Since permanently leaving his corporate environmental engineering career in 1996, award-winning folk/Americana artist
musical journey has traced nearly a million miles of blue highways, and earned him a wealth of critical acclaim and enthusiastic fans for his captivating performances and seven recordings.
Andrew’s powerful and entertaining show is like one man theatre, delivered with warmth and down-home comfort.
His finely crafted songs are woven together with humorous stories and poetic drama, while the musical soundscape traverses influences from Appalachia, tasteful slide and jazzy blues, feisty anthems, rustic folk, and even a little fancy flatpicking on a Carter Family tune.
While his skillful guitar work provides a tasteful foundation, the touches of native American cedar flute, resonator guitar, djembe (African hand drum) and even mandolin add delightful and mesmerizing embellishments to the show.
He has performed at many prestigious venues including the Kennedy Center, the International Storytelling Center and the Atlanta Olympics, has been part of the Rocky Mountain, South Florida, Boston and Delmarva Folk Festival lineups, and a guest on NPR’s “Art of the Song” and “River City Folk” shows.
Musician draws on a diverse range of influences, including Lyle Lovett, Taj Mahal, Louis Armstrong and Doc Watson to name just a few. Images and music – crafted stories underpinned by a melodic guitar style that draws the listener in to the story.
Alternative country, old time, folk and blues best describe the music. Performances may include a favorite old fiddle tune such as "Blackberry Blossom" or the Vince Gill/Guy Clark gem "Jenny Dreamed of Trains", the beautiful folk standard "If I Needed You" by Townes Van Zandt or the country blues standard "Corrina". He is an award winning songwriter and a frequent contributor at local songwriter showcases such as The 9 Songwriter Series.
He performs frequently throughout the region and has headlined recently at 49 West in Annapolis, Brewer’s Alley in Frederick and New Deal Café in Greenbelt, Maryland. He has performed at festivals throughout the Mid-Atlantic region including the Virginia Fly Fishing and Wine Festival in Waynesboro, Virginia, the barBAYq in Annapolis, Maryland, and the Oyster Fest in St. Michaels, Maryland, where he was invited to perform his song "The Boatbuilder", a story about legendary boatbuilder Bronza Parks.
"Singer/songwriter Mike Kelly is a master at putting story to song.
Kelly, with his gentle stage demeanor, makes this happen with a combination of his accomplished guitar playing, catchy melodies, hook-filled lyric lines and a healthy dash of wit.." HG Coffeehouse, Accokeek, MD
grew up in a musical family and started performing in children’s choir, church programs, and with his family. In Jr. High and High School Brent sang in the choir, a barbershop quartet, and was featured in the musical Oklahoma as Curly. After high school he toured the Midwest with the musical group The Isaiah 6 Project. During his freshman year at Indiana Wesleyan University Brent made the University Chorale, (an elite travelling choir), which had the distinct privilege of performing at the National Gaither Praise Gathering in Indianapolis.
In 1994 Brent enlisted in the U.S. Coast Guard to serve his country.
When Brent was stationed in Detroit, MI he started teaching himself guitar.
In 2007 he was transferred to Arlington, VA and shortly afterward started volunteering with the World Folk Music Association.
This fueled his desire to connect with audiences through music and share with others all the ways that music has affected him.
In 2014 he played his first open mic and in May the following year he wrote his first song “The Horizon.”
He continues to support live music as vice president of the World Folk Music Association and a member of the Songwriter’s Association of Washington.