Echo's Children Filk
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Echo's Children (Callie Hills and Cat Faber) is an acoustic duo that performs mostly at science fiction conventions. We write, arrange, and perform original songs about subjects that range from science fiction through science and technology to out-and-out fantasy.
Our first gig was to entertain a dozen princesses; we naturally joined forces in the face of so much royalty, and decamped from the area, winding up serenading some bemused peddlers instead. We have since traveled over much of the country, changing costumes and instruments frequently to throw off pursuit, while writing, arranging and performing songs about subjects ranging from fairies and gypsies to computers and spaceships. Many of these performances, until now only seen in the wild, have been captured on digital media, and are displayed in lifelike settings and attitudes on Under the Gripping Beast, our first CD (released at OVFF in 1997), As Good As Any, released at BaltiCon in 1999, and A Dancing World, released at LepreCon in 2001.
Many of our song lyrics, and audio samples from our CDs, are available via our website, http://www.echoschildren.org . Please stop by and visit sometime!
Since moving to Oregon in 1985, Arlene 'Callie' Hills has performed in a variety of amateur and semi-professional ensembles. In addition to performing regularly with Cat Faber as "Echo's Children", she has founded two Renaissance consorts (one of which, Belles-Anges, she is still active in) and two madrigal groups. Callie's formal musical education includes two years each of piano and flute lessons, two years study in music theory, history and performance at the University of Oregon School of Music, and two years of voice lessons, still ongoing. She is self-taught on recorders, pennywhistles, and guitar (in descending order of skill...). When not rehearsing or performing, she pursues a myriad of interests including Renaissance costuming, both as costume designer and creator for Echo's Children and Belles-Anges, and as one of her areas of study in the Society for Creative Anachronism (SCA).
Cat Faber began writing filk before she knew what it was. She claims her first filk was written at the age of six or seven, but steadfastly refuses to say what it was or what it was about. When she took up the guitar at the age of 15, she suddenly had a way to write melodies down, and a simple way to stay in key while composing. Her main forum was the Society for Creative Anachronism, in which she gained the beginnings of her performing experience. She attended her first con (an Orycon, she thinks) at about this time, but owing to the expense did not become a regular con-goer for many years more. She has performed in several choirs and madrigal groups in various states, and founded and helped run one in Amarillo Texas, where she also got her Ph.D. in Molecular Biology. She joined up with Arlene "Callie" Hills in 1996, when they discovered their vocal ranges, musical instruments, and lyrical and compositional talents to be complementary. Their first engagement really was to play for a dozen (or so) Princesses. Ask them about it sometime.