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Michael McNevin | Sketch

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United States - California - SF

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Folk: Modern Folk Country: Americana Moods: Type: Acoustic
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by Michael McNevin

\"Michael is one of folk music\'s best kept secrets. His first album, \'Secondhand Story\' is still one of my favorites, and \'Sketch\' firmly establishes Michael as a songwriter to be reckoned with.\" - Christine Lavin
Genre: Folk: Modern Folk
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Bagger
4:23 $0.99
2. John's Cocoons
4:40 $0.99
3. Two Feet Ahead of the Train
3:36 $0.99
4. My Turn Again
5:27 $0.99
5. Ballad of Big Daddy's
4:36 $0.99
6. Etch-a-Sketch
5:03 $0.99
7. Song for Tracy
4:55 $0.99
8. I'll Make Do
4:52 $0.99
9. Rogue River Revisited
5:04 $0.99
10. Cropduster (Guitar Instrumental)
1:58 $0.99
11. Mr. Mayes
3:56 $0.99
12. Drought
4:35 $0.99
13. Big Daddy's Epitaph
2:17 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
A tireless traveler and troubadour, singer songwriter Michael McNevin has been playing clubs and festivals across the U.S. for the past 15 years. With his vivid brand of storytelling, he pens tales of the people and towns he comes across, hightlighting a seasoned voice and unique steel string guitar work. He\'s been a main stager at the Kerrville, Philadelphia, and Strawberry Music Festivals, and he\'s been billed in the concert halls with the likes of Johnny Cash & The Carter Family, Shawn Colvin, Donovan, Richie Havens, and 100s of others on the songwriter circuit. 

Michael has 5 CDs to his credit, and a few hard to find cassettes (remember them things?). In 1994, his first  recording, Secondhand Story, was chosen by The Performing Songwriter Magazine as a Top-12 self produced Record of the Year, and he was nominated for Artist of the Year by the National Academy of Songwriters. Michael was a 1992 Kerrville New-folk winner (previous winners include Lyle Lovett and Shawn Colvin), and is a 5-time winner of the West Coast Songwriter\'s Association\"Song Of The Year\" award - \'91, \'92, \'97, \'98, and \'05. He won the 1999 Unplugged/Unsigned Competition put on by the WCSA and NARAS (the Grammy people), was a top 3 finisher at the Troubadour Competitions for both the Telluride Music Festival and the Rocky Mountain Folks Festival, and is a past winner of the Napa Valley and Columbia River New-Folk Competitions.

He picked up his Dad’s guitar at age 14. By the mid 1980s, he was working odd jobs by day and playing pubs at night around the San Francisco Bay Area. He also logged three years at a local state college studying music, fiction, and theater. With a stockpile of songs, he dropped out and moved to New York where he cut his troubadour teeth playing the subways and streets of Greenwich Village. He also played the Monday open mic nights at the legendary Gerdes Folk City night club in Greenwich Village. It was here that Dustin Hoffman and Warren Beatty heard Michael play; they were researching their roles in the movie \"Ishtar\" as failed songwriters. Perhaps the most defining New York experience for McNevin was a night spent in the slammer for jumping over a subway turnstile. This would become a song titled \"Jersey Jail\" off his 1992 debut release, \"Secondhand Story\".

While many of his songs chronicle the people and towns of his travels, they also capture the Huck Finn childhood he had growing up in the rail town of Niles, California. \"Two Feet Ahead Of The Train\" reenacts a close call he had on a train trestle over the Alameda Creek when he was ten years old, \"Bagger\" describes his days working at the town grocery store, \"John\'s Cocoons\" details the spring ritual of his eldest brother hatching a shoe box full of giant Polyphemus Moths all over the house, and \"The Pride Of Niles-Centerville Little League\" depicts his days booting infield grounders for the Niles Electric Braves.

McNevin has also carved himself a niche in the art world, doing impossible drawings on the Etch A Sketch (not kidding - check out the CD Cover art to \"Sketch\"). His music and art, particularly the art that illustrates the songs of his CD \"Sketch\", have been Featured on CBS\' \"Evening Magazine\", and numerous other features on ABC, NBC, and FOX, and nation wide press and periodicals. One drawing spent a year hanging in the hallowed Baseball Hall Of Fame in Cooperstown, showcasing the song and video of little league song, as it was placed into the official Hall Of Fame baseball song collection.

For ten years, his tour journals ran as segments called \"Napkin Literature - Stories From The Road\" in the Harbinger Magazine. He writes it all down - from a jail in New Jersey, to being caught in the Nashville Tornado, to chasing down a robber in Carbondale Illinois, his songs and stories are that of a life well travelled.


\"I don\'t know what\'s best about this CD - Michael McNevin\'s music or his Etch A Sketch drawings that accompany each song. McNevin is a singer-songwriter of the highest order.\"
-Acoustic Guitar Magazine

\"The talent of Michael McNevin lies in his ability to extract juicy bits of life from his surroundings and let a tale unravel from each one.\"
-Performing Songwriter Magazine

\"Michael McNevin\'s \'Secondhand Story\' is an evocative peek into a stranger\'s life.\"
-Chicago Tribune

\"I\'m pleased to say the advance publicity and the promise I heard on the Waterbug compilation were both entirely justified by the music in \'Secondhand Story\'. This is very classy stuff.\"
-Victory Review, Seattle

\"Heard you on the KFOG acoustic Sunday morning show. Bagging groceries and an Etch-A-Sketch. Two of my historical accomplishments--dig the tunes.\"
-Tony Bennett

\"Michael is one of folk music\'s best kept secrets. His first album, \" Secondhand Story\" is still one of my favorites, and \"Sketch\" firmly establishes Michael as a songwriter to be reckoned with. His voice is hypnotic, his guitar playing superb, production perfect. Get this disk.\"
-Christine Lavin

\"The word riveting aptly describes Michael McNevin\'s performance. His voice is one that stays with you after a show. This guy\'s going somewhere.\"
-Good Times, Santa Cruz

\"McNevin, whose cynical-hopeful lyrics, and funky semi-cover of Paul Simon\'s \'The Boxer\' (with hysterical new lyrics and a new title, \'The Taxer\') made him a crowd favorite at the High Sierra Music Festival. His childhood baseball tale, \'The Pride of Niles-Centerville\', was another that captured imaginations.\"
-Village View, L.A.

\"Probably the most played tape in my car this year...Secondhand Story is one of the finest sets of original material the 90\'s will see.\"
-The Kerrville Kronikle, England

\"In his songs, McNevin paints scenes and situations as clear as his Etch A Sketch compositions. He uses plain and unpretentious language and yet vividly creates a reality instantly recognizable to all of us.\"
-Rosalie Howarth, KFOG Radio, SF

\"Michael McNevin has been kicking around from coast to coast for years now, a maven who delights his audiences with story-songs and patter... Here are sketches of people, places, and events... a bang-up good collection.\"
-Sing Out! Magazine

\"McNevin has moved to the forefront of the New-folk movement. Captivating stories told with heart against a backdrop of clean, optimistic guitar.\"
-Brian Turhorst, KVMR Nevada City, CA

\"His voice, exquisite melodies, flowing guitar lines - it\'s all light as a feather. Even when the subject matter is dark, the song goes way up in the air.\"
-Dirty Linen Magazine

\"McNevin is a charming live performer, and much of his success may be due to his warm, humorous stage presence. Standouts include \'Busy life\'. \'Jersey Jail\' is another gem...finely wrought lyrics, astute observations...\"
-Bluegrass by the Bay

\"McNevin picks up songs like furniture picks up dust.\"
- Reporter News, Abiline, TX



to write a review

Randy Santoro

Stellar effort!
This is one of my all-time favorite albums. Great playing, warm vocals and fun songs. Buy it now!

Lindalou and Michael Ryge

Great album!
Michael McNevin is an amazing storyteller and his songwriting is wonderful. This album is always a joy to listen to!