Anne Harris is a singer/songwriter, violinist, recording artist, and actor based in Chicago, Illinois. She has independently produced and released four studio albums on her record label, Rugged Road Records: Anne Harris (2001), Open Your Doors (2003), Wine and Poetry (2005), and Gravity and Faith (2008). A live album, Live at the Acorn Theater, was also released in 2008. Her music has been described by various writers as incorporating a variety of influences, including traditional Celtic music, American folk-rock, Afrobeat, soul, and chamber music. For lack of a specific genre label, her work has been dubbed "conscious music" which refers to music and lyrics that have some basis in spiritual, humanist philosophy.
Harris grew up in Yellow Springs, Ohio, home of Antioch College, and the earthy, liberal, and progressive environment of her hometown remains an influence in her songwriting to this day. She began studying classical violin at the age of eight and eventually attended the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, where she earned a degree from the School of Music. After college, Harris moved to Chicago and worked as an actor in theater and commercials for a few years before returning to music around 1997. She worked for a while with a number of local Chicago bands, notably Poi Dog Pondering, building a strong reputation for her instrumental talent. Over time she began writing and performing her own music.
Along with her recorded work, Harris has since performed at the North by Northeast music festival in Toronto, Canada, has sung the US National Anthem at a Chicago Cubs baseball game, and was awarded "Album Artwork of the Year" honors at the 2006 DIY Music Festival in Los Angeles for her "Wine and Poetry" CD packaging.
Harris continues to play violin with other notable national artists. She's currently touring with trance-blues innovator and 2009 Blues Music Award winner, Otis Taylor, and also appears with Cathy Richardson Band and Jefferson Starship.
She is currently serving an elected term on the Board of Governors of the Chicago Chapter of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences.
Harris also appears as the character "Prudence" on three episodes of Jack's Big Music Show, a music-oriented children's television program on Noggin.
(Anne Harris with Otis Taylor at Poconos Blues Festival 2012)