From Pipes To Strings

Glasgow, Scotland is home for singer/songwriter Michael McMillan. Michael has toured the world for nearly 30 years with his music, and earned numerous accolades along the way including album of the year nomination for his album, Cross Country, by UK Country Music Radio. Stuart Cameron (Hotdisc Radio and TV) called his record, Missing Person, “Quite simply, this is one of the best British original albums recorded this century.”

Michael spent most of his childhood with his Grandfather, a shipyard worker and a classical violinist. “Now there’s a paradox,” Michael mused. “He was a great guy. He would play classical music and tell me the stories behind each piece, which was much more interesting than just listening to it.”

When Michael was 13, he joined a pipe band, learning to play Highland Bagpipes and then drums. “I traveled all over with them, and recall thinking, ‘this was a good gang to be in.”

Michael moved on to playing drums in rock bands and eventually ran away from home at 16, to London, where he played professionally on the London music scene for a few years before returning to Glasgow. “At that point I started writing lyrics. I loved listening to lyrics and the stories and images that the songwriters of that era told and created,” he said. It wasn’t until 2004 that he learned to play guitar, and set out on a solo career. He’s just released his sixth album, Whisky.

“I don’t have a set formula or format to my writing,” he said. “But I do like to get away somewhere quiet once I have collected enough material to work with. My inspirations over the years as far as songwriting goes started with The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Hollies and The Kinks. Recently, I have been listening to Guy Clark, Gretchen Peters, Willie Nelson and Jason Isbell. The one thing they (we) all have in common is being great story tellers, and that for me is what it’s really all about.”

Learn more about Michael here,