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New Music Friday: “Through This Fire” Released!


New Music Friday: "Through This Fire" Released!

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Hey Friend!

I‘m going to keep this short, because there’s one big piece of news: Through This Fire was released today!

Check it out:
Spotify
Apple Music
iTunes
Amazon
iHeartRadio

So now, I have a humble request. Give the record a listen. If you like what you hear, pass it along to your friends… either by posting a link on social media, sending a text message, bumping it in your car, or hacking into their wi-fi networks and making their Alexa play the record on repeat. Your call. 😉

Now for some real talk. There’s a lot going on in our country – and the world – right now. 2020 has been a hell of a year, and it’s easy to lose hope or feel like we’re running out of gas. But there’s still important work to be done, and I still believe we have time to change this world for the better. With that in mind, I put together this video to go with Invincible, the closing track on Through This Fire.

One of my housemates commented, after watching this video, “I want to go fight fascists now,” so maybe it can help you push through the home stretch of this season.

Whatever you’re able to do, do it. Drive your friends to your local Board of Elections to cast their vote early. Volunteer at a call center. However you can, make your voice heard and help others to do the same.

Finally, if you happen to live in the Cleveland area, I’ll be playing an in-person show tomorrow night – with limited capacity, masks mandatory, and social distancing measures – along with Guy Snowdon and Meg Stepka, two phenomenal Singer-Songwriters. Tickets are available here, and they’re just $5!

As always, it’s possible that additional shows will be added to the schedule, but even if not, there will definitely be more news & videos in the coming days and weeks, so make sure to follow me on social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Youtube) so you don’t miss anything!

Thank you so much for joining me on this journey, through all its twists and turns.

Cheers,
Michael

 

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Fall Music news


Fall Music news

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Hey Friend!

I haven’t written one of these in a while, I hope you’re doing well! While I haven’t been inactive – in fact, I’ve been putting a lot of time into Spontaneously Combustible Apparel, a new clothing company focused on making positive social change – most of my performances have been private shows or porch concerts that didn’t make sense to share, but now I’ve got some news!

Singer Songwriter Michael McFarland. Photo by Arron Bound/No Numbers
I’ve also got some sweet new press shots, thanks to No.Numbers 

First, the immediate: for the first time, Hello Headrush will be doing a livestream performance! In a normal year, the past month would have been spent furiously preparing for IngenuityFest, Cleveland’s 3-day celebration of arts, technology and music. This year, the Ingenuity has gone virtual, teaming up with the 48 Hour Virtual Music Festival, for an event called Virtually INGenious. Your three favorite androids will be kicking off the festival at 7pm tonight, streaming live from the Hello Headrush Facebook page!

Next, there’s new music on the way! The second single from my upcoming EP will be coming out October 9. It’s called “The New Contagion”, and you can pre-save it on Spotify now! Pre-saving may seem like a small thing, but as more folks hit that pre-save button, the song generates more attention from music curators, which can help spread new music to more ears. It would mean a ton to me if you pre-saved the track

Of course, if there’s a release date for a second single, it should be no surprise that the full EP will follow soon after. The release date for the new record, entitled “Through This Fire”, has been set for October 23. I feel like I always say this in the lead-up to releasing a new record, but it’s always true: I’m SO EXCITED about these new songs, and I can’t wait for you to hear them! 

While it’s to be expected that my performance calendar’s going to look different than it did in The Before Times, in addition to the live-streams I DO have some upcoming public performances – limited capacity, socially-distanced, and mask-mandatory – but I’d still love to see some friendly faces, even if I can only see the top half! The October 24th show will be your first opportunity to snag a physical copy of Through This Fire.

As always, it’s possible that additional shows will be added to the schedule, but even if not, there will definitely be more news leading up to the release of Through This Fire, so make sure to follow me on social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Youtube) so you don’t miss anything!

Thanks as always for joining me on this journey, through all its twists and turns.

Cheers,
Michael

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April (Wait, What Month Is It?) Music News


April (Wait, What Month Is It?) Music News

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Hey Friend, happy quarantine to you!

What a difference a month makes. At the beginning of March I wrote to you about plans to travel out of state, shows I was excited to play with The Mess Makers, and ambitions to do more touring over the coming months. Of course, I don’t have to tell you that none of those things happened. We find ourselves at an unprecedented moment in our lifetimes, staying at home and keeping our distance to help keep one another safe. While I’m sad that the performances and travel plans have all been cancelled or put on hold, I’m heartened by seeing my fellow Ohioans taking steps to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.  I’m also greatly encouraged by the heroic efforts of those on the front lines: the medical professionals showing themselves to be the superheroes we know they are, as well as the workers keeping essential businesses up and running.

Fortunately, we finished production on the long-promised music video for my new song “More Than You Believe You Are” right before lockdown started, and the video was released April 3, right on schedule! You can watch the video on YouTube or Facebook, or listen to the song on Spotify.

As musicians, most of us thrive on live performances, and that’s also where a lot of us make the majority of our income.  With events and performances canceled for the foreseeable future, figuring out how to turn being a musician into a work-from-home job has been a challenge, to say the least. Livestream concerts have become the norm, and the “virtual tip jar” has suddenly become a common sight. I had the pleasure to take part in a 48-hour Livestream Festival at the end of March (you can watch my performance here), and you’ll be able to catch me tomorrow for a Sunday Brunch Livestream show – I’ll be taking requests for both my original songs and cuts from my covers list, so pour yourself a mimosa, fry yourself up some eggs & french toast, and join me tomorrow!

I’ve also been spending a lot of time in the studio working on new material (what else was I going to do, right?), and breaking from tradition, I’ve been sharing the demos of those songs on Facebook. Here are links to a few of those demos:
“End of the World”
“Learning to Stand Again”
“Hope is the New Contagion”

I’ve got several more I’ll be posting in the coming days, so make sure to follow me on Facebook to catch those when they go up, and for info about other upcoming livestream events.

Thanks as always for joining me on this (for now, virtual) journey. I can’t wait to see all your smiling faces again out in the real world once this pandemic is behind us!

Cheers,
Michael

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March Music News


March Music News

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Hey Friend,

Happy March! Even though I know we can count on at LEAST one big snowstorm before winter’s gone for good, the forecast is starting to look pretty spring-ish here in Cleveland, with highs well above freezing for as far out as my phone’s forecast will show me.

The comparatively-balmy weather came in handy this past weekend, as March 1 was the day “MYTBYA Video Shoot” was on my calendar. I’ll give you 3 guesses as to what MYTBYA stands for…

If you guessed “Master Yodeling Thunder’s Blazing Yak Academy,” then you’ve landed on a fantastic name for a Kung Fu school, but unfortunately are slightly off-target regarding this past Sunday’s activities. Instead, a group of 20 or so stalwart folks gathered on Edgewater Beach on Cleveland’s Lake Erie shore to film a music video for my new single that’s slated to be released later this month, “More Than You Believe You Are”.

I’m super excited about this song and this video; all the folks involved absolutely knocked it out of the park; particular shout-outs to our lead actor Jaered Andrews, our videographer Arron Bound, and our production coordinator (and my partner) Amanda Nyx. We have 1 more day of shooting scheduled, but that will be indoors, non-weather-dependent, and won’t require a small army of volunteers to pull off!

This coming weekend will find me & and Amanda performing & exhibiting at another of Wizard World’s Comic Cons, but this time right in our own backyard!

Wizard World Cleveland will be happening right at the Convention Center in downtown CLE – follow this link to grab your tickets, and use the promo code FREEPHOTOCLE to snag a signed celebrity photo from the vast Wizard World collection!

The end of this month will see my yearly pilgrimage to Cape May, New Jersey, for the Singer-Songwriter Cape May conference. I’ll be traveling this year with my good friends Kevin Conaway & Sean Benjamin, and doing two showcase performances while I’m there! I look forward to this event every March; I can’t wait to see all the Garden State friends I’ve made over the years, and all the other singer-songwriters that travel from across the country to share their stories, songs, and insights.

Michael McFarland and the Mess MakersOver the past 6 months I’ve been thrilled to be supplementing my solo shows with full-band performances as Michael McFarland & the Mess Makers – playing with a full band is just so. much. fun., and the gentlemen I get to share the stage with are both a blast to be around and a pleasure to collaborate with. We’ll be playing our next show on April Fool’s Day (no joke) at The Grog Shop, one of my favorite venues. We’ll be sharing the bill with our friends Meg & the Magnetosphere, Davey Squires, and Don Beck. Of course, you can expect there to be absolutely no shenanigans, tomfoolery, hooliganism, or other such malarkey. We are SERIOUS musicians, after all…

Here’s everywhere you can find me playing over the next month. Hope to see you at one of the shows!

As always, there’s a chance I might end up picking up a few more shows over the coming weeks, so be sure to like my various social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram) and keep an eye on the Tour Dates page to make sure you don’t miss anything.

Once again, thank you for taking this journey with me. I can’t wait to see what happens during this new decade!

Cheers,
Michael

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February Music News


February Music News

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Hey Friend!

I’m going to try to keep this month’s update short; which is usually what I say write before writing a novella to deliver to your inbox. But for real this time!

Along with playing a full slate of shows, including dates in New Orleans and Nashville, January’s been a month of planning, and of planting seeds. My performance schedule’s starting to fill in for the coming year, with some dates confirmed as far out as August and September; I only have the next two months up on my website’s concert calendar so far, but I’ll be adding a ton of additional dates over the next few weeks.

On top of that, I’ve been back in the studio demoing new songs; one of the new tracks, More Than You Believe You Are, is going to be getting the full treatment over the coming months. We start tracking drums for it this week, a music video is in the works, and I’m targeting March to get all of that out into the world and into your ears and eyes as a new single. I’ve been adding this new song into the set list at recent shows, so if you get a chance to catch me live you’ll get a taste of what’s coming before everyone else!

As for the other new songs, if you head over to my Instagram, you can catch a little in-studio video of how one of those (called Light On) is shaping up. I have 4 or 5 other songs that are just about ready to be extracted from after-hours concert hall that is my brain and rendered in a less ethereal format, and I’ll post more preview clips as that happens.

In addition to forward movement with my own music, it’s been exciting to see how a project my partner Amanda & I hatched while we were in Scotland (in the lobby of a movie theatre, right before watching Spiderman: Far from Home, to be exact) has grown. ListenCLE has now expanded to 8 mood-based playlists clocking in around 6 hours each (think of them as radio stations; put them on shuffle and enjoy) plus several seasonal “mixtapes”. For the first time this month we heard one of these playlists – “Groove” to be specific – playing over the sound system at a local cafe. The plan is for a lot more of that over the coming months!

I’ve got a full slate of shows this month all over the region, including full-band shows (one on Valentine’s Day, no less), a Hello Headrush appearance (on Leap Day, when a fracture in the space-time continuum will create ideal conditions for cross-temporal transmission), and a ton of solo performances. I hope to see you at one!

As always, there’s a chance I might end up picking up a few more shows over the coming weeks, so be sure to like my various social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram) and keep an eye on the Tour Dates page to make sure you don’t miss anything.

Once again, thank you for taking this journey with me. I can’t wait to see what happens during this new decade!

Cheers,
Michael

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January Music news


January Music news

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Happy New Decade, Friend!

Greetings from the road!  I’m currently en route to New Orleans by way of Nashville, on my way to play a series of shows this weekend while exhibiting my artwork at another awesome Wizard World comic convention.  I’ll be hitting Commodore Grill on the west side of Nashville tonight to share some tunes before continuing on to NOLA tomorrow morning, kicking off a new year by doing what I love all across the country!

On the subject of travel and touring, 2020 is likely to see me returning to the road more frequently.  My relationship with the Wizard Con continues to grow, affording me ample opportunity to get out of Cleveland for a while, and I’m working on developing a solid mobile living situation to extend those trips more regularly into multi-week tour opportunities.  Though I’m not much of one for “New Year’s Resolutions”, I AM a big fan of career goal-setting, and increased touring is my #1 goal right now.

A close second is creating more musical content to share with you, both in audio and visual formats.  You may have seen my House of Ghosts live concert video in late 2019, and I’ve just released a video for The Last Sunset, a production that holds a special place in my heart.  

“The Last Sunset” music video – Michael McFarland & the Mess Makers

 

We actually shot the video in January of last year, in the middle of a massive snowstorm that kept us from using our intended shoot location (an unheated industrial warehouse space) and forced us to relocate filming to my own home.  The entire band, our videographer, and my partner Amanda (as production coordinator) kept their spirits high and proved exceptionally flexible as we moved furniture, cleared floors and walls, and even tacked sheeting outside the windows to turn a cold snowy day into a bright “end of summer” feel featuring all of my faithful Mess Makers.  

I’m anticipating additional video content (including at least one Hello Headrush music video) in the new year, and am currently prepping multiple new tracks for my solo project.  Be sure to check out my upcoming shows to hear the new material before it’s released!

I’m also looking to build more performance opportunities at festivals and with other musicians.  Lately I’ve been working to turn my musical influences (many represented here in my personal “2019 soundtrack” playlist on Spotify) into my musical colleagues, seeking collaborative connections with other artists I admire.  I’m also working to build new relationships, both creative and corporate, with sponsors and small businesses whose missions and values align with my own, working to make the music and creative scene – and the world – a better place.  For example, I’m excited to now have personalized picks from my new sponsor Trident Media featuring my new logo, and I’m working on a partnership with a local clothing company for some new concert attire.

There’s so much in store for me in 2020, and I’d love to share it all with you!  Be sure to check out my upcoming show schedule below, and of course keep an eye on my website for a fully up-to-date list of my performances and appearances.

As always, there’s a chance I might end up picking up a few more shows over the coming weeks, so be sure to like my various social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram) and keep an eye on the Tour Dates page to make sure you don’t miss anything.

Once again, thank you for taking this journey with me. I can’t wait to see what happens during this new decade!

Cheers,
Michael

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December Music News


December Music News

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Happy December, Friend!

This month always feels like it sneaks up on me. I swear that it was just yesterday I was contemplating my goals for the new year… but at the same time, it seems like ages ago. It almost feels like I’ve packed a lifetime of events and excitement into 341 days (or something like that; calendar math is hard), and I’ve had the opportunity to exercise my creative muscles in so many different ways that I’ve almost lost count.

Music has, as always, been my primary focus. I’ve been able to continue traveling and touring all around the country to perform at various events and venues, visiting cities like Chicago, Austin, Memphis, St Louis, and more to share my songs – close to 100 shows in total this year! I’ve stayed equally busy at home, filming and producing not one, but THREE new music videos. Just this week I released the first of those, a live concert video of my band The Mess Makers. It’s always a blast sharing the stage with Kevin, Eric, and Michael, and videographer Tyler Ray (also guitarist of The Boom Shakalakas and Guy Snowdon & the Citizens) did an amazing job of capturing that energy. Check it out!

“House of Ghosts” – Michael McFarland & the Mess Makers

A second Mess Makers video is also waiting in the wings; I finished the first rough cut of it earlier this week, so expect that soon! A solo video filmed at Cleveland’s Edgewater Park is also in the works for release early next year. With all these videos coming out, I’ve had the itch to start working on my first Hello Headrush video as well, and I’m pretty excited about the idea I’ve been fleshing for that – I can’t wait to tackle in the coming months.

Another exciting bit of news; I just was offered an endorsement deal from Trident Media, which means I’ll soon be one of those cool kids whose guitar picks have their own logo on it! It’s an honor to have been asked to join their roster, and their products are absolutely top-notch.

Parallel to my career as a musician, I’ve also been continuing to build the DIY music venue that operates out of my own home. McFarland Manor celebrated its one year anniversary with a multi-day music and arts festival that was attended by over 400 friends and fans. Our lineup featured over 30 musicians, a dozen featured artists, dancers, storytellers, puppets, and even a strongman! The community continues to show overwhelming support for local music and it never ceases to amaze me.

This year has also seen incredible (and unexpected) growth in my career as a visual artist, as well. Last year, I began drawing black and white character portraiture, and my collection of personae has expanded to over 100 individuals. On top of the 2D art, I’ve found myself right in the middle of Ingenuity Cleveland, an ever-growing creative collaborative that develops large-scale interactive art experiences for festivals and other events around town. For the group’s flagship event, IngenuityFest: Dreamscapes, I had the honor of developing and building a wonderful piece, collaborating with my partner Amanda, my brother Dave, and even my niece Julia & her partner Piper got in on the action! The Zen Soundscapes project let me hone not only my art skills, but my building and software skills as well, while allowing me to use my background in audio engineering in an unexpected way. We’re already planning for the next event, and I’m so excited to see what we create next.

On top of my creative endeavors, Amanda & I also had the amazing opportunity to backpack around Europe this summer! Starting with the Women’s World Cup semis in Lyons, France (which the US won, natch), we spent a day in rural France, an evening in Lyon proper, two days in Paris, two days in Rotterdam, and two days in Scotland walking the hills from which my McFarland ancestors came, before heading to London for the return trip. 



It’s hard to believe I was able to fit so many adventures into the past eleven months, and I know that my 2020 calendar is already filling rapidly; after celebrating New Year’s Eve, I’ll have just one day off before hitting the road to New Orleans, with a stop in Nashville along the way! Life continues to be a crazy whirlwind work in progress journey, and I can’t wait to see what’s in store for the future.

Here’s a quick rundown of the shows I’ve got coming up over the next month:

As always, there’s a chance I might end up picking up a few more shows over the coming weeks, so be sure to like my various social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram) and keep an eye on the Tour Dates page to make sure you don’t miss anything.

Once again, thank you for taking this journey with me. I can’t wait to see what happens next!

Cheers,
Michael

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November Music News


November Music News

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Happy November, Friend!

If last month’s newsletter was like a novel, this time you’re getting the CliffsNotes!

New Music Video Coming!
At the Michael McFarland & the Mess Makers show last month, the very talented guitarist Tyler Ray from bands like The Boom Shakalakas and Guy Snowdon & the Citizens, who also happens to be a very talented videographer, was there shooting footage of our set. He’s currently in process of cutting that footage together to make a kickass music video for the song House of Ghosts.  Watch for it soon…

TN & TX!
Next week I’ll be hitting the road for Austin, Texas to play my music & show my art at Wizard World Austin, with a stop along the way to play at Java Cabana in Memphis, TN. It’s been several years since I’ve played in Memphis, and I can’t wait to be back… and it’s ALWAYS a blast getting to share my music in Austin. Given that there was snow on the ground when I woke up this morning, a quick jaunt south sounds like it’s coming at the perfect time.

NEW STICKERS!
I ran out of stickers a few months back, and it’s about time I remedied that. Monday I put in an order for 1,000 three-inch stickers with the new logo (that same one you see on the banners in the pictures above), which should be ready to go any day now! Stop by a show to grab one for free, or I’ll have them available on my web store soon!

I thought you were keeping a light schedule this month?
Remember how I said November was going to be a less-packed month of shows? Well, life doesn’t always turn out how we planned… And in this case, I’m 100% ok with that! In addition to the run down south, I’ve got shows scheduled all over the region, I hope I’ll see you at one. Even if it’s only because you want the new sticker…😉

As always, there’s a chance I might end up picking up a few more shows over the coming weeks, so be sure to like my various social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram) and keep an eye on the Tour Dates page to make sure you don’t miss anything.

Once again, thank you for taking this journey with me. I can’t wait to see what happens next!

Cheers,
Michael

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October Music news 🎵👻🎃💀🎶


October Music news 🎵👻🎃💀🎶

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Hey, Friend!

Happy spooktober! This past weekend was the first time it really felt like Fall, and I’m here for it. You’ll probably notice that this newsletter’s coming later in the month than it normally does. Usually I might try to include some reasonable excuse for why it’s late, but I decided that life’s too short to worry about overdue homework, so I’m going to let this one slide… I hope you’ll do the same? 😉

You may recall a few months back I mentioned a fundraiser for a project my partner & I were hoping to build for Ingenuity Fest this year. In case you’re not familiar, Ingenuity Fest is a 3-day arts, music, and technology festival that happens in early fall every year in Cleveland. It was an honor to both exhibit, help curate a stage, and perform at this year’s event. If you contributed to the fundraiser for the Zen Soundscapes project, THANK YOU. Here’s an album documenting the entire build process, from the initial sketches and renderings to the final installation at the festival!

The same weekend as Ingenuity Fest, I released a new Hello Headrush single; while still a part of the dystopian science-fiction saga that is the Hello Headrush universe, this one has a bit more melodic turn to it than the first two singles. It’s called “The Long Winter” and can be found wherever online music is served. The rest of the debut EP is already recorded, so you can expect more of the Hello Headrush story coming your way over the coming months!

Last year in this same month, I dove head-first into creating two-dimensional art for the first time in a decade, and used “Inktober” – a series of one-word drawing prompts, one for every day in October – as a catalyst for that. I’ve since had the opportunity to show my artwork at events all over the country, which was an unexpected but not unwelcome result. I decided to try my hand at Inktober again this year, and I’ve found it equal parts rewarding and challenging. One thing I’ve been pushing myself to do is to work on completing “sets” of images I’ve previously started, and matching the styles of those; there are several Game of Thrones portraits I did last year, and I’ve had the opportunity to add to collection. I also added companion images from Young Frankenstein, Lord of the Rings, and there are several more coming up! You can follow along the rest of the month on my Instagram art account.

Speaking of showing my artwork, next weekend I’ll be at Wizard World Columbus, playing music and showing my art. You’ll be able to catch me on stage at 4PM Friday, 1PM Saturday, and 10AM Sunday, and my art will be on display all weekend long in Artist Alley!

I’ve got a few other regional shows coming up before the end of the month, including one with my full band The Mess Makers. you’ll be able to catch us at the 5 O’Clock Lounge on the 25th, along with our friends in The Boom Shakalakas and Brian Hager & the Sky Rockets. If you’re in the greater Cleveland area, I hope you’ll join us!

I know I’m packing a lot into this newsletter, but one last cool thing I wanted to mention! I had the honor of curating a “Mixtape Playlist” for Cleveland Magazine, as part of the ListenCLE project. When selecting songs, I had in mind a drive through the Cuyahoga Valley National Park, leaving at dusk and arriving home after dark. You can check out the article here, and find all the ListenCLE playlists here!

Over the next few months, my show schedule may be a little sparser, because I’m working on new music, both for Hello Headrush and as Michael McFarland. Expect some studio updates soon! I won’t be totally absent from the stage, though… Here’s what I’ve got lined up for the immediate future:

As always, there’s a chance I might end up picking up a few more shows over the coming weeks, so be sure to like my various social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram) and keep an eye on the Tour Dates page to make sure you don’t miss anything.

Once again, thank you for taking this journey with me. I can’t wait to see what happens next!

Cheers,
Michael

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September Music News


September Music News

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Hey, Friend!

Welcome to September! The weather’s pretending like it’s going to stay cool for a bit, but here in Ohio we know that there’s going to be at least one more sweltering heat wave before diving straight into winter. But, you know, variety, spice, life, and all that.

It’s not officially Autumn yet, but never mind that; the impending season has always been a time of change, of transitions, of new beginnings. Spring may try to claim that title, but it’s never worked out that way in my life. This year looks to stay true to form; the biggest change coming this time is that I’ll be returning to the stage with my full band – Michael McFarland and the Mess Makers – on a regular basis! Our first performance will be at the Heights Music Hop, a 3-day festival jam-packed with incredible talent; we’ll be performing on Friday the 13th ( 😱) at 8PM… and you can expect to see lots more shows with the Mess Makers showing up on the calendar in the coming months.

I’ve also started writing new material! Much like the squirrels are doing right now, I stockpile song ideas, lyrical snippets, and melodic fragments (usually in my phone’s voice recorder, but occasionally in my cheek pouches along with some acorns) until I’m ready to start writing in earnest. A few weeks back, it felt like the right time to start stitching together those pieces into full-fledged songs. I’ve already been in the studio demoing new tracks, and you can anticipate at least one new song will be released before the year’s end!

Hello Headrush (my Apocalypse Dance Party Electro-Rock Opera) will also be releasing a new single later this month. No audio for you yet, but if you’ve seen Hello Headrush live, you’ve heard this one already. I can show you what the single artwork looks like, though…

Hello Headrush will be hitting the stage again at the end of the month – September 28th at 7PM – for one of the coolest events that Cleveland has to offer: IngenuityFest! Along with building some big crazy interactive art installations for the festival (you might remember the Zen SoundScapes project I mentioned last month, and thank you SO MUCH if you donated, shared, or even just took the time to check out the fundraiser), I’m helping curate one of the stages at the festival this year! Meg Stepka & I have joined forces to curate three days of outside-the-box multimedia performances. If you can make it to the festival, make sure you swing by the Cabaret Stage and check out all the awesome that’s going to be unfolding there.

Because of all the prep involved in getting ready for IngenuityFest at the end of this month, I’ve intentionally kept my show schedule lighter in September than I have for the rest of the year, but there’s still some opportunities to catch me performing around the region:

As always, there’s a chance I might end up picking up a few more shows over the coming weeks, so be sure to like my various social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram) and keep an eye on the Tour Dates page to make sure you don’t miss anything.

Once again, thank you for taking this journey with me. I can’t wait to see what happens next!

Cheers,
Michael

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August Music News


August Music News

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Hey, Friend!

Happy August! Before we get to the meat of this newsletter, here’s a few fun facts for you about the month we currently inhabit…

  • In the early Roman calendar, August was actually the sixth month of the year, and was named after Augustus Caesar. The month was originally 30 days in length, but an extra day was added so that it would equal the number of days in July, which was named after Julius Caesar. Egomaniacs, those emperors. Who’da thought?
  • August 3rd is National Watermelon day, be sure to hit the grocery store early to avoid the rush of melon maniacs.
  • On August 21st, 1911, the Mona Lisa was stolen from the Louvre Gallery and not recovered for two years.

Feel smarter yet? No? Well, let’s see what we can accomplish with the rest of this newsletter…

I’m thrilled that just this morning, the second single by Hello Headrush (my multi-media science-fiction electro-rock hyphen-fest) was released! It’s called “Count Down To…”, and out of all the songs I’ve written so far for Hello Headrush, this one comes closest to hitting my targeted “Apocalypse Dance Party” feel. Mixing and mastering duties fell once again to Eric Bert Audio, and the final product absolutely SLAPS. Check it out on Spotify, Apple Music, or Amazon Music. If it’s not yet on your favorite digital platform, it probably will be soon!


The next big Ingenuity Cleveland event is on the horizon, and this one is the biggest of the big: IngenuityFest!  Much like the fundraising Bal for which I created a bunch of “dream beds”, the theme this year is Dreamscapes – which I’ve adapted into dream-like soundscapes for my highlight project! Building on the idea of a tranquil Zen garden and the Japanese traditions of Shinto-Buddhist syncretism, I’m developing an entire footprint of modern-meets-ancient interactive artwork.  The centerpiece is a human-scale Zen rock garden (just like the one you probably had on your desk at some point), erected over a light-up floor.  As you rake through the sand, software created by my brother Dave will translate the areas of light intensity into notes from a Japanese pentatonic scale. The result? An ever-changing soundscape that reacts to real time interactions! To help fund this ambitious project (which already has a working demo and is about to start in earnest), I’ve been fortunate enough to secure up to $5000 in donation matching from the Cuyahoga Arts & Culture Foundation via a community-focused crowdfunding platform called IOBY.  The project is about 75% funded and is in its last days – if you’re interested in the project, want more information, and may be able to donate, please check out the page for more information!  All donations are matched dollar-for-dollar in real time!

It’s been a few months since I last took the Wizard World stage, but I’m so very excited to announce that at the end of this month I’ll be headed to Chicago for one of the biggest pop-culture geekfests on the planet! You’ll be able to catch me on stage (performance schedule should be coming soon!) and in Artist Alley for the whole 4-day con.  This will be my first opportunity to appear at the Chicago event, and I’m looking forward to reveling in the finest pageantry and nerditry the Midwest has to offer!

Here’s a rundown of the shows I’ve got scheduled for the remainder of August:

As always, there’s a chance I might end up picking up a few more shows over the coming weeks, so be sure to like my various social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram) and keep an eye on the Tour Dates page to make sure you don’t miss anything.

Once again, thank you for taking this journey with me. I can’t wait to see what happens next!

Cheers,
Michael

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July Music News


July Music News

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Hey, Friend!

You’ll notice that this newsletter’s a little late this month – I promise there a good reason for that, and that good reason is that just last night Amanda & I returned from a whirlwind trip of Europe! The trip took us through 16 airports, train stations, and bus terminals, six countries, seven cities, and a lifetime of memories. We got to be in the stadium in Lyon, France, when the US Women’s National team won their World Cup semifinal match against England, and watched the final game against the Netherlands in Rotterdam! We stayed in hostels, Airbnbs, and architectural sleeping pods. We slept on buses, planes, and trains. We watched the sunrise over Notre Dame de Paris, got scolded at the Louvre, locked out of the Palace of Versailles, ate Dutch pancakes in Holland, saw breathtaking landscapes in the Scottish Highlands, and as the end neared were torn between wanting this incredible journey to continue and being SO READY to get back home.

Here are a few shots from the trip – tons more will be hitting my Social Media Accounts before long, so check those out if you’re interested in seeing more!







As amazing as the trip was, there’s really nothing like sleeping in your own bed after two weeks of non-stop travel.

Now that we’re back, it’s time to dive head-first into summer! Four shows are coming up this weekend, including one tomorrow in downtown Akron. Hello Headrush will be performing at the Buffalo Infringment Festival, and you can expect Count Down To…, the new Hello Headrush single, to drop before the end of the month (Eric’s mix for this song is KILLER!).


Here’s a rundown of the shows I’ve got scheduled for the remainder of July:

As always, there’s a chance I might end up picking up a few more shows over the coming weeks, so be sure to like my various social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram) and keep an eye on the Tour Dates page to make sure you don’t miss anything.

Once again, thank you for taking this journey with me. I can’t wait to see what happens next!

Cheers,
Michael

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