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Artists and Recordings

SHAWN COLVIN
bio

New York City, that great melting pot of folk music sources and influences, is also the ultimate proving ground, one that few contenders survive. Perhaps there is something in the South Dakota bloodlines of Shawn Colvin that afforded her the tenacity and perseverance not to let go when the growing pains finally caught up with her in New York when she realized that, "whatever my personality was, I never understood the difference between what I could do and who I was."

Few things rival the intensity of experiencing a Shawn Colvin live solo performance. She is the songwriter's songwriter. Her compositions deftly articulate life, while her voice lends poignancy and drama. The impact is underscored by Shawn's riveting guitar skills, which combine eclectic tunings with an infectious and unusual right hand technique.

Shawn Colvin realized her dreams through a combination of discipline, vision, and talent. She picked up her first guitar at age 10, and followed her muse over the years along a meandering itinerary that included Canada, the Midwest, Texas, California, Boston, and New York City. Burgeoning new forms of folk allowed her to explore different genres and hone her performing skills. She was also able to work with other musicians including singing back-up on Suzanne Vega's 1987 hit, "Luka." Her work did not go unnoticed, and in 1989 she released her debut CD entitled "Steady On" on Columbia Records. Her debut earned her a Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Folk Recording.

Folk music occupies a special place in the heart and has always been identified with the sound of a Martin guitar. The authentic and personal nature of the genre has its finest moment in the duet between voice and acoustic guitar.

 

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