Billy McLaughlin

Billy McLaughlin is recognized internationally as a world-class guitarist, composer and inspirational performer who has appeared on Billboard’s Top Ten Chart. Previously signed to Virgin Records’ Narada label, McLaughlin has 14 CD releases, 3 National Campus Entertainer of the Year Awards, 5 Minnesota Music Awards and his decades of national concert touring earned him the Hall of Fame Achievement Award.  But in 1999 McLaughlin vanished from sight as his career crumbled due to a little-known neuro-muscular disorder called Focal Dystonia. After suffering several years without a cure, he embarked on an unlikely attempt to regain his career by re-learning his instrument left-handed. His remarkable comeback is captured in the documentary film Changing Keys and a concert film called Coming Back Alive featuring McLaughlin with string orchestra and a reunion of his longtime rockband.  Now serving as Ambassador for Awareness for the Dystonia Medical Research Foundation, McLaughlin was the winner of the 2010 Public Leadership in Neurology Award whose previous winners include Paul Allen, Julie Andrews, Leon Fleischer and Michael J. Fox.  McLaughlin has resumed an international schedule of concert appearances and keynote speaking. He resides in his home state of Minnesota where he is proudly raising two...

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Caroline Aiken

Independent to the bone with seven CDs, and with a Grammy nomination for Best Contemporary Folk CD in 2006, Caroline Aiken has performed numerous times to benefit thousands of causes, and has played thousands of shows in her 40-plus years of touring at home and abroad. Writing, producing shows, festivals, theaters, and series, Caroline has also served 12 years as Entertainment Director for the Atlanta Dogwood Festival. Caroline has recorded with and shared stages with The Indigo Girls, Bonnie Raitt, and has been a guest performer at major venues with them such as San Antonio’s Majestic Theater, Denver’s Red Rocks, and Berkeley’s Greek Theater. Caroline has headlined at the Kerrville, Texas Music Festival (Main Stage since ’95), Seattle’s Bumbershoot (since ’96), Folk Life Festival (since ’76), NY’s Falcon Ridge, and Northern California’s High Sierra Music Festival. Caroline’s class, “How to Enjoy the Time on the Stage,” teaches how to be an independent artist, a booking agent, a manager, a record label, and how to read the fine print, as well as song writing, and guitar-percussive finger style. Caroline’s finger picking style won an invitation to the Stuttgart Germany Guitar Seminar in May 2006 and...

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Michael McNevin

A San Francisco Bay Area native, Michael McNevin started his career with a six-month stint in New York City, cutting his troubadour teeth in the subways and streets of Greenwich Village. Now a veteran of the folk scene, Michael has logged close to 20 years worth of concerts across the U.S., and he’s been a main stager at some of the bigger music festivals around, including the Strawberry, Kerrville, High Sierra, and Philadelphia music festivals. He’s been billed in clubs and halls with the likes of Johnny Cash, Shawn Colvin, Donovan, Richie Havens, Christine Lavin, Utah Phillips, and 100s of others on the songwriter circuit. He has a seasoned voice, accomplished steel string guitar work, and a vivid brand of storytelling. He is a past winner of the Kerrville New-folk award in Texas, a 6-time winner of the West Coast Songwriters Association “Song Of The Year” (’91, ’92, ’97, ’98, ’05, ’09), and was chosen by Performing Songwriter Magazine as a Top 12 “DIY Artist Of The Year”. With 5 releases under his belt, and a few hard to find cassettes, his next CD is tentatively titled “Kickin’ Tires”. Tracks include ‘Broom’ & ‘Scarecrow’ (both winners of the WCS ‘Song Of The Year’ award), ‘Phoenixville’, ‘Pioneer Shindig, & ’60 Years Of Sand’. Two of the tracks – ‘This Town Is Gonna Change’ & ‘I Shot Broncho Billy’ – are also heard in the indie film “Weekend King”, an indie film that features five of his songs in the soundtrack, and casts him in a cameo role as a broke and lovesick bartender. In addition, Michael is an Etch A Sketch artist of some renown, delighting and dumbfounding audiences with his song illustrations on the little red toy. Michael has been a guest on CBS “Evening Magazine”, numerous news and entertainment segments on NBC, ABC, and dozens of cable music shows. He also owns and operates the Mudpuddle Shop, in downtown Niles, CA. He’s hosted 70+ concerts there, and well over 200 jams in the 6 years he’s operated it. It also serves as the Golden Spike Headquarters – a volunteer crew that Michael facilitates for the town, to help the local steam trains gather passengers for rides through the Niles Canyon. His original Etch A Sketch art creations are also a shop attraction — 20 of them hang on the wall, waiting for an...

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Tom Prasada-Rao

Tom Prasada-Rao is a musician’s musician – an unassuming presence on the folk scene since the early nineties. His voice belies his musicianship and his extraordinary songs. From Rishi’s Garden with it’s homage to Ravi Shankar to the groove of Sleeping Beauty , Tom’s music is melodic, ambitious, and reverent. He’s starting to tour again and is currently featured on the nationally syndicated TV show Troubadour Texas. In the fall of 2007 Tom quit the road to produce records, raise two stepdaughters, and walk a rather large Golden Doodle named Thurman twice a day. In addition to producing, he took a job teaching music at White Rock Montessori in Dallas – TPR was formerly the songwriting teacher at The University of Virginia’s Young Writer’s Workshops – where he created the songwriting curriculum and taught for eight years. From headlining major festivals 15 years ago, to the relative obscurity of his recording studio – Tom has continued to mature as an artist. That work has blossomed into an impressive resume of producing credits as well as cuts (his songs covered by other artists). This year (2012) will mark Tom’s first solo release in 10 years – featuring bass guitar legend Chuck Rainey, and piano virtuoso Julie Bonk who was Norah Jones’ teacher – all masterfully produced by Jagoda. Tom Prasada-Rao was born in Ethiopia of Indian parents and raised in Washington DC. He moved to Texas in 2003 and is married to singer-songwriter Cary...

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