Mike Strauss Band

    The Mike Strauss Band has existed in various forms over the years. A work in progress, perhaps? Perhaps.

    I guess you could say that everything begins with Mike. As a songwriter, singer and guitarist his songs, singing and guitar playing establish the outlines that the group embellish, color and sometimes re-shape. It could be country, but it's not quite country. It could be blues, but it's not quite blues. Not quite rock, folk or jazz  either. Somehow the group manages to live both in and outside of the "Americana" umbrella that these styles inform. Rollick n' Roll? Rhythm n' Rues? Perhaps.

    At one time consisting of seven (maybe eight?) members spread out on the main stage or crammed in the corner, the current line-up consists of six individuals. Pretty much from the beginning (or at least the recorded history of the group that starts in Charlotte, NC around 2004 with a cd called "Gone Electric") Jon Schigoda has been playing the upright bass in the band. Randolph Lewis contributed his unique brand of electric guitar playing (which includes a custom tuning and extensive use of the Bigsby Palm Pedal string bending mechanism) to the second cd ("How in The World") in 2005 and became a regular performer with the band shorty thereafter. Randolph convinced his former band mate (in the bands Come On Thunderchild and Les Dirt Clods) ,drummer David "DK" Kim, to join the group starting with the third cd "After All" in 2007. By the time the group recorded it's fourth cd in 2010 ("Ideal Road") the trombone playing of Molly Jay had become a big factor in the band's sound. During that cd and the one that followed (2011's "Crooked Heart") the band also included Beth Brown Al-Rawi on fiddle and Donovan Collins on keyboards. When the group began work on it's most recent recording ("The Whole Skinny" slated to be released in early 2014) Beth and Donovan had exited the group and trumpeter Matt Postle had joined. The current line-up with Mike, Jon, Randolph,  DK, Molly and Matt continues the musical adventure and expects to be an exciting chapter to the already ten year long journey of this group of music makers.

 

 

 

Discography:

Mike Strauss "Gone Electric" (2004) produced by Joe Kuhlmann & Mike Strauss .Featuring :Mike Strauss, Jon Schigoda, Greg Lilley, David Hellyer, David Childers, Michael Reno Harrell, Eric Lovell, Marty Faulkner, Steven Carpenter, JD Wilson, Kristen Campbell, Roni Tel-Or, Tim Gordon, Joe Kuhlmann & David Howle

Mike Strauss "How in the World" (2005) produced by Mike Strauss, Eric Lovell & Gigi Dover. Featuring :Mike Strauss, Eric Lovell, Gigi Dover, Jon Schigoda, Jason Atkins, Randolph Lewis, The Near Misses, Rick Spreitzer, Roni Tel-Or, Kristen Campbell, & JD Wilson

Mike Strauss "After All" (2007) - Produced by Randolph Lewis. Featuring: Mike Strauss, DK, Ron Brendle, Randolph Lewis, Rodney Lanier, Shana Blake, Reeve Coobs, Bob Barone, Jason Atkins, Lenny Federal, Woody Mitchell, Tom Kuhn, John Wicker & Chris Garges

Mike Strauss "Christmas Lights" (2007)  Produced by Mike Strauss. Featuring: Mike Strauss, Jon Schigoda, Randolph Lewis, Reeve Coobs

Mike Strauss Band "Ideal Road" (2010) Produced by Mike Strauss. Featuring: Mike Strauss, Randolph Lewis, Jon Schigoda, Molly Jay, Donovan Collins, Beth Brown Al-Rawi, DK & Rick Spreitzer

Mike Strauss Band "Crooked Heart" (2011) Produced by Mike Strauss, Randolph Lewis & Clifton Castelloe. Featuring: Mike Strauss, Randolph Lewis, Molly Jay, Beth Brown Al-Rawi, Jon Schigoda, Bill Scott, Donovan Collins, DK, Clifton Castelloe, Hope Nicholls, Aaron Pitkin, Nathan Palmer & Jason Smith

- Mike Strauss Trio"Volume 1" (2012) Produced by Mike Strauss. Featuring: Mike Strauss, Randolph Lewis, Jon Schigoda & Clifton Castelloe

- Mike Strauss Band "The Whole Skinny" (2014) Featuring Mike Strauss, Randolph Lewis, Jon Schigoda, DK, Molly Jay, Matt Postle & Lindsey Ryan Horne

 

 

 

 

Over the years Mike and band have had the opportunity to open up shows an impressive list of artists including: Ry Cooder, Ricky Skaggs & Sharon White, Asleep at the Wheel, Robert Cray, Joe Bonamassa, Idina Menzel, Pete Anderson, David Lindley, Dan Hicks, Chris Whitley, Robert Earle Keen, Matt Schofield, Tim Reynolds, Ruthie Foster, Patterson Hood, Ray Bonneville, Chris Smither, New Riders of the Purple Sage, Malcolm Holcombe and many more!

 

 

 

 

OTHER PROJECTS:

Mike is also a member of the Plaza Family Band, a group that performs "children's music" for the whole family.

Molly and Matt are two-thirds of The Fat Face Trio, a tuba/trumpet/guitar instrumental group.

DK also plays drums with Temperance League and Benji Hughes, among other bands.

Jon also plays bass with The Mannish-Boys.

Bill Scott also performs with the band from time to time on drums and he also plays with Unknown Hinson.