Emboldened by two voices and two spirits, Haley & Michaels sharpen arena-size pop with rock ‘n’ roll energy and a fresh country edge. Capturing the vision of both Shannon Haley and Ryan Michaels, they embody what it means to be a pure duo on stage and off.
Introduced by a mutual friend in Nashville in 2012, the two musicians unassumingly met up for coffee and bonded over their similar Northern California upbringings and lifelong passions for music of all kinds, while discovering that they grew up just three miles apart from one another. Carving out a style of their own, the pair breathed new life into country with stadium size spark and powerful pop palatability, striking a chord immediately with audiences everywhere.
Following their emergence in 2015 with the breakout single “Giving It All (To You),” the independent pair sold over 200,000 digital downloads and generated 10 million-plus Spotify streams in addition to landing on marquee playlists such as New Music Friday, New Boots, and Wild Country. Along the way, they shared the stage with the likes of Sam Hunt, Brett Eldredge, Chris Young, and Old Dominion, in addition to performing twice on NBC’s Today and earning a fan in Hoda Kotb. After signing to Hickory Records/RED Music and Sony ATV Publishing with co- President Danny Strick in June 2017, they dove headfirst into creating their first full-length studio album.
The duo says that personal discovery would define the writing process in the creation of this album.
“We gave ourselves the freedom to write songs and create the sound that reflects who we are as artists—without limiting ourselves during the creative process. Everything comes back to being honest and staying true to who we are. We’ve poured everything we have into this album and it’s filled with a lot of blood, sweat, tears and personal life experiences,” says Haley.
“We grew up with music that said something, meant something, and that you could feel viscerally,” adds Michaels. “Our goal is to uplift through the songs. We wanted this album to have the depth of the albums we always aspired to make growing up—whether it was Guns N Roses and U2 or Sheryl Crow and Shania Twain.”
Haley & Michaels kick off this next phase of their musical career with the 2018 single “All Out.” Produced by Zach Abend and Matt McVaney and mixed by Chris Lord-Alge [Rolling Stones, Keith Urban], the single evokes Keith Urban’s brand of adventurous pop-country, with Haley & Michaels delivering their vocals in a rapid-fire rhythm, just before an undeniable refrain powered by stadium-size electrics and the anthemic proclamation, “Let’s go all out.”
“It’s inspired by our journey in the music industry,” Haley says. “Throughout the years, there have been people who have questioned us for pursuing music as a career. We had the idea towrite an anthem answering those who have doubted us. This song is about that moment when you commit to going for something whole-heartedly regardless of the outcome, whether it’s a relationship or pursuing your dreams. We’re all in for the long haul, no matter what, and we wanted to write about it.”
The album will also boast the duo’s breakout “Giving It All (To You)” and longtime favorite ballad “The Price I Pay”—which took home “Song of the Year” at the Nashville Independent Music Awards.
Showcasing another side of their artistry, the twosome pledged support of the #MeToo movement with the heartfelt, topical, and appropriately titled song, “Me Too,” assuring women and men everywhere that they’re not alone. Right out of the gate, it earned widespread praise with Refinery29 describing it as an “empowering statement of solidarity that bolsters the voice of the #metoo movement.”
“It is our message of empowerment and healing. It is a representation of unity,” continues Haley. “We feel impassioned and inspired to help spread this important message in the best way we know how: through music.”
In the end, that feeling is just starting to spread from the duo.
“We really know who we are and what we want to do together. We want to lift spirits with our music. Whether it’s a love song, a sad song, or an anthem about empowerment, we want people to feel better after listening,” Michaels leaves off. “That’s what music has always done for us.”