You Say It's Your Birthday: Sarah McLachlan

Today is the birthday of Sarah McLachlan, who was born in

1968 in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. McLachlan has created a worldwide

following with her enchanting voice and sensitive, introspective songwriting.

As a child she studied guitar, piano and voice, singing in a new wave band in

her teens; by the age of 17 a Canadian record company, Nettwerk, was knocking

at her door. But her parents said no, thank you -- so McLachlan's record deal

was stayed for two more years.

She debuted in 1988 with Touch,

which surprised everyone by selling 100,000 copies in Canada alone. She

followed in 1991 with Solace, then toured Canada and the US for a year

and a half before retiring to Vancouver for work on her third release. While

the first two albums were well-received by audiences, McLachlan opted for a

less pop-oriented feel on her next work, instead describing the process of

songwriting as "a kind of therapy." The result was 1993's Fumbling Toward

Ecstasy, a critically acclaimed effort featuring the hit "Possession," an

obsessed-fan rumination which landed her a spot in VH1 playlists. At the same

time, Fumbling revealed a lighter, less depressed side of artist.

McLachlan is expected to release a new album around the middle of 1997,

and is currently coordinating a summer festival tour called the Lillith Fair,

which will highlight female artists. Last year's tour included Lisa Loeb, Paula

Cole and Suzanne Vega. Other birthdays: Tim Newman (Ditch Croaker), Rick Wright

(Pink Floyd), Rick Allen (Box Tops), Dave Sharp (Alarm), DJ Muggs (Cypress

Hill) and actor Alan Alda. -- Beth Winegarner