Born and raised on a farm in rural South Carolina, Carroll’s first music influences were church music and what scatterings he could pick up from the night time radio. His mother was the church pianist and taught him his first chords on the guitar. This gift of music would be his constant companion. His first performances were playing guitar and singing in his pre-teen years in his home church.
Traditional southern gospel and bluegrass would give way to Jim Croce and James Taylor as he entered college. The first paying jobs were to pay for the tuition but would pave the way for his life’s work. His college years were filled with music courses and performances in a variety of groups and venues. His broadcasting degree would qualify him to be a recording engineer which was to be his ticket to the music business. He first tested the waters in New York but opted for Nashville, Tennessee. There he worked with songwriters and music publishing and in various studios recording and helping produce nationally released records.
Family matters and money matters brought him back to South Carolina and back to performing in 1981. He settled in Charleston, where he started a recording studio and music publishing business. “Charleston Recording” would become the largest studio in lower South Carolina. A steady gig at the Mills House Hotel helped to pay for his growing family and the dream that refused to die. He released his “Carroll Brown Live” cassette while working there. He produced over sixty albums on both regional and national acts and built an impressive resume. The last album he produced before he sold the business was his own “Roots and Wings” project. It’s the story of a farm boy who is driven from home by a dream only to eventually return to his roots.
Those roots include Irish blood and his intense interest in the Irish music led to visits to his ancestral homeland and the release of his “Songs of Ireland project” in 1998.
Other recordings include the 1999 “River of Love” with Carroll’s Charleston band “Ace Basin” which received a notable amount of airplay nationwide and in several European countries on Country and Western stations. In 2000 a holiday project with Frank Emerson, & Harry O’Donoghue “A Christmas Postcard” kicked off an annual holiday concert tour which has continued to grow in popularity each year. In 2002 he recorded a nostalgic acoustic project similar in sentiment to “Roots & Wings” called “The Old King Edward Box.” In 2003 two projects were released: a live solo Irish project called “Pub Favorites” and an instrumental guitar project of familiar Southern songs called “Melodies of the Old South” with guitarist, Mike Davis. Other projects followed including "Homegrown Love," which is a compilation project of favorites picked from Carroll's previous studio recording projects. A new Holiday project was released for the 2007 Christmas tour with Harry O'Donoghue. It's called "Nollaig, an Irish Christmas" and was very well received. Two projects with numerous unreleased originals followed. "Songwriter" in 2008, and "Sweet Savannah Nights" in 2011, which is one of the most requested songs at his shows and the most often purchased disc. 2013 saw the completion of a long overdue "Irish" studio project. "Closer To The Top Of The World" has a variety of Irish folk and Irish pub songs. It was quickly one of the most often purchased discs. 2014 was yet another busy year and included the annual visit to Ireland which included a return to Scotland. 2014 also saw the production and release of a third Christmas project, "Stillness In The Air," featuring Carroll and his frequent music partner Harry O'Donoghue.
Today Carroll and his wife and partner all these years, live on the family farm where he was raised. Not much time for farming, but the gift his mother gave him is still his passion. He is still performing full time in venues and festivals around the Southeastern U.S. and he is still writing songs and working to realize the dream that captivated him so long ago.
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