Mike Miller


In June of 2015 I asked Jim Bruno, who lead a recurring songwriters workshop/class at Berkeley’s venerable Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse if he had a recommendation for a producer. Jim gave me a couple of names, one of which was Ben Bernstein. Ben and I exchanged a few emails and talked on the phone a bit before meeting. It was immediately obvious to me that Ben and I shared a lot of the same musical influences and sensibilities. Equally important was that Ben was an experienced producer, exceptional bass player and talented multi instrumentalist. Ben introduced me to Mike Stevens who plays drums and percussion throughout. Mike has a rich and diverse background that allows him to provide whatever rhythmic texture best serves a particular song which is great as there are a lot of different influences in my songs including Celtic, Country, Folk, Pop and Rock. The name Page One Project came about in part as a recognition that I was ready to move music from the back pages of my life; where it had been for many years, to the front page.





What is music to you? What does it give you?

Music is a passion and a creative outlet. It provides me with joy and a purpose.

What is your music dream?

To write songs that have a positive impact on the world.

If you could change the world - what would you start with?

I'd want to help people see themselves for who they are and strive for some combination of improvement and acceptance of themselves and by extension others.

Which is the most memorable song from your childhood?

Wow, so many to choose from. I'll go with "Can't Get There From Here" by R.E.M. because it was the first song that really got me thinking about how a song is put together. There were so many cool and interesting sounds and approaches in the arrangement and Michael Stipe's lyrics during their early years were often opaque but on that song they were relatively easy to understand.

Who are your favorite musical artists or bands?

Again, so many to choose from. In my adult years I've tended to drift towards acoustic based genre's and artists as well as groups and individuals that focus on the art of songwriting. Darrell Scott, Richard Thompson, Tim O'Brien, Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell and Robert Earl Keen to name just a few.

What inspires you to make music?

I can't really help myself. When inspiration beckons I have to follow.

What is the message you want to send with your music?

I'm not sure I have a specific message.

How do you feel when you perform in front of an audience?

Terrified. Which is why I seldom do so. :-|

How do you see the musicians’ reality nowadays? What could be improved?

Frankly it's horrible, particularly as I write this since we're neck deep in the whole CORONA-19 Virus pandemic. Technology makes it easy to get music out there but getting it heard is extremely difficult and streaming pays essentially nothing. Life performance does offer a path to making money but it requires a lot of time, effort and a bit of luck. At the moment most of the world is on lockdown which means concerts are a thing of the past for now. That takes away a major source of income from musicians. Too much of the money being generated by music is going some place other than to the artists. Fixing that is going to be tough.

What do you think of Drooble?

Too early to be sure but seems nice so far.

What frustrates you most as a musician?

The plethora of web sites and companies that purport to help musicians gain fame and fortune while in the end doing essentially nothing.

Do you support your local scene as a fan? How?

Yes. Mostly by attending live shows and buy music when I like the band/artist.

What qualities should a musician nowadays have in order to get their music heard by a larger audience?

Some combination of luck and the ability or desire to produce songs that sound the same as everything else that is out there. Originality has always created a steeper slope for new artists to climb but right now it's pretty much the kiss of death from what I can tell.

Share some awesome artists that we’ve never heard of.

Darrell Scott, Robert Earl Keen, Sara Trunzo, Britton Patrick Morgan, Maggie Wing I could go on for hours.