Susan Cohen
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Susan Cohen

West Islip, New York, United States

West Islip, New York, United States
Band Folk Singer/Songwriter

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Discography

Grand Folk Railroad - True North LP
Wildflowers - Housewife From Hell LP

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Bio

There was an 8-year-old girl growing up on Long Island who was told she couldn't sing in the chorus at school because her voice wasn't good enough. Every day she waited in the hall outside the practice room listening to rehearsals, learning every part. But in junior high everything changed, and the years of listening and learning paid off. There was a music teacher who saw something that the other teachers didn't, and Susan was given the chance to not only sing in the chorus, but carry all the solos as well. He was also the band teacher and gave Susan the opportunity to learn to play alto sax, soprano sax and oboe - she already played flute and piano. This was the confidence that a young girl needed.

Then it was on to folk music and songwriting, listening to Joan Baez, Phil Ochs and Bob Dylan - alongside the Beach Boys, the Beatles, the entire British Invasion and Motown. Country music started to catch her ear and into the night she could pull in radio stations from far away playing George Jones, Tammy Wynette and Loretta Lynn. College opened up even more music genres - blues, bluegrass, rock - and classical music was always a part of her background.

For a short stint Susan worked closely with columnist and record industry consultant Al Aaronowitz to help produce the Country In New York series, and subsequently opened for such acts as Merle Haggard and Buck Owens.

She teamed up with her friend, Elly Wininger, and they became Wildflowers. Occasionally known as The Heavenly Bodies, they sang back-up vocals for country artists who came to NY, such as Tanya Tucker. They continued to play all over the NY metro area until the inevitable happened - they both became moms!

Being a Long Island mom isn't very glamorous, and most of the other moms on the playground just don't get it when you say you're a singer/songwriter, so when Susan settled into suburbia her music went on the back burner. That's not to say she wasn't writing songs and recording. During this time she and Elly teamed up with the late Steve Burgh on their LP, Housewife From Hell.

By and by the kids grew up, Elly moved away, and Susan found the growing folk scene on Long Island. Now she's writing, recording, and playing with her band, Grand Folk Railroad.