Introducing… Haley & Michaels

Written by SLN Staff Writer
Introducing… Haley & Michaels

Haley and Michaels

New country duo Haley & Michaels, comprised of Shannon Haley and Ryan Michaels, has quite an incredible story. It’s as if the stars aligned in order for them to meet and make music together. What’s even more fascinating is that Shannon and Ryan became a real-life couple after they met.

Their story is one you couldn’t make up if you tried. Get to know Haley & Michaels with our exclusive Q&A below.

How did you two meet? Did music bring you two together?

Both: We met through our guitar player, who was playing with both of us as individual artists at the time. He thought we would be a good fit as songwriters and he connected us. We got together in Nashville at The Frothy Monkey. When we sat down, we found out that we grew up three miles apart from each other in Northern California. When we told our mom’s that we met, we found out that a mutual friend of theirs had tried to introduce us on MySpace seven years prior to our meeting.

When did you decide that you wanted to pursue a career in country music?

SH: We had both been living in Nashville pursuing solo careers in music. Ryan started out in country music after he went to Belmont University in Nashville. He then started a rock band and was doing that when we first came together.

RM: Shannon had been making trips to Nashville while at college at UCLA. She was singing country music at the country music bars in Los Angeles and after graduating she made the move to Nashville to pursue a career in country music. So we had both been at this for years before we came together and started writing.

Who are some acts that you look up to and why?

Both: We really look up to Little Big Town and Garth Brooks. Little Big Town because we love their music and harmonies. Also, because we respect their journey and the way they have been able to keep their group together through so much. We heard them give a talk on perseverance and it was really inspiring. Garth Brooks is our favorite artist with many of our favorite songs. He makes great country music but also puts on a rock ‘n roll show. He also has a reputation of being one of the kindest, most sincere people who remembers everybody’s name.

Tell us the story behind your single “Giving It All (To You).”

SH: Right after we got engaged, we went on a radio tour and we planned most of our wedding from the road. We had most everything done except for our vows and we had no idea when we would have time to write them. During one of the big ice storms that hit Nashville this year, we got snowed in and had to cancel a co-writing session. The two of us sat down to write our vows, and instead accidentally wrote “Giving It All (To You).” When we were done writing, we looked at each other and said, “Well, I guess we have to have white roses at our wedding” and I guess “‘To Make You Feel My Love’ isn’t going to be the song I walk down the aisle to.”

Can we look forward to a new EP or album anytime soon?

Both: Yes we are working on new music right now!

Has the mix of music and marriage ever been difficult to manage?

Both: Luckily for us, we have gotten much better at navigating both. Sometimes being married and being in a duo together can be challenging, because if one thing isn’t going really well, it’s easy for it to carry over into the other thing. During the beginning of our relationship, that was more of an issue. Now, we just feel lucky to be able to do this with each other. It’s so nice to know that someone you work so closely with in this business always has your back. We get to share so many amazing experiences together, and when one of our dreams is coming true, it’s happening to the other as well.

What’s on your country music “bucket list” as a duo?

Both: We have a very long list! Opening for Garth Brooks, writing a song with Garth and Trisha [Yearwood], playing Madison Square Garden and Shoreline Amphitheater are at the very, very top.

Check out the “Giving It All (To You)”music video below…

Fans can keep up with Haley & Michaels on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Pick up their single, “Giving It All (To You),” HERE.