New Jersey is not exactly considered a bastion of the blues–even though Johnny “Clyde” Copeland and Hubert Sumlin have lived here, and the state is currently home to Joe Bonamassa, Shemekia Copeland, Robert Randolph and John Hammond. Mike is doing all he can to change this perception, as founder of North Jersey’s biggest free blues festival: South Mountain International Blues Festival, curator of the Blues In The Loft series at South Orange Performing Arts Center and Board Chairman of North Jersey Blues Alliance.
He's no slouch as a bassist either, having toured the globe with artists like Lauryn Hill, Angie Stone, Hubert Sumlin and Stacy Lattishaw. I met Mike last summer when I played the South by South Orange Festival. He's become a great friend and supporter. I'm learning from him constantly, so it was pretty great to have him come moderate the lecture and jam with me. He added a lot and it was a "thrill" to jam with him!