it.

  12. Considering the show and the family have never once mentioned the fact that they are related to Jewel, i wouldn’t quite say that they are cashing in. If they are cashing in, it is because it’s a really nice show about an awesome, honest family that i think millions of people envy. wishing their family lived like that.

  13. This “writer” had to use a dishonest headline to get people to read this terrible article.
    The show and Jewel are both great. They have nothing to do with one another and that is just a fact. If I ever see another story by Spy Vondega I will make sure to skip it.

  14. Love, love, love the show! I do not live in the US (I live in Switzerland), so only came upon the show a few months ago, but have now managed to get all of the back episodes (and am now half way through season 3).

    The author of the article was either badly informed (and is a lousy writer for not doing background research), or has an axe to grind with the Kilchers. The family did not use Jewel’s fame to get their show started, and she has never been upset with them about the show. I think Stellavera pretty much set everyone straight.

    Anyway, bless them all for living life the way they want to live it – and keep the shows coming!

  15. Didn’t know that Jewel was a Kiltcher. I’ve always loved the reality show, watching it now in fact . They probably have some sort of job that pays actual money, but who cares. I think this is how they live and what they love.

  16. I may be out of touch with the rest of the world, but until this show I did not know there was a Jewel. I had never heard of her before. I only learned of her and her music after watching the show for a season.

  17. Keep in mind, they aren’t allowed to mention her name if she hasn’t given them the right to do say. The show doesn’t mention the names of Atz Lee’s children either..they keep them private and they choose not to have them on the show. Also, who cares if they are cashing in on being related to Jewel? They are interesting people too and their way of living is becoming very trendy and I find it somewhat informative. For all we know Jewel encouraged them to do the show…who knows if the writer of the article even knows anything about their situation at all.

  18. I have watched the show from the beginning and like everyone else no mention of Jewel! I happen to be a fan of her music! Seems to me there needs to be a meeting of the minds of Jewel and her family! It seems to me they go out of the way to protect her and seem to go out of the way to protect any unwanted connection between the show and her career! It’s a shame though after watching a video of them performing together! They might want to consider making the connection official, which might increase interest in both the the show and her career! Seems the talent in the family heretofore unknown to fans in general would very very exciting!

  19. I think it’s hilarious this article is trying to say that the family is capitalizing on Jewel’s fame. The only reference at all is that she co-wrote the title and sings it with her dad. But they don’t even mention in the show that Atz is singing it. Here’s the truth of Jewel’s involvement. She heard they had been approached to do a reality show, so she put them in contact with her agent because she wanted to make sure they were treated fairly. She didn’t even know about the show until after the fact. And yes, the Kilchers are millionaires and yes, they only live a few miles from Homer; but so what? I think that says tons about their character and authenticity. Obviously, they’ve lived this lifestyle for decades before they acquired the money and I think it’s admirable they haven’t moved off the homestead and headed to Hollywood!!! They have chosen this lifestyle and even have outhouses, for heaven sake!!! Now I’m quite sure if their hunting was not successful, of course they’d head to McDonalds before they would let their children starve; but I also believe they would first do everything in their power to “live off the land”. My husband and I live in the middle of a large town and are taking steps to live similarly to the Kilchers. No, I will never have an outhouse (eww) but we are striving to produce as much of our own food as possible. I love the show and I love the Kilchers. Oh and one last thing–right after Finley was born, Eve was very obviously nursing him on camera. How cool is that? How many times have you ever seen that on TV? I love them even more for that one show.

  20. I love this show….No offense, but I didn’t even know who Jewel was…I’d never heard of her music….But, I behind to listen to the into song for the opening of the show and wondered if Nyone on the show was singing it…and Bam…come to find out it was Atz Sr. Daughter….who just happen to be famous like all of the Kiltchers…..I love this Kiltcher family…….I would never dream of the Alaska lifestyle at my age,but, two of my siblings out if ten children lived in Kodiak and Holmer, Wassila, Anchorage….etc. My Mother and Father went there to visit many times before they passed and loved the beautiful sites…..But, I’m definitely a lower 48 gal ;) / But, these people are just the bomb. I love following then through their days…..I said all of that to say this…..I had never even knew of A girl named Jewel…..??? They earned my respect all on their own …they didn’t need anyone to give them a leg up…these are smart people. Worth 5 million …I mean really…come on? Love them and now that I’ve heard her she is blessed with a unique voice and I love to hear her and the Father sing the theme song…She’s blessed to have a Father like him…..and her heritage! <3

  21. Too bad the writer decided to grind his axe on one of the better “Reality” TV shows around. As with all entertainment I’m certain there’s a lot of creative license involved. As far as it goes, the show is high quality and a great way to enjoy a little “what if I could” dreaming.

  22. My problem with the show is the dishonesty, they talk like “if we don’t get enough meat for the winter we’ll go without” and yet Otto and Atz are both millionaires. They can drive to Homer and have a steak dinner anytime they want. Just be a little more honest and you have a good show.

  23. Wow so that’s Jewel’s dad? And they sang that song together? That’s awesome! Good for them :) that Atz has a heck of a lot of great wisdom as does Otto. We are raising free range kids in Australia ( home educating), and hope to be almost 100% self sufficient within the next couple of years. Who gives a rat’s if they have electricity? I love that are still macgyvering as much as possible even if they do have a fat bank balance. The cash isn’t the point. Its the difference between buying cage eggs or growing your own chickens with organic produce to make healthy free range eggs. It’s reducing your carbon foot print, its about being real, family, etc etc. We live on a property, within a 5 minute drive to shopping centres etc but we choose the alternative for a reason. Isn’t that what we are all trying to do? Great show, thoroughly entertaining! Haters go watch the Kardashians, there’s the fakery lol

  24. I love this show The kilchers are great it’s nice to see family’s living off the land It reminds me of how times must have been along time ago. More people should live like this no cell phones video games etc. I live in the northeast kingdom of Vermont and love the quiet watching the moose deer bear that are part of my property. No noise traffic lights. This is the life

  25. I had no clue the jewel was even related to them. And I didn’t see or hear anything from the show that showed they were using her fame. If they are canceling the show b/c of her that really sucks. Because this is the first show in a long time that I actually LOVE. And jewel having anything to do with the show or not wouldn’t bother me one bit. you wouldn’t even know they are related.

  26. The Kilcher family has been one of Alaska’s highest profile families for 75 years. To make a claim the the Kilcher family is playing off Jewels fame is ridiculous at best. I’ve met Jewel and she is a really down to Earth person. It’s her mother Lenedra who turns her nose at the rest of the family at times and is probably the one who suggested the family is sucking fame from Jewel. From family sources I know that Lenedra has been very controlling of Jewel. She divorced Jewel’s father Atz Kilcher when Jewel was only 8 years old. She fights to do all she can to keep Jewel distanced from the Kilcher side of the family. There is much more to this story, but I am sworn to secrecy on some aspects. The entire family are just like they are portrayed on the TV show, except that they do own some modern cars that producers ask them to park out of sight of the cameras, typically behind the barns. The Kilcher family, led by the late Yule Kilcher was of significant importance to Alaska long before Jewel was even a twinkle in Atz’s eye.

  27. I watch the show its a great show alot of you say you watch every show and never heard them mention Jewell well you should pay more attention because otto has mentioned her a few times pay attention peps

  28. I don’t believe that Jewel is so self-centered that she believes the entire Kilcher family is riding on her coat tails. She knows she owes her own success to the hard work of her father and support of her family. She couldn’t possibly so egotistical to believe that this all centers around her career. Her Grandfather was a state senator.

  29. I never heard of this person (Jewls) I didn’t even know they had a daughter. She sounds very selfish n jealous of her familys fame. Shame on her. What is her problem?

  30. Jewel left Alaska years ago. Now I think she is the one trying to use the show. I had not known she was related until I was looking up the show on line. She wasn’t even on the mothersday special. That leads me to belive that they don’t see each other much.

  31. I think the Kilcher family has made a name for themselves without using Jewel. Not many people even knew she was a part of the family. Wonderful show.

  32. I am not a Jewel fan however a huge fan of ATLF.
    Even if the family doesn’t need the money, they are a great example of why people go off-grid or choose to live a life style that of which they are doing. I see the show and family as trend setters. People are getting sick of working just to “live” and going back to simpler lives. I know many young people who are in college now and they don’t want to live in big huge mansions or be house poor for 30 years.
    Hopefully the show stays on, according to this thread there sure is a lot of fans!

  33. I have been watching that show since the first episode and there has never been so much as a mention of Jewel . I never would have known they were family to Jewel until reading this article . I also don’t believe they tried to cash in on her fame

  34. I thought Jewell was a struggling singer/songwriter who was homeless when she was discovered. I am pretty sure that was the story when she arose from obscurity. It was a rags to riches story. Was that all a farce? Anyone have some info on that?

  35. Along with most others, I also had no idea of the connection between Jewel and her family in Alaska, that is until I actually saw her and her father Atz Kilcher singing the show’s title song together – she proudly introduced him as her father and spoke fondly of her childhood. I LOVE the series “Alaska, The Last Frontier” and appreciate that these families allow us to share the beauty of the place they live. Mostly though, I’m thankful for how encouraged and grateful they’ve collectively reminded us to be.

  36. Love this show. Nice to see folks with money living a lifestyle that is respectful….not like the Real Housewives who wouldn’t know what its like to shop at Krogers and buy clothes at Kohls. Just because you have money, doesn’t mean you have to show it off. Used to wait on a fella that was a multimillionaire. He looked like any blue collar worker, lived in a modest house. His wife used coupons at the grocery, but they were always there to lend a hand if a neighbor had a need. Why do some folks find that lifestyle choice so hard to believe?

  37. I love the show! I had no idea Jewel was Atz’s daughter or Atz Lee’s sister. I just hope they keep the show going. Obviously the family has a lot to do with Alaska’s history. Somebody had to, why not them?

  38. I love the show????? What is the cost of living in alaska I thank it very costly .and the shorter times of day and night I thank it can be hard. I’m 60 and as a kid are times were hard so this show take me back to my childhood I thank that what thay try to do I will keep watching .and thay do live in a dark remote place just sayin

  39. There is a very simple explanation for why Jewel is not on the show. She’s a famous celebrity/musician and would have to be paid accordingly. It’s a low-budget reality show. That’s not a slam on her or her family.

    And if she was upset about the show, why would she have recorded the theme song with her father?

  40. My daughter and I just stumbled upon this show on Netflix yesterday. We homeschool, and I was looking for a new documentary to watch and I thought this sounded interesting since it’s in a reality tv style format. We’ve watched two episodes now, and I love it! I had absolutely no idea these people were related to Jewel until just now when I googled them. From an educational point of view I think this show is fascinating! My daughter can learn so much from them, and I’m really enjoying it myself. I’m so glad they decided to do a show about people like this, living off the land and trying to survive. I can’t wait to catch up on all the episodes!

  41. Love the Kilchers, my Girl Scouts are huge “Eve” fans :) Never heard Jewel mentioned, did not know who sang the theme until I watched the credits :) Great song, great family, so happy about little Findley!!!

  42. Odd, I started watching ALFT because of seeing Jewel on a tv show where she said to be sure to watch her families new show about their life in Alaska. Loved it ever since.

  43. I had never heard of Jewel but I have loved Alaska, The Last Frontier since it started. Of course it is TV but I enjoy looking for the clues on the show that they bought the plants for the garden in a store, etc. But what nice people and georgeous scenery.

  44. Its obvious that the person who wrote this (hopefully damaging) article, is one of those who in his late 20’s to early 30’s found out that Santa Claus and Harry Potter arent real !!!! It put that person into such a psychological quandary and deep depression, that now their goal in life is to try to pop other peoples balloons and try to shatter their worlds also, by trying to prove that reality shows arent really “reality”! Guess what “dumb-a$$”, people who watch reality shows are actually smart enough to know that the plot and story-line have been somewhat enhanced in order to be more entertaining…….. Now go home to Mama and cry some more, asking her “how could the world be so cruel to me?”, and beg for another Prozac to subdue your pains from learning that Santa and Harry Potter arent for real ~ Oh and folks, dont forget , if you read it on the internet, it just HAS TO BE TRUE !!! LOL

  45. I find it odd that with 5 daughter’s and mothers of the nephew never being mentioned. Even the song is “fathers,sons” no mothers ,sisters,daughter’s…..but then grandpa was a little creepy.

  46. I am a huge fan of Alaska TLF and frankly I would be embarrassed to admit Jewel was my family member. She always complains she had a horrible life and lived in her car. She sounds like Kermit the frog. Her Snaggle tooth? No one cares she’s related that’s why no one knew before this story.

  47. If Jewel is so against the show, why did she co-write & sing with her father Atz on the Theme Song for the show? I loved them for most of all tge episodes & only mafe the connection of her being family when I saw a book about her & her family & then noticed her name as co-writer of that Theme Song. They aren’t “cashing” in on anything in my opinion, I doubt this article is truly her opinion either. She has always presented herself as much more respectful than that. And…. I LOVE THE SHOW & IT’S CAST & IT’S CONTENT!! Go Kilchers! (All of them)

  48. It is a great show with great people. My father-in-law lives 20 miles from our town . He has lived without electricity (has a generator) and in-door plumbing for many years. He retired 30 years ago from his town job and chose to live as a trapper, handyman. He is nearly 80 and has only one leg (recently lost to diabetes ). He still lives all alone in the bush because he chooses to. He is the real deal, just as I think this family is. I just wanted to say that just because “civilization” is close does not mean people cannot live a life close to nature. Best of luck to them.

  49. As for what this family is being accused of, I have to disagree. Jewel actually wanted them to sign up on Bravo and they said no. She was on a show on Bravo and if anything it would be the other way around. I’ve read up a lot of their history and watched her interviews. She mentions them more now but ofcourse, who wouldn’t. As long as they love each other that is what matters. I remember one article mentions Atz Lee calling her about cameras and she didn’t know about the show then she was pushing for them to have Bravo not Discovery. I’m glad they did as Bravo is a total different world than Discovery or the Kilcher family!

  50. Personally, I have just stumbled on the show and have watched almost all of them greedily. I love the discovery and nat geo and history channels, most of the shows on tv are crap. Even if so and so has a drink too many ( btw she herself said she escapes it as much as possible because it can wear on you especially women, and look at the statistics of alcohol and substance abuse even amongst natives, in Alaska. I couldn’t do it) it doesn’t change the fact that discovery is showing us another alternative way of life. They all freely mention that they have many interests OUTSIDE of Alaska, in every episode really and don’t claim to be TRAPPED. I’m sure they also have hired hands to help out. However, do all of us get a sense of betrayal or appreciation for being allowed to take part of a beautiful idea of a possibility and pride in land. Alaska is incredible and no one there ever take things like nature for granted because even in Homer McDonalds with all the trimmings, you can Still die in a blizzard! Kudos to the Kilchers for their values, view points, traditions good or bad or ugly I still intend to watch it. It’s beautiful. :) go Alaska

  51. The shows success in no way hinges on the fact of jewel being atz Sr. Daughter jewel. They have a healthy ongoing relationship. So whoever wrote this article should leave well enough alone. Many have grown to love and respect the kilcher family and they’ve brought much joy and hope into many people’s life’s.

  52. They never claimed to be poor. They just choose to live off the land. My husband and I do much the same thing but I still have modern conveniences like all clad pots, and LL Bean boots. Doesn’t take away that we grow 90% of our veggies, and barter for meat when we don’t hunt.

  53. Whatever anyone thinks, they’re an awesome family who are there for each other. They may live close to civilization but choose to also live off the land. Nothing wrong with hunting, OR getting your nails done in town. I’m sure when Disc was looking for a family they did their research and found the one who was most credible and worthy of our interest. Chill out everyone, if you feel it’s fake, take a field trip up to MN. for a year. It’s as close to Alaska (without the endless sun, or endless darkness), then tell everyone how fake it is. End of the day, all these people have been elsewhere in the world, for education, curiosity, escape, vacation, whatever reasons but they returned to their roots and are back in Alaska now. that IS the last frontier! Everywhere in the lower states most of your predators are human; up there, lets just say…… it takes a special breed of people to deal with those elements. I’ve got nothing but respect for them!

  54. This article is way off. I have seen Jewel on stage with her father Atz. She says that the people from Discovery had no idea that the Kilchers were her family. Infact she had her camp contact them to make sure that her family was not getting a bad deal. She also co-wrote the theme song for the show and sings it with her father Atz.

  55. Ok. First do your research before writing something. Second to those who are saying the show is fake again do your research. Yes I’m sure that Homer has grown & developed over the years. Do I believe that Otto, Atz, Eiven & Eve go to town much…no. Otto & Atz were raised without modern conveniences. They have said that they try to stay as true to what their father Yule did but they have also said it is easier than it use to be. As far as Jane goes she has never made it a secret that she didn’t live a homesteading life before now. She lived in upper class. She may not completely live a homesteading life now but she does try. Does Discovery add dramatics…of course they do. Even with that the show is still an inspiration. We could all take a page from their book & try to be more self-relient!

  56. the Kilchers are like any other family would be if it suddenly achieved worldwide notoriety. People have the tools to find out about other much different lifestyles. I don’t think that their fame has spoiled them-they appear to be very natural and that’s what I admire about them.Whether or not Jewel chooses to be part of the series- well, she has a lot on her plate, and that’s her business and her life! I think Otto’s a hoot! I said HOOT, not COOT!

  57. Oh Brother! Is there nothing a network or media won’t do to stir up trouble when there is none (or shouldn’t be?) “Jewel is spurned.” Ridiculous! I have never even heard her name mentioned on the show or that there even was a sister. Believe me, these people can stand on their own, without Jewel’s endorsement, and have created a great show just by being their wonderful selves. Alaska, The Last Frontier is THE BEST show on TV right now. No other show about Alaska even comes close. It is so NOT reality tv, which is why I love this awesome series about this very down-to-earth, hardworking, creative and intelligent extended family. The only reason I learned of Jewel’s father being Atz was because I told my husband back along that I thought it was Atz singing the theme-song and I wondered if Eve or Jane were accompanying him. I later caught the credits after a show and saw that it was indeed Atz’s beautiful, rugged voice. When I googled to find out who was singing with him, I was very surprised to learn it was Jewel! Please, media-mongers and networks who finally got it right, don’t mess with this show or start rumors or innuendo where there is none. Jewel should be darn proud and feel very lucky to have Atz Kilcher for her father. He and brother Otto, are truly great men. They don’t make them like that anymore. And their wives, sons and daughter in-laws are incredible, too. They are all incredibly clever and resilient..always thinking on their feet. The only show that on tv that is of the same caliber with regard to quality and content is Deadliest Catch and I can’t wait for that to start again. Please consider running the show for two hours each week as one hour isn’t enough!!!
    ps I would love to live their lifestyle and be neighbors with these people. What a great and wholesome life!

  58. Dave, if Stellevera isn’t available, I am! Totally agree with everything you said, couldn’t have said it any better myself! I’ve also always dreamed of giving up everything to move to Gods country and now that my children are grown and settled in their lives I have nothing holding me back. I’m totally enthralled with the beauty of Alaska, it’s been calling my name for years!

  59. We love the show and think they are a hoot. Atz Lee and Jane may have a normal life off the homestead but I think that Otto and Charlotte are very comfortable in the life they live. Good for them.

  60. Just came across this program in Nov. and just enjoying it so much. Never heard anyone mention Jewel. Don’t care. I will continue watching. Will now have to find the old episodes.

  61. This article is a little bogus. Jewel co-wrote the theme song with her father Atz and performs it with him. Obviously she’s not too upset about the show. It appears from all her interviews that she likes the idea that her family is benefiting from telling their story.

  62. Actually I saw Jewel perform live this summer and and her brother Atz Lee filled in and performed during her break. She actually mentioned the show and said that when discovery approached the Kilchers to do the show they had no idea they were related to her. She spoke fondly of her family and the show. She also sings the theme song with her dad.

  63. Some of you who claim to watch the show, but are now disappointed by what you’re reading, have really missed what the show is about. They’ve never claimed to be poor, they’ve never tried to portray they live in a desolate area, in fact, in one show Atz stated that he wished his son (the youngest one) would hang out on the homestead more often but he cares more about his social life at this point in his life. There’d be no social life if they wanted us to think they lived in a remote area. The fact that they have such a great net worth makes me admire how they try to live their lives even more. They still CHOOSE to grow their food, they CHOOSE to kill and grow their protein choice. They supply their own dairy and do as much of their own manual labor as they are physically capable of doing. The fact that the have a town closer than I though simply answered so e questions I had that were never addressed in air — didn’t change how much I admire the life they CHOOSE to live and are honest about that choice

  64. They have no need to cash in. Atz has a net worth of 5 million dollars. If its just the land he could still sell lit and live happily for the rest of his days on easy street and not work so hard to maintain a life he is committed to. Otto is worth 4 million. So to say they are cashing in on Jewel is bogus, ad as DJ said.. she helps sing the theme song.. she cant be ‘that’ against it. :)

  65. Gee, I feel a little embarrassed. I was falling for all the hype, I’m a little deflated now. Still sure I’ll be watching Sunday nights, but not with such wide-eyed wonder. After all, it is “reality” tv.

  66. I’m not big on reality TV but I really liked the premise so I gave it a shot. I thought here might be some artistic license used in the show because that seems to be the norm. The thing
    that made me finally stop watching was in one
    scene where Jane is fishing you can cleary see that she has had acrylic nails done. I garden on a 8000 Sq ft lot. There is no way a “homesteader” would think this is a practical thing to do. That just kind of blew it for me.

  67. No offense to jewel but I find the show way more entertaining and to my taste then her music. The fact that anyone think an they are using her fame for the show is ridiculous. I heard her name mentioned once on the show by Otto after he put down the rogue cow that was tormenting and killing the calfs. Sorry jewel but the show is waaaay better then any of your music was

  68. If Yule Kilcher emigrated to Alaska 70 years ago Homer must have been really small at that point.. In fact In Wikipedia it says that Homer was incorporated into Alaska March 31, 1964 24 years after yule emigrated . It must have been hard!

  69. Everyone I know loves what the Kilchers are doing. It’s clear that there’s more to some of the clan than we see here but that’s to be expected. I think Eivin and Eve are the real deal. I’m just guessing but Atz Lee and Jane have come along for the ride but are not quite “All In” with the lifestyle. We can see that they have made progress in becoming self sufficient and I think they’re a pretty good bunch. Even if they are winging it a bit. As for exaggerating some of the hardships. I’ve lived through blizzards and they can kill you anywhere. Being ten miles from civilization when there’s eight feet of snow on the road is like being on the moon. As for modern ammenities, they make no claims about not having electricity. In fact we see the solar panels and lights and Jane has a electric range in the cabin. It’s the indoor plumbing and forced air hearing they don’t have. I too think the writer of this article is just trying to get his own 15 minutes but at least we have all set him straight. As for the local sour grapes? Don’t be jealous!
    For many years I have dreamed of getting away from it all and after watching this show, I just might. Providing I can find a good woman who wants to give up the easy life and move to God’s country.
    (anyone know if Stellavera is available?)

  70. I have a flash for the haters that say they’re from Homer. You moved in on the Kilcher’s, not the other way around. The show is who they are. I’m sure Otto and Atz didn’t have any
    McDonalds 9 miles from their house, growing up. And, I imagine Homer didn’t look anything like it does now. So, take your jealousy down to Jane’s bar and cool your jets.


  71. I really like the show, watch it every week, and some reruns. It dont bother me if discovery stretches things a little. Great show, so is gold rush and th.e crab fishing show. My 3 best shows are all in alasaka. Lol

  72. I live in KY and find this show so refreshing! So what if the Kilcher’s have access to grocery stores or bars. There have been mercantile & saloons since the 1800 to help meet peoples needs while farming. I don’t care if they have electricity,indoor plumbing or out houses it does not negate the fact that this family has a cool history and a story to tell and I enjoy them sharing parts if their lives with us. While I have never heard Otto or Atz mention Jewel on the show I have repeatedly heard them speak of Yule Kilcher and their mother. What sloppy journalism and for the haters DON’T WATCH THE SHOW!

  73. This is a strange article. They don’t use her fame for this show at all. In fact, she didn’t even know that there was going to be a show. Where during an episode to they use Jewell to promote this?

  74. EVERYONE IS RIGHT! I am a Kilcher sister,
    And never once was jewels fame used to make this show popular, nor a foot in th door.
    In fact, the show started in a very back door way: a film crew was looking to make a show called “Alaskan Mountain Men” in Homer, started filming rugged guys there, and happened upon my nephews and then met their dads and it morphed from there. The film crew had NO idea they were Kilchers, did not know the dads had 6 sisters, had no idea we all own a 600 acre homestead in common, that we r related to Jewel, that our father Yule helped write the Alaskan Constitution or was a State Senator or that there already were 4 feature and TV films made about our family pre Jewel being discovered and numerous magazine articles featuring the homestead (National geographic , Time)

    So does that answer all your questions?

    The article author did not do their research!!!!

  75. I just watched the entire first season of this show and absolutely loved it! I don’t feel like this family is trying to cash in on anything, it looks like they are proud of the way that they live their lives and I had no clue that Jewel was an immediate family member to these guy. Disagree with this article, love the show..

  76. I love the show! My husband and I watch it together every Sunday. We like to joke about what we think is real or scripted. What does it really matter anyway? Its a fun show to watch. We live on a small farm ourselves & laugh when we see something very real or a little far fetched. I looked at the google maps and saw they were in a developed area but it is still remote. We too have a Mcdonalds 11 miles away but I still have 40 chickens ,fresh eggs and a Llama. I too had no clue they were related to Jewel till reading this article. I think if anything is fake its the article!

  77. I have enjoyed this site since it began and never knew of any connection to Jewel until I heard it yesterday at a family function. This article is extremely biased!

  78. When I first started watching the show I didn’t know they were in any way related to Jewel. I watched because it was entertaining. Even when I googled the family and found that they do live only a few miles from Homer, it didn’t make me think less of the show. So what if they can drive a few miles to McDonald’s for some fries. So what if they have electricity. I never did believe they would die if they couldn’t catch fish or get enough wild game to last the winter but I like the fact that they portray a way of life that some people still live today, myself included. And besides. Otto cracks me up!!

  79. The Kilchers are heroes So what if they live 10 miles from Homer, Alaska. The point is they are doing their best to live off the land. The Kilchers are not fakes, but TRUE AMERICAN HEROES. GOD BLESS THE KILCHER FAMILY! WE AMERICANS LOVE YOU IN THE LOWER 48!

  80. I don’t think there is any ill will among ANY of the family members, after all the theme song is sung by Atz and his daughter Jewel. It is a wonderfully addicting show and I for one am glad to have stumbled upon it and have been able to watch every episode to get caught up thus far.

  81. A little off topic, but I think the show is pretending they are homesteading the way the grandpa, Yule Kilcher, really did in the 1940’s. Back then his wife did homeschool and they were isolated. But now things are more modern then they act in the show. Typical of “reality TV”. Looks like the family offers tours of their property and of the cabin that the grandpa lived in.

  82. I have to agree with many of the post here. Having been a fan of Alaska The Last Frontier for about 3 years and not knowing who Jewel was until just now. I’m her Dad’s age so I don’t follow singers and their songs. I’m past that, like way past that. But the show is one of my absolute favorites!

  83. show is mostly Bull… we live in Homer and know that Jane drinks nearly every night, at the bar, not at the home by candlelight. They all have electricity and running water. They all shop in town for all the goodies and now have even more $ to do so with since youall are so enthralled with the lie…

  84. Yes, jewel was mentioned one time that I am aware of, after slaughtering a cow, her dad made a reference to her song ” pieces of you”, jokingly, it wasn’t until that episode I even put 2 and 2 together and realized this was, indeed her family.
    She sings the theme song with her dad, I highly doubt she feels they’re cashing in on her fame, as they are sll characters, in their own right!!

  85. I was born and raised in Homer. Google search Homer. Look at the pictures. Use google maps and look at the the distance from Kilcher Rd. to McDonalds. 11 miles. They are 9 miles from the Airport. It is not what they make it look like. If you showed a 360 degree aerial view you would see the town of Homer which has a population of 6,000. Not huge but we have stores and many franchises. Not all mom and pop stores. It’s ridiculous. I know the family. Yeah they’re different but they are ‘homesteading’ in the middle of a populated area. They are not in a remote location. On a side note. Homer is absolutely gorgeous and it is a wonderful vacation site for anyone who likes the outdoors :)

  86. I agree with the others. I enjoy the show and how resourceful the families are in dealing with the harse living conditions. I didn’t have any idea that they were related to Jewel until I read Atz’s bio on the Discovery Channel website. I think the write of this article is about as far off base as you can get. I will continue to watch the show as long as it’s on.

  87. I had a penpal since 1976 who lived outside of Homer and her account of life up there was different than this tv show. They had a beautiful home, went to the grocery store and got mail regularly. She had many penpals. She raised her kids who are now in their 50’s. They went to school by school bus and one still lives in AK. She later moved to Soldotna and lived by a lake. Her home was beautiful and she went to town for groceries and their only animal was a pet dog.

  88. Just so you know… NONE of the Kilchers live off the grid. Only Two of them actually live on the homestead and they both have electricity. The others live in town or in Europe. None of the Have to do what they do.. They are making $$ doing that show and making it up as they go. Town, Homer is 10 miles away from the homestead and has everything they need. All Bullshit is why Jewell wants nothing to do with it.

  89. There was an episode where Otto (I think it was Otto, and not Atz) flashed one of Jewel’s CDs – I don’t recall any of the specifics about the episode except that they were outdoors and were talking about playing some music. But I’ve watched almost every episode and that’s the only reference to Jewel that I’ve noticed.

  90. I agree with the others…the Kilchers are not ‘Cashing in on Jewels fame”..I had no idea they were related to Jewell until I googled them..I was shocked. THey have never once mentioned her name or anything. The show is about a family living off the land and showing how hard a life it is to live a subsistence style life. Preparing for winter is all they do..once winter comes, they do more ball bustin work but never once have I heard Jewells name mentioned…I LOVE this show and I want to fly up there to visit them and see if I could live that life…GREAT SHOW!! Screw who ever said they were ‘cashing in on Jewells fame’..not true.

  91. The title said that Jewel spurned Discovery, and then never went on to explain how she spurned them. The article then accused her family of “cashing in” on her fame which I doubt is true. I watched the show for a whole season before even realizing they were related to Jewel. I only found out out by being so interested in the family that I looked them up on the internet. I think the article is the one cashing in on the success of others’.

  92. Well, while surfing the web, I ran across the Kilchers. Sour grapes on Jewel’s front perhpas? Until today, I had NO idea Jewel was any relation to Otto, Azt and the gang. Somehow, I liked it better when I didn’t know. Good family values, hardworking, and very entertaining. Get over it Jewel…. Sounds like you’re cashing in on them!

  93. Just watched newest episode and not sure how much longer the show can go on. Episode was OK but they’re stretching everything a bit. A little too much dialogue maybe. A deer hunt is not a spiritual event. Show might be out of new material sooner than they thought

  94. All the Kilchers, including Jewel are down to earth people. They are also educated, wives included with assorted degrees, traveled Europe, work as wilderness guide’s and children’s camp directors, plus much more.
    Eiven(sp) once referenced builder/architect Gehry, wow.

  95. The only time I heard Jewel’s name mentioned was the episode where Otto had to put down a rouge cow. He said during the butchering process that it reminded him of Jewel’s song, “Pieces of You”. I love the show and admire them all for their tenacity and dedication to a life that few of us could ever accomplish. Never miss it!

  96. I just found out today that Jewel was part of this family. I’ve seen every episode at least once. This story makes assumptions that they’re cashing in on her. Maybe they mentioned her name to get a foot in the door? But the shows success has nothing to do with Jewel..

  97. I LOVE this show and didn’t know the connection until my husband read it, but Jewel has been mentioned on the show once when Otto and Eivin are butchering a cow..Otto says “for some reason I keep mulling over that song of Jewels over and over in my head, pieces of you” and I don’t think that is capitalizing on her!!!!

  98. Maybe they used her name to get their foot in the door at discovery but other than that I don’t see how. I didn’t even know until now just surfing on the web that she was even related to them in anyway.

  99. I have watched this show since the beginning and have only recently learned that Jewel is Atz Kilcher’s daughter. Like everyone else is saying, she has never been mentioned on the show and they are in no way capitalizing on her fame. They are truly an interesting family who have made a compelling show about their lives. I do have to say that I always thought the opening song was pretty great, and I now realize it’s Jewel and Atz singing it together. So seeing as she recorded the theme song, it doesn’t seem that she would feel betrayed that they made the show. Looking forward to the new season premiere tonight!

  100. Hello, we’ll I had no idea jewel was related to them at all. Your right they never mention her, they are too busy working! Me and my husband just love the show. I sure hope they keep it going !

  101. Im a huge fan of the show and have been watching since it began. I had no idea that Jewel was in any way related to the kilcher family. I dont see how they are capitalizing on her fame- Ive never heard her name mentioned.

  102. Though I love Jewel I didn’t know until today she was Atz’s daughter. What a talented lady,Jewel, and what an amazing family group, the Kilchers. In NO way are they trying to capitalize off each other. Until today I didn’t know wrote the opening song and sang it with Jewel. I hope they keep the series as is and renew for many years to come.

  103. I disagree completely with the thought that the Kilchers are getting anything from Jewel’s celebrity status. They never even mention her. I think most of us are just interested in the life that this family leads, and everything there is to see and do in their area of Alaska. Most people have no clue how it would be to live like this, and because of this, it is very interesting. I have visited your state two different times and read anything and everything about your state, and I still find this show “great” Keep up the great job of producing these shows and it sounds like most people feel the same way I do, so again it does not have anything to do with making money off of the celebrity sister/daughter. I am just glad that they are willing to share their life with us.

  104. 100%!
    If anything it is Jewel who has benefited from being related to Yule Kilcher.
    She could always take her husbands name of Murray? It used to be a common and respectable thing to do? Maybe I am too old fashioned…

    Anyway, I respect what the Homer family do way more than what she does. It seems to me the people in Alaska are REAL people.

    YES! She has a beautiful voice and is very talented.

  105. I have watched the show since the start and never once have they even mentioned Jewel. So how exactly is the family leaching off of her fame? Seems to me they are just simple folks living a life that most of us in one way or another wish we had.. the simplicity the scenery.. Get your facts before you write crap like this… fools.

  106. This article is kind of silly but the show is delightful. This is what I didn’t get from the PBS Frontier House nonsense. Had no idea from watching the show that they are related to Jewel.

  107. I agree with you Arixian. This article seems to do more to cash in on Jewels fame than the show ever did. Having watched the show several times on my Tivo, I still struggle to make the connection that the author is using as the premise of this article.

  108. I have been watching the show and even though I knew her last name and that she grew up in Alaska I had no idea she was even affiliated with the family let alone the daughter/sister of some of the people on the show. I mention that because as a viewer of the show I don’t get the sense that the family is trying to use her fame as a way to gain attention for themselves at all. There has never been a mention of her during the show. The show is about living in Alaska and she lives in Texas so why would she be a part of the show and why would they need her for it.

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