Traverse City singer-songwriter John Piatek heads pop- and psychedelic-hued collaborative project | News

TRAVERSE CITY – On “John Piatek & Friends” a lively, psychedelic pop taste permeates indie rock, along with a dash of musical experimentation.

For Traverse City guitarist and vocalist John Piatek, the 10-track album marks the latest step in a journey that began at the age of 12 when he first performed in front of an audience on a porch overlooking Spider Lake.

Since then he has toured the Pacific Northwest, writing his own songs “compulsively”, studying jazz guitar at Aquinas College in Grand Rapids and recording an album with the Traverse City group The Persons.

In 2019, Piatek began writing and recording material with songwriter and visual artist Jake Myers, eventually releasing an EP in 2020 and following in July 2021 with the full-length “John Piatek & Friends”.

The duo’s musical influences run through the entire collection, with Piatek declaring the couple “have a mutual respect for Brian Wilson (of The Beach Boys), The Black Keys, Steely Dan and a variety of rock, pop and jazz artists ” Has.

“The songs were built on the rock format of (the EP). The lyrics are full of memories of young adulthood, friendships and love, as well as scenic images from the landscapes of northern Michigan, ”he added.

The duo independently recorded, produced, designed and distributed the album themselves and then set up a new recording studio in Kalkaska, where Piatek says they have “more space” to explore their ideas.

Now in his mid-twenties, Piatek “has returned to feverish writing and recording just two months after the duo’s latest album was released” and is “cautiously optimistic” about booking future shows to support this and other releases.

John Piatek & Friends will be playing free shows at the Acoustic Taproom in Traverse City on October 1st and November 5th, using proceeds from merchandise sales in support of the Cherryland Humane Society.

“We are incredibly happy for the vibrant and supportive music community in northern Michigan that we have around us,” said Piatek, adding that the duo are keen to forge even “more connections” within this robust scene.

“We envision a very bright future for local original music in northern Michigan as more local acts have become known nationwide and the community continues to passionately support their local artists. … We believe that we are only just beginning to see a diverse and talented roster of local artists emerge. “

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