Barbara Jean grew up immersed in a world of music and sound, honing her early gift for the violin, and a musical legacy passed from grandmother to mother to daughter, into a sharp eye for songwriting and a skilled hand as a multi-instrumentalist. Calling the rugged grandeur of Lake Superior's North Shore home for the last several years, she has developed her craft through constant live performance and has struck out on her own to take her debut record, The Great Escape, to fans all across the Midwest. Classically trained on the viola at the University of Minnesota, and self-taught at the banjo, her voice and songs transcend tradition with a mix of Americana, Appalachia, and an insightful vulnerability in lyric and delivery.
After winning the songwriting competition in 2011 at Big Top Chautauqua and making honorable mention in the 2012 Telluride Troubadour Contest, Barbara Jean earned a slot on the prestigious Mountain Stage radio show, and has shared bills with such notable acts as Trampled By Turtles, The Pines, Low, Jonathan Edwards, Meg Hutchinson, Eilen Jewell, Martha Scanlan and more. Performing solo, as a duo, or in larger ensembles, she brings a grace and comfort to the stage at once disarming and captivating, gaining her a burgeoning audience and high praise from her peers. With the release of her first record, the sky is the limit for this stellar songstress as she takes her songs and her sounds to wider and wider audiences.