The couple behind the duo Haley and Michaels took time out of their busy schedule to chat about their current projects and past influences. In light of recent events, the musical pair released a song entitled, ‘Me Too.’ Shannon Haley stated that this song led to a “powerful response” from their fans. She went on to say that they received YouTube comments and direct messages from a number of people stating that their song helped in their healing journey. The influential song resonated with so many people and really put Haley and Michaels on the map. As popular as this song is, it is not their first taste of success. Haley and Michaels have had a lot of radio play from Sirius XM’s The Highway. Ryan Michaels spoke about their success on the popular radio station and said that, “it is gratifying and exciting to hear your song on a station that you’re a fan of.”
The married couple first connected over growing up in California and loving country music. Growing up in the 90’s, country music was not very popular in the West. Ryan’s musical influences are drawn from rock music such as U2 and Bon Jovi as well as some country/rock performers such as Keith Urban and Garth Brooks. The artists that have impacted Shannon range from Shania Twain to Bob Dylan to Sheryl Crow. The different influences of the couple have helped to shape their sound. However, among all of their differences, Haley and Michaels have always “been fans of artists that write their own music.”
The duo has their first studio album set to be released this year. The couple who have been heavily influenced by song writing have written all of the songs on their album. “The songs are a part of who we are, our story and what makes us Haley and Michaels,” Shannon Haley said. She described a song on the album called ‘The Price I Pay.’ The song was one of the first songs they ever wrote years ago yet fits perfectly on the album. This song is “part of the new sound even though its an older song.” Another song on the album will be the pair’s newest single, ‘High Note.’ Describing the motivation behind the song, Ryan says it was written based upon a personal experience. At the end of a Pink Floyd concert, Ryan was getting ready to leave and he scanned the crowd as the classic rock anthem, ‘The Wall’ was filling the arena. Ryan looked out into the audience and saw thousands of cell phones and lighters in the air and immediately called Shannon. He told her he was “leaving on a high note” and she knew immediately that they had to write that song. Ryan, Shannon, Phil Barton and Zach Abent got together and ‘High Note’ just fell out onto the paper. As the writers of the songs on their album, they have the vision of what they want the song to be. Shannon and Ryan try to be involved in all elements of the song and album production. To keep their vision, parts of the songs in the final recording are actually created in the moment while writing the songs.
As a newer act, Haley and Michaels travel extensively trying to get their music heard all over the country. Ryan said that while touring he has “gotten comfortable living out of suitcases.” He stated, however, that it makes the world a little bit smaller. Shannon added that she agreed in that the “suitcase life is a real thing.” Both acknowledged that they “rely on Starbucks and Chipotle very heavily” living on the road. The pair are mapping out dates for the summer and fall shows and are in the process of planning out the rest of the year to promote their current single ‘High Note’ and upcoming album. They do not have any New England dates booked yet, but will soon be heading out on radio tour!