Phillip-Michael Scales – 07/30/21
Phillip-Michael Scales | TICKETS
Growing up, Phillip-Michael Scales had an uncle who played guitar for a living. He knew it was a big deal but didn’t understand the significance that his Uncle’s name was B.B. King. Even though Phillip-Michael played guitar, he shied away from soloing and most things blues. Instead, he fell in love with songwriting when an english teacher told him “A great writer can make their reader identify with anyone.” The trouble was he couldn’t find his story in the blues.
Born with a fierce independent streak and a passion for performing, Scales fronted his own indie bands, wrote and recorded his own music, and worked to make a name for himself on his own terms. All the while, his uncle just smiled a knowing smile and encouraged him to “stay with it.” As Phillip-Michael began to discover “the blues” in his private and personal life, their relationship grew closer.
It wasn’t until his Uncle passed away, that Scales began incorporating more of the blues into his music. “These days I’m finding more of my story in the blues. A lot has led me here between politics, my identity, and of course: Legacy.” The result is a sound he calls “Dive Bar Soul” which takes a bit of indie rock story telling and couples it with the passion of the blues.
He most recently released a single called “O, Hallelujah” and he has been featured in Rolling Stone France. His music has taken him all the way to the Middle East, as well as festivals across the France and North America.
He has opened for Fantastic Negrito, Anderson East, Guster, David Cook, Bethany Joy Lenz, Matt Hires, Billy Rafoul, Crystal Bowersox, Tyler Hilton, Jon McLaughlin, and Cory Brannan.
“HE HAS JUST RELEASED HIS LATEST ALBUM, “FROM YOUR BONES,” WHICH IS AS LITERATE AND SOULFUL A POP ALBUM AS ITS PREDECESSORS.” – JESSICA HOPPER, CHICAGO TRIBUNE
“ON HIS NEWEST ALBUM, FROM YOUR BONES, RABBIT BOUNCES BETWEEN TALL TALES AND BIOGRAPHICAL STORIES WHILE A FOLK-POP BAND CHURNS UP SOME ROOTSY, ROLLICKING NOISE IN THE BACKGROUND. “SO LONG” IS THE FIRST SINGLE, WHICH WE’RE HAPPY TO PREMIERE. GET READY FOR STORY TIME, FOLKS.” – AMERICAN SONGWRITER
“AS A LYRICIST, RABBIT BALANCES DEFT METAPHORS AND SURPRISING TURNS OF PHRASE WITH LINES AS BLUNT AS “SOMETIMES THE BEST TEACHER IS PAIN”. RATHER THAN SLICE THROUGH EMOTIONAL KNOTS, HE WORKS TO UNTANGLE THEM, STRAND BY STRAND.” – SASHA GEFFIN, DINGUS
“BRIAR RABBIT FINDS A WAY TO MAKE EVEN THE MOST LIFE-SHATTERING EVENTS INTO FUN SING-A-LONGS THAT PLAY PERFECTLY AT PARTIES OR, IF YOU’RE LIKE ME, WHEN DRIVING ALONE IN A CAR AND SINGING AT THE TOP OF YOUR LUNGS. I DON’T REMEMBER WHAT OR WHERE I HEARD BRIAR RABBIT FIRST, BUT I KNOW THAT IMMEDIATELY THERE WAS SOMETHING SPECIAL ABOUT HIM. WITH HIS NEW SINGLE “SO LONG,” HE HAS PROVEN ME RIGHT YET AGAIN.” – MUSIC DEFINED
“SINGER-SONGWRITERS SUCH AS BRIAR RABBIT (PHILIP-MICHAEL SCALES) CREATE SENSITIVE, SOUL-SEARCHING TUNES THAT DON’T ACTIVATE THE CHEESE FILTERS. BETWEEN THE INTELLIGENT LYRICS AND BUSY ARRANGEMENTS IS DELIGHT. YES, HE’S SINGING AND STRUMMING. YES, YOU WILL SEE THE WORDS “INTELLIGENT” AND “BUSY” AND THINK IT’S SOME DUDE JUST SHOWING HOW SMART HE IS. WRONG.”
– KEVIN WILLIAMS, CHICAGO TRIBUNE
“BRIAR RABBIT’S WARM PERSONALITY WAS EXEMPLIFIED BY THIS ACT, AND WAS A MAIN REASON WHY THE CANADIAN DEBUT OF THOUGHT-POP WAS A SUCCESS AT NXNE.”
– EMERSON BRITO, RAZMATAZ MAGAZINE
“BRIAR RABBIT’S NEW CONCEPT ALBUM “THE GREAT ROUTINE!” IS BEAUTIFUL AND CUTTING. DISMISS IT AT YOUR OWN INTELLECTUAL PERIL.” – JC BROOKS, (OF JC BROOKS AND THE UPTOWN SOUND)
“I DON’T KNOW IF I CAN THINK OF ANOTHER EXAMPLE IN PERFORMANCE WHERE PASSION AND SHAME MEET IN SUCH A BOLD WAY, WHICH YOU ARTICULATE SO WELL IN ‘COON.’ ” – MOTOR CITY ROCKS BLOG
“BRIAR RABBIT IS THE PROJECT OF PHILLIP-MICHAEL SCALES, WHO WRITES CHARMING LITTLE INDIE POP SONGS THAT NEVER CROSS THE LINE INTO TOO-CUTE TERRITORY. THIS IS SENSITIVE, SINCERE MUSIC WELL-SUITED TO A MIX CD, IF PEOPLE ARE STILL MAKING THOSE ANYMORE.”
– METRO MIX CHICAGO (TOP 12 FOR TASTE 2011)
“CHARMING POP YOU WANT TO PUT IN YOUR POCKET.”
– MATT PAIS, RED EYE (ROCK N VOTE 2011)
“BRIAR RABBIT IS GOING SOMEWHERE. BETWEEN THE OBVIOUS TALENTS OF THE BAND– IN FAST-PACED POP SONGS, SLOWER SINGER-SONGWRITER THROWBACKS, OR IN SONGS WITH ORCHESTRAL MOVEMENTS– AND SCALES’S LYRICS, I CAN’T EVEN IMAGINE WHERE THEY’RE GOING TO BE IN SEVERAL YEARS.”
–KATIE DARBY, KATE DARBY RECOMMENDS
“BOTH THE LEAD VOCALS AND THE INSTRUMENTATION ON BRIAR RABBIT AND THE COMPANY YOU KEEP HAVE THE ABILITY TO BE GENTLE WITHOUT SOUNDING WEAK, AND THAT GIVES THE ALBUM ITS MOST POWERFUL MOMENTS. THE SONGS ARE VAGABONDED AND YET HAVE A SOLID BASE IN THE TIGHT, LIVE-SOUNDING PERFORMANCE AND PRODUCTION, AND IN PHILLIP-MICHAEL’S SONGWRITING EXPERTISE.” –WINDY CITY ROCK