Existential Banjo


Episode 1
Little Pink America
with Corky Siegel &
Sons of the Never Wrong

Episode 2
People Get Ready
with Sue Demel, vocals

Episode 3
MTA (Poor Ol' Charlie)
with Tony Trischka

Episode 4
Suite for Americas:  Dorian
with Nora Barton, cello

Episode 5
Midnight Rider
with Darol Anger. violin

Episode 6
Vincent Black Lightning
@ Chicago City Winery

Episode 7
Hasna ya Layla
with Aziz Samaoui, ngoni

Episode 8
Opus 821
with Geraldo de Oliveira

Episode 9
Gaudete & Sleepers Awake
with David Jennings, vibes

Episode 10
Corrina, Corrina
with Aziz Samaoui, ngoni 

Episode 11
with Erkan Ogur
(Concert in Istanbul)

Episode 12
Last Thing On My Mind
with Tom Paxton, songwriter

New Releases

A-sides CD

Fingerstyle guitar with Darol Anger on violin 


Two New Hal Leonard books



To Play on the Banjo 
(co-written with Greg Cahill)


About Michael J. Miles



When Pete Seeger first heard Michael Miles, he sent a letter to Michael saying that "in all my 70 years this is among the most beautiful recordings I’ve ever is enough to make me want to learn the banjo all over again.”

Michael Miles is one of America’s most inventive clawhammer banjo players. Add guitar, vocals, jazz instruments, orchestras and complex historically-themed theatrical presentations to the mix and, two decades later, Michael has a critically acclaimed catalog of original compositions, stage performances, music CD’s and music instruction books.

Michael's performance credits include the Kennedy Center, Smithsonian Institution, Ravinia Festival, Harris Theatre in Chicago, American University in Beirut, Johnny Keenan Banjo Festival in Ireland, MIAM Graduate Conservatory of Music in Istanbul,  and the Royal Opera Theatre in Marrakesh.





Global Voices: Music 

“Over 8 days, in 5 different cities, Michael Miles interacted with over 2000 Moroccans through workshops and public events, most them young students who had never met an American.  For those 2000 people Miles was the face of America.   Musicians like Michael MIles are among the best Ambassadors that the United States can have.”  
   - Elisabeth Millard, Consul General, Morocco


“We have read your email and we are thrilled by your ideas! We are ready to start planning together and sharing more ideas. Having students of different cultures in both your and our school will be a very important attribute.  Maybe it will be a good idea to modulate a western piece into the oriental maqam, what do you think?”

- Lara Molaeb, Music Teacher, Lebanon


The music component of the
Global Voices Initiative seeks to create musical exchanges with US students and those in other countries.  The premise is to sidestep language barriers that separate cultures and join them together through the true universal language of music.   


This is accomplished through email exchanges, pre-recorded video exchanges and live Skype exchange as a culminating event.   The students learn about the each others countries and have the truly exciting experience of musical exchanges with students of similar ages in countries and cultures thousands of miles away.   No ability to speak each other’s languages is required to share music.   

2010-2014 School Year Statistics

Over 2000 student participants, aged 7-18

Over 30 teacher participants  

6 Countries:  

United States, Morocco, Lebanon, Ireland, Italy, England

Illinois cities:  Chicago, Niles, Lincolnwood 

Cities outside US:  Beirut, Casablanca, Dublin, Milan, Manchester


Participating Schools and Organizations
Rutledge Hall, LIncolnwood IL

Passages Charter School, Chicago IL

Murphy School, Chicago IL

Niles North High School, Skokie IL

Wellspring Learning Community, Beirut

Riad School, Casablanca, Morocco

American University in Beirut

Ravinia Festival, Highland Park, IL

Kilternan School of Music, Dublin


More Information

This is a not-for-profit organization.  Please contact Michael Miles directly for more information about the music component of the Global Voices Initiative.  


Michael MIles with student performance in Beirut.

Chicago students send greetings to Morocco

Miles speaks in Morocco with Arabic translation

Highlights of live Skype exchange between Niles North HS, near Chicago and Riad School in Morocco.

Students from Murphy School in Chicago sing for their new friends in Morocco.