rises like an angel from the ashes with a voice to match" The Guardian
"The voice of her generation" Steve Knightley
"Chris While is the best singer in the UK" Barbara Dickson
People will try to compare Chris While's voice to others but as Folk Roots wrote of her, "She learns from many, takes from few and comes away her own woman".She is described as a singer's singer and a great guitarist and although her songs have been covered by many other artists, she is the definitive interpreter of her own extremely personal songs.
She has always been a singer performing round the folk clubs of her hometown , Barrow-in-Furness. She left Barrow with her ex-husband, pianist and songwriter Joe While and they travelled the country as a duo. After their divorce in 1991 she set her sights on a solo career.
In 1993 she joined The Albion Band as lead singer and the following years brought her voice and songs to a much wider audience both in the U.K. and inthe international arena. Chris made four albums with the band writing or co-writing most of the material.
She left the band in 1997 to persue a full time career with Julie Matthews. During this time she also co-wrote (along with Ashley Hutchings and Phil Beer) over forty new English folk songs for the TV series The Ridge Riders presented by Nick Knowles.
Chris has five solo albums, 'Still on fire' 1991, 'By Request' 1992, 'Look at me now' 1993, 'In the Big Room' 1997 and her latest, 'Rosella Red' 2007 .
In 1999 at the first BBC Radio 2's prestigious Folk Music Awards, Chris's song The Light in my Mothers Eye was nominated in the best song category.
Over the years Chris has made many appearances with Fairport Convention and in 2007 she was asked to take the place of the late Sandy Denny to re-create the classic Fairport album 'Liege & Lief' with the original 1969 line-up at Cropredy Festival in front of 30,000 fans.
Chris annually tours with her daughter Kellie While, lead singer with the Albion Band and E2k. They currently have 2 albums together, the eponymously titled Chris & Kellie While and their latest album Too Few Songs www.chrisandkelliewhile.co.uk.
Chris's latest album Rosella Red was released in the autumn of 2007 to rave reviews.
“She has the heart of a poet and the eyes of a painter. Her writing is literate, credible, forthright and honest. Her voice is beautiful, a term I very rarely use when describing the deliveries of most singers. It is emotion packed without ever being melodramatic, compassionate without being needlessly sentimental, damning when she fervently believes certain issues need to be confronted head on, but always making for compelling listening. A quite superb album from one of the most notable women, currently living up to the reputation she has quite painstakingly built over a number of years in the contemporary folk scene.”
Maverick Magazine (five stars)