Mike Love announces “Love Will Find A Way” tour in support of new album

Music News | Sep 4th, 2015

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Reggae rocker Mike Love’s newest album is out now and it’s called Love Will Find A Way. The album was released on Love Not War Records and was recorded at Soul Sound Studio and Studio Ala Moana in Kane’ohe, O’ahu, Hawai’i. Love is currently on tour in support of the new album, but sadly no dates in NYC or the East Coast yet.

Lauded by the likes of Jack Johnson and Usher, O’ahu’s Mike Love brings impressive bounties of skill and heart to the roots reggae table. His head-to-toe humanism recalls the most poignant facets of the Rastafari philosophy of “one love,” making him a true revolutionary in a sea of stylists. He is perhaps best known for the solo performances with loop pedals that he began at the urging of his wife, showcasing his uncanny vocalizations of instrument sounds and his genius knack for harmonies. But Love is equally at home with other musicians; in fact, guest artists who have inspired him throughout his career play a pivotal role on his newest and strongest album to date, Love Will Find A Way, due out September 1st on Love Not War Records and recorded at Soul Sound Studio and Studio Ala Moana in Kane’ohe, O’ahu, Hawai’i.

The album title is also its theme, and it refers to the idea that unconditional love enables living beings to survive and adapt within today’s dire straits, particularly the challenge to ecosystems that climate change poses and the ascendency of corporations over citizens in many countries. For Love, this love is grounded in the experience of family, both at home (as a father of four) and publicly (among fans at live shows), and has the power to improve lives. In his words, “People are hungry for something, and a lot of times they don’t even know what it is. Positive music that has messages of spiritual and social change can be a beacon for them in the darkness. That’s really the inspiration for all I do—healing. We need it now more than ever, myself as much as the next person. The music heals me as much as it does those I play for.”

As a result, the songs on Love Will Find A Way address different levels of inter-connectedness, from small-scale to universal. Personal interactions are covered in the songs “Forgiveness” (reaching understanding through empathy), “I Love You” and “Advaya’s Song” (about Love’s youngest son), and “Make It” and “Sweet Sound” (the importance of self-reliance as a basis for action). In turn, ruminations on the human condition motivate “Be Thankful” (the connection between happiness and gratitude), “Good News” (the desire to return to childhood bliss), “Can’t Take It With You When You Go” (prioritizing experience over possessions), “Time To Wake Up” (getting wise to covert methods of control), “No Regrets” (the precious fleetingness of life), and “Penniless” (ceasing to equate money with contentment). Finally, treatment of the environment is the topic of “Step Lightly” (the commercialization of O’ahu’s Manoa valley), and “Let It Rain” and “Roll River Roll” (water as a metaphor for nature ultimately “washing away” the blights of industrialization).

While a message of togetherness—working in harmony with both nature and one another—pervades Love’s lyrics, it is also musically realized through a multitude of influences, textures, and collaborators. Trained on piano during his adolescence as part of a multi-generational musical family, his distinct version of reggae is enriched by a penchant for classical music, rock, and blues. He enjoys employing loops with his four-piece band as well as solo, creating an almost orchestral sonic richness in his performances. Finally, input from other musicians provides a fresh perspective and balance to Love’s concepts. On Love Will Find A Way, he adds to his own vocals, guitar, ukulele, and piano a hand-picked assemblage of first-rate talent that includes Sam Ites on drums, Jon Hawes on bass, Keith Tsukamaki and Jorell Nacapuy on keyboards, Reggie Padilla on saxophone, Deshannon Higa on trumpet, and Kelli Heath-Cruz as engineer.

Love regards the music-making process as magical at the point of surrendering one’s ego. He perceives each song as a complex, fully-formed personality that becomes realized not by him, but through him. As he describes, “I credit myself more for just being the conduit for the music than actually writing it. Once I made that realization, there has been an endless flow of musical creation; there’s never been a time when I’ve sat down to write something and nothing has come out.” This perspective also transforms obstacles into opportunities, as in the case of the song “Step Lightly”: Love and his band soldiered through technical difficulties until dawn, resulting in memorable final takes of the backing vocals. In their live shows, it manifests as a give-and-take of energy with the crowd, selecting songs and interpretations in response to the vibe rather than insisting upon a pre-determined set. An eternal student, Love’s openness and humility provide a healing force that can’t help but make converts out of listeners.

Tour Dates

Sep. 4 @ Church of the Pacific – Kauai, HI
Sep. 5 @ Lulu’s Lahania – Maui, HI
Sep. 8 @ The North Door – Austin, TX
Sep. 9 @ Cambridge @ House of Blues – Dallas, TX
Sep. 10 @ Rose Music Hall – Columbia, MO
Sep. 11 @ Subterranean – Chicago, IL
Sep. 12 @ Shangri La Festival – Clarks Grove, MN
Sep. 13 @ Black Swamp Fest – Bowling Green, OH
Sep. 15 @ The Knitting Factory – Boise, ID
Sep. 16 @ Nectar’s Lounge – Seattle, WA
Sep. 17 @ The Goodfoot – Portland, OR
Sep. 18 @ Volcanic Theatre Pub – Bend, OR
Sep. 19 @ Provolt Community Center – Provolt, OR
Sep. 20 @ Leo’s – Oakland, CA
Sep. 21 @ City Winery – Napa Valley, CA
Sep. 22 @ Moe’s Alley – Santa Cruz, CA
Sep. 23 @ Harlow’s – Sacramento, CA
Sep. 24 @ The Knitting Factory – Reno, NV
Sep. 25 @ El Dorado County Fairgrounds – Placerville, CA
Sep. 26 @ Harrah’s Rincon – Valley Center, CA
Sep. 27 @ Avila Beach Resort – Avila Beach, CA
Sep. 30 @ Constellation Room – Santa Ana, CA
Oct. 1 @ Discovery – Ventura, CA
Oct. 2 @ Vegas Bowl – Las Vegas, NV


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