Chuck Michaelson moved to Portland, Oregon last year from Gainesville, Florida, where he was a part of the music teaching and performing community for more than 25 years. Originally from Chicago, he completed his BA in Music History and Masters of Music (MM) at the University of Florida. Through his studio, Helios Music Enterprises, he's taught students of all ages and levels in piano, guitar, organ, flute, digital keyboards, recorder and ukulele. Chuck has worked in many different musical settings over the years, including classic rock groups, mainstream jazz, blues, country, funk, and R&B. Before devoting himself to music full time, he worked as a radio announcer hosting various shows on public radio, including "Nothing but the blues", Montage (jazz), and Musica Antiqua (Renaissance and Medieval). Among the bands he's worked with: the classic rock groups The Dormant Spores and Sanity Clause; the funk/rock outfit Monkiez Strikin' Matchez, and the acoustic jazz group The Bluebird Jazz Sextet. Currently he performs with the NOPO (North Portland) Big Band and as a soloist. He also hosts a weekly radio show on Portland's KMHD called "Hard Choices" every Saturday from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. Some of Chuck's most memorable gigs include opening for legendary Texas bluesman Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown while with Monkiez and earning a slot at the Pensacola Jazz Festival with The Bluebird Jazz Sextet only three months after the group formed. Banjo master Bela Fleck and the Flecktones and organist Joey DeFrancesco were also on that bill.
Over the years, solo performances have been a constant for Chuck and now they are the largest part of his creative work. He is always working up new material, including arrangements of cover songs and original piano instrumentals. Inspirations include the classic songwriting of The Beatles, Paul Simon, and Steely Dan. His instrumental pieces are infused with elements of classical music, blues, and jazz.
Live: acoustic piano or Privia 88-key digital piano controlling Macbook with various softsynths;
Studio: acoustic piano, electric piano, acoustic guitars, organ, button accordion, softsynths, percussion toys
Chuck is currently working on an album of piano-centric instrumentals called "At the rainbow's end", slated for release in December 2012. The title was inspired by a double rainbow he and his wife encountered while driving along the spectacular Northern Peninsula of Newfoundland, Canada.
A typical setlist mixes original piano instrumentals with arrangements of pop songs and jazz standards. Here is a sampling of the cover tunes:
CAPTAIN APRIL (Liz Story)
CEORA (Lee Morgan)
JAMES (Pat Metheny)
JOSIE (Steely Dan)
LADY MADONNA (The Beatles)
NY STATE OF MIND (Billy Joel)
DON’T YOUR WORRY ‘BOUT A THING (Stevie Wonder)
SONG FOR MY FATHER (Horace Silver)
REVELATION (The Yellowjackets)
There are no upcoming dates at this time.