Thanks to the inexplicable popularity of my Submit Music page — along with the endless number of releases I get via HumanHuman, Groover and SharePro — I always have a massive digital backlog of albums, EPs, singles and videos awaiting my perusal. Here’s another recent must-hear, along with the Bandcamp link so you can buy the music straight from the source. Tell ’em I sent ya. And if you’ve got something I need to hear, send it my way. If I think you’re half as good as you think you are, I just might include you next time.
THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Lyric-driven, simple folk songs are what singer-songwriter Mike Ward produces. Currently living in Detroit, Mike grew up listening to the Irish music of The Clancy Brothers and singing in church choirs. His influences include Bob Dylan, Simon & Garfunkel, Neil Young, Bruce Springsteen, Jason Isbell and John Prine. Why Psychosongs? Turns out there are many Mike Wards creating music. His nickname PsychoWard provided an answer. (If you’ve seen him dance or play hockey, you’ll get it.)
His first studio album We Wonder was released in 2018, receiving four Detroit Music Award nominations. The followup The Darkness And The Light explores a life lived while looking over the past, the present and toward the future. Regrets. Hope. Contentment. As well as reflections of our changing world and the importance of embracing new ideas.
The Darkness And The Light was produced by Mike Gentry and David Roof. The record was recorded, engineered and mixed by David Roof at Rooftop Recording in Grand Blanc, Mich., and mastered by Ian Gorman at La Luna Recording and Sound in Kalamazoo. Joining Mike on this record are David Roof playing bass, mandolin, piano, Hammond organ and percussion. Jimmy Showers jumped in on acoustic and electric guitars. Sara Gibson performs on cello. Jeff German added electric guitar for The Line Between Us. Vocally, Alison and Tessa Wiercioch of Jackamo, Dave Toennies of Border Patrol and Downtown Judy Brown provided harmonies. The full collection of voices join in a chorus to bookend the album. The album was recognized on the Folk Radio DJ Charts for March and April of 2021. In 2020, Mike received four more Detroit Music Award nominations and was a finalist for and Americana Songwriter award. He performs at various venues throughout Michigan and beyond.”
MY TWO CENTS: “Don’t let the nickname scare you. Or fool you. Singer-songwriters don’t come more grounded, thoughtful and sincere than Mike Ward. Anchored by his rich strumming, lightly sanded vocals and philosophical lyrics, this is music by grownups, about grownups, for grownups.”