Washington State-based violinist/violist Anna Schaad began studying piano and violin at the age of five. She was a member of the Seattle Youth Symphony for four years, and while still in high school, studied with violist Paul Coletti at the University of Washington. She attended Evergreen State College, graduating with a degree in American History in 1991. Settling in Bellingham, WA, she expanded her musical interests to the popular styles of Celtic, blues, folk, and bluegrass, and she played and recorded with several bands in the area, including the Clumsy Lovers and Tom Landa & the Paperboys. She also began doing session work, appearing on albums by Dana Lyons (and composing the song "If I Had Known" on his album Cows with Guns), Lisa Thiel, Casey Neill, Big Brother & the Holding Company, Joanne Rand, and John Reinhold. On May 1, 1998, she released her debut album, The Raven Project, through her Raven Fiddle Productions label. Her second album, Songspell (September 1, 1999), was co-credited to Canadian multi-instrumentalist David MacVittie. The Journey appeared on October 4, 2001. Moving to Anacortes, WA, and marrying Navy pilot Jeff Montgomery, Schaad took her time preparing for her next album. On Dream Within a Dream, released after an eight-year gap on June 2, 2009, she incorporated various techno and hip-hop elements into her music.
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