Michaela Anne
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Michaela Anne

Nashville, Tennessee, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2014 | INDIE

Nashville, Tennessee, United States | INDIE
Established on Jan, 2014
Band Americana Country




"Michaela Anne, A Country Singer, and a Law School Crowd"

Short of outright heckling, there probably aren’t many more dispiriting things you can shout at a performer from the crowd than “Are you on Spotify?”

Certainly the guy who did this to Michaela Anne on Thursday night meant no harm. But what’s a fraction of a cent in streaming revenue at some point down the road compared to $15 cash in hand?

“I am on Spotify,” she assured him, “but I would like it if you would buy my record.”

This exchange took place upstairs at Hill Country, the Brooklyn barbecue restaurant and music venue, where a private Brooklyn Law School event wasn’t quite finished when Michaela Anne took the stage and began her first free set of the night.

It’s a tough gig, playing for a room of people largely interested in talking among themselves, one name badge to another. But this young country singer handled it admirably. Mostly she stuck to her lovely new album, “Ease My Mind” (Georgia June), full of plain-spoken songs of romantic regret and small-town longing written by her and sung in a sweet voice that she’s using half of, much less than she should be.

There were flashes of that voice’s fullness during this show, as on “Lift Me Up," which begins with a bleak jolt: “The darkest nights in Kentucky/feel like a grave they’re digging just for me.” On “Is This What Mama Meant” which she said was inspired by her parents, for “longtime lovers who stick it out,” she sang achingly, “Our hearts are black and blue/from learning what not to do.”

Wearing white fringed cowboy boots, and letting her voice slip into tart twang when called for, she was backed by a sharp band: the excellent Thomas Bryan Eaton on guitar and pedal steel, Aaron Shafer-Haiss on drums and Danny Macleod on bass.

As a unit, they were squarely convincing. But like any young singer trying to grab a restless crowd’s attention, she served up a few covers, including a too-folky “Looking for Love” (from “Urban Cowboy”) and a spirited take on Dwight Yoakam’s “Ain’t That Lonely Yet.” While she was singing Hank Williams’s “Your Cheatin’ Heart,” the Spotify inquisitor went to her merchandise table, dropped $15 cash for a CD, signed up for the email list, the whole thing. Victory. - New York Times

"Michaela Anne Wants Some Downtime in "Ease My Mind""

Up-and-coming artist Michaela Anne is based in New York City, yet her music indisputably draws from Nashville’s classic country heritage.

As a kid, she made fun of her dad’s taste in music, which leans toward classic country’s story songs. But when she was about 10 years old, she discovered the Dixie Chicks, which led her backward through country music history. By high school, she had been led to legends like Patsy Cline, George Jones and Tammy Wynette.

“The ironic thing is that the stories in the songs became my favorite part,” she tells CMT Edge. “I love country music because of the writing but also the soulful voices. I like voices where I can hear every nuance of pain or joy in the timbre of their voices, and country music has some of the most honest, vulnerable, expressive voices. I love that.”

Naturally, living in New York has influenced Michaela Anne’s music, too. That’s particularly true on “Ease My Mind,” the title track of an album she released this spring.

“When I wrote ‘Ease My Mind,’ I think I was having a usual moment of feeling overwhelmed by the fast pace of living in NYC,” she says. “Everyone racing around always trying to ‘achieve’ and ‘accomplish’ things is both very inspiring as well as stress-inducing for me.”

She adds, “The chorus directly reflects the worry that is present in my life — and that I see in many of my friends’ lives — of how will I ever do and be everything I want. And then, on top of that, how will I ever stop worrying? It’s that thing of wanting a free-spirited, open life but then wondering how all of your dreams can come true if you’re just wandering around free but also knowing that stressing out and forcing it probably won’t help much either.”

Across Ease My Mind, she writes about the highs and lows of love with insight that exceeds her years. Her soprano is reminiscent of Emmylou Harris and Dolly Parton, and her songwriting shows promise of reaching those heights, too.

Michaela Anne will share her new music this weekend with shows in Esperance, N.Y., on Friday (May 16) and Binghamton, N.Y., on Saturday. In June, she’ll open for Brandy Clark at the Highline Ballroom in New York City. - CMT Edge

"Song of the Week: Michaela Anne "Ease My Mind""

Brooklyn has been a music mecca for over a decade now -- mostly for its rock scene and creative atmosphere. But a new era has begun in the New York City borough, one in which folk and roots music have become the area's truest "sound." Michaela Anne might have something to do with that.

She's spent years in this vast metropolis plugging away, improving her songcraft and adding to a Brooklyn tradition in the making. Her latest effort, Ease My Mind is chock full of Americana-driven tunes that will have you laughing, dancing and weeping alone to yourself on the E Train.

The exceptional title track features a down-home snare beat, complemented by Michaela's twanging alto. It's a mix of old country and new school songwriting that feels just right.

"I've lived in New York City for the past eight years but never thought of myself as a city girl. As much as I love the city, I find it pretty stressful and am mostly drawn to things (music, culture, art) that come from more rural environments," the singer tells The Sitch.

"It took me awhile to feel that I could play the music I love in this metropolitan setting. Ease My Mind is specifically about the anxiety and stress that I connect with a fast-paced city life. Michael Daves (of Chris Thile & Michael Daves) played a large role in introducing me to the roots, bluegrass and country music scene in NYC and he actually taught me how to play guitar so I'm especially grateful to have his guitar playing featured on this track." - the Bluegrass Situation

"Meet the 25 Finalists for Martin Guitar and American Songwriter's The Pub Deal Contest"

American Songwriter and Martin Guitar‘s “The Pub Deal” Contest was the first of its kind, designed to award a talented and deserving songwriter a year-long $20,000 publishing contract with HoriPro Entertainment Group, Inc.

All the entries have been carefully reviewed, discussed and narrowed down to 25 Finalists, listed below, in no particular order. With the help of Holly Williams, Dean Dillon, Martin Ambassador Mac Powell and Martin Ambassador Hunter Hayes the “Top 5? will be determined by Dec. 10 and invited to participate in an audition process with HoriPro’s staff. Click each finalist to view their American Songspace profile and listen.

Michaela Anne is 1 or 25 Finalists. - www.americansongwriter.com

"American Songwriter Daily Discovery: Michaela Anne"

ARTIST: Michaela Anne

SONG: “Baby We’re Through”

BIRTHDATE: May 21st, 1986


AMBITIONS: to have a long sustainable career as a singer, songwriter, performer and educator.

TURN-OFFS: Arrogance.

TURN-ONS: Sincerity, honesty and kindness.

DREAM GIG: the Opry, of course. And singing with Gillian Welch, David Rawlings and Emmylou Harris.

TV ADDICTIONS: Homeland, New Girl, Nashville and Parenthood. And I just started watching Felicity from the beginning. I guess I have to admit that as an addiction. Do I watch too much TV?

CELEBRITY CRUSH: Matt Damon always and forever, since I was 10. And of course the usual Ryan Gosling.

MY NIGHTLY RITUAL BEFORE BED: reading a book. I usually wake up with it on my face and the lights still on.

WORDS TO LIVE BY: one of my favorite voice teachers told me you can’t sing based on how it sounds to you or others. You have to go based on how good it feels. It should always feel good even if other people listening aren’t responding in the way you hope. I’m learning this applies to all aspects of life. Live based on how good it feels, not on what other people tell you about yourself.

I NEVER LEAVE HOME WITHOUT: my purse which is about 10lbs too heavy filled with my wallet, phone, notebooks, lip glosses, pens/pencils, whatever book I’m reading at the time, and most likely some beginner music theory flashcards for my students.

I WROTE THIS SONG: sitting on my bed one summer reminiscing about a guy I used to date. Kind of embarrassing and cliche, but the truth. - www.americansongwriter.com

"Finding Nashville in New York City"

Michaela Anne grew up in a military family, calling many places home—by the time she was 18 years old she had lived in twenty different houses. Her dad was a Naval Submarine Officer and transferred over his love for country music to her at a young age. At 11 years old she was listening to heavy doses of Patsy Cline, Hank Williams, and a new country trio of the time: the Dixie Chicks. Eventually she took music lessons from a bluegrass guitarist and singer, and now she's putting out her own country songs, straight from the heart of... Brooklyn.
Recently ABC's Nashville has made even the country music genre's toughest critics tap their feet—and the show's soundtrack was ranking competitively with Taylor Swift's Red when it was released. Cynical city slickers like Lena Dunham have also fallen for the show... so we got to wondering: is there a Nashville in New York City? Can those cold New York hearts that have recently warmed up to twang find it in their own backyard? And that's when we found Michaela Anne—for the Nashville-educated, she's like the Scarlett O'Connor of Brooklyn.

The singer/songwriter—who moved to New York in 2008 to attend the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music—told us, "There was definitely not a country music scene to be found within that world. I actually felt like I had to hide my love of country music for some foolish reason. I was dying to find people who just loved to hear a sad song. For some reason I had felt ashamed of the fact that that was what did it for me. Simple beautiful music."

"But then I heard about Michael Daves, a great bluegrass guitarist and singer, and I heard that you could take private lessons with him through the school. Through studying with him, I learned about the great roots music scene in New York. It was really refreshing for me to find a community of people who really liked simple, song-based music. But for a long time, I would say I didn't really have friends here in New York who loved country music like I do... the first few years I definitely questioned why I was here."
However, last year Nielsen/SoundScan numbers showed that New Yorkers purchased the most country music out of any other city in the nation, including Nashville. At the time, Billboard's Wade Jessen acknowledged a possible connection: “New York City is a very demanding place to live, country music is a great way to put the brakes on a lot of the noise in people’s lives.” And this year New York City got its first country music radio station in 16 years: Nash 94.7, broadcasting out of Brooklyn.
While country fans are out there in the five boroughs, Michaela Anne tells us the country music scene isn't that strong "unless you're using country in the broadest sense of the word. There's a great scene for American based roots music. Bluegrass, old-time, western swing, honky tonk, some cajun are all really prevalent here. There are some world class players who call New York home, and that's one of the great reasons to live here if you're into that music. But as far as a scene of songwriters who are writing and performing what would be classified as 'country' music versus any of the other roots genres, I think it's still a pretty small scene."
Michaela Anne—who is currently raising funds to record her new album—is one of those musicians that introduces blues and folk into her brand of country, just like some of the younger artists on Nashville...

...and she watches the show, too.
"I'm a fan! I think the characters and story lines could be called accurate to the scene here or elsewhere. Given that I'm not a commercially successful bus touring superstar I'd probably say that the Gunnar and Scarlett storyline could be most relatable to the scene I know. People working jobs, writing music, seeing your friends gain success or not, seeing relationships sour or flourish because of choices people make to achieve their goals. I don't think that's specific to country music, but to life... country music is a genre that typically tries to portray real life in songs. It's about talking about the day to day struggles, heartbreak, triumphs, hopes. It's so sincere to the point that it's easy to make fun of. Hence country music being the butt of many jokes."
But country has been winning fans over for years—there's even an annual Brooklyn Country Cantina at SXSW and a Brooklyn Country website dedicated to the music genre in NYC—so if you're ready to drink the moonshine, the below guide will get you started. - www.gothamist.com

"Merry Christmas from Brooklyn....."

Her wispy and heartbreaking clear voice is layered so gently and with such confidence you'll be surprised that she was only 24 when she made this record. Gloriously soulful and triumphant. - No Depression

"Michaela Anne Review"

"Her voice is pretty yet candid, draped with all the sweetness of honey and freshness of a summers day." - Real Detroit Weekly

"Michaela Anne Review"

"Her voice is pretty yet candid, draped with all the sweetness of honey and freshness of a summers day." - Real Detroit Weekly

"Michaela Anne Review"

"Her voice is pretty yet candid, draped with all the sweetness of honey and freshness of a summers day." - Real Detroit Weekly

"Honorable Mention in Telluride 2011 Troubadour Contest"

2011 Troubadour Honorable Mentions

Michaela Anne — Brooklyn, NY
Anthony D'Amato — New York, NY
Ashleigh Flynn — Portland, OR
Connor Garvey — Portland, ME
Phil Henry — Rutland, VT
Shay Lovette — Wilkesboro, NC
Nathan Blake Lynn — West Paducah, KY
Austin McCutchen — Brooklyn, NY
Chana Rothman — Philadelphia, PA
Amber Rubarth — Brooklyn, NY
Lynn Scharff (Driftwood Fire) — Fort Collins, CO
Lauren Stovall — Boulder, CO
Ryan Tanner — Salt Lake City, UT
Cindy Woolf — Springfield, MO
Maddy Wyatt — Brooklyn, NY
- Telluride Bluegrass Fest

"Rise & ReviewShine Monday: Michaela Anne - To Know Where"

Michaela Anne's debut album, To Know Where, features songs influenced by her travels throughout the US as a child of the military. Always musically inclined, she picked up the musical influences of the different and diverse places she lived. Now, living in Brooklyn, she has found the perfect city and venues for her original Americana compositions and stylings.

Recorded by Jesse Lauter (The Low Anthem, Elvis Perkins), Diko Shoturma and Scott Kettner, To Know Where is an album with soul-searching songs that have a way of touching the spirit. These songs of hardships and pleasures are an effective blend of the genres that inspired her -- country, blues, and folk. The title track is a gospel influenced tribute to her family and upbringing which features backing vocals by Willie Nelson's Farm Aid regular Jesse Lenat, while the backing vocals and phenomenal guitar playing are provided by Michael Daves (Chris Thile, Steve Martin, Roseanne Cash) on "Taken Away." The sweet melancholy in "Willow Tree" later becomes a sorrowful yearning in "Pardon," and jazz and blues influences can be found in the ragtime "Carry On" and the sultry "When We're Alone." But, it's "That Winter" that stands out most to me, with its beautiful expansive sound, doleful pedal steel, and Michaela's emotional and angelic vocal delivery.

With To Know Where, Michaela Anne shows us that although she is relatively new, she is far from amateur. She has already shared the stage with great musicians like Daves and Danny Molad (Elizabeth and the Catapult), Kristin Andreassen (Uncle Earl), and many others as well as open for The Diamond Doves, Lady Lamb and the Beekeeper, and Frontier Ruckus.

To Know Where will be self-released April 5th with tour dates to follow - Common Folk Music

"Music reviews: Paul Simon, Michaela Anne"

Michaela Anne, "To Know Where" (Michaela Anne) *** 1/2

The editor of this review has a desk. And that desk has a middle drawer. And in that middle drawer are the leftovers, the rejects, the huddled masses of compact discs yearning to be played.

This is music no one wants. It comes unsolicited, often from artists desperate enough to press their own disc and pay for the postage.

Every few weeks I'll rummage through the drawer. Most albums will never see the inside of my disc player. But every now and again, I'll see something that interests me. I'll get into what made me pick up Michaela Anne's debut "To Know Where" later. For now, I'll just praise it.

This is not a revelatory album. Anne breaks no new ground. She has just put together nine songs with uncommon clarity, vision and execution for someone just beginning her career.

Anne skirts the country/Americana line with a robust voice that is able to dip from joy to sorrow in a moment. There's the bounce of "Baby We're Through," where her voice just melts. There's the slow stroll of "Willow Tree," countered by the old-timey strut of "Carry On." The title track is her most personal, harking back to military brat roots and what constitutes a home these days.

She avoids a few pitfalls of first-time musicians, namely front-ending the disc with the best and filling in the rest with mediocre tracks. This is an album that never overstays its welcome.

Now for full disclosure: I picked up this disc and listened to it because of Suze Rotolo. There on the cover of "To Know Where" is Anne with a wide smile, chestnut hair flowing out over an enormous winter jacket. And I couldn't help but think of "The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan" with Rotolo beaming just like Anne with the rest of her life ahead.

Rotolo died in February. Her obituary said she was 19 in 1963 when she was photographed on the cover with Dylan. That's how I'll remember her. Perhaps 50 years from now someone will feel the same about Anne and her photo. If not, there's always the music.

— Scott Fallon, Staff Writer - New Jersey Record

"Words from Jesse Lauter (The Low Anthem, Elvis Perkins)"

"Sure, Michaela Anne's music nobly carries the cosmic-country angelic spirit of Emmylou, Linda, Dolly, Lucinda, and Gillian, but her story and voice is quite singular. She's young, honest, passionate, and the type of darlin' who will bring the honky tonk to the big stage. It was my pleasure to be involved in her past album, and I only look forward to seeing her develop and spread her gift to the greater world of music. Watch out for this songbird..." - www.jesselauter.com

"Artist of the Week: Michaela Anne"

I first met Michaela Anne at Pete’s Candy Store singing background vocals for another great singer/songwriter Kyle Ervin. It took me awhile to hear her original music, but once i did, i was hooked. In a sea of NYC songwriters, she stands out as a fresh young voice truly worthy of discovery.


As Michaela says in her myspace, she grew up in a military family and got moved around all over the country, luckily “she picked up musical influences as diverse as the places she lived.” And you can really hear it in her music. “Americana” is something that alot of people aspire to capture, achieving varying amounts of success. Michaela’s music captures that America that she has not only seen or read about, but truly lived… with a style that is honest and heartfelt, without ever being downtrodden and depressed.


Her writing is strong and getting stronger. Every song i hear is better than the last as she continues to evolve and refine her style. There is a certain ease to her vocal delivery, and a clarity of idea that lets her lyrics really shine through. When she sings, the listener can relate and really feel the often complicated emotions of real life in the music.


Michaela recorded her duo EP at the Gallery earlier this year, where you can hear her voice in its true form. Tucker Yaro’s bass playing is a great counterpoint to the guitar and his harmony vocals create a beautiful blend, allowing them to achieve a huge yet delicate sound in the duo format. She’ll be recording a full band album in the new year that will undoubtedly fill out her sound and allow her songs to reach new heights. - The Gallery Recording Studio Blog

"Hidden Music Venue"

Hidden Music Venue

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* Published May 16, 2010

1118 Cortelyou Rd., nr. Stratford Rd., Ditmas Park; 347-240-5850
Ditmas Park’s already innovative bourbon bar–slash–florist (it actually sells flowers in front) last year debuted one of the city’s tiniest, most transporting performance venues. A staircase near the back of the bar takes curious drinkers down to an intimate, candlelit space with weather-beaten benches and beautiful wooden beams that give the room a saunalike feel without, thankfully, the temperatures to match. Come showtime (usually on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights), folksy acts like Michaela Anne and Thieving Irons perform inches away from their front-row fans. - New York Magazine


Still working on that hot first release.



A self-described
military kid, Michaela Anne has moved beyond naval bases and barracks to become
one of the most-recognizable alt-country singer/songwriters in, of all places,
Brooklyn, NY. A former unhappy jazz student with a passion for Patsy Cline and Otis Redding, Michaela Anne has claimed
her place among singers who go their own way, looking to the timeless with
little regard for passing trends and current zeitgeist.


It isn’t easy
moving from place to place - switching bedrooms, finding new friends, and never
having a clear answer to “Where’s home?” Yet no matter where you are, there are
chords to be played and a song to be sung, and it was music that provided
solace and a constant companion during Michaela’s nomadic childhood. While
studying jazz she discovered her love of country music – and her true calling -
at 21 when her path crossed that of bluegrass musician Michael Daves. Finding
her true voice in an unexpected genre, Michaela embarked on a journey that has
led her across the United States playing her original songs alone and with her


That independent
spirit has led to a woman unafraid to take her own path and share her heart –
which is exactly what you get here. On Ease
My Mind
(Kingswood Records) Michaela takes you on a
journey through the turbulent life of a young woman in America; navigating her
way through the growing pains of imperfect relationships, self-doubt, and the
malaise that turns your days blue and grey despite the good weather.


Like a true country
classicist, it’s the stories that shine on Ease
My Mind
. Michaela’s words are so straightforward and full of honest truth
that it’s almost shocking. The kind of honest truth that hurts oh-so-good in
your ears, and strikes true straight to the heart of anyone who’s ever been
torn up by love. ”The Haunting,” in particular, toes the line between “Did she
really say that?” confessional and “Damn, I hope this works out” tearjerker as
Michaela belts the Take me back/Take me
back, again


Yet despite being
laced through with darkness, Ease My Mind
is immediately captivating, compelling one to start singing along to the first
time you hear it.  With Michaela’s
powerful clear voice cutting through that sweet pedal steel, it’s an album for
a woman alone on the highway, finding her freedom with the windows down and the
music up. Tank top, curly hair flying, and a smile on her face - kinda like
Michaela herself…


Michaela Anne has
been building her name on the Americana circuit playing shows throughout the
country, performing at Telluride Bluegrass Festival, Merlefest, SXSW, WDVX's Blue Plate Special, Folk Alliance
International, AXS Live National Television as well as sharing the stage with
notable bands and artists JP Harris & the Tough Choices, Steel Magnolias,
Lydia Loveless, The Woes, Kristin Andreassen (Uncle Earl, Sometymes Why),
Michael Daves (Chris Thile & Michael Daves) and Chris Eldridge (Punch
Brothers) to name a few. She has been recognized in numerous prestigious songwriting
competitions including Kerrville Folk Festival's New Folk Contest, Telluride
Troubadour two years in a row and Merlefest's Chris Austin Songwriting Contest.

Band Members