Gail Swanson

Gail Swanson


A hard working, honest singer/songwriter with clear and serious goals. Swanson loves to write and perform and is grateful to a constantly growing, loyal fan base and opportunities she's blessed with.


Maui based singer/songwriter, Gail Swanson is one of Hawaii’s most dedicated rock performers.

She has opened for Melissa Etheridge, David Crosby, Lisa Loeb, The Doobie Brothers and has done numerous shows with Willie Nelson and Pat Simmons. She is known for her songwriting, her electric flute, smokey vocals and personal connection with her audiences.

In October, Gail will perform at the Maui Music Festival with Willie Nelson, and in November, look for her at the 3rd "Pat and Gail's Local Licks" show, an unplugged songwriter show for charity... special guests TBA.

Swanson independently releases, promotes and distributes her own music, a catalogue of four CD’s.

Her recent CD “Living in a Movie” won a prestigious Hawaiian music award, a “Na Hoku Hanohano” for BEST ROCK ALBUM OF THE YEAR. (Hawaiian Academy of Recording Artists) This CD features special guests, Willie Nelson and Patrick Simmons from the Doobie Brothers. The double CD includes 8 rock songs recorded in Nashville with a full band, and 8 acoustic songs recorded on Maui.

Gail's songs have also won awards in the John Lennon Songwriting Contest, The USA Songwriting Contest, Andelle Music Songwriting Contest and the BMI Kauai Music Festival.

Gail maintains a large and loyal fan base in Hawaii and all over the world who support her “alternative folk/rock” acoustic show when she comes to their town. She promotes her own career with help from her regional fan clubs, street teams and on the internet.

As an artist, Gail loves to tour and perform, but her career focus is diverse. As a songwriter, her goal is to have major label artists record her songs, and to have her material placed in film/TV.

Gail endorses Rainsong guitars, Yahama flutes, and Elixir Strings. Gail has also signed a contract with Chicken Soup for the Soul® and is the co-author of the upcoming book,
“Chicken Soup for the Music Lover’s Soul."
Contact Gail:

“Gail definitely has a bright future in songwriting.” – Carol Bayer Sager

"Wonderful voice, great guitars." Rosanne Cash

“She writes great songs!” Willie Nelson


Half a Heart

Written By: Gail Swanson

Half a Heart – Gail Swanson ©2001

A love song’s just a love song, till I sing it to you
Then it flies like a bird through my heart
A morning’s just a morning, till I wake up with you
Then it’s a song, and you’re the melody that leads me from the dark.

Everybody knows that I am
Half a heart, half a heart, half a heart without you
You are the song in me.

There was no beginning, no love at first sight
You’ve just always been here.
You are the reason I can dream when I’m asleep at night
You’re in my heartbeat, keeping me safe inside.


There was a time I tried to walk away and leave you
The air so cold I couldn’t breathe.
But now I know I turned around cause I believe you are the better half of me.


Even the Angels Cried

Written By: Gail Swanson

Even The Angels Cried – Gail Swanson ©2000

You can slip through a crack in my mind

Just as fast as a waterfall

And your love rushes over me
like you never left at all.

How can someone big as life
Leave my life feeling so small

Even the angels cried when they watched you take the fall.

Even the angels cried when they tried to get back, back to you.
Even the angels cried when they tried to get back, back to you.

You closed the door, pulled the shades and tried to hide

You threw away the key, but you found the demons were locked inside

When the silence was so loud you wanted to scream

You tried to run, but you’re feet were frozen, just like a bad, bad dream

And I know you thought of me just for a flash in time

And I hope you thought of me because it eases my mind

And I know you broke yourself free from the cold world outside

But it was a cold cold rain down on me when your angels cried.


If time’s the only shelter I will find in this storm

Let me close my eyes until the rain is finally gone

And let me sleep through the thunder, let me sleep through the years

Cause only time can wipe away these angel tears.


Couple in the Corner

Written By: Gail Swanson

The Couple in the Corner - Gail Swanson ©2001

I play the guitar in a burger bar.
There are no windows, so the notes just fly away.

My life story floats out to the boats and the people walking by,
But no one's listening to a word I say.

Except the couple in the corner and the waitress

Who smile at everything I do

And I can hear them clap when no one else is brave enough to.

I am your juke box baby
I play the songs you know
You can tune me in or tune me out, just like your radio.
Deep inside I know my music still belongs
To the couple in the corner and the waitress who knows all my songs.

Here’s a tune I’ve never done
My youngest tender one
The one that makes me cry every time I sing it live

I take a breath and go
And I fumble through the intro
And I feel like I could die

And I close my eyes and hope that they are listening

Yeah I close my eyes cause I can't bear to see

My heart and soul just floating through a room of people who don't notice me.


Now my moment turns to fear
As the last sound that I hear, the final strum of my guitar
Is drowned out by a passing car
Silence deafening, I stand there listening
I open up my eyes and scan the corner of the bar

But my couple's gone just like this scary moment
And it's time for all the tables to be turned
As I blink, a new couple smiles at me, and the waitress sings a perfect harmony.



Four CDS, the most recent listed first:

Living in a Movie - (Double CD)
Sign of the Times
Warm Heart in a Cold World
Standing on the Bridge

Streaming audio is available at

Set List

Headliner shows - All original material
Opening act - All original material
Parties/Clubs - Covers and Originals

I have a list of over 200 covers that I know, which include all genres and span generations so I can entertain varying audiences.