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Grassroots Concerts welcomes Michael Shynes Feb. 23

Web posted February 13, 2018
Michael Shynes makes his Grassroots Concerts debut Friday, Feb. 23 at the Live Well Night Club and Coffee Bar in Nisswa at 7:30 p.m. in the first show of the 2018 spring season, the 30th year of the nonprofit series.

“Musically, I’m in love, says Rebecca Cicione of A & R Columbia Records. “His light, accessible, passionate sound is one that had me hitting the repeat button on one song for almost an hour.”

“Stylistically, he is difficult to pigeonhole because his sound amalgamates many different flavors, blending R&B, pop and blues into awesomely immediate melodies, evocative lyrics and contagious rhythms. Michael Shynes really has it going on.” --The Huffington Post

After losing his father to an auto immune disease at the age of 25, the Little Falls native decided to honor his dad’s legacy by chasing the dreams he had put off for so long. At that time he was working at a residential treatment center for teens and playing an occasional show on the weekend.

“It was important work, and shaped who I am today in many ways,” Shynes said. “After three years I just got tired of getting beat up, spit on, and called everything you can imagine. I loved those kids though, and wouldn’t trade my time there for anything.”

He moved back home to keep costs down while trying to become a full time musician. “It worked out well because I didn’t want to think of my mom being alone in the house after my dad’s passing. But by the same token it felt like a lateral move being back in my childhood home. I had many an existential crisis during that time.”

Shynes began playing every show that he possibly could, and as time went on, he was even able to pay off his student loans through concerts with his acoustic guitar. “Paying rent every month by writing and performing songs was pretty surreal, and the harder I worked, the better the gigs got.”

Shynes would often get noticed as a strong local candidate to open up for national acts as they came through town, and even ended up on a tour with Platinum Recording Artist Howie Day.

“That really taught me a lot because I was playing for theaters full of people who were not there to see me,” he said. “But I was telling the stories and playing my songs, and everyone was listening.” That was a landmark experience.

Now Shynes is one of the most sought-after acoustic performers and songwriters in the Midwest. He has an ability to blend shades of multiple genres over an acoustic landscape, and his songs are ripe with lyrical depth rarely paired with mainstream appeal. Shynes is unique in voice and phrasing. His vocal range and falsetto are nothing short of captivating, and his finger-picking is the perfect bed of warmth on which his soulful lyrics can rest.

For more on Shynes, go to www.michaelshynes.com.

The Live Well Night Club and Coffee Bar is located at the Journey Church, 5459 CR 18, next to the school in Nisswa. Grassroots Concerts is completely operated by volunteers and is a 501c3 nonprofit under the Internal Revenue Code. The series began in 1988. Concert is general admission and doors open at 6:30. At each concert, non-perishable food and cash donations are welcomed, with donations delivered to local food shelves by Grassroots volunteers. For more information please call 218-829-4092, go to grassrootsconcerts.org or visit Grassroots Concerts on Facebook.

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