On Friday, September 5, Fiddlers Crossing is bringing back one of the favorite performers from last year. Angelo M is an authentic voice of experience from the American Heartland, whether singing the blues or other styles of American “roots” music.
Angelo M (short for Melasecca) was a hit with Tehachapi’s audience because he is the real deal. Many performers can sing the blues, but this former steel worker has lived it. When the Pennsylvania steel mill where he had worked for nearly 30 years was bought out and then put into bankruptcy, Angelo not only lost his livelihood but his pension, as well.
Fortunately, he had other talents, which will be on display in the concert at Fiddlers Crossing. He is a master fingerstyle and slide guitarist who was able to make the unlikely midlife transition from blue collar steel worker to award-winning songwriter. He caught Nashville’s attention with his two successful self-released albums. Some of the tracks from his 2012 label debut, “From Steel to Strings,” are featured in the PBS Television series, RoadTrip Nation, and have garnered several prestigious songwriting honors, including Billboard’s World Song contest.
Fiddlers Crossing is at 206 East F Street at Robinson Street, in Downtown Tehachapi. Tickets may be purchased online at fiddlerscrossing.org, or at Mountain Music, Tehachapi Treasure Trove, Tehachapi Furniture in Old Towne, and Lucky’s Barbershop. Tickets are $20, and as always, coffee and goodies are included. The concert begins at 7 p.m. Doors open at 6:30p.m. Call 661-823-9994 for more information, or to reserve tickets by phone.
“A Real Crowd Pleaser! Angelo M. went immediately to our ‘Bring Back for a Return Vist’ list.”
Grady Ormsby – Booking Manager, Down East FolkArts Society
“Angelo M. made our jaws drop when he sat down and blistered the frets…”
Acoustic Live – Richard Cuccaro.
After a mill bankruptcy that cost him his pension, Angelo M. (short for Melasecca) made the unlikely transition from steelworker to touring artist and hasn’t looked back. He’s an award winning Americana songwriter and master finger style & slide guitarist with a blues bent in the vein of Chris Smither and Keb Mo. With guitar influences from the likes of Ry Cooder, Chet Atkins, Duane Allman and Leo Kottke, reviews hail Angelo M. a “Brilliant Guitarist” with an “Excellent Voice” and call his performance “Powerful”. After two successful self released albums this roots enriched folk artist got Nashville’s attention signing a recording contract with Music City Veterans. Angelo M.’s 2012 debut label release “From Steel to Strings” features 16 original tracks that showcase Angelo and all his assets.
He’s a humble blue collar man who spent years at a day job in a Pennsylvania steel mill before shifting careers, but there’s nothing understated about the talent of this bluesy virtuoso finger style player and award winning songwriter. Armed with a six string, Dobro, mandolin & harp, he’s down and dirty, no holds barred – an authentic link in the roots-Americana chain as a singer, player and songwriter. With authenticity at the core of Angelo’s writing and performances; his songs, autobiographical at times, are soulfully sung and seasoned with experience and retrospection. “I can relate to the reflection / regret, in this story… Man, the total of the lyric, singing and playing sound as real as Mississippi red clay…. Fantastic guitar solo! – Taxi.
A favorite at festivals, Angelo M. received a standing ovation at the Johnstown (PA) Folk Fest, was deemed “One of the Highlights” at the Kalamazoo (MI) Blues Festival and was selected from over five hundred artists to perform at the Falcon Ridge Folk Festival (NY) Emerging Artist Showcase. Also a hit at more intimate style Listening Room venues…Angelo M.’s been honored with several standing ovations while on tour around the country including: Artichoke Music in Portland( OR), Tidewater Friends of Folk Concert Series (VA), Down East Folk Arts Society (NC) and at The Hard Luck Café (NY). Angelo M.’s music is featured in the PBS Television series, RoadTrip Nation, is slated for an indie film soundtrack and, garnered songwriting honors in the prestigious “Mountain Stage” NewSong contest, Billboards World Song Contest and the Mid-Atlantic Song Contest. Angelo has shared bills with many talented musicians including: Roger Mcguinn, John Sebastian, Dar Williams, Chris Smither, Shemekia Copeland, Cephas & Wigging, Peter Mulvey and more. And whether it’s his intricate finger style on the acoustic guitar, some searing slide work on his Dobro, or the high and lonesome strains of his mandolin, you’ll be sure to enjoy this gifted artist who is just beginning to hit his stride.
Press n More…
“A REAL CROWD PLEASER!
“A We truly enjoyed hosting a show for Angelo M. His blend of blues music and storytelling captures the roots of the blues while adding his own charm and showcasing his exceptional fingerstyle and slide guitar playing. . OUR AUDIENCE COULD SEE WHY HE’S BECOME A FAVORITE ON THE FESTIVAL CIRCUIT AND IT WAS A PLEASURE TO BE ABLE TO PRESENT HIS TALENTS IN A MORE INTIMATE SETTING.”
Russ & Julie – Russ & Julie’s House Concerts
“ANGELO M. MADE OUR JAWS DROP when he sat down and blistered the frets.” “…After I picked my jaw up off the floor, I asked him, “Does Jorma Kaukonen know about you?”
“ANGELO M. IS DEFINITELY BOUND FOR WORLD RECOGNITION”
“THIS GUITAR WORK SHINES.. the elan of Mississippi John Hurt… the sense of longing shared by wandering singer songwriters since this all began… “
“I KNEW ANGELO WAS GOOD FROM THE CD BUT LIVE HE FLOORED US!
“A Gifted Musician with Incredible Dexterity on finger-picking guitar, slide Dobro and mandolin… After his powerful performance, many people were asking where and when they could see him again. “
Blues News – Kalamazoo Festival Review by Tim Richards (NZ)
“Thirty Years is actually one of my favorite songs on the Roadtrip Nationsoundtrack this year. Roadtrip Nation is not just a TV Show, but a movement with an entire life-on-the-road, forward thinking, grassroots culture behind it… The reason Angelo M.’s song Thirty Years is not only in our PBS series, but in the RTN soundtrack as well is because of how well it fits into that culture. When I hear a song that I know I could listen to cruisin’ down I-40 in a big green rv, I know it’s the right song for RTN. “
“Brilliant Guitarist… Excellent Voice…
- Rootstime Review (BE)
****4 STARS ” Very good guitar playing, beautiful voice and great songs! I really enjoy listening to this CD. Angelo M’s guitar playing is very good and he also has a beautiful voice. My favorite cut is “Thirty Years”. Well, he’s got a hit in this one. I am sure that my listeners will love that song. It has great radio appeal!”
- Przemek Draheim, Blues & Gospel Radio Host (PL)
“Whether it’s his ‘delta’ slide guitar workings or his ‘steel worker’ ‘blue collar’ blues, the color or where you got ‘em doesn’t matter….Angelo M. plays the blues from the heart. Armed with his dobro, Angelo M. levels the playing field!”
- Mickey Spillane, 91.9 WNTI (US)
“Thanks for coming into the stuido and playing such an Awesome Set.
Todd Mills HomeGrownRadioNJ (US)
“Angelo M has a great sense of style. His guitar playing and vocals compliment each other wonderfully! Switching careers and focusing on music at this stage in his life was exactly the right move!”
- Mel Thiel, 91.9 WNTI (US)
“His performances have evolved into multitasking enterprises; he breathes hurricanes through a harmonica, plays the devil out of his guitar, kicks a tambourine propped against his chair and sings when it’s convenient.”
- Mike Caggeso, York Daily Record (U