Katie was first introduced to fiddle music by her classical violin teacher at age 10 and immediately found in the Celtic traditions her musical home. From the earliest, teachers remarked on her natural style that was authentic, yet her own and identifiable. Years of study at fiddle and Celtic music camps from Atlantic Canada to Boston and from Nashville to California followed, feeding the excitement and laying the rich traditional footing from which her own uniquely roots-based modern compositions and playing style would be drawn.
Katie would go on to study Scottish Fiddle for several years with Hanneke Cassel, winning several US National Junior titles and in 2009, the New England Scottish Fiddle Championship. She first appeared at the legendary folk venue, Club Passim at age 13, where in January, 2013, she debuted her first CD, “Flourish,” to a sold out audience. Katie has been a member of the cross genre fiddle super-group, Childsplay, since 2009 and will be appearing on their upcoming CD and concert video release, “As the Crow Flies,” produced by legendary Irish fiddler, Liz Carroll. She performs regularly as a soloist, as part of a duo with guitarist Eric McDonald, and is a member of all-woman trad group, Long Time Courting. In the fall of 2012, she accompanied famed Galician bagpiper Carlos Núñez on his North American tour to promote the release of his Sony Masterworks double album, “Discover.”
Katie tours, teaches, and performs at concert venues, music camps, festivals, and dances throughout the United States. She has studied Scottish dance and is a much sought-after musician for Scottish Country dances, balls, and camps for her lively, warm and infectious playing. Katie is a devoted teacher whose teaching style was molded by years of attendance at fiddle camps where learning music is about joy and community and fun! This is her approach whether working with her private students, in workshops, at fiddle camps, in musical outreach programs or at Boston’s Symphony Hall.
Katie attended both The University of Glasgow and The National Piping Centre in Glasgow Scotland where she studied ancient and modern Scottish Literature and Scottish traditional music. Katie graduated Magna Cum Laude from Tufts University in 2012 with concentrations in Music, English and Child Development where she earned The Etta and Harry Winokur Award for Outstanding Contribution to Performance.
Listen to Katie here!
"I think they're brilliant" –Mike Harding (UK)
"Their individual and combined singing voices prove both interesting and persuasive... clarity of tone and expression is a feature of both voices." –Fatea (UK)
"[Their vocals are] clear, complex in undertone, and they use their voices' full dynamics. Their harmonies are rich and supportive..." –Shamrock Road (US)
HANNAH SANDERS (The Dunns) from Old England, and LIZ SIMMONS (The John Whelan Band, Annalivia, Long Time Courting) from New England, join forces to create a harmonic blend of voice and guitar. Their music draws from English musical traditions as well as American old time, blues and contemporary folk. Even though these gals grew up with an ocean between them, they had similar childhoods spent traveling with musician parents, and were exposed to many different styles of music, among them traditional folk and rock and roll. A transatlantic pairing of two seasoned performers who stay busy with other projects but just love it when they get to tour together, Hannah and Liz have impressed audiences with their unique, haunting vocal blend, their guitar chops, and their witty stage banter. They have toured in the northeastern US– opening for Karan Casey & John Doyle and The Wiyos and sharing shows with Laura Cortese & Jefferson Hamer among others, in addition to headlining their own shows– and they completed their first tour of England last summer. Currently they are touring in support of their new EP "World Begun".
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