Carah Faye Charnow

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Carah Faye Charnow
Carah Faye 2016.jpg
Carah Faye performing in 2016
Background information
Also known as Carah Faye, Carah Charnow
Born (1984-08-03) August 3, 1984 (age 32)
Origin Newbury Park, California, United States
Genres Rock
Occupation(s) Singer, songwriter
Years active 2004–present
Associated acts Versant, Shiny Toy Guns

Carah Faye Charnow (born August 3, 1984, in Santa Barbara, California) is an American singer and songwriter. She is currently the female vocalist of the band Shiny Toy Guns (2004 – 2008, 2011 – present), with whom she scored a Grammy nomination, and is also currently the frontwoman/vocalist of the band Versant. After leaving the band in 2008, she officially returned as a vocalist for Shiny Toy Guns in February 2011.


Shiny Toy Guns (2004-2008)[edit]

Main article: Shiny Toy Guns

In 2004, Carah joined the indie/rock/electronica band Shiny Toy Guns. The band gained popularity in California as well as through their Myspace page.[1] On October 17, 2006, they released their first album, We Are Pilots (UNI-MOTOWN), after previously recording and independently releasing it two times with varying track lists. The album’s best-known tracks are "Le Disko", "You Are the One", and "Don't Cry Out". On December 6, 2007, We Are Pilots received a Grammy Award nomination in the category of Best Electronic/Dance Album. Carah remained the female vocalist of Shiny Toy Guns until she was released[clarification needed] in the summer of 2008.

Versant (2008-2012)[edit]

Main article: Versant (band)

After her release from Shiny Toy Guns, Carah started a new band, Versant.[2] Samples of their songs "Push Away," "Out Of Touch," "Quick Escapes," and "Heartbeats" were posted on their MySpace page, and the full versions are included on their self-released digital EP heartbeats ep, released on September 21, 2010.[3]

Shiny Toy Guns (again, 2011-present)[edit]

As of February 11, 2011, it was announced at the end of the Shiny Toy Guns' countdown timer in a YouTube video[4] that Carah was part of the band again. Her then-husband, Daniel, was also joining. Versant was also quoted on Facebook saying, "Boys and Girls, Carah Faye and Daniel Johansson, of your beloved Versant, are joining Shiny Toy Guns for album number three. Please enjoy this piece of music history! Here is another announcement: Shiny Toy Guns isn't going ANYWHERE!"[5] Carah Faye was featured in the band's music video of their new single "Waiting Alone," a song from their 2012 album III. The album's third single, "Somewhere to Hide," was written entirely by Carah.

On May 12, 2015, Carah received a BMI award for co-writing "Stay the Night," performed by Zedd and Hayley Williams.

As of early 2015, Carah is writing and recording a solo album, but assures fans that Shiny Toy Guns is still intact. A release date for the solo album has yet to be confirmed.

Carah is the featured vocalist in the song "Where Do We Go" in Lindsey Stirling's 2016 album Brave Enough.

Personal life[edit]

Carah was born in Santa Barbara and moved to Newbury Park at age 5. She started taking voice lessons at an early age and sang in a professional show choir called Fresh Chances for America for about four or five years (with performances at events and venues like the Reagan Library and Amway Diamond Convention).

She has said that her main musical influences were Ella Fitzgerald, Etta James and Nancy Sinatra, and also Whitney Houston and Björk, among the contemporary singers. Carah's earliest muse was her grandfather, Arnold Moselle, a World War II fighting captain who sang in a "big band-ish" group called The Nightingales. He used to sing lullabies to her including Frank Sinatra and Nat King Cole songs, and he encouraged her to pursue a musical career.

After high school, Carah's dream was to go to New York and attend The Juilliard School. Instead, she went to Moorpark College and "did some garage band stuff that didn't go anywhere". Through a friend she met Jeremy Dawson, who needed a vocalist to record dummy versions of pop songs he was writing for other artists.[6]

In early 2004, Jeremy Dawson invited Carah to sing with Shiny Toy Guns, which he'd formed with Chad Petree in 2002. She remained the female vocalist of this band until the summer of 2008, when she was released. Almost immediately after her sudden release from Shiny Toy Guns, her band Versant began to form in Sweden. In a February 2009 interview, Carah said that she spends most of her time in Sweden (Vänersborg) working on music for Versant and takes occasional trips back to California.

Carah was married to her ex-bandmate Daniel Johansson.

On February 11, 2011 it was revealed that Carah had re-joined Shiny Toy Guns as their co-lead singer and that Daniel Johansson had joined the band as well.

On May 10, 2012 Shiny Toy Guns announced that Daniel Johansson was no longer with the band, the main reason being the separation of his long-term relationship with Carah Faye.

Carah claims to be straight edge and to have never had a drink of alcohol.[7]


  1. ^ James Montgomery (September 29, 2006). "Shiny Toy Guns". MTV. Archived from the original on 2009-03-23. Retrieved 2009-04-30. 
  2. ^ Karen Lindell (May 15, 2009). "Charnow can't wait 'to show the world'". Ventura County Star. Retrieved 2009-05-16. 
  3. ^ "Versant MySpace page, run by Carah Faye Charnow.". Retrieved 2010-01-13. 
  4. ^ "Shiny Toy Guns | together again". YouTube. 2011-02-10. Retrieved 2014-01-12. 
  5. ^ "Facebook". Facebook. Retrieved 2014-01-12. 
  6. ^ Karen Lindell (June 7, 2007). "Shiny Toy Guns will target fans' hearts at Friday's Seaside Beach Ball". Retrieved 2009-04-27. 
  7. ^ "The Nick and Artie Show - Shiny Toy Guns - Interview". TheNickandArtieShow. October 2, 2012. Retrieved 2012-10-21.