Michael Franti & Spearhead return to Grass Valley for a concert at Veterans Memorial Auditorium on Tuesday, October 15, as part of The Center for the Arts OnTheGo series. They are touring the U.S. in support of their critically acclaimed new album Stay Human Vol. II, out now on Thirty Tigers. Tickets available to The Center for The Arts Members on Thursday, August 1 and to the general public on Friday, August 2 at 10 a.m. local time via http://thecenterforthearts.org.
The writing on Stay Human Vol. II—which is co-produced by Franti alongside Ben Simonetti (Zac Brown Band, Shemekia Copeland, Blake Shelton), Niko Moon (Zac Brown Band), Kevin Bard (Fitz & The Tantrums) and others—was heavily influenced by Franti’s work on his new award-winning self-directed documentary, Stay Human. He explains, “I’ve traveled the globe making music and throughout the years I’ve always hoped that it could inspire small steps towards making the world a better place. Struggling with the challenges of the world I began filming my new documentary, Stay Human, telling the stories of heroic everyday people who helped me to discover more deeply what it means to be and STAY HUMAN.”
Stay Human has won an array of awards while on the festival circuit, including the RWJ Barnabas Health Award at the 2018 Asbury Park Music & Film Festival, the Audience Award at the 2018 Nashville Film Festival, the Audience Award and the Voice for Humanity Award at the 2018 ILLUMINATE Film Festival and the Soul in Cinema Award at the 2018 Maui Film Festival. The film is now available via on demand and digital platforms through Cinedigm.
Franti began writing music as a way to process both the political landscape of the late 1980s and the unique sounds and ideas of his Bay Area upbringing. In 1994, Franti formed Michael Franti & Spearhead. Touring with his band, Franti continued to notice inequality and injustice both at home and abroad. The band released their seminal Stay Human album in 2000, reflecting on the unjust nature of the death penalty among other themes, to make sense of our common humanity in juxtaposition to near constant violations of human rights.
Franti released his first self-directed documentary, I Know I’m Not Alone, in 2005 to widespread critical acclaim. The film depicts his mission for peace in the Middle East, with a focus on the human cost of war. Franti visited war zones in Iraq, Israel and Palestine again finding common connection, playing music to both soldiers and civilians regardless of affiliation.
Michael Franti & Spearhead continue to foster the community both on and off stage and with Michael and his wife Sara’s foundation Do It For The Love, a wish granting nonprofit that brings those with life threatening illnesses, veterans and children with severe challenges to concerts. His recent musical projects have included the Billboard #1 single “The Sound of Sunshine” (2010) and full-length releases All the People (2013) and SOULROCKER (2016), which topped the Billboard rock album charts at #4 and #5, respectively.
Stay Human Vol. II is available for purchase and to stream at https://ffm.to/stayhumanvol2. The album debuted at #62 on the Billboard 200 chart as well as #1 on the Americana chart and #1 on the Independent Album chart. It also reached #1 on the iTunes singer/songwriter chart.
Micahel Franti & Spearhead return to Grass Valley on October 15; don’t miss your chance to see them. Tickets go on sale Friday, August 2nd at 10am. The Grass Valley Veterans Memorial Auditorium is a treasured historic venue. General Admission seating is available on the floor on a first come first serve basis with the majority of seating available in the bleachers. The auditorium has been retrofitted with new seating in the bleachers. For ticket information visit www.thecenterforthearts.org.
About The Center for the Arts
Since 2000, The Center for the Arts, a 501(c)(3) non-profit arts organization, has grown into a leading presenter of music, dance, theater, comedy, literary, visual art and family programming. Typically, the Center presents more than 150 events per year from its location in downtown Grass Valley. The Center is currently underway in a major renovation of its multi-use 21,000 square foot facility in downtown Grass Valley. After the renovation, the Center will have a 490 seat main theater, a large visual art gallery, classroom space, and a 90-seat black box theater. For more information about the renovation, please reach out to The Center’s Executive Director, Amber Jo Manuel, 530-274-8384 ext. 206
Content and photos provided by Melissa Clark, Center for the Arts.