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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 🎵👻🎃💀🎶


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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


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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


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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


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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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June Music news


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Hey, Friend!

A year ago, while mourning the loss of a beloved DIY music venue that had recently closed its doors, a couple of my musician friends and I decided to launch a venue of our own. My home became the staging area for monthly live music showcases under the name McFarland Manor, and since then we’ve hosted 13 shows featuring 6-8 acts each show.  Music at the Manor spans all genres and has given birth to an absolutely amazing community of performers, artists, and audience members! We’ve been so proud of all that has happened since our that first concert that we have decided to celebrate the anniversary of the Manor with a special two-day music and arts festival, aptly named ManorFest!

ManorFest boasts a full Friday night lineup for the original indoor stage, then will launch the new outdoor stage on Saturday morning with acoustic acts. We’ve also invited our fellow DIYers from the Beezy Douglas Carnivale to bring along some of their favorite acts and carnival games and Cleveland’s best music hostess-with-the-mostess Meganne Stepka for a one-hour open mic session before closing out the night with four headliners back on the inside stage. Artists working in a variety of media will be displaying installations and galleries throughout the weekend, fortune telling and an ice cream cart will be on site, and even camping overnight at the Manor is encouraged! Oh – and in true McFarland Manor tradition, all of this is FREE!  You can find all the details right here in the Facebook Event!

McFarland Manor’s New Years show also saw the debut of my newest musical endeavor, Hello Headrush. A few months ago I released my first single from this multimedia performance project about a future world in which androids and humans are deadly enemies; you can check out that single “Second Life” on Spotify.  Now, I’m working on my second single, “Count Down To…”, from Hello Headrush’s upcoming first EP entitled Humanity*.  As always, I have Eric Bert manning the helm for post-production mixing & mastering, so expect this track to be even more awesome than the last one! Your first look at the artwork is right here in this e-mail… stay tuned for the single release!

I’d like to apologize in advance, as my next music newsletter is likely to be a little delayed in July.  I’ll be spending the first couple weeks of the month traveling through Europe, a trip that will (hopefully) start with seeing the US Women’s Soccer team play in the World Cup semifinals in Lyon, France, before sending my partner and I to Italy and Scotland for a few days each!

The rest of my summer calendar has filled up quickly, too, with live shows almost every week. This upcoming weekend I’ll be playing five days straight across western Pennsylvania and eastern Ohio!

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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May Music News 🎧🎵💃


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Hey, Friend,

A few days ago Justin Timberlake came out of his burrow in Leiper’s Fork, Tennessee, and saw his shadow, prognosticating the on-time arrival of May. So here we are! Everything’s turning green, and planning around unexpected torrential downpours can be a challenge… but enough about my mildew and plumbing issues! (You think I joke, but I just finished fixing my kitchen sink’s drain. On the downside, my soothing basement waterfall seems to have shut off. Pure coincidence, I expect.)

A few months back, I wrote about Brite Winter, a music and arts festival in Cleveland for which I had a hand in creating a number of the art installations. The art side of Brite is handled by Ingenuity Cleveland, and the next big Ingenuity event is coming up this Saturday! I’ve had the pleasure (and only a little bit of pain) of designing several large-scale pieces for The Dreamer’s Bal, and I’m thrilled for everyone to experience the results. This is a one-night-only event which harkens back to the Cleveland Kokoon Club’s infamous Bal Masque. It also serves as a preview of the DreamScapes theme for IngenuityFest 2019 this fall, for which I’ve already got a few large-scale installation projects percolating…

Giant dream catcher arches will lead you into a dreamscape full of fantastical beds (inspired by Sylvia Plath’s “The Bed Book”, a favorite goodnight story from my childhood), creepy nightmares (if you choose to crawl under the giant bed and find what lives beneath), a fairy forest, a pillow-dueling ring, roaming character actors, and an evening’s worth of phenomenal musical performances! I won’t be performing – after all the time spent building the art installations, I’ll get to relax and enjoy an evening of entertainment and perhaps a bit of revelry.

There’s an extensive Facebook gallery of photos by my partner Amanda of Fiercely Serene Studios, documenting the creation of the installations for the Bal – check it out here!

Last month’s Record Store Day release of the vinyl edition of House of Ghosts was a blast – there was a line all the way down the plaza for my morning performance at the Record Den in Mentor, and my evening show at the House of Blues was a great time as well! With the vinyl release, there have been some incredibly kind words people have been saying about the album:

“Talent, passion, and lyrics that come from the heart. That sums up the music on Michael McFarland’s latest album, “House Of Ghosts.” He knows how to tug at your emotions, yet, after you listen to the songs, you walk away feeling like you’ve got a kindred spirit in this thing called life.”
-Debbie Mazella, WMGQ Magic 98.3

“Big, bright & lovestruck slice of infectious anthemic indie-rock” 
-BarryGruff.com

If you haven’t gotten a chance to check out the record yet, you can stream it here, or order the vinyl here!

My spring concert schedule’s filled out nicely, with dates scattered all over northern Ohio and western Pennsylvania. 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 next!

Cheers,
Michael

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April Music News 🗺🖖🏻🎧


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Hey, Friend,

I’ve just returned from my annual visit to Cape May, New Jersey, for the Singer-Songwriter Conference that has become a traditional journey for me over the past seven years. Sharing the trip with my good friend and fellow singer-songwriter Kevin Conaway, we not only attended seminars and industry panels to keep moving our music careers forward, but we also had the opportunity to reconnect with many of our musical comrades-in-arms from across the United States! I played two showcase sets, enjoyed listening to many more, and came home with some exciting new ideas and goals towards which I can start working.

This coming weekend, I’m hitting the road again! This time I’m heading west instead, traveling to St Louis, Missouri, to be part of another Wizard World Comic Convention. As usual, I’ll be joining personalities like Kato Kaelin and Thomas Ian Nicholas onstage while I perform three sets throughout the weekend, and I’ll also be setting up a booth to sell my board games and my visual art, alongside a plethora of incredible artists including my friends Shawn Coss and Nate Michaels! This will be my fifth Wizard World experience, my fourth on the road, and I couldn’t be happier to be a part of such a huge and engaging community.

Finally, with April comes one of my favorite holidays: Record Store Day! I celebrate every year with patronage to local indie music stores, and this year have the honor of playing my own music at two different locations here in Cleveland – but that’s not all! I’ve been waiting for months now to finally release my recent album, House of Ghosts, as my second vinyl offering, and I’m so proud to be able to inform you that my record will be available at several stores in the Greater Cleveland area! Preorders are already in the mail, if you reserved your copy early, and of course if you can’t make it to one of the stores, you can always order through my website. House of Ghosts is the culmination of over a decade of songwriting, and among my discography is definitely the album of which I am the most proud. I do hope you’ll give it a listen and love it as much as I do! And if vinyl’s not your thing, you can still stream it or get a copy on CD.

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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House of Ghosts Vinyl Release – Record Store Day 2019

September Music News
The vinyl release for my recent record House of Ghosts is happening on April 13 – Record Store Day! House of Ghosts is my sixth album, my second vinyl release, and has been described by reviewers as a “big, bright & lovestruck slice of infectious anthemic indie-rock”. It was created entirely in Northeast Ohio; tracked at Spontaneously Combustible Studio on the west side of Cleveland, mixed & mastered by Eric Bert Audio in Warren, and manufactured by Gotta Groove in downtown CLE.
I’ll be celebrating the release with a morning performance at Record Den in Mentor, and an evening show at the House of Blues Restaurant & Bar. The album will also be available for Record Store day at several area record shops, including:
  • My Mind’s Eye – Lakewood
  • A Separate Reality – Cleveland (Ohio City)
  • The Record Den – Mentor
  • Blue Arrow Records – Cleveland (Waterloo)
  • The Vinyl Groove – Bedford

If you’re unable to make it to a show or retail location to pick up your copy, you can also pre-order here.

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March Music News


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Hey, Friend,

Not to sound like a broken record, but MAN is 2019 taking me for spin! This year has already been jam-packed with excitement, arising in some of the most unexpected places.

In January, I started working with a local creative collaborative called Ingenuity Cleveland, which hosts massive art, performance, and music festivals throughout the year. One of their early season projects is Brite Winter, a one-day, outdoor, five-stage music and art extravaganza bringing warmth and joy to the cold Cleveland winter in late February. A large team of artists, builders, musicians, performers, and everyday Clevelanders who wanted to make something beautiful joined together to fill three giant tents to the brim with giant art installations and interactive activities. I’m so proud to say that I not only helped on several major projects, but also designed an escape room style interactive game for one of the tents, which I then got to see played and completed by dozens of enthused families! It was so very rewarding to join this team and start creating larger-than-life experiences to share with my beloved city. Just as with my musical projects, I love creating experiences that are both literally and metaphorically multi-dimensional, and I’m looking very forward to continuing my involvement with Ingenuity for a long, long time.

Heading into spring, the hits just keep on coming: this weekend I’ll be playing the main entertainment stage at Cleveland’s Wizard World Comic Con! Though I’ve had the honor of playing at several other Wizard World events in other states, this will be my first time playing this event in the city I call home. Sharing the stage with celebrities like Kato Kaelin and Thomas Ian Nicholas is pretty cool, but I also get to share my visual art alongside my musical art as an Artist Alley vendor all weekend. And, of course, I get to check out all the wonderfully eccentric costumes that never fail to populate one of the largest comic conventions around!

At the end of the month, I’ll once again be making my way to New Jersey, for the annual Singer-Songwriter of Cape May conference. This will be my seventh year (I think?) in attendance, and I’m thrilled to once again be making the pilgrimage with my brother in musical arms, Kevin Conaway. Not only is the conference a great place for learning, networking, and building my skills, but I also get to play a showcase performance while I’m in town! It’s a very personally significant trip that has become a bit of a yearly ritual; I always leave the seaside town fired up and ready for what’s next.

Finally, I have a few things cooking for April already too! You may or may not know that National Record Store Day happens across the country, every year, and strives to celebrate indie music and record stores through patronage. This year it’ll be April 13, and I’ll be playing not one, but TWO live performances that day, the first at a locally run record shop – and I’ll be at each location with more than just my guitar’s groovy tunes to offer, if you catch my drift. Without officially announcing anything yet, like say, the release date for House of Ghosts in a beloved format, I’d say you’d be safe to mark your calendars and start…

THE VINYL COUNTDOWN!

Now that the groans from that pun have dissipated, here’s a rundown of the shows I’ve got coming up over the rest of this month. I’d love to see your smiling, grinning, smirking, or even pouting faces at one of them!

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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February Music News


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Hey, Friend,

We’re only one month into the new year and already so many musical things are happening! On New Year’s, my new multimedia electro-rock project Hello Headrush debuted in a small house show setting, but it’s already visiting larger venues thanks to Akron’s Empire Concert Club and my friends from The Scenic Route. Having the opportunity to bring my vision to a larger stage and broader audience was exhilarating, and the next batch of shows are already hitting my calendar. Of course, you don’t have to wait for a live show to hear Hello Headrush’s first single, which dropped at the end of January with the help of a Cleveland.com article by the wonderful Anne Nickoloff. Check out the article here, and listen the single “Second Life”, on any of your favorite streaming services: Spotify, iTunes, Google Play, it’s on all of’em!

Also picking up steam in 2019 is my old band, The Mess Makers – in case you’re not familiar, we play the same material from my solo records, but as a cranked-up 4-piece rock band instead of my usual one-man looping show. After a successful reunion last Halloween, we’ve begun playing more gigs AND, most excitingly, shot our first music video! Our performanced-based video for “The Last Sunset” was filmed on one of Cleveland’s most bone-chillingly cold days, which necessitated some flexibility amongst my bandmate and filming crew. Despite the single-digit temperatures, we were able to relocate the shoot from an old, empty warehouse that would have been absolutely frigid to a much warmer setting: my Victorian mini-mansion (Who you calling eccentric? I’m not eccentric, you’re eccentric! Boom! Roasted.) in Gordon Square.  Everyone brought their “A” game, including our director Brandon Radic from Lights & Sounds Media who turned our very cold lemons into a delicious lemonade slushie. He has a great eye for locations, angles, and all the little touches that make a video so special. We can’t wait to share it with you in a few weeks!

Amongst all these bigger band happenings, my solo performance schedule has stayed pretty well packed, with gigs all around Northern Ohio. Lately that’s been a bit of a challenge for me; I severely sprained my ankle during a co-ed recreational soccer match a couple weeks ago. You may not know, but I happen to be an avid fan of futbol, especially the EPL’s Arsenal, the Columbus Crew, and the United State’s own Women’s National Team; I’m also a casual player myself in several local leagues. Though the bruising looks horrible, there’s good news: while I may have sustained a heck of an injury, our opponents did NOT score on that play, and we came out with a 6-3 victory! I have been walking a little gingerly but the ankle is definitely healing, and the show will continue to go on!

And for everyone who pre-ordered my House of Ghosts vinyl when the album was released last October, I have great news! The crew at Gotta Groove Records has informed me that the manufacturing process is almost complete, and I’ll be able to pick up the records and start sending them out very soon. If you haven’t had a chance to place your order yet, you can still do so HERE!

I’ve got a nice batch of shows around the region 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

Copyright © 2019 Michael McFarland, All rights reserved.

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January Music News


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Hey, Friend,

Happy New Year!

I’m aware that I’m a few weeks late in expressing that sentiment, but know that it’s heartfelt all the same. The first days of 2019 have been spent re-charging, setting creative goals for the year, and starting to turn those goals into actions! 

Halloween’s House of Ghosts album release was such an exciting event for me, and the good vibes have just kept coming. I’m thrilled to report that I’ve receive the vinyl test pressings for the album, and they sound fantastic! Thanks to local vinyl manufacturers Gotta Groove Records, my new album will be officially available shortly, and I’ll be sending pre-orders out hot off the presses – almost literally! If you haven’t reserved a copy yet, you can still put in your pre-order HERE. As my second offering on vinyl, I’m incredibly proud of how this album has translated to such a time-honored medium and can’t wait for it to be spinning on your turntable!

The album release party was also an opportunity to reunite my band The Mess Makers, and we’ve been back in action ever since. Not only are we booking more shows around northeast Ohio, but we’re also shooting our very first music video this coming Sunday! We’ll be doing a performance video to my House of Ghosts single “The Last Sunset” and filming at Cleveland’s amazing Hamilton Collaborative, home to Ingenuity Fest, Skidmark Garage, and dozens of other art, music, performance, and innovation projects and events. It’s an exciting space full of creative energy that, combined with the videography & direction of Brandon Radic of Lights & Sounds Media should make for one excellent music video!

Of course, the new album isn’t the only big happening from this past year. Just after midnight on New Years, I debuted Hello Headrush, a new multimedia performance project which tells the story of a race of androids and their conflict with humanity. From the beginning, I wanted to make sure the live experience was unique and immersive: the “band” is comprised not only of myself playing & singing live, but two additional characters – portrayed by me – rocking out on life-size screens on stage along with me (insert “I’m beside myself” joke here), my microphone stand has a 3D-printed robot hand holding the mic, I’m playing a badass space guitar that was painted using fluid acrylics by Fiercely Serene, and I’m wearing a facial prosthetic to round out the visuals. The music is a combination of electro-pop & hard rock with a plethora of other styles blended in (even a bit of disco!), and I’ll be releasing the first single, entitled “Second Life”, from the debut EP Humanity* on January 28, followed by a live show at The Empire in Akron on February 2.

Photo by No.Numbers

Photo by No.Numbers – I’ll be performing at his Proxy photography show!

My regular solo performances and those with the Mess Makers will continue alongside the Hello Headrush project, and I’m looking forward to another truly awesome year of music. I’ve already confirmed appearances at both the Cleveland and St. Louis Wizard World Comic Cons, along with dozens of other shows, all of which can be found on my website. Here’s a quick list of upcoming gigs – hope to see you in person soon!

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.

Lastly, if you’ve ever wondered what music I personally listen to, here’s a little window into that; I put together a Spotify playlist that reflects how my 2018 sounded. Some of these are songs that were personally significant for me, some I found musically inspirational, and others are just bangers. I hope you enjoy – and if there’s any music you think I’d enjoy, please send it my way!

Once again, thank you for taking this journey with me. Let’s make 2019 a great one!

Cheers,
Michael

Copyright © 2019 Michael McFarland, All rights reserved.

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