I have thought of you many times since being part of your evening at Daniel's house many weeks ago.
You created a magical, whimsical and wonderful evening that transported us into other times and dimensions. We laughed, cried and felt a part of your creations.
I loved your story telling and felt captivated and entranced and entertained in the best sense of the word. What a great imagination!
And your bagpipe playing ... riveting, and moving. ( loved the hat ;-) )
The evening you gave us was truly one of the most enjoyable performances I have ever experienced. Being one who loves all things magical, mystical and good, you have come forth as a kindred spirit.
Wishing you wonder, fun, health, and all the bagpipes you ( and you wife ) can hold,
"You did a fantastic job. It was funny, cool, and the best!" -- Troy and Room 15, El Carmelo School, Atherton, CA
"What a storyteller you are!" -- Palo Alto Children's Library,CA
"The stories were magical." --Freight and Salvage Coffee House, Berkeley,CA
"You're the best storyteller in the world!" -- Robin, age 6 <
"This is a slightly delayed, but heartfelt, thank you for the fabulous evening you gave us last Wednesday. You sent 230+ people away reinvigorated and exhilarated. I think you could have kept them there rapt for another hour if we hadn't gotten booted out. I've heard from a number of people since then, and all they can say is that this was the coolest program we've done all year. Thank you for making that happen!" - Charles Junkerman, Dean of Continuing Education at Stanford University, commenting on my show, "The Other Bagpipes - Exotic and Little Known Pipes and Piping traditions of the World ".
" Kevin Carr is one terrific musician: fiddles, bagpipes, whistles, drums, you name it. He also has one of the most engaging stage presences I have ever seen. As long as he doesn't start playing the harp, I should be okay."
" Storytelling is becoming a lost art. Kevin Carr is one of its most skilled practitioners. When he tells stories and plays music, shildren and adults are entranced, and magic happens."
The aroma of rosemary, shepherd's pie and warm bread filled the Greenwood Community Center during an evening of storytelling and folk music by Kevin Carr last Friday. The event, which included a savory dinner, was organized by Carole Raye, longtime Elk resident and friend of Carr's, who was visiting from Portland, Ore. About 100 attended. The net proceeds benefitted the center.
An entrancing multi-instrumentalist and storyteller, Carr played the fiddle, Irish (Uilleann) pipes, Slovakian Duda (pipes), Galician Gaita, and French Cornemuse. As he switched from pipes to fiddle and back again, he told tales about trips to the former Soviet Union, Spain, France, Quebec and Ireland where he played with and learned from traditional musicians.
Called "Stories from the Musical Realms; Inspiration and the Music Between the Notes," his playing and well-told tales "illuminate the often supernatural sources of inspiration that give music its magic," as his website says.
Carr also gave the audience a taste of his CD in progress, "Fiddle Fables," as well as a new story based on a Czech Opera from the 1930s entitled, "Schwanda the Bagpiper."
In response to a standing ovation, Carr capped his energetic two-hour performance by playing a set of soulful Spanish fiddle pieces that truly illustrated what he calls "the spiritually lucrative field of traditional music."
This was one of Carr's first events as a storyteller-musician.
According to Raye, Carr hopes to return in the spring and perform in Caspar.
Piper, fiddler and storyteller Kevin Carr, along with his family, will present a Celtic-inspired gig Wednesdays at 4 Daughters Irish Pub.Photo by Anne Hammersky
March 04, 2011
By Teresa Thomas
When his Volkswagen camper broke down on a remote road on Ireland's west coast, Kevin Carr stumbled upon one of the richest veins of Celtic music in Éire.
"My car stalled on a lonely section of Ireland, and through a series of coincidences, I met an accordion virtuoso," says Carr, a multi-instrumentalist. "I was invited to a farewell party for this man, whose name was Joe Cooley. I got to meet all these great Irish musicians and ... became completely absorbed in the tradition for a long time."
If you go
Who: The Carrs
When: 6:30 p.m. Wednesdays
Where: 4 Daughters Irish Pub, 126 W. Main St., Medford
Interestingly enough, when Carr returned to his camper, it started right up.
Nonetheless, this brief exposure to the island's ancient musical genre left a lasting impression, which would dictate Carr's musical ambitions for the next 37 years.
For the first time since moving to Southern Oregon nearly 10 years ago, Carr will perform a weekly gig at 6:30 p.m. Wednesdays at 4 Daughters Irish Pub, 126 W. Main St., Medford.
The gig will feature Carr and his family, including wife Josie Mendelsohn (keyboards, banjo, spoons and fiddle), son Daniel Carr (guitar and mandolin) and, on rare occasions, daughter Molly Carr (mandolin and fiddle), as well as special guests. Carr primarily plays fiddle but also bagpipes and a variety of folk instruments. (He'll play the quieter uilleann pipes for his 4 Daughters gig.)
"We're just calling ourselves The Carrs," he says.
The family will perform traditional, Irish and Scottish tunes, jigs and reels; old-time, American music, such as the "Greasy Coat" medley and "Elzics Farewell"; French-Canadian music; Galecian music; and some originals composed by Josie and Daniel. The bulk of the music is instrumental.
"The Celtic idea is a romantic notion of the past," says Carr. "If things are beautiful, have ancient roots or are contemporary and passionate, I love it."
The Carrs first performed as a family project last summer in Galecia, Spain, an area recognized for its Celtic roots.
In addition to his family collaboration, Carr plays with Wake the Dead, a Celtic-Grateful Dead jam band; Hillbillies from Mars, an intergalactic, traditional dance band; Les Tetes de Violon, a Quebec-based fiddle group; and Charanga, a Rogue Valley-based Galecian big band. His various projects have taken him to Canada, Spain, France, Russia, Mexico and, of course, Ireland, where he played with a Galecian touring group at an Irish folk festival two years ago.
"To me, playing is as close to being in heaven as is possible on Earth," says Carr.
In solo shows, Carr weaves his passion for music and storytelling with his knowledge of international music traditions. Recently, he toured the Northwest, presenting "Stories From the Musical Realms," a program of folk tales and corresponding Galecian, Irish, French, French-Canadian and Czechoslovakian music.
The Carrs, along with guest musician William Greene, also will perform from 5 to 9 p.m. Thursday (St. Patrick's Day), March 17, at 4 Daughters.
For more information, see www.kevincarr.org or call 541-779-4455.
" First up was the one-man show that is Oregon's Kevin Carr. Anyone who has had the opportunity to hear Kevin perform knows that of which I speak. Kevin sang, he fiddled, and he piped on both uilleann and Galician Gaita. No doubt we were seeing a snapshot of Kevin's considerable oeuvre. How do you follow an act like that . . . "