Fri, Apr 19|
Michael Perry & the Long Beds
Ranging from straight-up twang to churchly harmonies and populated by characters drawn straight from rural and small-town America
Time & Location
Apr 19, 2024, 8:00 PM
Viroqua, 116 S Main St, Viroqua, WI 54665, USA
About the event
“First time I ever heard Waylon Jennings,” says Michael Perry, “was on an 8-track tape in a four-wheel drive truck doing sixty miles an hour down a Wyoming hay meadow. We were running late for Bible study.” Perry’s original songs are a direct reflection of that experience.
Ranging from straight-up twang to churchly harmonies and populated by characters drawn straight from rural and small-town America, they launch from places like the overpass outside Perry’s beloved hometown of New Auburn, Wisconsin (population currently 562), a gospel service in a granary, and the kitchen floor of a woman about to drop a world of hurt on her drunken husband. “I was raised by farmers and preachers and tough country women, and I suppose my songs reflect that,” says Perry. “Then again, certain wisdoms are available only from whistlers, frauds, and sinners, so I try to slide them a line or two as well.”
Author of numerous books including Population 485, Truck, The Scavengers, and the New York Times bestseller Visiting Tom, Perry began writing songs in the early 1990s during long nights when he was struggling to survive on prose. With no arts background (he has a nursing degree) he found himself drawn especially to the work of poets and singer/songwriters. He began writing songs as a way to break up all-night typing sessions, and eventually had enough of them that a musician friend invited him to play at a coffee shop. “I’m not saying I was nervous, but I ripped out a sixty-minute set list in thirty-two minutes flat,” says Perry. By 2004, he had begun recruiting the Long Beds. In 2006, he released his first album, Headwinded.
Since then Perry has released 4 albums, several singles, and toured backed by a collection of renowned musicians who have performed on numerous stages throughout the world (including The Tonight Show, Austin City Limits, and Eaux Claires festival) and worked with a host of artists, including Bon Iver, S. Carey, The Staves, Miley Cyrus, Lizzo, Field Report, The Tallest Man on Earth, Jimmie Dale Gilmore, and many more.
Every Long Beds show is built on roughneck ballads and freight train rockers interspersed with hilarious off-the-cuff tales from Mike’s diverse experience as a Wisconsin farm kid turned cowboy turned nurse turned best selling author and humorist. Michael Perry resides with his family on a small farm in rural Wisconsin.