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Michael Mullen

Michael loves fiddling, whether it's playing Celtic rock in front of thousands, or just enjoying some quiet tunes with a few friends. He has drawn the bow across the strings all his life, and continues to explore new horizons and delve deeper into well-known territories as well.

As a California native (born in Fresno, grew up in Reedley) he was lucky to grow up in a town with very strong local support for music in the schools, where he played in school and youth orchestras (and every other musical group at Reedley High). He did not truly learn the simple joy of playing his instrument, though, until he began exploring "alternative" musical styles such as folk fiddling, country, swing-jazz, old time, etc. It's in Scottish and Irish music that Michael has found his true heart's home: no other kind of music both speaks to his soul and satisfies his musical mind like the power and plaint of Scots-Irish reels, jigs, airs, and songs.

In January 1992 Michael moved to Oakland and joined Tempest, forging the foundations of the fiddle-voice that has become signature to the sound of the band. Over the years, Michael has toured and recorded on and off with Tempest, delighting crowds throughout the U.S., Canada and Europe. He has taken hiatus from the band periodically in order to pursue other musical and personal interests, but he and Tempest re-joined forces in 2004 and Michael plans to explore various side projects while recording and performing with the band. First among those side projects is his debut solo album, Fiddler's Creed. For more info or to buy the CD go to http://www.michaelmullen.net

Michael has performed many different styles of music with many different bands and ensembles over the years. A short list might include Tempest, Caliban, The Cadillac Cowboys, The Sons of the San Joaquin, Melanie O'Reilly, Shay Black, and his own bands Pangur Ban, Greenmangruvin, Sgian Dhu, and The Wild Hunt. Michael has been known as a high-energy performer for years, receiving much praise from critics, the audience, and the press for his studio and live performances. He has attracted a following in his own right as a dynamic performer in both the acoustic traditional scene and as a rock violinist, and although both his performance style and his fiddling ability have matured over time, Michael still receives rave reviews from press and fans alike.

Please check out Michael's solo album, Fiddler’s Creed. Click HERE.


Michael's Equipment:

5 string custom design electric violin by John Jordan of Concord, CA. Barbera Transducer Bridge. This all black instrument is my "race car": it's design is ergonomically superb and incorporates modern technology. It is incredibly stable and rugged and yet plays with ease, and there is no weight on my left hand at all. And did I say it has five strings?...

Acoustic Fiddle: a German-made Roman-Teller, circa 1975. Barcus Berry pick-up bridge that is almost as old as the violin.

Watch for a couple of other violins soon...

"Spiccato" by Roland. Excellent composite, as good as a wood bow of twice the price, and very difficult to break (always a plus when I'm on stage with Tempest...). I have a Coda "Conservatory" bow as a back up (also a decent composite bow). My good wood bow is a Lewis and Son. I have a few other miscellaneous bows.

D'Addario Helicore on the 5 string (perfect balance)
Pirastro Chromcor on Roman-Teller (decent compromise between plugged in and acoustic tone-I recently tried Obligato strings and may be switching...)

Zeta AP -12 Amp 85 watt 2 channel
Boss AD-5 Preamp
Shure Wireless

Korg Multi-FX box

Michael's Discography

TEMPEST Serrated Edge (1992) Beacon Records, Cs, CD
TEMPEST Live From Studio A, sampler (1993) WCBE, CD
TEMPEST Sunken Treasures (1993) Firebird, Cs, CD
CADILLAC COWBOYS Country That Kicks (1994) CD
CADILLAC COWBOYS Cowboys Have Their Own Set Of Rules (1995) CD
TEMPEST To Cry You A Song - Jethro Tull Tribute (1996) Magna Carta, CD
TEMPEST The Gravel Walk (1997) Magna Carta, CD
CALIBAN Caliban (1998) Magna Carta, CD
TEMPEST 10th Anniversary Collection (1998) Magna Carta, CD
TEMPEST Live at the Philadelphia Folk Festival (1999) CD
ADOLFO LUIS LAZO El Callejon: The Alley (1999) self-produced, CD
RUDY COLOMBINI Message of Love (1999) Marvelous Show Records, CD
ROB WULLENJOHN Blue on Green (2000) Monkey Palace Records, CD
LUCY STONER Foureyes (2002) self-produced, CD
MICHAEL MULLEN AND NIALL FORDYCE Pangur Ban (2002) Wise Cat Records, CD
IAN BUTLER Creme De La Phlegm (2002) IBMusic, CD
SGIAN DHU Promo Disc (2003) Wise Cat Records, CD
WILD HUNT Promo Disc (2003) Wise Cat Records, CD
TIM HART Traditional and Original Music Feat. The Irish Whistle (2003) CD
JACK FOSTER III JazzRaptor (2003) Muse Wrapped Records, CD
MICHAEL MULLEN Fiddler's Creed (2004) Wise Cat Records, CD

Lief * Greg * Adolfo * Brian * Michael

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