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16 November 1981 (age 36)
Nanaimo, Regional District of Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada
Allison Crowe (born 16 November 1981) is a singer-songwriter, guitarist and pianist from Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada who now also lives in Corner Brook, Newfoundland, Canada.
Allison Crowe began performing professionally in 1996, at age 15, doing regular sets in the coffee-houses and bars of Vancouver Island.
"I love singing for people," says Crowe. "It's a way to connect and share with others. Communication is crucial. Just being able to do what I do, to write and sing and perform, makes me feel not only alive, but incredibly lucky. Knowing at any moment everything could change, I don't take one second for granted."
Today, at 29 years, Crowe's reach is global. The audience for her music videos and song downloads numbers in the millions.
"Allison Crowe has a voice to fall in love with," says UK music industry journal Record of the Day. "She is from Vancouver Island in Canada, descended from Scottish, Irish and Manx stock. She's exactly the sort of artist who can make serious headway on her own label and that's just what she's doing."
With Ani DiFranco as a model of integrity, and Creative Commons licensing changing the "game" for musicians of a new era, Crowe created her own label. Since 2003, Rubenesque Records Ltd has released a series of critically and commercially successful albums: Lisa's Song, Secrets, Tidings, Live at Wood Hall, This Little Bird, Little Light, and Spiral. Through recording and touring Allison Crowe has achieved broad popularity, featured by BBC Radio, MOJO magazine and acclaimed Hollywood director Zack Snyder (300, The Watchmen, Sucker Punch).
"The first thing you notice about Allison Crowe is her voice. Rich and dark, it seems to come from a place most singers can only dream of accessing. Then there are the songs. Filled with raw passion and accompanied by Crowe's eloquent piano playing," writes Clodagh O'Connell (The Courier). Hers is a joyous sound: "Elton John meets Edith Piaf."
A sensation at the UK's John Lennon Northern Lights Festival, "Canadian angel Alison Crowe gave one of the weekend's most magical moments," says The Scotsman newspaper. Festival Director Mike Merritt describes Crowe as "awesome" and "spine-tingling", noting her performance "put hairs on the back of your neck! She brought the house down."
"Ever wonder what it would have been like to listen to a gifted singer/songwriter from Saskatchewan in a small, intimate hall before she became Joni Mitchell? Don't fret the missed opportunity. There's no need to turn back the clock. Check out Allison Crowe," says Robert Reid in The Record.
"Allison has a special gift that is so very rare in musicians today. She is true to her mind, heart and spirit," says Ross Hocker, long-time public broadcaster with NPR affiliate WGTE. Hocker, whose musical taste embraces Thelonious Monk, Bela Bartok and Charles Gounod, calls Allison Crowe's live performance "the most honest, heartfelt, and directly intimate concert in my entire life."
"In an entertainment world that increasingly genuflects at the altar of instant fame, Crowe seems an anomaly, building her career slowly and carefully," notes Adrian Chamberlain, of Canada's Times Colonist newspaper.
"Soulful. Alive. Joyous. Grievous. Real, true, music is what I want to make," says Allison Crowe.
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