Caroline Parke found her love for the fiddle a few years after moving to Tulliby Lake in 2012 with her husband and four children. Parke started writing music and did her first recording session with Ray Gathercole in Holden, Alberta, over Christmas and New Years in 2019.
“I was going to the old time jams in the area, they used to have them regularly in Islay, Heinsburg, here in Tulliby Lake, La Corey, Elk Point, and Elizabeth settlement. I played guitar and sang, but I noticed that everyone played guitar, so that’s why I got into fiddle music,” said Parke.
In 2019 Parke and her family went through a traumatic experience when strangers entered their property at nighttime. While on the phone with the RCMP, Parke dropped her phone after being startled when someone came out of the shadows from the flower beds, attacked her, and then ran into her house where her four young children were sleeping, and slammed the door. To protect her children, Parke retaliated against the attacker, receiving minor injuries. The RCMP arrived approximately 30 minutes after Parke’s initial phone call.
“The police response time is often long and unpredictable because of our location. I went out on the deck to talk to my father-in-law, and then he drove off after we spotted, what we thought was the getaway car. I stood on the deck and dialed 911 to make sure they knew the event was at multiple houses,” stated Parke.
In the following months after the attack, Parke found it hard to be comfortable in her own home. “Daytime was hard, because I was always looking out the windows to see if there were people in the yard. Nighttime was hard for the exact same reason. To top it off, I had four children that needed me and I could not communicate well with them because I always felt light-headed. I would make supper and just go in the bedroom and close the door,” said Parke.
However, Parke found moments of peace when she was alone with her guitar and started writing joyful songs in October of 2019, which lead to releasing an album in May 2020 called The Road. Parke was nominated for five awards through the International Singer-Songwriter Association including; International Female Rising Star, International Album of the Year, and International Female Single of the Year-Oklahoma Between, International Female Songwriter of the Year, and International Female Emerging Artist of the Year.
“Since releasing that album, I have released the single ‘Oklahoma Between’ on November 3 2020, as well as ‘Sharing of Each Other’ on February 28 2021. The next single I am releasing is called ‘Ranchin’, and it is slated to be released on May 1 along with my first music video that features ‘Life On The Farm’ at the Parke Family Ranch. I’m also working on a singer-songwriter album that I hope to release next spring. It would possibly be called ‘Walk With Me’,” said Parke.
Voting is open until April 30. And the top 15 nominees will be considered with the judges with the award ceremony taking place early August. To vote, follow this link: https://www.poll-maker.com/QTQKDZZX8
Caroline Parke posing with guitar. Photo submitted