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Scott Alarik

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The traditional balladry of American and British folk music is resurrected through the performances of deep-voiced folk singer Scott Alarik. Accompanying himself with finger-picked guitar melodies, Alarik successfully captures the storytelling aspects of his tunes. While his between-song banter provides comical interlude, his mastery of the ballad style makes his performances a deeply personal experience. Alarik's earliest exposure to folk music came through his older brother, Steve, onetime manager of the Coffeehouse Extempore in Minneapolis. His political commitments continued to grow in the late 1960s. Refusing to register for the draft in 1969, he served a 19-month prison sentence beginning in 1971. After his release, Alarik turned his attention again to music. Releasing a solo album, Stories, in 1978, he became a semi-regular performer on early broadcasts of the National Public Radio show A Prairie Home Companion. His second album was recorded with the show's house band, the New Prairie Ramblers, in 1981. Moving to Boston shortly after the release of his third album, Simply Christmas, in 1983, he slowed down his career as a performer to focus on his work as a folk music critic for The Boston Globe. The founder of The New England Folk Almanac, he edited and wrote for the magazine from 1990 to 1997. Over the past few years, Alarik has increasingly performed in the coffeehouses and folk music clubs of New England. His latest album, Old Fashioned, was released on cassette in 1995. ~ Craig Harris


05 January 1951

Years Active:

'70s, '80s, '90s