Musician/Singer Mike Woodlark Uses His Longtime Home For New Age Music Inspiration


New member
Musician Mike Woodlark has lived in one house for quite a few years, from the time he was in college and for quite a few more years. The house has lots of memories for him, a place where he went through good and bad times, where he became a man. His music reflects that place and those years of his life, and he wrote and recorded many of his songs there. That house in on a street called Mackland Avenue located in Albuquerque, New Mexico, so Woodlark named his new album Mackland Ave.

Personal reminiscences aside, the music is universal and of good quality. The album sort of has two sides to it. The first side is instrumental music of the new age variety, piano-oriented, but with a wide variety of other instrumentation demonstrated such as strings, cello, fiddle, percussion, kick drum, electric and acoustic guitars, bass, horns and electric piano (somewhat in the vein of Kerani or Timothy Wenzel). The second aspect of the recording is vocal music, three with upfront vocals and a couple with soft-in-the-background singing (all somewhat in the style of Bon Iver or Sufjan Stevens, both of which Woodlark acknowledges as influences). Of the vocal numbers, the one with lots of singing and plenty of lyrics is his tribute to Starry Starry Night painter, Vincent Van Gogh (Woodlark offers two versions, one with just piano and vocal, and the other with additional singing, drums and acoustic guitar added). This tune is definitely in the mode of late-night college-radio drifting-and-dreaming, just sort of easy-going folk or pop music. Of the all-instrumental tunes, there is the fairly upbeat “A Sight For Sound” (with electric guitar, strings and synth percussion), the melodic solo piano “Graceful Grim,” the very fast rhythmic and pulsating “Mackland Ave,” and the tempo-changing “Home Cooked Dinner” (with a nice violin part coming in halfway through the piece). Woodlark is versatile -- a composer, pianist, keyboardist and vocalist, and one to pay attention to. Suggestion: go online and track down this music and take a listen. It is worth the effort. For more info, go to his website at mikewoodlark dot bandcamp dot com.