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- Alison Krauss
- Decatur IL
- United States
- Great Voice Pretty Smile And Great Girl Next Door Look.
Alison Krauss was born on July 23, 1971 in Decatur, Illinois, but she was raised in Champaign, Illinois. Her parents encouraged Alison and her brother, Viktor, to play musical instruments at a young age. When she was five, Alison began by studying classical violin, but once she was exposed to bluegrass music a short time later, Alison fell in love with fiddling.
Alison started entering local talent contests at age 8, and two years later, she had her own band. At 12 years of age, she won the Illinois State Fiddle Championship, and the Society for the Preservation of Bluegrass in America voted her the Most Promising Fiddler in the Midwest.
When Alison was 14, she was already recording. She played on a record made by her brother called Different Strokes in 1985, and that same year, she signed with Rounder Records. Her debut came in 1987, with the critically acclaimed Too Late to Cry, which featured Alison's back-up band, Union Station. As part of her contract with Rounder, Alison followed that "solo" album with one by Alison Krauss & Union Station, Two Highways (1989).
Alison's next solo recording, I've Got That Old Feeling (1990), began to lay the foundations for her remarkable future success. Blending a driving bluegrass base with a more soothing country polish, the album won a Grammy for Best Bluegrass Recording, and the International Bluegrass Music Association named Alison Female Vocalist of the Year. In 1993, Alison became the youngest member of the Grand Ole Opry, and the first bluegrass musician to join in 29 years.
Throughout the 1990s, Alison Krauss dominated bluegrass. By herself and with Union Station, Alison released five more albums that decade. Every Time You Say Goodbye (1992) and 1994's I Know Who Holds Tomorrow (with the Cox Family) were followed by Now That I've Found You: A Collection (1995). This album was the first bluegrass record since the soundtrack to Deliverance (1972) to go gold, and wound up as the first-ever to go double platinum, with over two million copies sold. So Long, So Wrong (1997) and the adult-contemporary-flavored Forget About It (1999) rounded out the decade.
It wasn't until 2000 that bluegrass and Alison Krauss exploded into the mainstream. The soundtrack to the Coen Brothers' film O Brother Where Art Thou? was a phenomenal success, and it featured Alison on the tracks "I'll Fly Away" and "Down to the River to Pray." The film also featured Union Station member Dan Tyminski as the singing voice of George Clooney on "I Am a Man of Constant Sorrow."
The O Brother Where Art Thou? soundtrack sold an astonishing seven million copies, and won a Grammy for Album of the Year in 2002. More importantly, the soundtrack -- along with its follow-up album, Down From the Mountain (2001), and tour -- exposed Alison Krauss and her colleagues to a wider audience than ever before.
But Alison didn't ever slow down. She released New Favorite (2001), Live (2002) and Lonely Runs Both Ways (2004), and served as a producer for Nickel Creek. She's also produced The Cox Family, and has collaborated with musicians of every genre, from Yo-Yo Ma to Sting.
In addition to O Brother, Alison has been heard in the movies Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood (2002), Mona Lisa Smile (2003) and Cold Mountain (2003). The three Grammy Awards Alison won in 2006 for Lonely Runs Both Ways brought her trophy count to 20 Grammys in total, more than any other woman. And that doesn't include the special achievement award presented to Alison in 2005 by the Recording Academy.
Alison Krauss 2009 Grammy Awards
Alison Krauss and Robert Plant, who took home four awards, including Album of the Year for their album, Raising Sand, Record Of The Year (for "Please Read The Letter" ), Best Pop Collaboration With Vocals (for "Rich Woman"), and Best Country Collaboration With Vocals (for "Killing The Blues").