Traditional ballads have been a source of inspiration for guitarist, singer and Irish bouzouki player Lindsay Straw since her childhood in Montana. But she truly grew into the art when she became immersed in Boston’s Irish and folk music scenes. There she began to tie together the threads of the traditions she was most passionate about: English, Scottish, Irish and American songcraft. While in college, she founded a young Celtic trad band, The Ivy Leaf, which she draws from to fill out the music on her new second album, The Fairest Flower of Womankind. In addition to her own sensitive, agile accompaniment on guitar and bouzouki, Straw is joined by members of The Ivy Leaf, Daniel Accardi (fiddle), Armand Aromin (fiddle), and Benedict Gagliardi (concertina, harmonica), plus renowned Maine guitarist Owen Marshall (The Press Gang). Throughout, Straw’s tender vocals and careful arrangements draw out the inner depths of these old songs, telling tales of women from beyond the ages. A ballad needs commitment to be told, a belief in the importance of its story. Straw proves that these stories ring with inspiration even today.
Bright Young Folk said of her 2015 debut solo album, “My Mind From Love Being Free has finally announced Lindsay Straw onto the folk scene in magnificent style”. Her recording of the traditional song “The Bonny Light Horseman” was featured on fRoots’ July 2015 compilation CD playlist. A generous grant from Club Passim’s Iguana Music Fund and a successful Kickstarter campaign allowed her to record and release her second album, The Fairest Flower of Womankind, in April 2017. The album was #5 on the Folk-DJ charts for May 2017. The Living Tradition said, “Her singing does justice to a strong theme. It is fluid, bright, beguiling, natural and relaxed. Only the fear of adjectival overload stops me there.”
She was featured at the 2015 Northeast Regional Folk Alliance conference in Kerhonkson, NY as a quad showcase performer. In addition to performing extensively throughout New England at renowned venues such as Club Passim and festivals like the Maine Celtic Celebration and Boston Irish Festival, Lindsay has spent time touring the west coast, both solo and with Irish musicians Darcy Noonan and Preston Howard; the Midwest with flute and tin whistle player Caroline O’Shea; and Ireland and England with folk-blues trio The Morning Tree. She is also in high demand for weddings and private events in the Boston area and beyond.
In addition to performing solo, Lindsay performs with her husband, mandolinist Jordan Santiago, and with her Boston/Providence-based Irish quartet The Ivy Leaf. She also teaches the occasional workshop or class through the Passim School of Music.