Dusty Roads is a high-energy Georgia-grown Americana band, formed in 2014 by Atlanta based musician, John Mickelson. When you're at a Dusty Roads show, expect to hear influences of the legends of bluegrass and country music, such as Merle Haggard, Flatt & Scruggs, Willie Nelson, and Bill Monroe. You can also expect dustings of songs and sounds of the great writers and musicians from across the world as well as halls of time, like Django Reinhardt, Dire Straits, and even Bob Marley. ‘Come take a trip, down that long dusty road’.
Comprised of some of the Southeasts finest musicians, the band is ever evolving with its endless musical influences. John Mickelson has played acoustic guitar since he was 14 years old, when he was gifted his first guitar by a family friend. 'It was an acoustic guitar, I just loved the way the wood and strings rang together naturally' says Mickelson, who has been on the path of creating music ever since. John became friends with Colt Bowen (Drummer/Audio Engineer) during their time in Athens, Georgia performing with the High Strung String Band. “Colt has one of the lightest touches of any percussionists I've ever heard” says Mickelson of the Dusty Roads drummer, who was also the Recording and Mix Engineer for the band's debut album 'Steel Working'. Multi-instrumentalist Jared Lanham joined the band in 2016, and adds his melodic flare with the mandolin, rhythmic propensity with the Indian hand-drum called the tabla, and bluegrass soul with every song he sings. Guitar virtuoso Myles Brown brings his profound jazz vocabulary to the bands approach of solos and melodic structures, all the while playing a precarious balancing act between the acoustic and electric instruments tonality.
Dusty Roads is constantly searching for that sound, that lick, that twangy hook that sinks deep into the listener's soul and pulls them into the unfolding story of each song. The group cherishes the purity of silvery strings and vocals ringing together harmoniously. The band champions comradery, respect for the craft of their instruments, and finely constructed songs that feel as if they soar effortlessly down from the mountaintop to resonate the listener's heart-strings. "We came here with one purpose… to have fun creating and performing our music"- says Mickelson, Singer/Songwriter for Dusty Roads.
"My great-grandfather was a mandolin player from Germany, so I guess it just runs in the blood", says Mickelson of his musical lineage. Growing up in Atlanta, he was surrounded by a diverse world of cultures, food, and music. Like a rear-view mirror in a pick-up truck going down I-75, Dusty Roads look back through the history of written and recorded music, studying fervently to try to find out what made each of their favorite songs so special and unique, and then aspire to bring that 'magic' to their own music in new and exciting ways. 'It’s a part of our DNA to dig up the roots, themes, and melodies of the songs that have inspired us as a band, in order to help guide us where we want to go next musically', Mickelson says of the band’s future.
During the Winter of 2017, Dusty Roads was granted permission to begin recording their debut album ‘Steel Working’ at the historical Victor Kriegshaber House – the ornate building located above the Wrecking Bar Brewpub in Little Five Points, Atlanta. ‘We wanted to have that lived-in feel, that hard to pin-point sound and energy that you can only get from the experience of recording in a historic space’, says Mickelson. Released in April of 2019 at the Wrecking Bar Brewpub, the album features original music inspired by lessons learned through each of the band members lives, love, and heartache. "Life is heavy, but music can make your bags a little lighter" – John Mickelson.
Listen & Download the album ‘Steel Working’ at www.dustyroadsmusic.com