Mike Quinones

Mike Quinones

 North Adams, Massachusetts, USA

We're mixing our metaphors - We kicked in the sliding doors - The ocean-side think tanks are building a fighting force - Switch boards and ancient bones - Swords in foundation stones- We are dreaming in a heat spell with our ears pressed to the ground...


(Venues are free to choose between Bio #1, or Bio #2.)

---- Bio #1 ----

Mike Quinones wanted to be Robin Hood when he was little, but instead, he became a musician (and hasn't regretted it). He hails from western Massachusetts, and has been writing songs ever since he got his first guitar in high school. Musical inspirations have included Paul Simon, Radiohead, The Beatles, and Cat Stevens. His music has been described as passionate, adventurous, and intricate, and features songs with evocative melodies that carry their listeners to unexpected places. He has shared the stage with Vince Welnick of the Grateful Dead, Heather Maloney, The Mobius Band, Olivia Mancini, The Milkman's Union, The Brass, Wishbone Zoe, and many, many others. Mike is currently touring the eastern US, in support of his newly released album, Centuries.

---- Bio #2 ----

Mike Quinones was an Ankylosaurus in a past life, and enjoyed wandering the Cretaceous highlands, eating fresh green shoots and the fruits of flowering plants. The creatures and the landscape of that time were strange and wonderful, and they stirred the music in his heart. Millions of years later, with many doomsdays having come and gone, he was born into the body of a giant catfish, and lived a most interesting life of hunting, resting, and daydreaming. His soul filled with water, and the song of the water mixed with the song of the warm, circling air. Unknown lifetimes in the future, Mike's spirit came to rest in human form, and he took to playing instruments and singing, feeling a need to travel and play, to share the songs that still moved within him.



Written By: Mike Quinones

There is a city underground
The air is warm, the water moves
Unwrapping diamonds, counting down
Fossil bones are stirring in their sleep

Another round, another life
The fish's eyes are blurry stones
It's holding on, it's changing shape
Senses sharpen, senses grow

Three hundred holy wars or more
Out of motion, out of mind
With all their anger drained away
Pulled apart by roots and rain

We're holding on, we're pushing back
We're binding books and drawing maps
Of grinding plates and icy comet tails
These songs are blowing over desert trails

I Swear I Saw You

Written By: Mike Quinones

Oh the camera was shaking and the forest hid your face
Your silhouette was just too far away
But I remember everything
I wrote it down, a tape-recorder caught the sound
Caught you whistling and howling crazy at the burning stars
The burning stars

All the whippoorwills were singing when you ran across the road
The headlight beams revealed your blinking eyes
And I am told you looked so very curious
And almost like a man
Until you hopped the fence and ran off, chattering into the heavy night
Into the heavy night

Well I heard you came down from the hills just looking for a fight
They said they saw you in a graveyard
With your face all glowing white
I heard you took a shotgun blast right to the chest
But you laughed it off
You must be blessed, or maybe you are the Devil
Or the Devil's son

But I do not believe in all of that
I'm not a fool, I'm not a tag-along for shadows supernatural
Oh I know you better
Hungry ghost or cannibal, kicking at the cabin walls
I know you
I know you better

So I followed you through wilderness
Through cold and rocky peaks
I saw your tracks in snow like waking dreams
At eighteen thousand feet
The air was sharp and thin as fiberglass
But I will not deny the past
I've got the microphone you smashed and the rope you clawed through
I swear I saw you
I swear I saw you

In the Land of Trees

Written By: Mike Quinones

When the sea speaks to the blue heights
Where cloudy birds will glide and jungle beasts will run
When the trees bow in the moonlight
And somewhere close a solar wind flies from the sun

Though my heart beats on a big drum
When dragons cross the kingdom
I won't hold back a thing from you

When the old man in the mountain
Closes his eyes and sinks into the core
Where the hills roll, love surrounds them
When we merge like rushing sunbeams on the floor

Though the earth may crack and shatter
I won't shake on shaking ladders
When I have the one that matters to me

So we will play for a thousand years
In the land of trees
In the land of sun
And we will sleep in the shade of a lifetime
And run, run, run
Through wonderful lands

So I'll break handcuffs and tethers
I will walk above the weather
When the one I'll love forever is near


Written By: Mike Quinones

My love would pull me from the hurricane's mouth
And I would face an army in her place
All the waters and strings in our hearts move and sing
Through starlight and snow
And the acres that hold our lives

We walk, we climb upon the shoulders
Of windy trees, through braids of spiral breeze
All the oceans and seas in our bones twirl and reach
Over our home, through the seasons that roll through the sky

If I became a ghost, I'd search through space
And find a way to sing you a love song

My love and I will wind around the timberlines
And feel the rain cool this mountain chain
All the cities and sounds in our souls are washing down
Ringing with sparks
And leaping from heart to heart

I have wanted to ask you
For a long, long time now
Can I hold you and warm you
Will you sleep on my shoulder
Let me ask you finally
Will you live your life with me

Raised by Wolves

Written By: Mike Quinones

Oh I was born with a torch in my hand
My soul descended from the crawl-space tunnels and broadband
I thought I heard a seance- A candle ring of fiery tongues
Smoke stacks, carrier waves expand my lungs
Here comes the angel of wrath with the heavenly host
I’m the doom of the wicked
I’m a virtually unstoppable ghost

Well I should tell you I was raised by wolves in a past life
I went out in a blaze of glory- A blast of light
But suddenly I’m filling up the skin of a metal frame
My skeleton is crackling- My engine’s a bed of flames!

I’ve half a mind- Half a mind
To call you out
To take you down
To set you right
Clear the way!

It was a slow, slow dance with the Lady of Liberty
She whispered in my ear, “Oh baby, deliver me-
But don’t tell your friends that I said so- They’d never understand-
All the subtleties between a warning shot and total war at my command- “

And now I know how the news flash shocks and haunts her
Torpedoes and mines, smart bombs and rocket launchers
On the continental shelf
Deep inside the bending shadow of the coast
Well fire up the special effects
Shoot out the lights and block the roads

We’re mixing our metaphors
We kicked in the sliding doors
The ocean side think tanks are building a fighting force
Switchboards and ancient bones- Swords in foundation stones
We are dreaming in the heat spell with our ears pressed to the ground

This is the sound of the snapping of redwood trees,
crack of the champion’s whip
Splinters and shockwaves and muscle-bound battleships
The hour of our reckoning is floating seven feet above our heads
We are tracing the cross-sections
of a juggernaut that barrels to the end

This is the final boss battle and our spines will cross and rattle
We're charging through the silence of the pines and frost and travel
to the borders of the empire, and the teeth of the waterfall
With credits rolling on and up
We levitate-
We’re phantoms at your call


The Yearling (2010, limited release)

Centuries (2012, December release)

Set List

I have at least three hours worth of original material, but can also play a wide variety of covers. I generally adapt my set list to the vibe of the venue.