Pittsburgh Musician/Activist Mike Stout Releases New Album


Time To Build A New World CD Release by Mike Stout
Mike Stout, the World’s Grievance Man, is an internationally known socially conscious singer-songwriter and social activist who performs at concert halls, festivals, clubs, union conventions and schools across the United States and Europe. Stout has appeared in Germany on eight concert tours and has performed in Paris, Denmark, Poland, and the Czech Republic with his message of human solidarity and peace. The highlight of his 2007 German tour was a concert at Berlin’s Brandenburg Gate playing for thousands at the national protest day. In Sept of 2012 Mike performed in tribute to the 100th Anniversary of the birth of folk-singer Woody Guthrie at the State Theater in State College, Pa. along with Noel Paul Stookey (of Peter, Paul, an Mary), Anne Feeney, and Si Kahn.
Working with all-star casts of nationally known Pittsburgh musicians and producers Mike has released 13 independent CDs and recorded over 150 songs. Mike Stout’s “Point of Pittsburgh”, “Americana Dreams” and “Breaking The Chains” CDs were named notable releases by the Pittsburgh Post Gazette.
John Hayes of the Pittsburgh Post Gazette wrote of Mike “In the Woody Guthrie tradition, his songs reflect contemporary issues without resorting to journalism. They’re more like partisan op-ed columns that grab political opponents by the throat and don’t let go.”
On his fourteenth CD release “Time To Build A New World” Mike Stout is rabble rousing again with a new batch of recordings calling people to arise in solidarity to fight for their rights and an end to injustice and alienation. His concerns for the world are highlighted on three musically powerful tracks.
Where is the soul of America? – In these times of warring political factions putting the government in unproductive grid lock Mike Stout asks what happened to the driving American spirit that united Americans to do great things. In this bluesy slide guitar driven tune a big chorus of singers asks:
“Where is the soul of America? Where is the spirit that made you great? Where is the soul of America? We need it now more than ever today. Where’s the will, that brought the Bill of Rights to stay, The ways and means to bring about our common dreams…now?”
Alien Nation –Is a percussion filled rocker telling the story of the isolated cyber addicted. Today we live in a nation where alienated people do everything remotely through their smart phones and laptops. Face to face conversations with friends are a thing of the past. Now people interact indirectly with electronic friends through the social media and texting. Focused on their own narrow safe secure cyber view they are distracted from other people’s pain and have lost touch withour community
It’s instant gratification and cyber-sensation. In the palm of your hand, you’re always in command. Facebook or twitter, you daily blog or text; Angry, sweet or bitter, it’s always indirect. Opinion, gossip, rage. It’s all an open page, in Alienation. Cyber worlds apart, you don’t feel nobody’s pain.”
Big Brother – Is an ominous tune fired by Freddie Nelson’s blazing guitar that warns about the threat of NSA spying and personal data collection by the big corporations.
“The right to privacy is a thing of the past. Total surveillance is the order of the day. You’re fair game if you dare to dissent. The Bill of Rights just got a whole lot shorter. Big Brother’s watching, he’s got you in his sights. He’s got the authority to do what he feels. Someone better wake up and face up to the facts –Big Brother’s watching, you don’t even know he’s here. You better pay attention, ’cause somewhere down the line It’ll be your turn; it’s just a matter of time. – Big Brother’s Watching.
You say to me, “how can this be? “I can’t believe they call this democracy?” Orwell and Huxley must be laughing in their grave; Someone better speak up before it’s too late.
Time to Build A New World CD -In the title tune Mike sings: Now the time has come to go beyond just protest and defiance; From helpless pawn, to citizen, from reliance to alliance where the have-nots take command to take the future in our hands. It’s time to build a new world where the people take control.
Throughout the 12 song CD Mike calls attention to social and economic problems asking people to unite in solidarity to find solutions. “I was Killed By a Drone” mourns the innocent people unjustly killed by drones. “The End of Petroleum Man” highlights the need to expand solar and wind power to decrease the use of dirty fossil fuels. “Complacency City”, with a blistering guitar solo by Reb Beech, laments people who complacently sit in their bubbles oblivious to problems of the world. Mike’s answers to these challenges is to “Organize” because “Solidarity Rocks”. Mike also pays tribute to two labor rights fighters. “Traveling Man” celebrates the life of labor leader and historian Charles McCollester. “He Paints a Picture for Our Hearts” honors the working class artist and asbestos worker Bill Yund whose powerful illustrations and cartoons are found in many labor publications and novels. In the closing song “Move Along to Sweet Paradise” Mike sings of the rewards that will when people unite to fight for their rights.
An outstanding cast of musicians backs Mike on “Time to Build A New World” Guitarist Reb Beach (of Winger and Alice Copper) plays a blazing solo on “Complacency City”. Guitarist Fred Nelson, who collaborated with Paul Gilbert (of Racer X and Mr. Big) on the CD “United States”, provide hot guitar hooks on “Big Brother Is Watching”, Hermie Granati, who is a member of the Jaggerz, the B.E. Taylor Band, and plays the Door’s sounding keys on “Big Brother is Watching”. Time to Build A New World” was produced and engineered by Doug Wilken who has also worked with protest singer Ann Feeney, singer Autumn Ayers and others. Doug also plays guitar, bass and sings background vocals. Rounding out the band are guitarist Kevin McDonald (of Grapevine and Tres-Lads), bass guitarist Tom Valentine (Bill Toms and, Glenn Pavone and the Cyclones), drummer Derrick Edwards (Norm Nardini and the Tigers). vocalist Kelly Burgos and Laura Daniels on keyboards and vocals.
The CD cover was drawn by Leon Schauble of, Gelsenkirchen, a young student Mike met in on his 2013 tour of Germany.
“Time To Build A New World” was released on October 25, 2013 with a CD release show at Club Café in Pittsburgh. It will be available for sale on Itunes and Amazon and can be heard on Spotify, eMusic, Mog,Rhapsody and other popular music listening sites.
Eight of Mike’s CDs can be heard on Spotify at Mike Stout