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Seth Bernard and Friends with the Weather on making new music in “complicated times”

Jan 27, 2017

Independent musicians in Michigan are up against a fast changing music landscape.

Despite the challenges that come with producing, recording, releasing and touring, one music label is cultivating a community of artists who help each other succeed.

"All of us are using music as a way to build community, to empower youth and to uplift good work already happening here," said Seth Bernard. He's is the founder of Earthwork Music, a collective of artists with similar interests, but ranging in musical styles.

"People working on social justice and ecological responsibility. Those are type of things that we see ourselves connect by even more than style," said Bernard.

Chris Good is a long-time singer-songwriter now based in Ann Arbor. He's also an organic farmer. Good is out with his first full-length album, Friends with the Weather, a collaboration of Michigan-based artists.

Good talks about the songwriting process and being an artist in "complicated times."

"There are moments when our art finds deeper resonance beyond even our understanding, sometimes with the way that the news and current events unfold," said Good.

About his new album Eggtones Blues, Bernard is more direct with his socially charged lyrics. 

"As the arduous election cycle wore on, I decided it was more of a blues time for us if I'm going to serve the people with my music," he said.

Seth Bernard and Friends with the Weather double album release shows:

Friday, Jan. 27 - Rumpus Room in Chelsea, 8 p.m.

Saturday, Jan 28 - Founders Taproom in Grand Rapids, 9:30 p.m. 

Sunday, Jan. 29 - Kalamazoo First Congregational Church UCC, 7 p.m. 

Support for arts and culture coverage comes in part from the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs.