“Sarah Wilfong is a terrific multi-style violinist who has great technique, great time, and above all, fabulous musicianship. I love to hear her play fiddle tunes, or anything else, for that matter!” -Matt Glaser, Wayfaring Strangers; Artistic Director, American Roots Program, Berklee College of Music
Once upon a time, in the far-off land of Chicago, a 3-year-old named Sarah Wilfong convinced her parents to let her play the violin by playing “air violin” with chop sticks for three months. Once her parents caved to the inevitable, there was no stopping the determined toddler. (Sarah’s parents say not much has changed since then, except that Sarah is now 5’ 4” and has abandoned chop sticks for a real violin, except when sushi is involved.)
On her 11th birthday, a friend gave Sarah a copy of a Chieftain’s album which was a portal into the wild world of Irish music. Sarah fell in love. She started learning fiddle tunes by the dozens, and dragged her mom around the city to coffee shops, bars, and renaissance faires so that she could perform. This was followed by national Irish music competitions (known as Fleadhs) where she picked up a few medals, which in turn lead to forming multiple bands, and recording a number of albums.
When college time rolled around, Sarah decided on Berklee College of Music in Boston where she pursued a performance degree, and broadened her horizons with jazz, bluegrass, and composition. While not in class, she managed to keep busy with other musical activities, such as writing and premiering a suite for solo violin and orchestra, performing with Steven Tyler at the Berklee Performance Center, and performing with Charlie Haden and Michael Brecker at Carnegie Hall. Sarah’s college roommate claims she subsisted solely on popcorn and tea during this period.
Fate next took Sarah to Nashville, where she inked a multi-year record deal as part of the all-female country group Mustang Sally. While following the path of the road warrior and traveling across the U.S., Europe, and Asia, Sarah has opened for country music legends Blake Shelton, Miranda Lambert, Big and Rich, Dirks Bently, Neal McCoy, and Gretchen Wilson, among others, all the while entertaining her band-mates with knitting antics. In 2007 Sarah released “Fiddle Soup”, her first solo recording. In her rare free moments, Sarah enjoys teaching violin in Nashville, reading fantasy and science fiction novels, and watching Star Trek.