Some people are just destined for making music from a young age.  The skills needed are just given to these individuals and all they need is the desire and drive to perfect their craft and make a long career out of it.  Now if they are doing what they love they can keep it going and lead a very fulfilling life.  This seems to be the tale of Andy May.

Andy May

In a career that has spanned 4 decades and 3 different regions of the country Andy May is still enjoying himself creating great music along the way.  The singer-songwriter, guitarist, mandolinist, producer, educator, and visual artist has been in the Americana music scene for as long as anyone can remember.  It started early and by his 20th birthday in 1969 Andy had already played Carnegie Hall and won the Grand Championship on guitar at the fabled Union Grove, NC, Fiddler’s Convention World Championship.  Starting his career in NYC was a blessing, although not well known for Americana music, the folk music scene would heavily influenced his writing style making it unique and relatable to any listener.  Andy then moved to Massachusetts where he toured the honky tonk club circuit and began sharing his knowledge by teaching others how to make the guitar and mandolin sound their own.  In the late 80’s he up and moved to Colorado where he worked on his skills as a producer and performance coach becoming well known in both fields.  Finally he ended up in the music mecca that is Nashville, Tennessee and found a home to start up his label, Swift River Music, and release three albums of his own music.

Back in May, Andy May released the album Reflections, a collection of songs from his road warrior years.  Most of these songs were written before there was an Americana sound that Andy helped define.  The opener ‘Follow Your Heart’ is a fun little ditty that could cheer up even the most downtrodden soul.  The sound is slowed down and made personal on ‘Hello’.  Andy May’s style makes it as if he is singing just for you in a cozy cabin.  One of my favorites is ‘Lake Champlain’, a beautiful song using many instruments to create a warm soundscape that seems to cascade over the listener.  This song would fit in well anywhere from back in the mellow 1960’s hippie era all the way to today with the pretty sounds of an artist such as Bon Iver.  Go enter Andy May’s world and you may never want to come back to reality.

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