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About the Artists 

Artists Appearing On Neworldmultimedia Releases

Nick Annis has been recognized as an exceptional songwriter at Falcon Ridge's Emerging Artist Showcase and Folk Alliance's Performance Alley. Christine Lavin calls 'By My Silence' (co-written with Ellen Bukstel) "...powerful, beautifully constructed." Holly Near says, "Fine old-fashioned political song writing is alive and well in this familiar text".
MUSIC TO LIFE 2008

Nick Annis

Mitch Barrett is an "Appalacianfunkyrastafolksybluesman". He draws from his Appalachian heritage bringing mountain pholosophy to the contemporay stage. A Music2Life finalist in 2003, he is Kentuckys most awarded singer-songwriter. being a two-time Merlefest winner. a Kerrville New Folk winner, a Folks Festival Song Writing winner and the 2009 Telluride Troubador.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2001 , MUSIC TO LIFE 2010

mitch barrett

Mitch Barrett & Carla Gover

Mitch Barrett & Carla Gover are a husband-wife songwriting duo from the Appalachian mountains of eastern Kentucky. Influenced by the tradiational music of the region, Mitch received the Kerrville New Folk Award in 1999 and the pair were winners of Nashville's Chris Austin Songwriting contest in 1998 and 2000.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2001
A formal showcase performer at the Southwest Regional Folk Alliance in October of 2005, Arlon Bennett is a songsmith from New York who has been a Kerrville New Folk Finalist and also was a Music-to-Life showcase finalist/performer in 2003.  He is currently finishing his 3rd CD.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2003, MUSIC TO LIFE 2006

Arlon Bennett

Erik Balkey is a traveling house painter and songwriter from Philadelphia.  He travels armed with a guitar and notebook as well as paint brushes, rollers and buckets.  His recent release is called Liberty Tree from his side project called Mission Street Project.  The recording consists of 18 songs on topics of social relevance, including many co-writes with other American touring songwriters.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2006

Erik Balkey

Raised in a Christian, arts-loving home Michael Kelly Blanchard  apprenticed for his life's work as storyteller/songwriter from the very beginning. Always, there was the intertwining of art and faith in his parents' home. Mostly through music and literature (his father a fiddler, his mother an English teacher), he saw firsthand the blending of belief with the blessings of creativity. He started writing songs in his early teens and coincided this with an ever-expanding work as a performer in local clubs and coffeehouses. In his early twenties, he studied composition at Berklee College of Music, sharpening his music skills.  Since then he has recorded ten albums, written two music dramas, one cantata and a novel. When not touring, his time is spent at home writing and overseeing Quail Ministries.
THERE IS LOVE

Barbara & Mike Borok The Yorktown Heights, New York couple Mike and Barbara Borok don't remember anymore how or why the call themselves "New Middle Class" but they think it had something to do with wanting to play songs of social relevance. Their decision led to last September's appearance on the main stage at the Southwest Regional Folk Alliance Conference in Kerrville, their songs being played on over 40 radio stations nationwide and becoming the 2003 MUSIC TO LIFE Grand Prize Winner! 
MUSIC TO LIFE 2003
Adam Brodsky Combine Bob Dylan and Tom Lehrer, and you get Loudon Wainright III. Do it on a shoestring budget and record it over an old Dead Milkmen tapeand you get Adam Brodsky. Hailing from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Adam is best know for his brash sense of humor and clever songwriting. He is currently on a national tour promoting his latest cd: Hookers. Hicks and Heebs on Permanent Records.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2003
Randy browning A Kerrville New Folk winner, and an active music educator, Randy Browning lives in Southern Maine and performs throughout the Northeast, both solo and in the Folk duo "Late Bloomers". "Radical Rags" is the title song of his recent solo project, a group of Folk and original songs connected by progressive social change.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2008
Hailed by Michael Bolton as “An Amazing Artist And Spirit”, multi-faceted musician and community activist Ellen Bukstel won three coveted competitions; Wildflower, Music To Life and Breaking The Silence In Song. Collectively, her original music videos have helped to raise millions of dollars for various community organizations.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2008
Ellen Bukstel
Bob Chabot Bob Chabot, 2003 MUSIC TO LIFE'S First Runner Up, has used songwrting as a vehicle through which to give voice to people whose stories we might not otherwise hear; ordinary people faced with extraordinary circumstances...the courage it takes to battle injustice, and to keep hope alive. He writes about the joy and pain of living, about children, grandmothers, coyotes and carphones. An MTL finalist in 2001, Bob has released a fivesong CD "On a Farm with a Pond and a Goat" and is presently at work on a second album.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2001, MUSIC TO LIFE 2003
As a Kerrville New Folk Finalist in 2003, Steve Chizmadia's singer-songwriter  habit got the breath of life it needed to start becoming a career. Since then his CD "It Is What It Is" reached #12 on the Folk DJ Charts in 2007, and he has showcased at the Northeast Regional Folk Alliance and played many gigs around the country.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2010
steve chizmadia
Brian Claflin has worked in the music business and has produced radio commercials, but has never stopped writing songs - even co-writing with Nanci Griffith and Adam Duritz on the song "Going Back To Georgia". Brian also sings traditional folk music in a vocal duo with h is father, award-winning storyteller Willy Claflin.  Brian recieved raves in December 2009 from the Boston Hearald and the Boston Globe for his vocal tribute to Ralph Stanley in the Appalachian-themed 'Christmas Revels'
MUSIC TO LIFE 2010
brian claflin
Melissa Crabtree has been living her life as an outdoor guide and musician, guiding river trips on the grand canyon and singing on the boat.  She released her first CD while touring across the country in a vegetable-oil powered van, to protest the country’s petroleum addiction.  She has received awards for her music at Telluride and was among the 10 finalists in the songwriter showcase at Rocky Mountain Folksfest and Tucson Free Folk Festival.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2006
Melissa Crabtree
A songwriter, singer, guitarist, pianist and activist, Steve Deasy performs at coffeehouses, house concerts, peace and human rights rallies, gatherings and festivals. Steve comes from a long line of Irish musicians and rabble rousers. Great Grandfather Cornelius immigrated from Ireland and was run out of Johnstown, Pennsylvania for union organizing mine workers. This is the second time he has been recognized by Music2Life.
 
MUSIC TO LIFE 2010
steve deasy
Annie Dinerman Annie Dinerman is the Songwriters Guild recipient of the 2006 Abe Olman Scholarship for Excellence in Songwriting.  She also holds Backstage Bistro Award for Songwriter of the Year and a MAC award for Outstanding Special Musical Material.  Her song, “Child in Me Again” was recorded by Kathy Lee Gifford on her “Born For You” CD and received multimedia acclaim. 
 
MUSIC TO LIFE 2006
The inspiration for Amy Dixon-Kolar's songwriting comes from her work as a teacher, social activist, American Sign Language interpreter and mother. Hailing from Chicago, she has traveles the US performing at political rallies, colleges, coffeehouses and house concerts.  Her music has been played on folk radio programs around the country and in 2009 she sang in the juried showcase at the Folk Alliance Region Midwest Conference.
 
MUSIC TO LIFE 2010
amy dixon-kolar
A two-time semi-finalist in the Mountain Stage New Song Contest with a versatile classicly-trained voice, quirky singer-songwriter Sofia Echegaray is one part Joni Mitchell, one part Muppet. Sofia has been interested in social and economic justice ever since she first noticed that life isn't fair.
 
MUSIC TO LIFE 2010
sofia echegaray
Ellis A rising star in the folk music community. Ellis is known for her vibrant, open-hearted nature and contagious sense of humor. Her music is described as “...joyful, unpretentious modern folk.” A transplant from Texas to Minnesota, Ellis founded her own record label at age sixteen. She has since released six critically acclaimed recordings included her newest, BREAK THE SPELL.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2008
Jon Fromer Founder and organizer of the Freedom Song Network, a local coalition of more than 200 musicians who contribute their music to struggles for human rights, civil rights and workers' rights, Jon Fromer's music has been at the heart of movements for peace and social change in the San Francisco Bay Area for decades. Jon performs nationally as well as in Europe and South Africa.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2008
A Native of Berkeley, California, Rachel Garlin is a guitar-toting former junior high school teacher who began her musical career while serving in the Teach for America Corps in Phoenix, Arizona. Last year, Garlin and fellow musician Melissa Crabtree toured across the country in an alternative fuel "veggie van" that runs on recycled vegetable oil. The two singer-songwriters sought to share their original music as well as raise awareness about oil dependency and the environment.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2003
Rachel Garlin
Spook Handy hails from New Brunswick, New Jersey, the 'geographic center of the Northeast Corridor'. Spook primarily writes about spiritual freedom. He was six years old when "I had the profound realization" he says, "that God exists not only in the church but in the words and music of song."
MUSIC TO LIFE 2001
Eric Hansen began playing guitar and singing at family gatherings in Highland, Indiana at the age of nine. He played in Chicago coffee houses throughout his teens and then studied guitar, voice and musical composition at Chicago Musical College. After four years as both songwriter and performer with Chicago's Free Street Theater, he moved to New York working for 17 years in musicals, plays, radio plays, commercials, soap opera, cabarets and night clubs.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2003

Eric Hansen

Miriam Davidson & Kia Heartwood&

Since 1995, the folk and soul partnership of multi-instrumentalist Miriam Davidson and songwriter Kiya Heartwood has toured extensively, performing at The Bluebird Cafe in Nashville, Old Town School of Folk Music in Chicago and festivals including the National Women's Music Festival, the Kerrville Folk Festival, the Clearwater Folk Festival, the South Florida Folk Festival and the Philadelphia Folk Festival.  They have six CD's on the Terrakin label including their latest, Underdog produced by Mark Hallman.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2003
, MUSIC TO LIFE 2006

Ron Heath

Rob Heath is first and foremost a storyteller who just happens to be a songwriter. He’s written for Glen Campbell Music, Criterion/Atlantic Music and Don Goodman Music. His single “I Believe” was recently released over the Internet to radio stations worldwide receiving 188 requests for his most recent album COUPLE OF TIMES ROUND THE SUN.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2006

Oregon songwriter Eileen Hemphill-Haley credits many influences ranging from Emmy Lou Harris to Bonnie Raitt, Woody Guthrie to the Allman Brothers. A finalist in last year's Kerrville New Folk Contest, her songs reveal an artist who has clearly found her own voice.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2001
Tim Henderson Sprinkling performances all over the United States from the Mountain Stage in West Virginia to the Woody Guthrie Memorial Festival in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Tim Henderson is considered by many to be one of America's outstanding folk song writers. His newest CD "The Wind Knows My Name" follows five previous releases and his book of lyrics "Sweeping Up Dreams".
MUSIC TO LIFE 2003
Paul G. Hill received a Bachelor's Degree in Music, Theory and Composition (B.M.) from Southern Methodist University on 1972. He is currently Creative Consultant for Celebration Shop, Inc. and also travels extensively in providing support music for the Company's hospital tours throughout the nation. A number of Paul's songs have been placed with publishing and record companies, most recently "Inside" from FRIENDS OF THE FAMILY (co-written with Noel Paul Stookey of "Peter, Paul & Mary") was included on Warner Bros. Peter, Paul & Mommy, Too album. Paul has been selected several times to perform his original songs at the prestigious Kerrville Folk Festival in Texas.
BEST I CAN BE, WE CAN DO, WORLD AROUND SONG 
david ippolito David Ippolito consdiers himself one of the luckiest men alive - for the past 9 years he has been known to hundreds of thousands of people as "That Guitar Man from Central Park".  He makes his entire living writing and performing songs for people. Part of his job description is to write songs that  "comfort the disturbed... and disturb the comfortable".
MUSIC TO LIFE 2010
Melissa Javors won the Kerrville New Folk Award competition in 1981. Her songs have been performed by several popular artists including Peter, Paul and Mary. Likewise, co-writer Lisa Aschmann's work has been featured in many films and television programs.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2001
Rachael Kilgour is a singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist based in Duluth, MN. She spent time as backup vocalist and violinist for artists Catie Curtis and Sara Thomsen before breaking out in 2006 with her own original work. For the last two years, Rachael has been writing and performing as a solo artist and is currently preparing to record her debut album.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2008
Rachel Kilgour
Emily Kurn has earned a host of honors: 3rd place in the Rocky Mountain Folk Festival Songwriter Showcase (2009) and 2nd place in the Woody Guthrie Folk Festival Songwriting Contest (2007), the same year performed  as a Kerrville New Folk Finalist and her album, "Things Change", charted for 8 consecutive months on the Folk-DJ Chart.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2010
emily kurn
Kate Long Kate Long makes her living in a variety of ways. She is a newspaper writing coach, radio producer, editor and performing songwriter. A West Virgina native, she is rooted in Appalachian traditional music, but writes in several genres. 2003 MUSIC TO LIFE's Second Runner-Up, Kate has three CD's of her songs. One of them, "Who'll Watch the Homeplace" was an International Bluegrass Music Association Song of the Year.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2003
Mottau, Drew & Clark
Bob Drew and Jim Clark, both navy veterans, met in 1970 and have played the New Hampshire music scene for over thirty years. It was during a rehearsal in Lyndeboro, NH, of one of their 'mutual' bands, Sweeney's Glider (which was featured on Public Television's program, New Hampshire Crossroads, in 1997), that they met Eddie Mottau. Drew, born in Jersey City, NJ, moved to Massachusetts during his youth, and currently resides in Antrim, NH. His broad interest in music was apparent from age 12. Jimmy Clark was born in Northampton, MA, moved to Portland, ME, when he was just two, then to Amherst as a teenager. His father was a jazz guitarist with his own band in the 1930's, and his mother played mandolin. . Eddie Mottau, born in Boston, MA , has long been recognized as a unique and talented musician, working in a variety of roles with such diverse artists as John Lennon, Noel Paul Stookey and Felix Pappalardi.

NO MOULDING, DANCE FOR LOVE
Jim Newton received a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy (B.A.) from McMurray College in 1971, a Master of Theology (M. Th.) from Southern Methodist University in 1975, and has done post graduate work at Princeton Theological Seminary. Former Chaplain at Parkland Memorial and Methodist Hospitals in Dallas, he is currently President of Celebration Shop, and serves there as an ordained minister. A member of The Association For The Care Of Children's Health (ACCH), Jim blends his keen interest and training in pastoral counseling with his musical talent and nearly 30 years of experience in leading groups through music and speaking. In Jim's own words, "When I see a child begin to open up and smile because of our music, I know that I'm doing the right thing. This is my work for a lifetime."
BEST I CAN BE, WE CAN DO, WORLD AROUND SONG

kathleen pemble

Kathleen Pemble plays, teaches, runs an open mic and books the groovy on-going series called 'The Music Room' . She is the Winner of the New York City Song Slam and has been featured on New York's WFUV as the 'New Music Monday' featured artist. The New York Times praises her work noting: "Winning melodies in the folk-pop vein delivered with strong, supple vocals make Ms. Pemble's music compelling".
MUSIC TO LIFE 2010

Kate Power

Coming of age in Washington Square during the folk revival of the 1960's, Kate Power  has been playing concerts, coffeehouses and festivals since age 15.  She has independently and collectively helped to shape the face of folk music in the Pacific Northwest through her  work with husband and music partner, Steve Einhorn, and their popular music center, Artichoke Music. 
MUSIC TO LIFE 2006
Steven Rizzo was born and raised in Bryan, Texas. He formed his own country band while in college, playing dance halls, wedding receptions and festivals throughout cebtral and eastern Texas. After a move to Nashville, Rizzo won a songwriting contest at the Gibson Guitar Cafe and had the good fortune to meet Wade Quick who soon became his close friend and main co-writer.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2001

Lisa Rogers is a longtime Lone Star lesbian lampoon artist, half of The Therapy Sisters, and an occasional presidential candidate. Her musical mission is to make music music that makes people go, "Ah-ha","Ha, ha'" or "Ah!"
MUSIC TO LIFE 2008

lisa rogers
Eugene Ruffolo Actively involved in the New York studio scene, Eugene Ruffolo is a singer songwriter with 4 CDs of original material which have been released throughout the US and Europe. He's a first prize winner of both the Telluride Troubador and MerleFest song competitions and has worked on numerous album, television and movie projects.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2008
John Seay is a Baltimore native who started songwriting at age 12 (1961).  He actively ‘gigs’ in the mid-Atlantic area, runs a recording studio and produces other songwriters.  He has six solo CD’s, was a finalist at Newsong Festival in 2002, and Susquehanna Festival in 2006.  Seay’s songs have been recorded by Charly McClain, Lea Salonga (Tony Award Winner) and numerous others.
 
MUSIC TO LIFE 2006
John Seay
Amy Speace is a NYC-based singer-songwriter, whose 2006 CD SONGS FOR  BRIGHT STREET, released by Judy Collins’ Wildflower Records, spent months in the Top 10 of the Folk Radio and Americana Roots Radio  Charts and gathered rave reviews around the world.  Honored in 2007  with a nomination by the North American Folk Alliance as one of the ‘Emerging  Artists of the Year’, Amy was recently named by WFUV, NYC’s leading  AAA station as a ‘Top 16 Artist to Watch in 2008’.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2008
Amy Speace
Tracy Spring is an award-winning singer songwriter from Bellingham, Washington. An accomplished guitarist and mountain dulcimer player, her 1995 release Life and Art, was named best album of the year by the folk and Acoustic Music Exchange on the internet. In 1998, she won the NW Emerging Songwriter's Contest at Lakefolk in Washington State.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2001

Noel Paul Stookey ,now in his fifth decade as the "Paul" of Peter, Paul, and Mary, and on the road with Peter and Mary for about 40 concerts a year, Stookey's passionate beliefs have been an impetus for his own personal activism. That spirit has guided both his words and his actions. After creating "The Wedding Song," for example, Stookey assigned the publishing rights from the song to The Public Domain Foundation, guided by his daughter Elizabeth Stookey Sunde, which has donated nearly 2 million dollars to charities in countries around the world. "...Most the songs I’ve written since the late 60's, though they may be really quite wide contextually, are from the 'forgiven and Loved' perspective that one inherits as a gift of the Spirit and I'm hopeful that I can remind people; to challenge them to create a peace on earth by starting within their own hearts."
PAUL AND, ONE NIGHT STAND, REAL TO REEL, SOMETHING NEW AND FRESH, IN LOVE BEYOND OUR LIVES, THERE IS LOVE, CIRCUIT RIDER, VIRTUAL PARTY, FACETS

ric taylor The artist for who the term "Song Noir" was coined, Ric Taylor ahs been touring the country for years as both a musician and whitewater paddling instructor. He has won numerous national songwriting contests (including those sponsored by ASCAP and the Songwriters Resource Service), as well as winning the Telluride Film Festival student competition. His latest CD is "Songs from Around the Cosmic Campfire".
MUSIC TO LIFE 2010
Sara Thomsen grew up with a family that loved to sing. From listening to lullabies to singing at family gatherings and in church and school choirs, her life has been filled with music. She began piano lessons early and in the ninth grade was introduced to the guitar; the instrument that has become her constant companion. She is a staunch supporter of struggles for human dignity, ecological sustainability, and is deeply connected to a life of spiritual practice.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2001
vanessa torres Vanessa Torres is a nationally touring singer-songwriter who has shared the stage with many other notable folk artists as well as playing the side stage of the Women and Music Festival.  Torres was invited by Holly Near in 2008 to join the 'Sing Out The Vote'  rallies across the battleground state of Ohio.  She ahs also recieved Honorable Mention in the prestigious Telluride Troubador Competition and was a 2009 tricentric Showcase Artist at the Northeastern Regional Folk Alliance.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2010
With a background in environmental activism and social justice, Michael Veitch worked for many years for the Vermont Public Interest Research Group as a statewide recycling advocate and an all around 'hell-raiser'! Commenting on being a singer-songwriter, he says "The politician in me sees the strength in a well-timed message, delivered through a song. And the musician in me shivers when a great melody comes pouring out. It may just be the best of all possible worlds."
MUSIC TO LIFE 2001
Amy Carol Webb A Kerrville New Folk finalist of 1999, Amy Carol Webb carries on the pioneering spirit inherited from Native American great-grandmothers on both branches of her family tree. Her name literally means "beloved song weaver". The Miami Hearald named her one of the "50 to make a difference in the next century"- the one songwriter among philanthropists, activists and cultural visionaries.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2003, MUSIC TO LIFE 2006, MUSIC TO LIFE 2008
Zane Williams

Zane Williams was born in Abilene, Texas and moved to Nashville in 2000.  He and his wife Jodi have traveled to over 400 colleges nationwide where Zane plays as a solo coffee house act on the NACA circuit.  The Williams drive a van that runs on recycled vegetable oil, volunteer often with a family of Somalian refugees and are currently hand-stiching the artwork for Zane’s new CD released in 2006.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2006

For 20 years, Maryland native David Zee has served as both a performer and composer. As Musical DIrector for the political comedy troupe Gross National Product, his musical scores have supported programs on Discovery Channel, Home and Garden Television and PBS. Past credits include a New York FIlm Festival award for original music in the Corporate Division.
MUSIC TO LIFE 2001 , AfterTime
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