Music artist and songwriter Claire Lynch is among 54 artists to receive one of 50 USA Fellowships (some collaborative) from United States Artists (USA). The national arts advocacy organization announced the award of the 2012 fellowships today, each of which comes with an unrestricted grant of $50,000. The 2012 USA Fellows represent the most innovative and influential artists in their fields. Reflecting the diversity of artistic practice in America, they include cutting-edge thinkers and traditional practitioners from the fields of architecture and design, crafts and traditional arts, dance, literature, media, music, theater arts, and visual arts.
Out of the 54 winners, only seven are in the music field. Previous winners for music include Lila Downs, Bill Frisell, Wu Man, Michael Doucet, Leila Josefowicz, and composers Mary Ellen Childs, Sean Shepherd and Uri Caine. In addition, Lynch joins 2012 fellow Tony Trischka and 2010 fellow Rob Ickes as the only USA fellows whose roots are in the bluegrass tradition.
Lynch has long been recognized as a creative force in acoustic music and at the forefront of women who have expanded the bluegrass genre. She has twice earned The International Bluegrass Music Association’s “Female Vocalist of the Year” title, and two Grammy nominations among others. For over two decades, Lynch has delighted audiences and enjoyed reverent standing ovations for her shows at prestigious music festivals and theaters around the world.
On a personal level, it makes me feel “bona fide” and will fuel my creativity and confidence and allow me to take my work to new levels,” shares Lynch. “I’m in the studio recording a new album now and the thrill of being selected is bringing an incredible energy to the sessions – Claire Lynch.
Lynch has crafted one of the most instantly identifiable sounds in acoustic music. Her style encompasses classic bluegrass and thoughtful infusions of contemporary folk, country, rock, and swing. As a songwriter of inventive and evocative Music Row hits, her songs have been recorded by Kathy Mattea, Patty Loveless, and others, and she has performed as a backing/harmony vocalist with Dolly Parton, Linda Ronstadt, Emmylou Harris, and Pam Tillis, just to name a few.
Lynch’s musical work is also embodied in seven albums released by Rounder Records, where she enjoyed an 18-year collaboration with label founder Ken Irwin. Currently, she is recording a new album to be released in 2013 on esteemed roots label Compass Records. Founded Garry West and by GRAMMY-winning musician Alison Brown, the company provides a thriving haven of creativity for artists and a reliable beacon of quality for roots music fans.