Violet Bell weaves roots, soul, psychedelic, and classical music into a lush, wild soundscape. On stage and in the studio, the North Carolina duo of Lizzy Ross (guitar, banjo, vocals) and Omar Ruiz-Lopez (violin, viola, cello, guitar, mandolin, vocals) share magnetic chemistry. The two have played more than 300 shows from Montreal to Miami in just over two years, honing the fiery intimacy of their live show and a building a steadily growing fanbase.
Violet Bell cut their debut LP Honey in My Heart with engineer Jason Richmond (Avett Brothers, Steep Canyon Rangers, Nneena Freelon, Dom Flemons, Bombadil). The songs were recorded live in single takes, without isolation, click tracks, or vocal tuning. The sound is dynamic and many-colored, spanning styles. Full of personality, Honey in My Heart feels consistent with the duo’s true selves as opposed to hidden behind studio wizardry.
Violet Bell was an official Americanafest 2018 showcasing artist. Since forming in March 2016, Violet Bell has been presented at venues and festivals such as WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour, The Center for the Study of the American South, Rooster Walk Festival, Shakori Hills Grassroots Festival, Ocrafolk Festival, the Charleston Bluegrass Festival, the Festival for the Eno, the Beaufort Music Festival, the Burlington Carousel Festival, the Haw River Ballroom, Folk Alliance International, and many more.
Violet Bell has worked with KidzNotes, the Wake Forest Community Youth Orchestra, The Jacksonville Children’s Chorus, the University of Mary Washington’s James Farmer Multicultural Fair, the Savannah Folk Music Society, and others to engage communities of all ages in educational and inspiring workshops.
Violet Bell was born in 2016, when singer-songwriter Ross recruited Ruiz-Lopez as a multi-instrumentalist for a live album recording show… two weeks before the show. Ruiz-Lopez slayed the performance and brought out a new dimension of beauty in the music. Violet Bell released their debut EP Dream the Wheel in 2017 and have been playing ever since.
Ruiz-Lopez began performing professionally in 2008 with acts such as Jonathan Byrd, Steph Stewart and the Boyfriends, Sinful Savage Tigers, and Chocolate Suede, and has composed and performed several original pieces for the Durham Symphony Orchestra. His experience in orchestrating and arranging allows Violet Bell to perform with chamber and orchestral ensembles, expanding opportunities for partnership across the globe.
Lizzy Ross has released three full-length albums of original music under her own name, been a two-time Kerrville New Folk finalist, and won Floydfest’s On the Rise contest, a Carolina Music Award, and an Emerging Artist Grant from the Durham Arts Council. Ross studied music and arts entrepreneurship at UNC Chapel Hill, and toured solo and with Lizzy Ross Band from 2009 - 2016.