Bronwen Beecher, the Fiddle Preacher
Learning the violin since age 7, Bronwen has the elite skill of a classical violinist. Throughout her study, however, it became clear that the deep soul, creativity and ferocity of her playing could not be contained in just one musical form. The daughter of academics, Bronwen always had the benefit of exposure to a wide canvas of language, culture and music, attending symphony performances from the age of 4 and listening to her father sing Mariachi and various other traditional styles. An unusually strong childhood connection to the blues and gospel music set the stage for her college years at Loyola University in New Orleans, where she found the time, despite several hours a day training in classical music, to take in the rich musical landscape of her surroundings. There she played in a goth band, was the odd man out in the Loyola gospel choir, worked on her blues improvisation and even began street performing.
After that, her interest in diverse music and culture took her and her violin to Ottawa, Cape Breton Island, Jiaxing, China, and various adventures throughout Europe. So now, speaking limited French with a Beijing accent, it has become clear that Bronwen was meant for mismatched things. Additionally, we can officially say that her refusal to wear matching socks in the second grade was not a phase.
Now Bronwen's precision playing and improvisation chops intermingle with all the fiddle moxie of a street brawler. In fact, the Fiddle Preacher would just as soon smack a Hungarian fiddle tune upside the head till it cried “uncle,” to the yells of an elated audience, as sing a soulful Gaelic Aire or play a heart-wrenching Adagio. With disarming sincerity, Bronwen can deliver all of that with equal comfort.
In all of her work, Bronwen's pancultural but modern style of music comes from a musical soul that demands authenticity of self, rather than loyalty to a particular genre of music.
Bronwen's compositions have been featured in three theater productions. She has written orchestrations for three albums, including the progressive metal band, Subterranean Masquerade's "Suspended Animation Dreams," and her own former band, Salty Frogs' award-winning album, "Today Was Strange." Bronwen's violin and fiddle stylings have appeared on over 30 recordings and she can often be found kicking up a storm onstage with a variety of other acts as a "hired gun" fiddler.