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MP3 Blackbirds - Anatomy of Melancholy

Some stories, some poltical statements, some lost love and lost friends, all done up in guitar-driven acoustic style.

9 MP3 Songs
FOLK: like Joni, FOLK: like Ani

Blackbirds is an experimental mix of old and new: the old Chicago veteran and the neophyte. Mike has been around the Chicago music scene for 30+ years, with many stops along the way. Claire is his former student who has no professional experience, but adds the silk to the burlap in this mix. Contemporary folk might explain the genre, but it tends to explode in various directions.

Mike has lived in Chicago his whole life, and began playing rock in the 60s (pre-DJ) era, when working bands could stay busy. The rock morphed into folk-rock, into solo acoustic folk, into some Christian, and then into a cocoon that lasted about 10 years. Re-emergence coincided with a return to teaching after a 13 year sojourn in the law. Mike now plays mostly benefits for causes supported by the campus ministry group he coordinates. He now does all his own recording, mostly on a Korg D1200 Mk II digital machine. Multi-track recording has encouraged him to learn bass, mandolin, lap steel, some keyboard and percussion, in conjunction with the guitar and harp he already brought to the mix. Much of his song writing focuses on social issues about which he is passionate.
Claire is a Chicago-suburban girl who discovered her skills in student musical productions. She brings a rare vocal clarity to the mix which will only improve with time and experience, as she discovers her style. Claire currently attends St. Louis University located (paradoxically) in St. Louis, MO.
The big challenge for Blackbirds is finding a vocal mix which allows for duets; the closest thing that comes to mind is Steve Earle''s work with Emmylou Harris. The other big challenge is trading song information back and forth so the precious school-break recording time has maximum results.

Some of our music appears on SOUNDAID (see links), a place where musicicans from around the world offer their tunes to help Heifer fight world hunger.

Whatever profits come form these ventures will go to fighting AIDS in Africa.

Thanks for listening.

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