Folk/pop songs that stay in your head... imagine Paul Simon after years of following Phish.


Singer/songwriter, Hines, loves music, always had, always will. As a kid growing up in a Chicago suburb, music affected his life early on: beginning with Disney songs in kindergarten and evolving into Metal bands in junior high. As Hines matured so did his musical tastes. Phish became the catalyst that helped Hines discover bands like The Beatles and The Grateful Dead, and artists like Paul Simon, Bob Dylan, and Gillian Welch, (just to name a few)… all of which have impacted Hines’ original music. Maybe even more importantly Hines learned to respect and investigate all genres of music.

The story that most musicians tell is of one continuous path toward their final musical destination. Hines’ story follows a more disjointed path. Although he loved the idea of being in a band in high school, he was not convinced that music was to be his life. His first college experience was in Los Angeles studying film at USC, but he found himself spending more time involved with music than film. So, Hines relocated to Boston and began attending the Berklee College Of Music to study songwriting. Two years into his stay at Berklee, Hines was once again on the road. This time he ended up in Boulder, Colorado and spent the next three years working at a brew/pub. Now armed with a huge backlog of stories and experiences and the maturity to be committed to what he knew was in his heart, Hines moved back to his hometown of Chicago and began to write.

After years of working unfulfilling jobs, Hines decided it was time to pay the bills as a full time musician. As luck would have it, one of Hines’ favorite sandwich shops, Potbelly, was looking for lunchtime acoustic acts. Two years later Hines has amassed well over 1,000 hours of live performances at various Potbelly’s around Chicago. All this “paid practice” as Hines puts it, has given him years of live performance experience in a very short time. Dozens of original and hundreds of cover songs later, Hines was ready to record an album.

In Kindergarten, appropriately named because that’s where it all began, is Hines’ debut album. It showcases his folk/pop style and hints at many other genres with lyrics that tell a story. The thirteen original songs are an eclectic mix from the upbeat, ‘wanna dance to’ song like Oh Why to San Diego, a Dylanesque ballad of love and life, to the jazz driven, Kindergarten. He’s an artist that put every part of himself into the project having single-handedly written, performed, recorded, produced, and mixed the entire album.

One of the most difficult things for an artist to do is to describe their music. When Hines says “imagine Paul Simon after years of following Phish” he means it. Taking a cue from Phish, Hines’ goal is for every live performance to be unique. A different setlist each night, fun cover songs, and most importantly a show where fans have fun and leave wanting more.


San Diego

Written By: Hines

She saw the sunrise in San Diego
But it was too late for him
He had pledged his life to her so many years ago
On a cloudless night behind a high school gym
Didn’t seem Sarah was ready
Johnny knew just what to say
A perfect choice of words
And she leapt into his arms
He could do nothing wrong
Sarah she had never felt so safe
Palm trees grow in San Diego
And we sure can’t see them here
Johnny mentioned this to her at least a thousand times
Each time that a new day would begin
The sun has barely broke horizon
And days they aren’t meant for dreams
I’m late for work, I missed my bus
So let me go, before he could say more
Sarah she could not see what he means
I heard the sun lives in San Diego
Soon as she had closed the door
The conversation which had dawned early that morning
Still the same one she continued to ignore
Sarah had a tough day dealing
With the life she didn’t want
John I think I need some help, what should I do
My tank is nearly spent
Hurry please I’m almost out of air
Do you believe in San Diego
If you do, we could go there
We should fly from here like felons from the law
And we won’t tell a soul, not that they would care
Johnny knew Sarah was ready
Finally Sarah she did agree
They rounded up their lives and dove into the night
Placed their fears aside
On the way to where they’ve never been
We’re on our way to San Diego
It seems almost like a dream
Like some big budget moving picture story
And I can’t believe it’s staring you and me
Sarah reached down for the atlas
John I’ve never felt so free
This map it shows so many roads
Which should we choose
Just keep heading west
John I think I smell the ocean breeze
I think we’re halfway to San Diego
Another day and we’ll be there
Sarah noticed that John’s face was losing color
And she hoped for change with San Diego air
John how are you feeling
He said hey I’m still alive
Now hit the gas and we’ll outrun the Texas wind
We won’t look back again
Don’t worry about these things you cannot change
A hundred miles from San Diego
Sarah smiled up at the moon
John had been lying on the backseat since last sun-up
Sarah asked him if he felt like driving soon
Johnny didn’t answer, hours now without a sound
Johnny talk, you’re scaring me, a screeching halt
A cry into the night
Johnny we’re almost there, please just hold on
She saw the sunrise in San Diego
But it was too late for him
She had lost him in the Arizona desert
And the tears she cried washed that desert clean
Sarah’s kneeling by a tombstone
Here lies a husband and a friend
Johnny dear we made it here, just so you know
Next to you a palm tree grows
The sun it shines for you in San Diego…

Oh Why

Written By: Hines

Oh why, did he try…
The little boy saw the little girl
From across the room and the sparks just flew
In the time that it took to lock eyes
His heart had stopped and she just knew
She found the guy that she’d been looking for
A clean-cut man and no gumshoe
Hi there ma’am, I’d like to know your name
I’m short of breath and it’s you who I blame
I’ve something to say though it might sound lame
I wanna…
The little boy told the little girl
Our love is fate, I’m so happy
She turned around and with a cunning smile
He took the bait, he soon would see
She’s not the girl that he thought she was
He said for her he’d do anything
I’ll buy you a diamond ring
We’ll fly across the world and we will sing
Our love is stronger than anything
He fell in love with the little girl
She taught him things that changed his world
Before they went to sleep every night
She asked for proof that their love was right
You say you love me and that’s just fine
I need more proof, that’s the bottom line
I want secrets like your bank account
Your stocks, your bonds, it’s paramount
Now that you placed your trust in me
I’m gonna…
The little girl conned the little boy
She stole his life and broke his heart
He woke that morning and guess what he saw
Her bags were gone, she did depart
He’d been blinded by looks and by love
The policemen told ’m he wasn’t too smart
I’m gonna find her, it’s all that I’ll do
I’ll search everywhere, Mozambique to Peru
And when I find her, I know what I will do
I’m gonna, I wanna …

Which Way To Hell

Written By: Hines

Severe intoxication
Each time that we go out
So many times I’ve watched you fall apart
A fifteen-dollar romance
And you expect some big reward
Well you’re so cheap it frightens me
You never give to charity
Let’s say that money grows on trees
Still you’d have to wait and see
Ignoring resolutions
Your body needs a friend
The way you eat is going to be your end
You gave up on your studies
You could have been someone
You started out so promising
In your seat before the bell would ring
How long it’s been since you heard that bell
You act like life is a wishing well
You pick some days out of a hat
Smoke the rest that’s where you’re at
There’s this word it’s called ambition
You must never have heard
Ambition, well it’s more than just a word
We held this intervention
You need to change your ways
We’re your friends, we’re helping you
You never care for our point of view
Don’t look at us like we’re all wrong
Your days too short and your nights too long
We’re here to try and steer you right
Our case is more than just airtight
We won’t sit by for one more day
You joke around, what do you have to say
Which way to hell…


In Kindergarten: released January 26, 2006
1. Oh Why
2. I Don't Have A Monday
3. Kindergarten
4. Once In A While
5. It's That I Love Her
6. Desperate Agitator
7. Sure Could Use A Sign
8. San Diego
9. Tears
10. Which Way To Hell
11. The I'm Right Blues
12. The Songs Groove
13 Walking Home

Set List

Hines' setlist changes every night. He pledges that no two shows will ever be the same. Whether a long or short set is needed, Hines can fill it. For example at a party in 2005 Hines played for over six consecutive hours and still hadn't played half of his songlist which combines originals and covers.

As of May 2006 Hines has 52 original songs.

Artists Hines covers. (this list is always growing)
Paul Simon
Bob Dylan
The Grateful Dead
Gillian Welch
John Prine
The Beatles
Pink Floyd
Elton John
Billy Joel
Neil Young
Velvet Underground
(to name a few)
as well as many traditonal folk songs