Michael McLean Music
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  • July13th

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    I know I shouldn’t be that surprised, but I finally got word that in the midst of the global economic downturn, I am NOT going to be receiving a songwriter bailout package from the government. Apparently, unlike Chrysler and GM, I am NOT too big to fail. So, like most of you, I’m figuring out other ways to make it through the current crisis. As I’ve been thinking about the challenges many of us are facing it occurred to me that what might be needed, even more than financial assistance, is emotional and spiritual support. Something more like an INSPIRATIONAL STIMULUS PACKAGE.

    As I’ve tried to imagine what might be included in such a stimulus package I’ve decided this:

    I’m a songwriter. If this is your first visit to my website and you really don’t know much about me, you’re probably much too polite to ask, but the answer is, NO , I haven’t written any “hits” that you’ve heard on radio or TV. Nevertheless I’ve been lucky enough to pay the light bill and feed the family with the support of a wonderfully loyal and generous fan base who’ve let my music be a part of their lives since my first collection of songs was released in 1983.

    I hope this doesn’t come across as “gimmicky” but I’d like to use this website,( and Face Book and Twitter when I figure out how to do it) to share with you what I’m calling my 2009 INSPIRATIONAL STIMULUS PACKAGE. It’s filled with my songs, and the stories behind them, that I hope will help getting through tough times a little easier. Now I don’t actually think that listening to these songs of mine will fix everything in your life or instill you with perfect hope simply by humming along. But I want to offer something, limited as it may be, that says: “Hey, you’re not alone.” I may not know exactly what you’re going through or how I can help you, but I’d like to join you in your journey, even if it’s only through the earphones of your iPod or the speakers in your car stereo.

    So, here’s the deal. Each week I’m going to be posting a story about one of my songs along with an MP3 of that particular song…and when I learn how, I’m going to be making a PodCast of those stories and songs. If you find a particular story and song speak to you, please feel free to download it FOR FREE! If none of them happen to connect with you, but you know someone who’s struggling and might need their message, please feel free to pass it along in whatever format you’d like; burn your own discs and give them away, or email an mp3 of the songs you think might be worth sharing. Think of this forthcoming INSPIRATIONAL STIMULUS PACKAGE as a collection of PASS ALONG SONGS and STORIES. As an aside I’d like to mention that if you do choose to pass any of these songs along and add a note of your own to the one you’re giving them to, the very fact that you were thinking about them and wanting to lift their burden a bit will probably prove to be FAR more inspirational than any of these songs could ever hope to be.

    So I’m getting some help from some really smart people to get this all available on my website, and hopefully it will be so user friendly that even guys like me can navigate it easily.

    Oh, one more thing. If you’re wondering why I’m doing this, or what I’m really after I think that as you listen to the songs I’m sharing along with the stories you’ll have a sense of who I am and what my songs have taught me and what I’d like to pass along on this amazing journey called life.

    Michael

  • October7th

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    Okay, this is a little bitter-sweet. This month marks the release of a SILVER ANNIVERSARY boxed set of my songs. Six CDs combining “best of” songs from albums I’ve created over the last 25 years along with brand new songs hot off the recording presses. The sweet part is realizing that I’ve been lucky enough to make music for a living for a quarter century and how exciting it is to share my newest songs with my friends who’ve been encouraging me to keep writing all these years. The bitter part is the realization that it’s been a “quarter century”. That’s OLD!!! When my folks celebrated their twenty-fifth wedding anniversary I was so happy they were still in love and going strong given their “advancing” years. They were younger then than I am now and I thought they were ancient.

    Well, I guess it’s true that time flies when you’re having fun. The latest collection is divided by themes: Hope Hiding, Tender Mercies, The Other Side of Sorrow, Changed, See Us Shine and It’s Not Love Til It’s Been Through A Storm. I’m pleased that Shadow Mountain Music is releasing the albums individually as well as in the boxed set. This way if you, or someone you love needs some songs about hope or love or friendship they’ll be easy to find and easier to share. I do hope you enjoy the offering and that you’ll let me know if any of the new songs will be added to your favorites collection.WordPress

    The 2007 tour is officially underway, and I couldn’t be happier. The show this year feels very personal to me this season and I think It might have something to do with our recent experience with the wild fires. Before the tour began I wrote this for the program notes: “Until a few weeks ago I would have never associated wild fires in Southern California with a Christmas story like THE FORGOTTEN CAROLS. But having lived through the recent fires I see a very real connection, and I’m sure it will affect tonight’s performance. When Lynne and I were evacuated from our home at the end of October an instant sense of vulnerability overwhelmed us. We weren’t in control, though we desperately wanted to be to preserve things that were important to us. We, like Nurse Chamberlain, found it hard to let go. As evacuees we experienced being “homeless” and had a new perspective on the lines from the song, “it’s HOW we live, not WHERE”. We were the recipients of great kindness and concern and discovered that we were loved and cared for more than we knew, just like Connie Lou. And then we realized all over the country various people are battling the wild fires that nobody sees…the emotional, spiritual and psychological ones that are consuming hope and destroying faith.

    A greater sense of urgency to be like Uncle John for those we know who are in particular need of the healing power of love this holiday season has certainly filled the McLeans. Ironically, our experience in Malibu has lit a fire within our hearts to spread the spirit of Christmas to those who may need it this year more than ever. We hope the show tonight reflects the gratitude, comfort, peace and joy we received an extra measure of during a difficult time in 2007. And we hope tonight our performance can add to the flame that burns brightly in hearts that bear the name of the One whose birth we celebrate this time of year.

    Merry Christmas ” PS I’m really excited by the wonderful response we’ve had to the release of the DVD of The Forgotten Carols Live Stage Show. So many people who’ve made coming to the show a part of their Christmas tradition have told us how much they wished they could share the experience with their family and friends who live well beyond the cities we tour each year. I’m glad we have something to offer, and truly hope that the show, along with the special features I added as “behind the scenes” insights about the evolution of this show, make it a gift worth sharing. So please, come to the show if you can, and if not, take it home with you and join us as we remind each other of some of the carols (and truths about the season) that have been forgotten .