Chris Carroll_June 2015

“Play your music.” – Three simple words spoken by a beloved grandmother in the waning moments of her life. To some it may sound like a line from a Hallmark movie, almost too moving to be true. To Chris Carroll, it was that sentence that cemented her conviction to follow a passion that had been moving her since grade school.

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The oldest of four children, Carroll was raised in St. Catharines, a sailing town on the Canadian shores of Lake Ontario. Early on Chris was pegged by a teacher as a singer and performer, convincing her to join the choir in the 4th grade. At that point the fire was lit and Carroll would continue to seek out the stage as her place of refuge. While still a minor she began to sit in at a local venue dubbed, The Club, on guitar and vocals. The eclectic range of music she found herself immersed in on that stage, began to inform what would later become her style, an intoxicating mixture of Americana, jazz, R&B, Blues and country that sets her apart.

Prior to settling in to take care of her ailing grandmother and having that life changing conversation, Carroll spent a year planting trees across Canada and held down numerous day jobs, all the while eagerly grabbing whatever gig happened to be available. Those gigs included a two year run as the lead singer in what she describes as a “psychedelic jam band”, Buddhas Don’t Box. Buddhas provided even more ingredients for the young Carroll to use in her musical kitchen, incorporating a range of covers from Nina Simone to the Grateful Dead.

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Once music became her desired career, she began cultivating her songwriting chops both as a solo performer and working with a talented young local guitar player, Tim Kulakowsky. Chris and Tim were playing 3-5 nights a week and more and more Chris’s original compositions were what the crowds desired. So, they entered the studio and quickly cut a 6 song EP entitled, Before and After. It was shortly after the release of that now out of print EP that Chris was offered a spot on the roster of Roger Marin’s Cicada Festival held in her home town. Little did she know at the time, this gig would be just as influential to both her life and career as that conversation from a few years earlier.

Also playing the festival that weekend was Texas Singer/ Songwriter, Adam Carroll. The two spent the after show hours swapping songs and stories. Sensing a strong connection both personally and musically, Adam and Chris began getting to know one another via skype while living over a thousand miles apart. Eventually Adam asked Chris to move to Texas and in 2013 they tied the knot.

Upon arriving in Texas, Chris already had a sack full of phenomenal songs and the obvious next step was cutting a proper record to showcase them. Alongside a fine band (Adam on Harmonica, Producer David Beck on everything under the sun, Kym Warner-mandolin, Dees Stribling on drums and percussion and Bill Whitbeck on bass) Carroll dove into the sessions at Austin’s Fast Horse Studios. The resulting record serves as a loud announcement of Chris Carroll’s arrival on the Americana scene. Trouble & Time, which will be released in the fall of 2014, is as diverse as the influences that have impressed themselves into Carroll’s life over the years. She is completely comfortable singing a jazz bass flavored, conga driven track like the lead single, “Cause or Cure” as she is the more straight forward country tinged folk ballad, “Just Like That”. Carroll’s lyrics are concise and entrancing, and the Canadian’s delivery allows the listener to really settle into the songs regardless of which genre she happens to be channeling at the time.

In addition to the release of her debut album, Chris will be expanding her touring area over the next year. Whether she is sharing the stage with her husband or headlining the show, it is inevitable that she will continue winning over new fans every time one of her songs finds its way into any true music fan’s ears.