Born in Philadelphia, Kevin Roth was a child prodigy, playing the piano by ear from the age of three. At thirteen he discovered the mountain dulcimer and fell in love with its sound and peaceful quality. Although the traditional music of the dulcimer is simple, Kevin’s musical background and interests ranged from Peter, Paul and Mary and The Mamas & the Papas, to jazz, classical, and world music. He followed his calling and developed a style of dulcimer playing completely his own.
This unique sound caught the ear of Moses Asch, legendary founder and director of Folkways Records, who signed Kevin in 1974, to what would become a twelve-album deal. Kevin quickly became known around the world as a leading innovative dulcimer player. His entire Folkways collection is now part of the Smithsonian Folkways label.
In the early eighties, Kevin began to write, record, and perform for children. His music career skyrocketed as he produced award-winning albums and made numerous television and concert appearances. He sang the theme song to the hit PBS/FOX television show, Shining Time Station, based on the character of Thomas the Tank Engine. He also wrote and sang the music for several of the series' music videos. Kevin has recorded for Sony Kids, Random House, National Geographic, and the Book-of-the-Month Club, to name a few.
His concert appearances and albums have carried him across the country and abroad, performing in solo and symphony concerts, music festivals, and the White House, and making television and radio appearances. Parent magazine wrote about Kevin, "...everything children's music should be - funny, sweet, entertaining and a little bit silly."
In 1984, Kevin formed his own label, Star Gazer Productions. He joined forces in 2006 with his long-time mentor, Noel Paul Stookey of Peter, Paul & Mary, to record a collection of songs based on Kevin's original artwork. The resulting CD/DVD collaboration, Between the Notes, garnered rave reviews.
His latest project for children is The Tales of Wabby. This brand line of storybooks and music fulfills a lifelong dream of Kevin's. "I wanted to find a way to reach children’s hearts while at the same time touching my own. In creating Wabby, I want to leave this world a legacy of joy and peace. We all have an inner Wabby who is always there whispering in our ear, "Trust your heart, follow your dreams and know that you are loved."
His new children's recording "My Quiet Times: Hammer Dulcimer Lullaby Instrumentas with Rain Forest" has just been released with rave reviews in Keyboard Magazine.