Cari Norris’ music stems from the traditions of her grandmother, the late Lily May Ledford, original leader of the first all-women string band in radio, The Coon Creek Girls. Cari performs ancient ballads as well as original songs on guitar, clawhammer banjo, and mountain dulcimer. She has studied with master Appalachian musicians such as Jean Ritchie, Lee Sexton, Rich Kirby, and Sue Massek, as well as Kentucky composer, Daniel Dutton. Cari has appeared all over Kentucky, in surrounding states, and in New England at festivals, concerts, teaching workshops and school programs. She has been featured on several Kentucky Educational Television programs such as Kentucky Life, Mixed Media, and Jubilee, in which she performed with Jean Ritchie.
Cari’s performance is both energetic and reflective, even meditative in quality. Being rocked to sleep as a child by the plaintive Kentucky mountain ballads of her grandmother forever marked her musical sensibilities with what has been described as the "lonesome mountain sound." Cari has produced three solo recordings, Morning and Night, Cari’s Old Christmas, and In and Out of the Garden. She co-produced the widely acclaimed solo recording of Lily May Ledford entitled, Gems, which is available on JuneAppal Records. Cari is also a quilter and painter, and has a Masters Degree in Art Education. She feels a calling to teach the music and art traditions which have been handed down to her from family, fellow musicians, and friends.