In 1995, heavy hitting critic Steve Morse wrote, "Carol Noonan seems to exist beyond time.....she sounds at times like a 90's Sandy Denny, soaring into the heavens, as she hits you in the heart". Now described in this century as a "brilliant modern folk singer", by renown critic Dave Marsh, or "Her beautiful voice offers the consolation music is supposed to provide"...... by Playboy magazine, Maine singer songwriter Carol Noonan, continues to win the praise of critics year after year.

She is known foremost as a contemporary singer-song writer, but is also known for her haunting renditions of Irish, English, and American traditionals. All of Noonan's last six recordings, have been produced independently on her own label, Some of her more recent recordings have been funded by pre-orders from her fans, who once again will put their checks in the mail quickly to support her. This is just another sample of Noonan keeping the music business between herself and her fans. Most of these titles are only avilable from her, giving Noonan a bird's eye view of who is buying her albums as well as why and where.

Click on any album photo to place an order.

Noonan, grew up in New England and attended New England Conservatory of Music, as a classical voice major. In the summer after her junior year, she took a job at a lakeside resort in Center Lovell, Maine as singing chambermaid. Her blooming love affair with Maine, and a yearning to sing music that more suited her unique vocal stylings, were enough to make her ultimately decide not to finish her conseravtory education. She made Maine her permanent home in the early eighties, where she has lived
for over twenty years. Since then, she has built a strong career, first, as the lead singer and songwriter for the band Knots and Crosses, and most recently as a soloist with one of the most versatile folk voices of our time. Knots and Crosses sold 20,000 albums independently, until they were briefly signed to Island Records.

Noonan then went on to record three solo albums with the strong indie label, Rounder Records. She recorded three albums for Rounder; "Absolution", Noonan Building and Wrecking", and The Only Witness". They were critically acclaimed, but commercially unsuccessful. She had spent over a decade in the music industry, and although she had been considered one of the best singers on the scene (Boston Music Award in 1993 for Best female vocalist), she had watched first, Knots and Crosses, and then her own career decline.

You can buy my Rounder recordings on the Rounder website.

Click on any album photo to place an
online order.

Absolution The Only Witness Noonan Building and Wrecking

At the same time, her husband Jeff faced his own career difficulties, as his business of building commercial fishing nets suffered great losses when the New England fishing industry was hit hard with the new imposition of government regulations. It was time to face facts. There was no room for the indulgent participation in a musical career that would only add to their financial burdens. So Noonan put down the guitar, and remained close to home, working two jobs to help hold onto their precious farm. Times were hard, but as her husband's business bounced back, so did Noonan's music. When she released "Self Titled", she found that the respect that she had been honored with years before was still intact, and so were her fans. With the help of a wonderful network of musicians and multi media, she was able to spread her music all over the country and even overseas to a brand new and larger audience. And it was her audience who took on the task of spreading it further. With Noonan's personal touch, she thanked people for buying her records, and asked them to help her get the word out "if they liked it"...and they did.

This is my husband Jeff. He puts haddock on your table. He is a fine man

This is the truck that hauls the nets that put haddock on your table.

My "Scotti" -a very good dog

So after a decade of commitments to record labels, Noonan has created a humble cottage industry out of her farmhouse in Brownfield Maine with tremendous success, where she is the chief cook and bottle washer. She has twice been featured on NPR's Weekend Edition and has sold thousands of albums nationwide, thanks to the loyal support of public radio, and her fans. Although the internet has been instrumental in distributing her music, it is her honor system method of selling her music that really sets her apart from any other artsit or label. Noonan has taken a unique, grass-roots approach allowing people to buy her music on trust, with the help of a toll free#. Her customers call 866-CAROLCD, and give her the order, she fills it, writes a personal note of thanks, and slips in a bill for the music. People have really responded to her personal touch and belief in them. Her fans seem to relate to a simpler time when music was pure, and a deal was sealed with a handshake.

In addition to her Boston Music Awards, Noonan has had rave reviews from the likes of NPR's Weekend Edition to the unlikely pages of Horse and Farm and Playboy Magazines. Locally, she and her husband a fishing net builder, have been featured on countless New England tv news spots, and Boston's t.v. magazine, "Chronicle". She has also had a feature story in Yankee Magazine, along with twice having a story run on the wire nationally by the prestegious Associasted Press. She has also been a guest on World Cafe and Mountain Stage.

Noonan has performed her hauntingly beautiful ballads all over the country, but she is primarily based in New England, headlining the coffeehouse circuit, along with festivals, such as the Newport and Boston Folk festivals. Noonan has been quoted as saying, "you are only as good as the company you keep". She was referring to the stellar line up of musicians who have graced these concerts and her recordings. Guitarist Duke Levine (Mary Chapin Carpenter, Jonatha Brooke, Peter Wolf, the Del Fuegos), Guitarist Gerry Leonard (David Bowie, Paula Cole), drummer Billy Conway (Morphine), drummer Dave Mattacks (Fairport Convention, Richard Thompson), Bassist Paul Bryan (Aimee Mann, Jonatha Brooke) and lastly but never leastly guitarist Kevin Barry (Paula Cole, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Jonatha Brooke) who is now her constant stage companion. This duo makes for a strong musical force, that can only be really appreciated through a live appearance. Her concerts have been described as emotional roller coasters; her hilarious Maine humor, coupled with her dark and heart wrenching ballads.

Kevin Barry Duke Levine my opera singer friend Lisa Saffer Kevin Barry and I

Her latest endeavor, is connected to music, but a far cry from being on the road or recording. She and her husband Jeff Flagg are renovating one of their barns on their rural property, to eventually house the Stone Mountain Arts Center. Noonan hopes to bring arts to the country in a big way...the Stone Mountain Arts Center is slotted for a summer opening in 2006. She has released two new cds to raise money for the project.

Water is Wide Carol Noonan Sampler
Volume 1
Stone Mountain Arts Center begins with a barn moving (flying barn)
and continues development in the new location behind our house.
Take a minute to read about the Arts Center Construction.
Fundraising CDs for Arts Center. Click photo to order.

Her voice has been compared to a young Joan Baez, or a voice from ages long ago. But if you must compare her to an era, close your eyes, and slip back into that time when Eminem was a candy and fruit roll ups were only available to astronauts...there you will find the voice of Carol Noonan.


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