Looking out over the musical horizon of a beautiful, fully realized full-length album, it’s hard to hear the harrowing journey husband and wife duo Ryan and Angelica Hay had endured over the last half decade to get there. But when listening to their tragic story, one undeniable fact emerges: Nothing heals quite like art.
20 Monroe Live (11 Ottawa Ave NW, Grand Rapids) brings in A-list stars, but it also regularly brings in local artists as openers. Here is just a sample of those homegrown musicians — as seen through the lens of Anthony Norkus.
Although it’s one of the oldest bars in the city, Grand Rapids’ Kuzzins Lounge has really cranked up the volume over the past six months.
When the robots inevitably become sentient, walking about with our day jobs, tossing back cold motor oil at the bar after a long shift, will they sing for each other? Will they plug in an old jukebox, croon Sinatra on a Saturday night and wonder why humanity ever felt so blue? I sure hope so, but for now, all we have is ourselves and our karaoke machines to entertain one another with the magic of song.
Olivia Mainville was not brought up in a musical family, per se. Her parents love music and listen to it constantly — her father even collects instruments. But as far as playing any of those instruments goes, that’s another story entirely.
Ten years ago, David Abbott had moved back to his hometown of Grand Rapids, unsure of what to do next. He began work at ArtPrize, which slowly but surely led him on the path to April of 2018, when he became the first-ever executive director of Festival of the Arts. In conversation, it’s immediately clear that Abbott is passionate about his community and the festival itself.
Even as he’s living the dream of every working musician — out on the road playing packed venues and massive festival stages all across the country — organist/vocalist Michael Trotter Jr. admits he could have never written the script for his life right now.
Right from the very beginning, Watching For Foxes has always kept an eye on the next horizon.
With each of Jesse Ray and the Carolina Catfish’s three full-length albums earning a WYCE Jammies Award, as well as snagging the number-three spot for Best Original Band on Revue’s very own Best of the West readers’ poll, there is little doubt that the group has captured the attention of West Michigan.
Absolutely overflowing with talent, West Michigan’s local music scene has something for everyone. Once again, we’ve compiled our list of 10 bands across all genres who we think deserve your time this year.
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