Music has long been an important part of Beaver Island culture. For most Islanders, singing came as easy as talking, and in the days before TV, almost everyone played an instrument. The most common form of entertainment then was called a "house party," which is defined as what happens when two or more Islanders get together after the sun's gone down.
The tradition has continued strongly in some quarters, producing a number of local favorites: Edward Palmer, Cindy Gillespie, and Rich Scripps, to name a few. The youngest might be Mike Moore, long-time Island band member and son of Phyllis and Joe, he being our music teacher and an excellent musician in his own right. Growing up on Beaver Island, and in the Moore household, it's no wonder Mike turned to music to express himself. But nobody here expected his expression to be so complicated, nuanced, and harmonic as it is.
Mike has been an important member of various local bands (featuring Randy Osborne, Joddy Crosswhite, Kevin White, Dan Peck, Ross Henderson, John McCafferty, and others) for the past eight years. When the summer's parties are done, Mike has been studying music at Central Michigan University. During this time, he has absorbed all these influences and blended them into his own special concoction. It defies description, combining elements of world beat, rock and roll, country ballad, and blues. It doesn't hurt that he has an amazingly resonant and expressive voice.
Last summer, Mike produced his first CD titled Innocent Desire. He wrote all the songs and music, played guitar, and sang, backed by some Island friends. He worked with the editors in the studio, honing the sound until he was satisfied. Those who were here last August for the first of two CD-release parties (the second was in Mt. Pleasant) were so overwhelmed by his talent that they bought enough copies to put the enterprise in the black. All of us can't wait to see what he comes up with next --one rumor has him writing an opera!
Mike´s CD can be obtained by writing Mike, PO Box 435, Empire MI 49630. Phone 616.448.2416, or email.