Lyrically-centric, vocally-charged folk songs. Those are what singer-songwriter Mike Ward loves to create. Living in Detroit, Mike grew up listening to Irish music and singing in choirs. A few influences are Jason Isbell, Nanci Griffith, Bob Schneider, Bruce Springsteen and John Prine. Sonically he fits in the camps of Sarah Jarosz, John Paul White and Drew Holcomb. For Mike, the roots of family run deep—both the strengths and weaknesses. His writing echoes along empty sidewalks, on country backroads, in family portraits, and in the thin lines between joy and tragedy, love and loss, past, present and future.
His first studio album,”We Wonder”, was released in 2018. Phil Maq of WHFR 89.3FM named it Best Folk Album of 2019. “The Darkness and the Light” released in January 2021, explored a life lived with regret and hope and reflections of our changing world. The album made it to number 33 on the FAI Folk charts for March 2021 and has been played on radio around the globe.
During the lock down of 2020, Mike was challenged to write 30 songs in 30 days. This sparked a year of fresh ideas and now Mike has emerged with a 12-song album titled, “Particles to Pearls”, released in June 2022.
Mike performs at venues and house shows throughout Michigan and the Midwest.
You might find him at Trinity House Theatre, 20 Front Street, Pete's Candy Store, 31 West, Over Yonder House Concerts, The Gaelic League Detroit and PJ's Lager House. He also loves playing at festivals such as Arts, Beats & Eats, Wheatland Folk Festival, FARM Performance Lane, Thumbfest, Lake Bonisteel Music Fest.
He has been featured on Ron Olesko’s Folk Music Notebook Shelter in Place Showcase, Jon Stein’s Hootenanny Cafe Showcase, John Bommarito's Acoustic Alternatives, Charlie's Open Mic Acoustic Showcase with Charlie Mosbrook and The Stratton Setlist.
Why Psychosongs? There are a lot of Mike Wards creating music. So his nickname, PsychoWard, provided an answer. (If you’ve seen him dance or play hockey, you’ll get it).