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Runner-turned-actor-turned-musician Michael Cooke swaps movie and theatre work to embrace change on ‘Around Here’

A 30-year-old from the Scottish town of Greenock, 60’s Folk-inspired singer-songwriter Michael Cooke has many fascinating stories to tell. He trained to be an Olympic runner at Glasgow School Of Sport over a decade ago before lumbar and Achilles foot injuries caused him to take a year off to recover. He has also appeared alongside prolific movie stars such as Jesse Eisenberg, Lizzy Caplan and Michael Caine in the magic-heist hybrid movie ‘Now You See Me 2’ and he has also dabbled in theatre work, including playing a role in Shakespeare’s ‘Coriolanus’ in Milan, but, now with experience in all things entertainment, he now chooses to channel himself into music:

“So many people let life pass them by and get caught up in group identity because they are scared of knowing themselves. I think once you start down the road of knowing yourself there’s no going back and let’s be honest it’s pretty terrifying you see a lot of things about yourself you don’t like and it’s very hard to ignore”

Michael Cooke returns to music with his new album, ‘Midnight Call’, after swapping appearances on BBC and Netflix series to create a transcendent track about accepting change. The lead single ‘Around Here’ sits somewhere comfortably between the raw, vulnerable vocals of Bob Mould and the fuzzy, warm guitar melodies of J.W. Francis. Boasting a calming collection of soft indie rock beats with a soothing blend of subtle instrumentation, which perfectly accompanies the subject matter amongst the smooth and dreamy Folk melodies that create a smooth and dream-like sound forming a bubble of warmth around the listener. Cooke’s lovely vocals, reflecting on a story of acceptance and how nothing will stay the same forever, ooze comfort even whilst tackling the subtle melancholy of his lyrics. The glint of optimism is bolstered by the layered, airy vocals, meaning that the track has an overall floaty and woeful air about it. The video has the same levels of subtlety in its decidedly hand-painted, animated style that mirrors the aesthetics of ‘Around Here’ with confident precision.

Michael Cooke is a one-man show who continues to push boundaries and see what he can achieve. Coming from a working-class background created a fire in him to always aim high, and now fully tapping into his creative side, and his work ethic is a credit to the success that he has achieved already.

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Words by Jacob Braybrooke

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