Hickory – On his road to the National Storytelling Festival this fall, well-known singer/songwriter and storyteller Michael Reno Harrell has a one night stop in Hickory for a show on Saturday, July 16th in the Firemen’s Kitchen.
Harrell has been busy since his last performance at the Fireman’s Kitchen. Besides having toured from coast to coast and lots of points between, he has released a new recording. “Tales From The Tavern” is a CD/DVD two-disk recording of a live concert taped in Santa Ynez, California. It showcases the self-pinned stories and songs that Harrell has become so well known for. In addition, Harrell’s latest project, “Old Trucks & Good Dogs” is a soon to be released book filled with sixty-eight short essays, musings and observations on life in general. Harrell will be one of only 18 featured tellers in the National Storytelling Festival in Jonesborough, Tennessee in October.
Harrell is an award winning songwriter, as well as a veteran storyteller and entertainer, and he’s from the South… the Southern Appalachian Mountains to hone it a bit finer.
One could compare Harrell’s performances to his granddaddy’s pocket knife: well warn and familiar feeling, but razor sharp and with a point. His brand of entertainment appeals to a very diverse audience. A typical day for Harrell might include a program for 4th graders in the afternoon and a concert for a mixed audience that evening.
Harrell’s recordings top the Americana Music Association charts year after year. His original songs and stories have been described as “Appalachian grit and wit” but, as his writing shows, Harrell’s awareness is much broader than the bounds of his boyhood home or even the Southern Experience. Having toured throughout the British Isles and much of Europe, as well as most of the US, the songs he writes and the stories he creates reflect an insight into people’s experiences that catch the ear like an old friend’s voice.
Harrell’s natural knack for storytelling, in print, song and spoken word has earned him praise from not only the music community but from the literary and storytelling worlds as well, having had the honor of being a Featured Teller at the National Storytelling Festival and to be Teller In Residence at the International Storytelling Center, as well as performing at major music events like MerleFest and the Walnut Valley Festival. Along with his performances, Harrell often conducts workshops in songwriting and storytelling as well.
Tickets are $16 each and may be purchased in advance online at hickorytheatre.org, by phone at 828-327-3855 or at the door one half hour before performance time. There is not reserved seating for this show.
Photo: Storyteller Michael Reno Harrell returns to the Firemen’s Kitchen on July 16th at the Hickory Community Theatre. For tickets call 828-327-3855 or go online to hickorytheatre.org.
Photo: Michael Reno Harrell performs in the Fireman’s Kitchen July 16