Apr 14, 2019
This week we talk with award-winning producer, songwriter and performer Michael Crittenden –founder and frontman for folk-rock’s Troll for Trout – who has deep roots in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and a biding passion for music that’s earned him widespread praise as an in-demand producer, player, studio owner and collaborator.
A graduate of the Berklee College of Music in Boston, Mass., Michael has performed most of his life, sharing stages with the likes of John McVey, Todd Rundgren, Shawn Mullins, Jonatha Brooke, Hootie & the Blowfish, The Doobie Brothers, Peter Frampton and Kenny Wayne Shepard, among others.
Michael's songs have been heard on radio stations across the country as well as on MTV, ABC and PAXnet television. He was honored as Producer of the Year at WYCE’s Jammie Awards in 2013, after previously winning Jammies for Album of the Year (2002 and 2009) and Song of the Year (2009). He’s also a past recipient of an ASCAP Songwriters Award, two Billboard songwriting awards and an InterActivist Award from Los Angeles Based META Association. Michael also has served on the instructional staff at the prestigious Lamb’s Retreat for Songwriters and Mackinac Island Songwriter's Workshop.
Beyond writing and performing, Michael, aka, “The Colonel,” is owner of The Mackinaw Harvest Music Group Inc., a Grand Rapids recording studio and publishing company. He has produced recordings and collaborated with many artists, including Pop Evil, The Accidentals, Ralston Bowles, Drew Nelson, Cary Cooper, Larry McCray, Brian VanderArk, Hello Dave, Kimber Cleveland, Spencer Mulder, Ed Dupas and a long list of others.
And his fierce love for the Michigan outdoors and fishing not only provides a meditative respite from the hubbub of modern life, but inspiration for his music and his philosophy of life.
“Sometimes, I just like to be out in nature and open up my senses to what’s going on around me. That’s a very spiritual time for me,” Michael once told The Grand Rapids Press.
“In life, you’re trying to stay in tune with what’s going on around you, with what’s happening right in front of your eyes every day. A lot of it is pretty awesome, and a lot of it we let go by because we’re not paying attention.”