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Michael Hurley
Bluegrass


A singer/songwriter in the subversive Greenwich Village folk scene of the late '60s and '70s, with several songs lent to the Holy Modal Rounders, Michael Hurley maintained an infrequent solo career into the '90s but was more famed for his writing credits. Born on December 20, 1941, in Pennsylvania, he migrated to Greenwich Village by the early '60s and was ready to sign a major record deal when he contracted mononucleosis; after spending several years in the hospital, Hurley returned to music and released a Folkways album in 1964 titled First Songs. Though he was inactive through the rest of the '60s, several songs from his first LP were borrowed by both the Holy Modal Rounders and the Youngbloods, who signed Hurley to their Raccoon label in 1970. He delivered two albums for Raccoon, Armchair Boogie and Hi-Fi Snock Uptown, but was inactive again by 1972. Four years later, Holy Modal Rounders' leader Peter Stampfel recruited Hurley for a 1976 project, Have Moicy. The group's self-titled album was critically praised, landing recommendations for Album of the Year by the Village Voice and Top 20 LPs of the '70s by Rolling Stone. Hurley's prominent place on the album -- guitar, fiddle, several lead vocals -- gave notice that he was ready to resume his solo career, and he signed to the folk label Rounder in 1977. Hurley released only two LPs for the label (Long Journey and Snockgrass), spending most of his time on his farm in Vermont or playing sideman on several albums. He resurfaced occasionally, recording LPs in 1984, 1988, 1995, and 1999. John Bush

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