"SCHATTE WOWS MEMPHIS" - Wins Spot in International Blues Challenge Finals
January 27th, 2015
Michael Schatte and his band just returned from an exhilarating week-long trip to Memphis, Tennessee, in which they competed against 117 of the best blues bands from North America and abroad during the legendary International Blues Challenge.
Representing the Great Lakes Blues Society, The Michael Schatte Band became the first act in the society's history to win their way into the competition's final round, performing with seven other band finalists at the lovely and historic Orpheum Theatre just off of Beale St. this past Saturday. An excellent article in the London Free Press concerning the accomplishment can be seen here.
The band, featuring Randy Cassidy on bass and Riley O'Connor on drums, was a crowd favourite throughout the week, advancing through two preliminary rounds and the semi-finals to reach a coveted spot among the festival's best acts. Their energizing blend of rootsy blues rock, illustrated through performances of Schatte original songs like Honey Doll and Pistol On Her Pillow from his new album Turn Back the Vikings (available here), proved a potent brew at Beale St. clubs and the Orpheum alike.
Thanks are due to Dave Harland and the members of The Great Lakes Blues Society, who supported the band (and their society cohorts, the excellent Katfight Keys) in many ways to make the trip an unqualified success.
The Michael Schatte Band will appear next at one of London's best live music clubs, The Eastside Bar and Grill on Friday, February 6th, playing new material from Schatte's latest album as well as revisiting the set that won them a spot in the finals at the Memphis International Blues Challenge.
Schatte live at the Orpheum, Memphis:
New Album Available Shortly!
Michael's new 15-song studio album, Turn Back the Vikings, is complete and will be available in late January / early February 2015! Recorded in Toronto and mixed in Austin, Texas by Simon Tassano (longtime sound engineer, album mixer, and co-producer for Richard Thompson), the album is quite simply Michael's finest to date. Stay tuned for more details...
Second Memphis Fundraiser Concert in London, January 11th
The Michael Schatte Band will perform at the Eastside Bar and Grill in London, ON on Sunday, January 11th to raise funds toward their trip to Memphis later in the month. Also performing are The Katfight Keys (Chuckee Zehr and Gail Selkirk) who will be competing in Memphis in the duo category, as well as some special guests. Click the poster below for more info:
Memphis Fundraiser Concert in Stratford, December 13th!
The Michael Schatte Band will perform at the Stratford Masonic Concert Hall on Saturday, December 13th to raise funds toward their trip to Memphis in January. Also performing are The Katfight Keys (Chuckee Zehr and Gail Selkirk) who will be competing in Memphis in the duo category, as well as some special guests.
Doors open at 7:30pm, tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the door. Don't miss a great night of music and a chance to support both of these fine acts who will be representing The Great Lakes Blues Society in Tennessee.
Click on the poster below for more details:
In other Memphis related news, an excellent article concerning the upcoming trip appeared in the Chatham Voice this week. Read it in full here.
The Michael Schatte Band Wins Road to Memphis Blues Challenge!
The Michael Schatte Band will be heading to Memphis, Tennessee. The power trio competed against a talented roster of regional acts in the final round of the Great Lakes Blues Society's Road to Memphis competition in London, Ontario on September 28th. Firing up the crowd with a set of bluesy Schatte original songs alongside some choice covers, the band won both the Fan Choice poll and the main band competition which will send them to the International Blues Challenge taking place on Memphis' famed Beale St. in January of 2015.
An excellent article appeared in yesterday's London Free Press concerning the win, and can be seen here.
The trip to perform and compete in Memphis will coincide with the release of Michael's new album of original music in January, production of which is well underway. The new record will be sure to please fans old and new, so please stay tuned for some exciting announcements on that front!
In-Store Guitar Clinic and Performance at The Twelfth Fret!
Michael will be bringing his unique guitar approach to one of Canada's finest music instrument stores on Monday, September 8th for an intimate in-store performance and clinic.
The focus of the session will be Michael’s work on the National Steel guitar, including slide playing, alternate tunings, gear choices, finger style approaches, and the hybrid picking that characterizes much of his guitar work. Michael will also showcase material to be released on his forthcoming album later this year. Seating is limited, see here for details.
New Beaches Live Footage
Two excellent live performance videos of The Michael Schatte Band performing at the Beaches International Jazz Festival have surfaced on Youtube. Included is a rousing rendition of I've Been Down Before and the not-yet-released-on-an-album Honey Doll. View them here.
SCHATTE TO PLAY BEACHES JAZZ FEST MAIN STAGE!
The Michael Schatte Band will be performing on the Main Stage at Toronto's Beaches International Jazz Festival on Saturday, July 19th at 6pm. Schatte's hour-long set will be followed by legendary Canadian showman Paul James. Don't miss it! More details on the SHOWS page.
Schatte called "CANADA'S HIDDEN TREASURE"
Following The Michael Schatte Band's rousing performance at the 5th annual Stratford Blues and Ribfest in June, festival founder Stew Laing called Michael "Canada's hidden treasure." Let's share the wealth, shall we?
THE MICHAEL SCHATTE BAND at Stratford Blues and Ribfest!
Don't miss The Michael Schatte Band live at the Stratford Blues and Ribfest on Saturday, June 21st at 8pm. Details on the SHOWS page.
SCHATTE ESSAY AND BRAND NEW RECORDING FEATURED
Don't miss Michael's contribution to the February edition of Numero Cinq, a wonderful literary website founded and edited by Douglas Glover, Canada's brilliant Governor-General's Award winning writer of fiction. Schatte has contributed an essay on songcraft method and inspiration which uses a previously unreleased song of his, Our Sun Sets Early, as a case study. The song will be available exclusively on Numero Cinq until its release on Michael's new album of music later this year.
Says Glover in his introduction, "..the incomparable Michael Schatte... is a dream of a guitar player, a dashing performer, but also a thoughtful and self-conscious artist. His advice and wisdom, his methods, can cross-pollinate to any other art; he works with words and sounds and rhythms while others ply different media, but the work is always work. And he is so damned quotable."
Hear the song and read the essay, which Glover calls "knowing and literate" here.
SCHATTE ESSAY FEATURED IN NEW BEATLE BOOK
Michael Schatte is pleased to have an essay included in a new book published by Hidden Brook Press entitled Window Fishing: The Night We Caught Beatlemania. Edited by the great Canadian poet John B. Lee, the anthology features works by numerous artists alongside Michael's contribution, an essay titled Let It Be Imperfect. The book can be purchased online in trade paperback form from Amazon.
SCHATTE PROVES SKETCH-WORTHY!
Michael performed recently at the Keystone in Mississauga, where talented local artist Evelyn Shifflett was inspired to sketch his likeness. Here's her rendering, which manages to convey the high-energy nature of Michael's live shows:
ALBUM IN THE WORKS
Songs are currently being written and recorded for a new album of original Schatte music, slated for release in the early fall of 2014. Watch this space for further news, clips, and other things related to the forthcoming work.
General Electric Uses Schatte Music in Video
Michael was pleased to have the instrumental portion of his song 'This Time Last Year' from his 2009 album Crow Filled Sky chosen for a GE corporate video compaign concerning the company's use of Facebook. Check out the video at www.facebookforindustry.com.
"Young Michael Schatte is, simply, a guitar virtuoso..."
The State of Vermont's Poet Laureate Sydney Lea has written a wonderful piece for the Valley News expounding Canada's many literary and social virtues, and making favourable mention of Michael Schatte and others who shared the bill with Sydney at a recent two-night musico-literary event. Read the complete article here.
NEW LIVE PHOTOS!
Michael performed on June 1st, 2013 at Chatham's lovely Capitol Theatre as part of Bluesfest 2013 (a guitar festival featuring Schatte, Tom Lockwood, Jack de Keyzer and others). Photos from this event can be seen on the PHOTOS page.
TWO NIGHTS OF WORDS AND MUSIC !
Michael is delighted to be performing alongside a fantastic roster of fellow artists at two different Ontario venues this coming weekend. The showcase, aptly titled A Celebration of Words and Music, can be taken in at the Port Dover Harbour Museum on Friday, April 12th (7:30pm), and in Highgate at The Mary Webb Centre on Saturday, April 13th (7:00pm). Come and enjoy world-class musicianship and writing!
Ian Bell (Guitarist)
John B. Lee (Poet Laureate, Norfolk County)
Douglas Glover (Novelist, Governor General's Award Winner)
Marty Gervais (Poet Laureate, Windsor)
Sydney Lea (Poet Laureate, Vermont)
For ticket information and other details, visit the SHOWS page.
NEW VIDEO FOOTAGE!
Visit the VIDEO page to check out six brand new performance videos captured during Michael's Four Songs, One Apocalypse CD Release Concert at Aeolian Hall in July, 2012. Shot in high definition, the new footage includes fan favourites and brand new unrecorded material.
MICHAEL SCHATTE BAND in the Mississauga News
In advance of their gig Friday, February 1st in Mississauga, The Michael Schatte Band was featured in an article in The Mississauga News. Read the piece here.
NEW AEOLIAN HALL FOOTAGE EN ROUTE!
In the coming days, some phenomenal live footage captured at Aeolian Hall in July, 2012 will be featured on www.michaelschatte.com via Youtube. Stay tuned!
THE MICHAEL SCHATTE BAND hits the circuit!
Michael Schatte is appearing live at many different venues in Ontario in 2013, both with The Michael Schatte Band and as a solo acoustic act. Be sure to check the SHOWS page for regularly updated gig details.
SCHATTE CONCERT REVIEW in The Beat Magazine!
"...one of Canada's best-kept secrets and certainly one of its most
skilled rock performers."
Read the entire review of Michael's Aeolian Hall E.P. Release Concert here. The concert was filmed in high definition for a future DVD release - stay tuned!
MICHAEL SCHATTE and HIS BAND E.P. Release Concert and Live Recording/Filming Session
Saturday, July 28, 2012
Michael Schatte and His Band return to London's Aeolian Hall on Saturday, July 28th, for the official release of his new EP, Four Songs, One Apocalypse (see below). Those of you who witnessed his last concert at Aeolian can attest to the rave reviews that followed it, as all the typical Schatte elements were there: incredible guitar playing, a rollicking setlist of original songs and classic cover material, and a band of ace musicians intent on bringing the house down.
On July 28th Michael is ramping up the entertainment value even further. The purchase of a ticket ($20 advance, $23 at the door) entitles the ticket holder to a FREE COPY of Michael's new EP (a $10 value), redeemable at the show. And there's more! The show will be filmed by three cameras in high definition and the audio recorded for a possible future live DVD/CD release. Schatte and His Band (drummer's drummer Riley O'Connor and veteran showman Randy Cassidy on bass) invite you all to come out, make some noise, and be part of a truly memorable musical event.
For ticket purchasing information, visit the SHOWS page.
MICHAEL SCHATTE - New E.P. to be released in July!
Michael's new E.P. entitled Four Songs, One Apocalypse, is currently in production and will be available for sale starting July 28th, 2012 with the E.P. Release Concert and Live Recording/Filming Session taking place that evening at Aeolian Hall, in London, Ontario (see above). The E.P. features four new original songs plus a live bonus cut. Check back here for online purchasing details...
SCHATTE AND BAND - New Live Dates!
Michael Schatte and His Band have several shows coming up, and more on the way. See the SHOWS page for details concerning concerts in Guelph, Toronto, and elsewhere!
SCHATTE AND BAND - Live in Port Stanley!
Michael Schatte and His Band will appear at the Port Stanley Festival Theatre, a lovely and intimate venue south of St. Thomas, Ontario, on Friday March 30th, 2012. See the SHOWS page for details and ticket information. Expect a high-energy show featuring Schatte favourites as well as an exciting selection of new material!
SONGWRITING WITH MICHAEL SCHATTE
Guitarist asked to teach 4-part songwriting workshop
Michael Schatte is delighted to be instructing a 4-part, 10-hour songwriting workshop presented by the Thames Institute of the Arts in Chatham-Kent early in 2012. The workshop, to be held in late February and early March, is part of the Literary Arts Festival hosted by St. Clair College in Chatham-Kent. Here's the official workshop description:
"Songwriting with Michael Schatte explores the age-old art of song craft with relevance to today’s songwriter. Taught by well-known guitarist, vocalist, and songwriter Michael Schatte, this class examines why we write songs, how to approach song composition, techniques that enhance writing, and useful tips for evaluating both our own and other writers’ songs. Exciting live performance demos by Schatte with analysis of his songs and those of world-renowned songwriters greatly enhance the participant’s experience."
Participants of all ages and backgrounds - both musical and non-musical - are welcome to take advantage of this fantastic musical workshop experience. Registration costs a mere $75 (plus HST) for sessions taking place February 27th and 28th, and March 5th and 6th, 2012. Classes each evening go from 7:00pm to 9:30pm. Sign up today at www.stclaircollege.ca/TIA (click on the Literary Arts Festival tab).
ORANGE BLOSSOM SCHATTE - New Live Video!
CALLING ALL GUITAR FANS - Check out the nine-minute version of 'Orange Blossom Special' now featured on the VIDEOS page. Captured live on August 27th, 2011 at The Mary Webb Centre, this rollicking tour de force by Michael Schatte and His Band pays tribute to the Hellecasters' blazing electric version of a bluegrass classic. Featuring Riley O'Connor on drums and Randy Cassidy on bass, this footage packs the eclectic punch Schatte and His Band are known for.
NEW STUDIO ALBUM IN THE WORKS
Michael Schatte and His Band are heading into the recording studio shortly to begin work on a new album of original music. Tentatively scheduled for release in mid-2012, the new record will be sure to please old and new fans alike. Stay tuned to www.michaelschatte.com for updates, song samples, and news of live gigs as they are confirmed.
SCHATTE AND BAND at The Dominion in Toronto
Michael Schatte and His Band will return to TheDominion on Queen (500 Queen St. East, Toronto) on Saturday September 10th, 2011. See the SHOWS page for details.
SCHATTE AND BAND - Live in Chatham-Kent!
Michael Schatte and His Band will appear at TheMary Webb Centre, a lovely and historic venue in Highgate, Ontario, on Saturday August 27th, 2011. See the SHOWS page for details and ticket information. An excellent newspaper article about the show can be seen here.
NEW CONCERT PHOTOS!
Pictures have been posted from recent shows in Waterloo and Highgate, Ontario, respectively. See them on the PHOTOS page.
SCHATTE AT BEACHES INTERNATIONAL JAZZ FESTIVAL
Michael Schatte and His Band will appear at the Beaches International Jazz Festival on Saturday July 16th, 2011. See the SHOWS page for details.
MORE LIVE DATES!
Two more new live dates added, including Michael Schatte and His Band shows in Waterloo and Toronto. See the SHOWS page for details.
SCHATTE LIVE IN 2011
Two new live dates added, please see the SHOWS page. Further dates including concerts featuring Michael's new band lineup will be posted as they are confirmed.
Tough Times - Schatte now a published author!
The lyrics to Michael's song Crow Filled Sky have been featured in a newly published collection of poems, essays, photos, and stories from Black Moss Press, entitled Tough Times: When the Money Doesn't Love Us. Michael is delighted to have his work featured alongside that of John B. Lee, Margaret Atwood, and other Canadian writers. From Black Moss Press:
"What sort of country do we want to live in? What sort of country do we already live in? What do we like? Who are we?
With these words, Margaret Atwood frames for us the tough questions that must be asked if we are going to grapple with the harsh reality of these economic “tough times.” In this essay, included in this ground breaking Black Moss Press collection that has been edited by the award-winning poet John B. Lee, she joins with 23 other writers and photographers to challenge our values and shed light on how we ought to articulate our future. "
Michael Schatte and His Band - Live at The Aeolian Hall
On June 5th, 2010, Michael Schatte and His Band put on a rousing concert for a highly enthusiastic audience at The Aeolian Hall in London, Ontario. We are pleased to announce that footage from the show is now available right here at www.michaelschatte.com. Watch seven selections in their entirety on the VIDEO page.
Note: the show was filmed in high definition by Saby Siren Productions, and the audio was captured by Chris Babin with the assistance of a team from The Ontario Institute of Audio Recording Technology.
Schatte Covers Danny Gatton!
Check out a recent (May 29th, 2010) performance of Danny Gatton's wonderful Elmira St. Boogie (what Michael refers to as a "mini-lexicon of rockabilly"). The video footage was captured at the 2010 CK Guitar Summit and was broadcast shortly thereafter. Available on the VIDEO page.
Crow Filled Sky Reviewed in Winnipeg
A favourable review of Michael's new album has been published in Winnipeg's Uptown Magazine, the online version of which can be seen here. From the review:
"...Michael Schatte’s sound falls superbly somewhere between the folk rock musings of Richard Thompson and the Canuck blues edge of Colin James... As a bonus, the artist also displays something of a literate edge to his lyrics that definitely sets him more than a few rungs above the moon/June competition. His playing throughout is at times awe-inspiring..." - Jeff Monk, Uptown Magazine
Aeolian Hall Footage Soon to Be Released!
Filmed in high def with three cameras and the audio recorded by a team from the Ontario Institute of Audio Recording Technology, Michael Schatte's recent band concert at Aeolian Hall has yielded some fantastic footage. We expect to have selections from the show available here at michaelschatte.com in the very near future. Stay tuned!
Schatte in the Media
On Wednesday, June 2nd, Michael Schatte was the topic of a feature article in The London Free Press, available online here. That article, along with a television appearance on Janice Zolf's A-Channel News arts segment the night before focused on the upcoming June 5th concert at the Aeolian Hall. Also, Michael's closing set at the 4th Annual CK Guitar Summit can be seen on Cogeco cable this weekend and beyond as they broadcast the May 29th concert in its entirety.
June 5th Concert to be Filmed and Recorded!
The upcoming Aeolian Hall show will be filmed with two cameras and the audio recorded for possible future release. This will add a further element of excitement to what promises to be a great evening! Tickets are $17 in advance and $20 at the door and can be purchased online here. See the SHOWS page for further details including other ticket outlets in London.
Crow Filled Sky Reviewed
If you find yourself in London, Ontario before June 3rd, pick up a copy of the latest Scene Magazine (London's premier free music and arts publication). In it you will find an excellent review of Michael's new album, selections from which can be found on the BIO page.