WHAT I DO

I tell stories and play traditional folk instruments. From the Fillmore West to the Oregon Country Fair, from the former Soviet Union to Spain, from Alaska to Mexico, I've traveled to play with and learn from traditional musicians, to gather stories to share and to connect with folks through the ecstatic medium of music. I do solo shows such as "The Other Pipes - exotic and little known Bagpiping traditions of the World", " Stories from the Musical Realms - Concerning Inspiration and the Music between the Notes", "My Grandfather's Fiddle " "Fiddle Fables - Stories by and about Fiddlers" with tunes appropriate and appropriated. For more details on these shows see the Shows page.

I play with various groups :

Wake the Dead - Intergalactic Roots Music  (formerly, the world's only all star grateful dead celtic jam band)   www.wakethedead.org

Hillbillies from Mars - traditional Dance music from mars, America, Ireland, Scotland, Galicia, and points East , South , West and North. www.hillbilliesfrommars.com

Les Tetes de Violon French Canadian fiddle music - the finest kind. www.trentesouszero.com

Winter's Carol,  with Men of Worth -  Holiday Shows in the Gaelic Spirit ( solstice and St. Pat's) www.menofworth.com

Verdegaio - I play with Alexandre Cadarso and Javier Blanco  from Galicia whenever I get the chance; when they are in North America or I am in Spain or Ireland. Galician Music - pure and simple. And Grand.   http://www.nsaio.org/verdegaio

The Family Carr - new arrangements of traditional music from Galicia, Ireland, Cape Breton, the American south, by Kevin,Daniel and Molly Carr and Josie Mendelsohn


I give FIDDLE WORKSHOPS on various styles - Irish, Old time, Galician, Quebecois.

I have been on the faculty as fiddle instructor at the Festival of American Fiddle Tunes in Port Townsend Washington several times, and have been coordinator of the tutorial program there for many years. I have been on faculty as a fiddle teacher at Alasdair Fraser's Sierra Fiddle Camp, at Lark Camp in Mendocino, I have been camp instrumentalist at Puget Sound Guitar workshop twice and at California Coast music camp,  and have played for dances, told stories and given fiddle workshops at many  dozens of dance and music camps across the country and in Canada and Spain.

My School presentations are informative ( see Shows page on this site ) and meet criteria for English education as well as history of music. Kids of all ages and teachers love them.

I play for Contra, Square, Irish and Scottish, and Galician dancing. Also when I am available, I love to play pipes at weddings and other rituals.

Please read on, and listen to whatever interests you on my site.

FURTHER BIO INFO

Kevin Carr -  singer and storyteller, player of fiddle, bagpipes, accordion, and banjo.

Kevin Carr started guitar lessons at age twelve, and gave them up at thirteen after a beloved jazz teacher went on a bender. He played in rock bands throughout adolescence, quitting when he discovered the open-tuned twelve string guitar, and the freedom of long Fahey-esque improvisation. His family reacted with some hesitation. "Can't you just play a song?" asked his father who, in later years, faced with his son's increasing interest in bagpipes of various kinds, would remember Kevin's moody noodlings with more favor. Kevin also played french horn in the orchestra at school, being attracted to its high lonesome sound. He gave this lovely instrument up when, after returning from a short holiday, he found that his mother had sold it. At eighteen he discovered the five string banjo, and found to his delight that it utilized open tunings. He took the guitar and banjo with him to Europe for a year during which he earned daily sheckels as a street performer (and never did play a song). In 1974 he traveled to Ireland, in search of answers to questions posed by his intriguing extended family, and was introduced to Irish traditional music. In point of fact it was the mysterious engine failure of his VW Camper (on a beach in county Sligo which he later discovered is famous in all Ireland for the experience of the 'faery music'), and his subsequent rescue by friends who brought him to one of the richest veins of pure music in all Eire, that lured him into the spiritually lucrative field of traditional music. Kevin came home and bummed around for a year, during which time he acquired a bodhran, a tenor banjo, and a fiddle, and hung out with a wonderful fiddler in Los Angeles named Bill Jackson, whose sweet tone and drive instilled in him a burning ambition to play the fiddle. Later on he began playing at the California Renaissance Faires, where he met a host of music gypsies, and continued his careen into the depths of old musics. At this time he met Barbara Mendelsohn, the raven-haired beauty and harmony queen who was a major figure in the San Francisco bluegrass scene, an experienced and respected accompanist in Irish music circles, and who later to consented to be his wife. Since those days, Kevin has acquired a license to practice family therapy, a collection of bagpipes - Uilleann pipes being his favorite, with Galician Gaita and Scottish pipes a louder, but sweet second and third He has a reasonable facility on the one row button accordion, and a calling as a storyteller, the result of early exposure to his bard of a grandfather, Dennis McGough (who also played the fiddle and called square dances), as well as the influence of his father, Hollywood writer and Irish-American bon vivant Richard Carr.  Most importantly he has been blessed by the company and patient interest of his two fiercely inspiring and inspired children, Daniel and Molly. In addition to performing with his musical brethren in the venerable, yet still vital danceband, the Hillbillies from Mars, he performs with the Celtic/Grateful Dead band, Wake the Dead, with Galician big band, Charanga, and plays with his wife JOSIE ( THE ARTIST FORMERLY KNOWN AS BARBARA), both in a duo and as members of a couple of fine ensembles that feature the music of Québec ( Les Tetes de Violon, Melange ). In addition to perfoming solo as both a piper and a storyteller, he often appears in  a seasonal show with the Men of Worth and Maureen Brennan, called " A Winter's Carol". He may be found every summer in Port Townsend, at the Festival of American Fiddle Tunes, helping with the music tutorial program, and at the Lark In the Morning camp in Mendocino, playing many types of bagpipes and studying the socio-recreational milieu of ecstatic music making.

Contact: Kevin Carr  541 301 5306

Email: KevinCarr@aol.com

Musical Influences: Bill Jackson, Tommy Potts, Mose Allison, Johnny Doherty, Theresa McClellan, Seamus Ennis, Jules Verret, Lisa Ornstein, Liam O'Flynn, The Animals, John Fahey , Alexandre (Cano) Cadarso


Album Credits as featured performer: Hillbillies from Mars (HFM CD1301)

Wake the Dead (GDCD 4074)

Buckdancer's Choice WTD

Blue Light Cheap Hotel WTD

Tony Furtado: Swamped (Rounder 0277)

Les Têtes de Violon: Airs Tordus - Crooked Tunes (Thirty Below TB-001-CD)

Les Tetes de Violon : Deux Rives

Yvon Mimeault: Y'était temps! (Thirty Below TB-144-CD)

Carolyn Cirimele: Lookin for Ida Rose (Wilder Shore 102)

Glasnotes: Live from Contrafornia (Avocet 103)

Patrick Ball: Fiona (Celestial Harmonies 13065-02)

Patrick Ball: Christmas Rose (Celestial Harmonies 17077)

Topanga Canyon Banjo and Fiddle Contest Anthology

A Winter's Carol, with Men of Worth and Maureen Brennan

The Big Music - storytelling

King of the Pipers - storytelling

Parcel from Ashland, with Barbara Mendelsohn and Patricia Maureen O'Scannell

Band Credits: Hillbillies from Mars

Wake the Dead (Celtic/Grateful Dead songs)

QuébecQuasi (Quebecois fiddle music for Contra Dance)

Les Têtes de Violon (Quebecois fiddle music)

Ziggizon (songs and tunes from Quebec)

Big Green Chair (kid's songs)

The Family Carr ( Kevin Carr, Josie Mendelsohn, Daniel Carr and Molly Carr)

Christmas Revels, Oakland, California 2001,2002,2003,2005.2010 - is now a permanent Artistic Associate