Bio

“A solid instrumentalist of outstanding calibre with undoubted star quality whose passionate voice rings in your head long after you have stopped listening.”
fRoots Magazine

TRADITIONAL SINGER / ACCORDIONIST SONGWRITER / GUITAR ACCOMPANIST

High-energy one-woman band Mary Beth Carty performs humourous, romantic party songs on accordion and stomping board, taking her audience on a musical journey from Paris to Eastern Europe to Brazil to Cape Breton Island. An equally talented guitarist, Mary Beth remains true to her Scottish, Irish, and Acadian roots, performing astonishing traditional songs from the depths of Canadianna. Also a percussionist on musical bones, or clappers, there is no lack of variety in Mary Beth’s live show. On stage, she is a captivating and heartfelt performer.

Known for her passionate, memorable voice, Antigonish Nova Scotia’s Mary Beth Carty was nominated Traditional Singer of the Year at the 2009 Canadian Folk Music Awards for her duo album Voici… Bette & Wallet, recorded in Quebec City. Her debut CD, Les biens-nommés, is a flavorful palette of sounds to be released on February 14th 2017. Produced and recorded by Mary Beth and percussionist Brendan Melchin, this fresh, singular album offers an energetic escape from the ordinary!

Mary Beth has performed throughout Canada, as well as in Congo, Rwanda, Austria, Italy, Switzerland, and along the Eastern Seaboard as a cruiseship entertainer on both Norwegian and Holland America lines.

As well as being a remarkable solo-artist, Mary Beth is a sought-after accompanist for Celtic fiddle music. Her percussive, driving, yet sensitive style of guitar accompaniment in DADGAD tuning has earned invitations to share the stage with fiddlers Ashley MacIsaac, Gillian Boucher, Howie MacDonald, Shannon Quinn, Lisa MacArthur, Cassie MacDonald, Colin Grant, Gillian Head, and Ward MacDonald, to name a few.

Following the demise of her successful folk duo Bette & Wallet, who performed at major festivals throughout Canada and France and gained critical and popular acclaim with their debut album, Mary Beth was encouraged by several French language mentors to continue song-writing in her second language. As Artist in Residence at Festival de la Chanson de Tadoussac, Petite-Vallée, and Festival Stella, Mary Beth honed her skills and began creating a collection of songs bearing the names of imaginary characters; Felix, Anthony, Clare, Juanita, Henri, and so on.

She has added to this collection a couple of traditional pieces; Malvina, a traditional song from Cheticamp, and Jules, a gypsyesque arrangement of Quebecois tune Le Clog a ‘ti Jules, to create an album that is fresh, energetic, and danceable, combining vivid lyrics with worldly rhythms stemming from Klezmer, Brazilian, and Manouche traditions. This debut, Les bien-nommés (The well-named, play on words with les bien-aimes, the beloved), will be released this fall. The album features a full accoustic band including the inimitable Donald MacLennan on violin as well as the Melchin brothers on double bass and percussion and Benedict Lafford on mixing.

Stay tuned for CD release tour dates!