Michael Cleveland’s blistering prowess and technical fluency have marked him as a sought-after musician, leading to performances with Vince Gill, Marty Stuart, Tim O’Brien, J.D. Crowe and the New South, Andy Statman, and The Kruger Brothers in recent years.
“It’s wicked to see how much music he pulls out of a bow. He’s untouchable.”Vince Gill
However, it wasn’t until 2006, when Michael formed his own band Michael Cleveland & Flamekeeper, that he found the right vehicle for his musical vision, and he hasn’t rested since, constantly looking for new ways to push himself and his music forward.
“He plays fearless and it’s intoxicating to play with him because he makes you play fearless,” says Country Music Hall of Famer Vince Gill. “He takes no prisoners but he plays with a restraint and a soul. He plays without abandon.”
Clearly, the IBMA agrees as he’s their most awarded Fiddle Player of the Year with 12 wins, has won Instrumental Recorded Performance of the Year six times, and fronts their 6-Time Instrumental Group of the Year. Together with Flamekeeper members Josh Richards (guitar), Nathan Livers (mandolin), Jasiah Shrode (banjo) and Chris Douglas (bass), Cleveland makes his way around the country performing festivals, clubs, and performing arts centers, delighting audiences, leaving them with jaws dropped in complete amazement.
“It’s wicked to see how much music he pulls out of a bow,” continues Vince. “He’s untouchable.”