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Artist Spotlight

Micheal Lee is not a stranger to the writing or performing world of music. He began singing in church at 14, writing songs at 16, and singing in nightclubs at 17, making $100 a night. Michael Lee reminisced with me about how his dad had to get him into the venues because he was underage. Michael Lee cut his first demo songs at 19/20 years old. He comes from a family full of performing artists. Michael Lee’s parents were part of a gospel group in the 80s and 90s. His granddad and great-uncles were in a country band in the 1960s touring the southern states. Michael Lee’s family reunions are full of family members singing and playing instruments together. 

Michael Lee grew up in the northwest corner of Georgia, a couple of hours from Nashville. Michael Lee and a friend he met through a family member casually played their guitars and sang while at a BBQ event for a hunting club at a dove shoot. It didn’t take long for them to gather a crowd and soon it became an event in itself gathering 300 or so people in the middle of a cornfield. Grammy Award Winning producer Wilbur C. Rimes was hunting at the club and heard them playing. Wilbur C. Rimes took an interest and brought the duo to Rosewood Studios in Tyler, TX  to cut a 3-song demo and then they returned the following year to finish the album, kicking off his career. Michael Lee began writing with many A-listed songwriters like Pat Alger (Nashville Hall of Fame, Georgia Music Hall of Fame, and hit songwriter on Garth Brooks's Unanswered Prayers, The Thunder Rolls, etc.) Michael Lee's catalog is full of Christian country songs and relatable country music with a 90's country vibe and rhythm.

Michael Lee continued to write music and recorded several projects with Red Hen Records as he took a break from touring to be at home with his family. He has been releasing new music, gracing the radio with his deep country baritone vocals and charming lyrics. He is signed to Private Label Artists and beginning a radio tour with tour dates added often. Following his Feb '24 release, The Well,  Michael Lee’s most recent song paints a picture very true to his own life and marriage. Showing the thankfulness of marriage and commitment, Loving Me Comes Easy To You was co-written with label executive Randy Smith from Private Label Artists. Loving Me Comes Easy To You was produced by Diamond Rio’s Micah Schweinsberg and Dana Williams. You can find Loving Me Comes Easy to You on the album Backdated which is available wherever you get music. Find Michael Lee on social media as michaelleetunes and by clicking the buttons below.

Thank you for your stories and commitment to your craft and for sharing your faith in Jesus.

Until we chat again....In A Country Minute.

Michael Lee photo by Julie

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Jake Bush is a renowned Texas artist with 6 songs hitting number 1 on the Texas Radio Chart since 2020. Jake successfully released Gravity and You as his 1st single off his album titled 7 in October 2020, followed by Better By Beer securing his 2nd number 1 hit. Where 90s Meets Now was the 2nd album that dropped a few more hits for Jake in 2022, including Cowgirl.

Jake Bush grew up in Pasadena, Texas as the youngest of 5, and served in the United States Army Reserves after completing high school. He grew up on 90s country and is determined to continue making music dedicated to traditional country music. Jake has kicked off 2024 with Good Time Machine written by Dan Alley, Dan Hutson, and Dan Sheroky. Good Time Machine is a walk down memory lane reminiscing with 90’s country music from Alan Jackson, Brooks and Dunn, and Reba playing on the jukebox. 

Jake’s second release is Somewhere Better to Be written by Don Alley, Tim Nichols, and Greg Bates. The song paints a picture that was "too close to my story not to cut the song", explained Jake, newly married and celebrating almost 3 years of sobriety. The lyrics of Somewhere Better to Be highlight the switch from drinking days to sobriety and the shift in importance and priorities.

"I was the king of the bar 

I was a friend of the band

I never went too long with an empty can in my hand

I shut the neon down ‘round two or three

Had some of the best times of my life

Till I had somewhere better to be


She’s got me checking my phone

She’s got me burning the road up

Fast as my truck can get to her place…”

Jake Bush started writing songs about sobriety before he was sober or even trying to be and thinks that it helped him with his sobriety. Jake said he gets song ideas from conversations, movie scenes, and random things that most people probably don’t pay attention to. Jake doesn’t stop tweaking songs until they are recorded, that is when he has to be 'completely finished' with them.

There is a plan to release a few more songs with a full album possibly out in the fall. Until then, check Jake Bush's website for tour updates!

Thank you, Jake, for your time and fun conversation, it was nice to meet you, In A Country Minute.

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For the last few months, I have seen advertisements for a local musician playing close to my salon, where I work full-time. I became curious and decided to touch base with him to get his story and introduce a whole new group of people to him who may not otherwise hear or see him. He is a blues artist who has a great back story.

Alexander Craig has lived in the northern suburbs of Minneapolis to some degree his whole life, growing a good half-hour drive from his current residence. Alexander was the frontman for his past band Crankshaft and after closing on that chapter in his life, he now performs under his given name.  The switch took him out of music and lyrics of a non-fiction state and shifted him into an authentic storyteller and songwriter. Bringing in the element of authenticity was a positive change for Alexander Craig and brought out a whole new level of creativity in his songwriting. He writes music from a lived-in perspective, writing from inspiration, and introspection, as a journaling type of creativity. Living and performing in the metro area for the last 16+ years has given Alexander a close connection to the community, restaurants, and bars. He also performs at private events, weddings, and corporate parties. 

Alexander Craig's first performance was at a middle school talent show with his brother as the drummer in their 3-piece band. Alexander remembered the cue of the music playing for the act who performed before their band and the jitters and panic bubbling up knowing they were on next. He said for a long time that he would hear that song playing and immediately relive that moment of nervousness. Alexander performed at a fundraiser for another artist, singing their songs and after personalizing their music to his style, realizing he was changing their music at their benefit show in their central area, he panicked. Alexander played the songs in his style and was reassured by the attendees that it was a great performance. Alexander is a great example of stepping outside the box and having the confidence to do your art, your way.

Alexander is a fan of the underdog bands and one of his favorites is Left Lane Cruiser from Fort Wayne, Indiana. He describes them as metal, rock, and blues band with a lot of talent and variety. Another favorite band of his is Southern Culture on the Skids from Chapel Hill, South Carolina, which has music and songs in a variety of genres. 

He is a fan of local musicians but highlighted Jeremy Johnson and Jason Medeiros as a couple of his favorite local talents.

Alexander Craig has not only been writing, recording, and performing his music, but he is also directing and producing his music videos. His latest video was recently released spotlighting the local Anoka Food Truck event for the song The More We Can Do.

Thank you Alexander Craig for sharing your talents with me and of course your conversation. I will catch a show in Anoka before your residency is over at 201 Tavern. Congratulations on your sobriety!

Catch Alexander Craig’s shows listed on his website and take a look at his videos while you are there. Links to his music pages are highlighted throughout the article.

Alexander's Latest release - Every Day And Every Night

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