Performing Arts: Music
From Kokomo, Indiana, Mike began playing guitar in 1977 at age 6. Mike grew up hearing his father’s soul-rock bands. He traveled with them and the Drifters in the mid- 1970’s throughout the southern States. With paper route money, Mike purchased his first electric guitar at age 10. His vocals and guitar are heavily blues and soul influenced. He began writing his own music at age 10. Mike’s style relies on emotion and expression, as do many soulful artists, but is surely not lacking in technical skills. Mike cites his father, “Big” Mike, Robert Cray, Tad Robinson, Howling Wolf, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Doyle Bramhall (1 and 2), Stevie Wonder, Al Green, Donny Hathaway Jimi Hendrix, Albert King and Collins….(get the picture?) as his mentors. Mike formed Steam Shovel in the summer of 1993 and was named “Best Blues Band in Indiana” in 2002!
-Voted “Best Unsigned Band in Indiana” in 2004 by the Slippery Noodle Inn (named Best Blues Club in the USA 2002- The Blues Foundation, Memphis, TN) and Crossroads Blues Society, and competed on Beale St. in Memphis, TN.
– Perform top venues and high-profile festivals continuously in Chicago (House of Blues), Cleveland (House of Blues), Cincinnati (REDS Stadium), Austin and Dallas, TX, Louisville, Nashville and Memphis, TN, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, New York, Michigan, and all over our home state of Indiana (including the Indy 500!).
-All tour dates are in support of our 5 CD releases (“98,”01,”04, LIVE “04,“07), & in doing so, have performed with BB King, Buddy Guy, Al Green, Robert Cray, Kenny Wayne Shepherd, Tower of Power, WC Clark, Walter Trout, Chris Duarte, Lonnie Brooks, Ronnie Baker Brooks, Bela Fleck, Medeski/Scofield/Martin/Wood, GE Smith (SNL), Fabulous Thunderbirds, Long John Hunter, Smokey Smothers, Tommy Castro, Carl Weathersby, James Hunter, Joe Bonamassa, Lil Ed…