Tradition - January-February 2005
Man am I thankful we
have some local talent that doesn't try to be something they are not.
Michael Murphy, part Native American has always been one of my favorite
folk-like singers. His ability to transcribe from his mind and heart
into words what he feels about the savage treatment handed Native Americans
by the American government, is very real. This CD opens with some really good
Native American flute playing by Michael. Colin Petersen of Omaha makes Native
American flutes, and Michael is obviously playing them on this CD. His version
of Amazing Grace is especially poingnant and beautiful. Very authentic, and
very real. This is ofne of those projects that you just need to have a
nice fireplace burining somewhat low, perhaps a glass of old-time wine,
and a relaxed mood. This CD will take you very very far from where you are.
Thank you Michael for this inspiring piece of work. Please be with us again
at our festical and share your wonder with us. This CD is well worth adding
to anyone's collection. It's super! Notice how Michael doesn't waste words
on his titles. He tells you up front in the least possible way what is most
important to him. If you find a chance to hear Michael in concert, don't
The Catholic Voice - October 25, 2002
a choir member at Sacred Heart Parish in Omaha, NE, said music
is his form of prayer. It's how he touches others. Although his folk-style
music doesn't necessarily mention God by name, the topics of his
songs talk of social awareness, peace and those who have influenced
my passion," Murphy said. "I like to sing a song that puts a face
on things, that has moral significance."
On his CD, Sacred
Hearts, he sings about his late parents, his friend, the late
Father Jim Fitzgerald, who died of brain cancer, as well as social
justice and peace.
Murphy is giving
all the profits from Sacred Hearts, which sells for $15
to Sacred Heart Parish. It's his way of being a good steward, he
said. By combining his time and talent while writing his music and
recording his songs, Murphy said he wants to incorporate his treasure
as well. The idea of using your talents to give back to the church
is something he hopes people will embrace in their own lives.
"I'm not going
to change things, but maybe by perhaps doing this, if somebody paints
or is a plumber, they'll go to their church and offer help," Murphy
said. "They'll find other ways to give their time and talent to the
Sacred Hearts can be purchased through Sacred Hearts Parish,
Homers in Omaha, or through Murphy himself at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Michael Murphy is one of Omaha's best
folk music composers and singers. Whenever
I hear him I'm always impressed with his nonchalant manner and presence.
He's always so easy going. Yet,
he sings and speaks of things so close to the heart, so near to the
soul, so much a part of us all. He's
a fine guitarist, a prerequisite to being a good folk music presenter.
It takes him a while to get into
"Migrant Farmers & Meat Packing Houses," but the wait is
well worth it. He speaks
with the voice of the needy, the forlorn, the lost, the hopeless, the
out of work migrant, the hungry. Very
good observation Michael, and very well presented.
The theme is different, but I can really relate to what Michael
is talking about. My dad
had to leave the farm during a scorching three years of drought.
Nothing left, nothing to hope for, nothing to feed his family
with. He sold what little
he had left, and went to Omaha to work in the meat packing plants,
dragging his penniless family with him.
My mom had to work in a laundry.
They both found their way out of it, eventually, but it was
tremendously hard for them. We
were hungry a lot. It's the
same for Mexicans today. Michael
is asking that we not hate them for taking a job, it's a job that you
On "My Mother" he talks first
about his old cedar flute, and how he finds his mother.
This is followed by a simply great flute rendition.
Come to our festival Michael and share
your wonderful music. Please
do some flute music in our tipi village.
Tradition - March-April 2000
This is another
2-CD project featuring one of my favorite folk singers, Michael Murphy.
One of the incredibly satisfying experiences I have is reviewing
CDs and tapes, and bouncing from one like Ginny Wicker who uses a
full Nashville back-up production to Michael Murphy, who uses himself,
is an incredibly delicious experience. I feel sorry for someone who
has never had the opportunity to do that.
Michael is probably
Nebraska's if not Omaha's premiere singer-songwriter-guitarist-flautist,
Michael, to use an old crutch, paints pictures with words and music.
Well, so that's an overworked adage, but in Michael's case it's
brand new. Whoever heard of a coyote talking to you in a dream.
has, and explains it...with poignant expression and incredible
Hey, this guy puts
a lot of those New York City and Los
Angeles boys shamefully aside. I like everything Michael does,
and have heard him do delightful sets at Avoca. Keep it up Michael,
one fine artist, one of a kind, and one that sooner or later
a lot of people are going to know. I know how the creative process
and Michael is in his prime time. Michael keep every scrap of
you write a note on, your mind is in YOUR mode now, so keep it
as long as you possibly can.
The two sessions
were done in separate locations, but the engineering is fine on both.
is the fine songwriting and presentation Michael is doing for
you. Another fine Christmas stocking stuffer (I know I'm way to
early for Christmas, but this is going to be a special Christmas-2000),
so if you have someone on your list who likes a gentler music,
is your chance to buy that special one-of-a-kind music at a
cost. Keep Michael on your mind, I do.