Kurt Michaels career highlights include work with: The Platters, The Coasters, The Drifters, The Temptations, Bobby Vinton, Spencer Davis, Badfinger, Otis Day, Wolfman Jack and others....and is available for your concert, college, club and festival date....by himself performing solo, or with his band.
Michaels has just released his 3rd solo cd "Soaring Back To Earth" which will feature Michaels' lead vocals and guitar work throughout accompanied by his longtime band mates, Jim Gully on keyboards, Christ Andronis on bass, Steve Vining (who also co-produced the cd) on bass, keyboards & background vox and Len Szymanski on drums with prominent guest performances by Billy Sherwood (Yes & Circa), Michael Sherwood (Air Supply) and Tom Brislin (Meatloaf, Blondie & Yes). The five audio tracks posted on this page are previews of the "Soaring" material.
Soaring Back To Earth is the third cd release for Chicago singer/songwriter & guitarist Kurt Michaels. Michaels, a touring veteran has enjoyed a succesful career as a musical contrator & bandleader for many well known legendary rock acts, such as Spencer Davis, Joey Molland (Badfinger) Wolfman Jack, Otis Day, The Temptations, The Platters and many others.
Soaring Back To Earth covers a diverse musical landscape: from early English pop influences to virtual tone poems with smoky ambient arrangments for guitar and rock band. Strong influences include The Beatles, Yes, Steven Wilson (Porcupine Tree),Todd Rundgren, Flaming Lips & Muse.
While Michaels guitar, vocals & writing are featured on the cd, there is participation throughout by alumnus from legendary rock icons Yes, who include:
Billy Sherwood (Yes, Circa & YOSO
Michael Sherwood (Air Supply & Yes)
Tom Brislin (Meatloaf, Debbie Harry, Renaissance & Yes)
Michaels' writing on this cd is directed at conveying some very real life cycle stories and reflects a wide gamut of adult emotions, ranging from the innocense of a young couple in love starting out starting out their life together in "It's Our Time"....trying to find a way to make things right with someone whom things have gone extremely wrong with in "Let's Try"....the insecurity of facing serious challenges and feeling very alone in "Will You Be There?"....and the deeply personal accounting of Michaels' reflections on his younger brothers untimely death in 2008 in two songs that are bookended together at the end of the cd. The first, "Didn't Get To Say Goodbye" is a powerful trip to one’s core depicting the initial grief & mourning, that evokes a bittersweet reflection of a bond broken too soon, with a musicality that fills a space between ambient and alternative. The feel is a ballad during a walk down a narrow passage on a damp night, stepping over shards of glass, remembering days that held sun, and a goodbye that never took place. An evocative stroll that builds from the plaintive guitar to an inevitable finish and a final chord – unresolved – . The last track on the cd, "The Epilogue: Hearts & Thoughts" shows the evolution of that grief that occurs over time, where you heal and learn to smile again (even if it's a bittersweet smile)....facing what lays ahead. You don't forget, but you do move on.
Michaels launched the cd with a 7/15/11 performance in Nashville, TN to an enthusiastic audience that traveled from many different parts of the country to experience a performance that one audience member described as a "transcendent and very moving".
Relase date: July 15th, 2011
1. Give Yourself Time
2. It's Time To Let Go
3. It's Our Time
4. Does This Come Up For You?
5. Words On A Page
6. Let's Try
7. Make Me Whole Again
8. Will You Be There?
9. Didn't Get To Say Goodbye
10. The Epilogue: Hearts & Thoughts
Influences include: The Beatles, Yes, Police, Jimi Hendrix, Jeff Beck, Tom Petty, Bob Dylan, Frank Zappa, Queen, Muse, Radiohead, Dave Matthews, Led Zeppelin, James Brown, Pink Floyd, Genesis and Ernest Tubbs & Junior Brown!
Inner Worlds part one - Eitux Records released in 2003
The Second Attention - A.M.Y. cd (compilation)
Portals III - Progressive Music Society (compilation)
Outer Worlds - Umbrello Records released in 2007
Soaring Back To Earth - released July 15/2011
all tracks from Inner Worlds and Outer Worlds are in rotation on AOL and Yahoo radio on progressive and ambient channels, as well as being played on over 50 land air and internet stations.
There are 3 elements to what we are capable of doing.
1. improvised instrumental soundscapes (2 musicians)
2. New, original vocal material done w/ full 5 piece band. (We have an hours worth of this music)
3. We sprinkle in covers from artists like the Beatles, Jimi Hendrix, Moody Blues, Asia, Jeff Beck and more, that vary from show to show.
We are trying to emphasise the new & original material, as we will have a new cd that we will be promoting come the summer of 2011. We are flexible on our presentation, depending on the time slot that needs to be covered and who the audience is.