Ham Jam House -Concert
Shake Russell & Michael Hearne
Shake Russell & Michael Hearne will play a fine acoustic concert on Friday, May 20th, 2016, at 7:00 PM.
About Shake Russell...
For more than three decades, Texas singer-songwriter Shake Russell has been entertaining audiences throughout the region with his unique, Americana style of folk-rock. A prolific songwriter, Shake has written or co-written hundreds of melodies. Through the years, Shake's songs and albums have frequented the Billboard charts, with many, including "Deep in the West," "You've Got a Lover," "Put Yourself in My Shoes," "One More Payment," and "Our Kind of Love" being recorded by such distinguished artists as Waylon Jennings, Jessi Colter, Ricky Skaggs, Clint Black, and Carolyn Dawn Johnson. Ricky Skagg's hit recording of "You've Got a Lover" has appeared on three of Ricky's albums. In 1983 Shake was commissioned by the Texas State University in San Marcos to write a song, "River of Innocence" for a documentary filmed and produced by the university. In 1986, Shake was asked by longtime friend Bruce Bryant, creative producer at Houston television station KTRK, to compose a theme song commemorating the Texas sesquicentennial. He obliged and wrote the regional favorite, "Traveling Texas."
Shake is a two-time recipient of the BMI "Million Air" award for Clint Black's recordings of "Put Yourself in My Shoes" and "One More Payment," both of which he co-wrote with Clint, and a four-time recipient of the BMI Writer's Award. The Texas Music Association named Shake the "2004 Texas Music Awards Entertainer of the Year" and nominated his new song, "Cowboy Coffee," for the "2007 Texas Music Awards Best New Song."
Weaving sophisticated harmonies through his songs and drawing from various genres, Shake created a style of folk-rock that is uniquely his own. His repertoire consists of a blend of love songs, ballads, and waltzes, skillfully balanced with lively rockabilly tunes and soulful rhythm and blues pieces. His lyrics are imbued with beautiful imagery, catchy phrases, and inventive similes and metaphors. But it is the rich, melodious voice of Shake Russell that breathes life and spirit into the lyrics.
As a left-handed player, Shake taught himself to play upside down in the same way as the legendary folk artist Elizabeth Cotton. Later in his career, Shake would have an opportunity to meet this amazing lady at a performance in Chicago. Before settling in Texas in the mid-70s, Shake's musical career took him from his hometown of Independence, Missouri, to Kansas City, Houston, Austin, Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York City, Chicago, Nashville, and the legendary Coconut Grove, a renowned mecca for artists that is often described as the Greenwich Village of the southeast. Other notables who significantly influenced Shake's development as a singer-songwriter were Bob Dylan, Lennon and McCartney, Robbie Robertson, James Taylor, Cat Stevens, Leonard Cohen, and John Vandiver.
By the early 70s, Shake had moved to Austin and played bass for John Vandiver's Ewing Street Times Band. An apprenticeship under John and tutelage from fellow band member, Michael Mashkes, afforded Shake an opportunity to hone his guitar skills and cultivate a musical style that would define his Texas-style brand of folk-rock.During this period, the band played at Armadillo World Headquarters, The original Saxon Pub, Cactus Cafe, Emmajoe's, Alamo Lounge, Waterloo Ice House, and various other clubs in the Austin vicinity. After The Ewing St. Times disbanded, Shake eventually relocated to Houston, and was emerged into the vibrant music scene of the Montrose area, where they rapidly garnered an enthusiastic following.
In the late 70s, Shake formed his own band and was joined by hometown friend and fellow songwriter-musician, Dana Cooper. Based in Houston, the duo enjoyed immense success throughout the state and was given extensive airplay on local radio stations. Many of the melodies on Shake's "Songs on the Radio" album were recorded at Houston's KLOL, including the hit "You've Got a Lover." During this segment of Shake's career, he played regularly at Theodores, The Texas Opry House, Ander Fair, Fitzgerald's, Rockefeller's, Corky's; and later, the Mucky Duck. Although their respective careers have since diverged to different regions of the country, Shake and Dana have reunited on several occasions over the years for packed-house performances and CD collaborations. One of their most recent shows was captured on the "Island Nights" CD, which was recorded live at the Third Coast Theater in Port Aransas, Texas.
Shake's latest CD, "Love is Why," is a delightful array of original compositions that beautifully showcase the extraordinary talents of this singer-songwriter. To fully appreciate and comprehend the magnitude of Shake's contributions to music, one need only listen to his life's work. From his 1976 album, "Songs on the Radio," to the 2006 CD, "Love is Why," Shake's music is a testament to the reasons why he is so widely celebrated as a Texas music legend.
About Michael Hearne...
How do you say "Acoustic Southwestern Americana Musical Guitar Genius" in just two words? Michael Hearne, that's how. Since the 1970s, this native Dallas Texan has strolled down a musical path inspired by the great folk and country singer-songwriters who typify and have characterized the Americana "roots" scene. Even minus the undeniable influence of the musical giants he admires and respects to this day, Michael simply had no choice when it came to deciding to be who he is.
This prodigious musical talent was blatantly obvious in Hearne as a young kid. With minimal formal training as a child, coupled with hours of music immersion and hardcore practice, his destiny was forever tangled in "wire and wood." Hearne had his hands on his first real guitar by age seven and by 12, Michael was a fixture at parties and local homespun events, not realizing that this period was actually dress rehearsal for what would prove to be an ever-evolving and rewarding musical career.
Michael continues to leave an indelible mark on his audiences not only with his signature "Michael Hearne" guitar sound, but also with songs and stories that are rich in lyrical prose, imagery and humor.
He is a songwriter's songwriter, cut from the same cloth that propels an artist on a committed journey to experiencing life as a series of creative events and fulfilments. Even though the musical high road is typically scattered with twists of fate and a few u-turns along the way (all of which make for great lyrics), Michael continues to forge ahead by just keeping on doing what he loves.
Longevity has yielded Hearne a vast fan base that is solid and ever expanding. Anyone who has ever grooved to one of Hearne's impeccable guitar leads or kicked up their heels to one of the many two stepping tunes played by him or with his band, South by Southwest, has also probably been caught singing along at some point in the night, note for note, with that beautifully distinctive voice that can never be mistaken for anyone else.
Hearne's never met an audience he didn't like and fans quickly become repeat offenders on the house concert, music festival, and club scenes, as both the man and the music are extraordinarily genuine, inspirational, and entertaining.
His newest CD, The High Road to Taos, has received critical acclaim, with some discriminating reviewers declaring it to be his finest work to date.
"Michael Hearne's record embodies all that I love about New Mexico. Between his whiskey velvet voice, the evocative songwriting and gorgeous musical production, I found myself profoundly aching for my favorite place in the world"
– Eliza Gilkyson
"Once in a while there comes a recording I never tire of playing. 'My Funny Valentine' by Chat Baker comes to mind. 'Come Away With Me' by Norah Jones is another. It's like they were recorded only yesterday even though it might be years since they were first released. In January of 2008, I heard Michael Hearne's 'High Road To Taos' and I knew from the second or third time I played it, and that's been a lot of plays ago, that this was one of those records I'll always play and every time I do it will be as fascinating, alluring and inspiring as the first time I played it. It's a very real classic and it's my hope it gets the wide audience it so richly deserves."
– Keith Sykes
Just after its release in December 2007, The High Road to Taos landed a coveted position on the KTAOS Top Ten recordings chart for that year. Michael Hearne is now being heard around the world thanks to the World Wide Web, old-fashioned regional and national airwaves and because of the legion of loyal fans who continue to request and support "Taos's own, Mr. Michael Hearne." A dedicated and eclectic fan base, which spills across borders and state lines and represents a smorgasbord of musical tastes, keeps Hearne perfectly aligned with the spotlight.
"His voice, style and outstanding musicianship blend into one beautiful gem. It's no wonder Michael's work will stand the test of time, as he remains the artist who captures the musical essence of the southwest. Like it's second nature. That's because it is."
A consistent winner of the "Best of Taos" awards for performer and singer for the past 10 years, Hearne's songwriting credits are impressive. Awards include Song of the Year, Album of the Year, and Best Production at the 2001 New Mexico MIC AWARDS, for "A Taos Christmas Eve," 2002. He has penned songs for Jerry Jeff Walker and Gary P. Nunn ("Lesson to be Learned from Love") and his New Mexico anthem, "New Mexico Rain," recorded by his uncle and aunt, Bill and Bonnie Hearne, and country music legend Johnny Rodriguez.
His critically acclaimed CD "Sight and Sound" – 11 songs written about 11 different works of art – won seven awards at The New Mexico Music Awards, making him the biggest winner in their history. This CD includes the song The Songwriter, co-written with Grammy winners Mentor Williams and Andy Byrd. Michael Hearne has also written songs with his good friends Shake Russell, Keith Sykes, and many others.
He and his band South By Southwest (a.k.a. SxSW) are best described as country swing/southwestern Americana. Loyal fans who continue to pack dance halls, clubs and house concert venues listen and two step the night away to Hearne and the sounds of long time band members Carmen Acciaioli, a musical master of the steel guitar, fiddle, mandolin, dobro, and hammered dulcimer; and the extremely talented Zeke Severenson on stand up and electric bass.
Deep In The West
New Mexico Rain
Doors open at 7:00 and the concert is 8:00 to 10:00.
$25 suggested admission donation
BYOB and hors d'oeuvres are welcome!