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Liz Carroll


Musicians of America: (Courtesy of the Knotted Chord Archive, 2002).
PLUS Biography (Courtesy of the Artist's site, 2005).

Liz Carroll (1956- ) Fiddle.

Born on Chicago�s Southside to Irish parents. Her father, Kevin, was from Tullamore, Co, Offaly and played accordion. Her mother Eileen is from Co. Limerick and her father, Tom Cahill also played fiddle.

Liz started on accordion but moved to violin at age 9, classical initially but growing her traditional repertoire from tagging along with her father to sessions. Early teaching influences were Joe Cooley and Johnny McCreevy as well as Kevin Keegan and Elanor Neary. Liz also was an accomplished step dancer, attending Michael Flatley�s alma mater, the Dennehy School.

Liz is also renowned as a great composer of tunes, with over 180 to her name at this stage. Liz made her first serious impact in the Irish fiddling world when she won the All-Ireland Senior Fiddle title in 1975, at just 18 years of age.

She recorded her first album two years later with accordionist Tommy Maguire, called "Kiss me Kate"(Shanachie).

Her first solo album, "A friend indeed"(Shanachie), was released in 1979 and includes five of her own tunes. He next solo project was simply titled "Liz Carroll"(Green Linnet) and featured Daithi Sproule with whom he went on to form the group Trian along with box player Billy McComiskey. Trian have recorded two albums and still tour occasionally.

Liz appeared on Daithi�s album "Heart of Glass" and also on Green Linnet�s fiddle compilation "My love is in America".

In 1994 Liz received a National Endowment for the Arts National Heritage Award(previously won by Joe Heaney, Michael Flatley and Martin Mulvihill among others).

In 2000 she released he latest solo album "Lost in the Loop"(Green Linnet). Produced by Solas� Seamus Egan it also featured Zan McLeod and Daithi, and contains 13 of her own compositions.

Liz� style is readily identifiable, considered robust and always driving and her concerts are always relaxed and full of wit.

She continues to tour, more recently with ex-Solas guitarist/singer John Doyle, and teach.

She has a new solo album due later this year titled "Lake Effect".

Biography (Courtesy of the Artist�s site, 2005).

The 21st Century has become the most prolific recording century of Liz Carroll's career. That little joke helps to celebrate the 2002 release of Liz's latest, "Lake Effect." After the success of 2000's "lost in the loop," which came 12 years after her first solo album, getting another recording from Liz is, in fact, a cause for celebration.

Since she was 18, when she astounded the Celtic music world by winning the Senior All-Ireland Championship, Liz and her fiddle have been amazing audiences around the globe. Her recordings and appearances on concert stages, television and radio, have established Liz as one of traditional music's most sought after performers. "lost in the loop," released in 2000, won Liz new fans around the world, as it garnered an Indie Award and Liz being named Traditional Performer of the Year for 2000.

Not that that's the first time a solo record by Liz has been praised. Liz's first solo, in 1988, "Liz Carroll," was chosen as a select record of American folk music by the Library of Congress, no less. That same recording was called "a milestone achievement in the career of a fiddler reaching beyond herself," by noted critic and radio host Earl Hitchner.

It should be noted that Liz's recordings are in the majority her own compositions, and they have given her a stature equal to that of her playing. When you listen to a Liz CD, you're hearing the tunes of a composer celebrated for invigorating the traditional styles of Irish music. Her compositions have entered into the repertoire of Irish and Celtic performers throughout the world. If you walk into an Irish pub and a group of Irish musicians are in the corner, buy them a pint and ask for a set of Liz tunes. They'll probably buy you a pint in thanks!

But it is Liz in concert that has entranced audiences throughout the States, and also in tours of Ireland, Europe, and Africa. Neil Tesser of Chicago's Reader marvels that "her quicksilver lines can captivate violin admirers way beyond the bounds of Hibernia." P.J. Curtis of the Irish American says that Liz "conjures up a dizzying mixture of the sweetest tones, the fastest runs, and the most dazzling display of musicianship imaginable." One of Liz's proudest concert moments was at the 1st American Congress of the Violin, hosted by Yehudi Menuhin.

In 1994, the National Endowment for the Arts awarded Liz a National Heritage Fellowship for her great influence on Irish music in America, as a performer and a composer. First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton presented the award which bestows national recognition on artists of international stature.

You can listen to short samples from some of the tracks from this artist using the player below.




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