Harris is fluent in reading and writing music and switched from her original instrument, the oboe, to the dulcimer in the mid-1970s. In making that switch, she became one of the foremost performers on that folk instrument, though at the time it seemed just a matter of expediency. She was married to John Kirkpatrick, a prominent melodeon virtuoso in England, was pregnant with their first son, and found herself unable to maintain the breath control needed to play the oboe. She performed on both instruments with the Albion Country Band on their debut album Battle of the Field (1976), and also recorded and performed as one half of a duet with Kirkpatrick. Harris has also performed with Richard and Linda Thompson, and has been a composer for the BBC on various broadcast plays, as well as for live theatre. She is also a singer and has written music for choral groups. More recently, in 2008 she was leader of the "Wild Angels Community Choir" in Welshpool, Powys, Wales.