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Kate and Anna
[ BIOGRAPHY | Discography
Irish/French-Canadian rooted Kate and Anna McGarrigle grew up in
Quebec's Saint-Sauveur-des-Monts village, where they took piano
lessons courtesy of the village nuns.
By their teens their
musical upbringing influenced their sound - from Victorian ballads
to blues to Appalachian and French-Canadian folk songs.
Through the 1960s, Kate went to McGill University to study
engineering while Anna studied painting at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts
in Montreal. As the '60's progressed into the '70's the sisters
honed their songs and a demo tape eventually made it to Los Angeles
where Maria Muldaur used two of the duo's songs on her album.
Staff producer Greg Prestopino persuaded Warner Bros. to
bring Kate and Anne out to Los Angeles to record a demo of their
own. Warner Bros. vanity label, Hannibal Records' label chief Joe
Boyd, signed the act and he and Prestopino would soon co-produce
their auspicious debut in 1975 with 'Kate And Anna McGarrigle'
featuring special guests Lowell George, David Grisman, and Tony
The eponymous LP was named #1 Album Of The Year by
Melody Maker and #2 by the New York Times, and Top Ten on countless
critics' polls. It also contained the hit and frequently covered
"Heart Like A Wheel."
A year later they followed that up
with 'Dancer With Bruised Knees'.
Their third album was
The 'French Record' was released in 1981 and
finally gave the sisters critical acclaim (Rolling Stone magazine
gave the record a 4 star rating) with its blend of English language
originals plus reworkings of several McGarrigle classics remade in
French. The album featured special guest appearances by Jay Ungar,
Alun Davies, and Fotheringay's Pat Donaldson and Gerry Conway.
Their next album would find its way onto Polydor Records as
Hannibal changed distributors - it too received a 4 star rating from
Rolling Stone - as did their commercial breakthrough, 'Heartbeats
Accelerating' in 1990.
The McGarrigle sisters have also made
guest appearances on albums by many other musical luminaries such as
Richard And Linda Thompson's 'Sunnyvista' and the Albion Band's
'Rise Up Like The Sun'. In 1991, they recorded three Stephen Foster
songs for the Columbia/Sony release 'Songs Of The Civil War' and
also contributed to the lullaby album and video 'Child Of Mine' in
1992. In 1995, the McGarrigles recorded 'Goin' Back To Harlan' with
Emmylou Harris for her album 'Wrecking Ball'.
recent foray was as part of the live Joan Baez CD 'Ring Them Bells',
as well as backing Quebec artist Gilles Vigneault.
McGarrigles have appeared in concerts and festivals throughout
Canada and the US, as well as Europe, Australia, New Zealand and
Hong Kong. They headlined the Newport Folk Festival in 1992, toured
in the UK and Europe in 1993, and returned to sold-out shows in the
UK in 1994.
Kate McGarrigle is mother of musician Rufus
Wainright (also son of eccentric folk guitarist Louden Wainright
III), and occasionally accompanies her son at his live shows.
With notes from Hans-Dieter Neuser
| DISCOGRAPHY | Links
Heartbeats Accelerating (Private Music)
1975 Kate And Anna
McGarrigle (Hannibal/Warner Bros.)
1976 Dancer With
Bruised Knees (Hannibal/Warner Bros.)
Monto (Hannibal/Warner Bros.)
1981 French Record
1982 Love Over And Over
1990 Heartbeats Accelerating (Private
1992 French Record [CD re-issue]
1994 Kate And Anna McGarrigle [CD
1994 Dancer With Bruised
Knees [CD re-issue] (Hannibal/Rykodisc)
1997 Love Over And Over [CD
1998 The McGarrigle
1992 Mother Mother
on 'Songs From The Civil War' (Columbia/SONY)
"Lullaby For A Doll" on ''Til Their Eyes Shine: The Lullaby Album'
199? "Goin' Back To Harlan" on 'The
Folk Scene Collection: From The Heart Of Studio A' (KPFK-FM)
with MARIA MULDAUR
1974 Waitress In A Donut
Shop (Reprise/Warner Bros.) [appearance by Kate And Anna McGarrigle
backing vocals on "Cool River"]
with LOUDON WAINWRIGHT
1975 Unrequited (Columbia) [appearance by Kate
And Anna McGarrigle vocals on "Over The Hill"]
& GAY WOODS
1978 Tenderhooks (Rockburgh)
[appearance by Kate And Anna McGarrigle on piano & vocals]
with THE ALBION BAND
1978 Rise Up Like The
Sun (Carthage) [appearance by Kate And Anna McGarrigle on vocals]
with RICHARD AND LINDA THOMPSON
Sunnyvista (Chrysalis) [appearance by Kate And Anna McGarrigle on
with ROGER GLOVER
(Polydor) [appearance by Kate And Anna McGarrigle on vocals]
1990 Orealis (Green Linnet)
[appearance by Kate on backing vocals and accordion; Anna McGarrigle
on backing vocals]
with THE CHIEFTAINS
1991 The Bells Of Dublin (BMG/RCA) [appearance by Kate
And Anna McGarrigle vocals on "Il Est Ne" and "Ca Berger"]
with EMMYLOU HARRIS
1995 Wrecking Ball
(Asylum/Elektra) [appearance by Kate And Anna McGarrigle on vocals]
| LINKS | Photos
| PHOTOS ]
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