Monte Pride is a Michigan-born, Michigan-based folk singer-songwriter and fingerstyle guitarist. His rich tenor voice and accomplished fingerpicking make him sound older than his years, but the enthusiasm he brings to the music and performance is all youthful, impassioned energy. That energy and appreciation shine through in his writing, every phrase weaving and winding to form a complex array of song. Monte draws inspiration from long-time trailblazing musicians such as Paul Simon, Nick Drake, and Joni Mitchell, as well as contemporary folk genre-benders like The Tallest Man On Earth, The Avett Brothers, and Frontier Ruckus.
After releasing two well-received EPs, Monte recorded his first full-length album. Working with engineer and producer Elan Dantus in his Ann Arbor studio, Monte chose twelve original songs to showcase his evolving songwriting talents and musical direction. Focusing on honest storytelling and vivid lyricism, his new release “Hawthorne Morning Sound” blends swelling cello, shimmering electric guitar, wistful lap steel riffs, lively banjo lines, and mellow acoustics with delicate, stirring vocals to bring songs of love, loss, and longing to life.
Monte has been performing in Michigan for the past five years, since he was a senior in high-school, growing a solid local and regional following. He has provided support for notable touring acts including The Cactus Blossoms, Rocky Votolato, Mutual Benefit, The Bones of JR Jones, and Florist, along with Michigan favorites like The Ragbirds, Gifts of Creatures, Timothy Monger, Sam Corbin, Watching for Foxes, Less is More, and The Rupple Brothers. Monte has performed frequently at Lansing venues like The Robin Theatre, The Loft, Mac’s Bar, Turner-Dodge House, and The Old Town General Store, among others, and has recently begun to venture outside of his local scene and grow within it, booking performances at the Ten Pound Fiddle (Lansing, MI - 3/29/18), Long Road Distillers (Grand Rapids), Plymouth Coffee Bean, and Louie’s Back Room (Kalamazoo, MI - 3/10/18). He has also played local and regional festivals including Farmfest, Sledfest (Gaylord, MI - 2/3/18), The Ann Arbor Summer Festival, Pumpstock, Capital City Film Festival, Stoopfest, EastXEast Lansing, and Gypsy Goddess Festival.
In the fall of 2014 Monte recorded and released his first EP, “Hollows On High”. He followed this release with his second self-released EP, “The Soul Sender”, in the fall of 2015. November 2016 marked the release of his first full length album, “Hawthorne Morning Sound”. It was met with a sold out show at The Robin Theatre in Lansing (11/18/16). Since then, Monte has headlined Mac’s Bar (Lansing, MI) in April 2017, led a "Songwriters In the Round” event in July 2017 at The Robin Theatre, and headlined The Robin Theatre again in November 2017, drawing another full-house.
In addition to his musical ventures, Monte began giving back to his local, Lansing community in Summer 2017, solely organizing the First Annual “Songs for Sustainability” Festival in Old Town Lansing, held in the Old Town General Store’s courtyard. It focused on building and engaging community, and celebrating the importance of environmental awareness and sustainable practice around music. The Rupple Brothers & Company, The Dangling Participles, The Stump Brothers, Jim Jersey, and Sea Bridson shared songs through the afternoon. The festival also featured multiple vendors who produce sustainably and environmental awareness groups. These included Mystical Makings, Urbandale Farm, Rust Belt Roastery, and Oh Mi Organics, with the Sierra Club, MSU Community Sustainability, MSU Greener Together, and Go Green Trikes represented to share their message. The event was free, with all encouraged donations benefiting “Music is the Foundation”, a local non-profit that funds local music programs in schools and the community, bringing instruments and joy to those who may not have opportunities otherwise.