For your viewing pleasure, Local Spins has assembled some of the most captivating new music videos by Michigan-bred artists covering everything from hip hop to indie-rock to pop and more.
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As Michigan hurtles into August for what promises to be another rollicking, record-setting month of live music and festivals, Local Spins figures it’s a great time to roll out artistic, visual representations of bracing new tracks by local and regional artists.
We’ve picked out 10 recent music videos, covering the gamut in terms of styles and approaches. They range from music videos quickly amassing an enormous following (900,000+ views in just two weeks for Grand Rapids native SoFaygo’s “Count Me Out,” and 100,000+ for Michigander’s “Stay Out of It”) to artistically pleasing productions that certainly deserve more attention.
So sit back in air-conditioned comfort and turn up the volume. Then, hit the road to catch some of these artists in concert.
1. SoFaygo, “Count Me Out”
Grand Rapids native and Atlanta-based rapper SoFaygo has caught fire as of late, as evidenced by the near million views he accrued in just a couple of weeks for his latest video. Just 20 years old, Andre Dontrel Burt Jr. was born in Grand Rapids and his breakthrough hit with “Knock, Knock,” which went viral in 2020 and has racked up more than 100 million plays on Spotify.
2. Phabies, “Fire Seed”
The striking video by this dreamy indie-rock/pop band from Grand Rapids accompanies the title track from the album that Phabies released earlier this year. Written by Laura Hobson, the melancholy, catchy tune with an uplifting air of rebirth unfurls as a signature Phabies track. The video was filmed by Joshua Skinner and edited by Nick Buwalda. Phabies play Saginaw Art Museum on Aug. 10, Dow Gardens in Midland on Aug. 14 and The Pyramid Scheme in Grand Rapids on Aug. 26 (with Low Phase, American Hotel System and The Cosmoknights).
3. The Accidentals and Kaboom Collective, “Lady of the Lake”
In yet another boundary-pushing collaboration initiated by Traverse City alt-folk trio The Accidentals, this latest project involves the youthful Kaboom Collective. The trio teamed up with this one-of-a-kind youth orchestra and last week released “REIMAGINE,” a collection that offers fresh takes on 12 classic Accidentals tracks. The trio and orchestra play Tuesday Evening Music Club at Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park on Aug. 9.
4. Michigander, “Stay Out of It”
Directed by Johnny Chew, produced by Mary Kate van den Berg and with director of photography Justin Gaar, this inventive and colorful video for Jason Singer and Michigander’s latest track has quickly enchanted fans. “Jason! You nailed it,” one fan wrote. “This is incredible and some of the catchiest stuff you’ve made.” Now based in Nashville, the Michigan native and his band kick off a national tour with Wilderado on Aug. 23.
5. Lokella (with Emilee Petersmark), “Just Nineteen”
The dark rock underpinnings of Grand Rapids’ Lokella get a star power boost with lead singer Jennifer Bartlett joined on vocals by The Crane Wives’ Emilee Petersmark on this track, creating a brilliant, powerful, hard-driving duet. The video directed by Bobby Boucher (shot and edited by Vybe Studios) features Grand Rapids’ familiar landscape as a backdrop. (The Crane Wives, by the way, play the Listening Lawn series at Studio Park in downtown Grand Rapids on Aug. 13.)
6. Brie Stoner, “Bloom”
Many who followed singer-songwriter Brie Stoner’s music more than a decade ago have warmly embraced the singer’s re-emergence in Grand Rapids’ music scene. Her spellbinding indie dream-rock is on full display here, with the music video for “Bloom” directed by Logan Zillmer and Stoner, and produced by Luke Shoemaker.
7. Steven Malcolm (with Snoop Dogg and Jay-Way), “Summertime”
What could be a more appropriate track for heating up August than a track titled “Summertime”? This one comes courtesy of Grand Rapids hip-hop artist Steven Malcolm, who’s attracted a national following as a Christian rapper and been nominated for several Dove Awards Described by one fan as “a dope song” and “dope video,” it also gets a star power boost from the Snoop Dogg himself. Malcolm plays the Unity Christian Music Festival in Muskegon on Aug. 10 and Bless Fest in Lansing on Aug. 27.
8. “Built Like a Fish,” Kyle Brown & The Human Condition
Inspired by the Pacific Ocean (Kyle Brown resided in Hawaii for about a year before returning to West Michigan), this video from Kyle Brown & The Human Condition shows off one of the region’s newest rootsy bands, which released its debut albums earlier this summer. The band plays Cowpie Music Festival near Caledonia at 1:30 p.m. Saturday, North Grove Brewers in Montague on Aug. 11 and the Forest Trail Music Festival in Free Soil at the end of August.
9. “Mr. Right Now,” Hannah Rose Graves
It’s only apropos that West Michigan singer Hannah Rose Graves filmed this particular video at Tio Top Deluxe Bar & Grill in Grand Rapids where she hosts a Wednesday “Open Stage” night. The video was filmed by Michael Young, with sound engineering by Clear Sky Productions. She also plays City Built Brewing’s Friday Night Live at 6:30 p.m. Friday (with Nicholas James & The Bandwagon) in Grand Rapids’ Canal Park and hosts “Hannah Rose’s Acoustic Cafe” at the aforementioned Cowpie Music Festival at 10 a.m. Saturday.
10. “Saint Blue,” The Blue Pines
Sure, this was filmed in the dead of Michigan winter, but what better way to cool off during the dog days of summer than ogling a chill alt-rock music video (filmed by Roz’Lyn Clayton)? The Blue Pines play Encore 201 in Traverse City at 8:30 p.m. Saturday and Third Nature Brewing in Rockford on Aug. 19.
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