Joe Reilly is a singer, songwriter, and educator from Ann Arbor, Michigan who writes songs from his heart. Joe’s songs are playful, clever, engaging, joyful, and always have something meaningful to say. The core of his message is an invitation to heal our relationships with our selves, with each other, and with the earth. Joe uses his music to bring people together and build community across lines of race, class, gender, ethnicity, religion, age, and nationality. Joe is Italian, Irish, and Native American (Cherokee) and was raised in Kalamazoo, Michigan in a creative household by musical parents who encouraged him to find his own voice. Joe loves to inspire others to do the same and to water seeds of compassion, joy, wisdom, and peace in our collective consciousness through the sharing of his music.
Joe tours year-round and enjoys performing in countless festivals, coffee shops, community centers, churches, temples, colleges, universities, and schools throughout Michigan’s lower and upper peninsulas and beyond, including regular tours on the west coast and visits to the Plum Village Community of Mindful Living in southern France.
In addition to performing, Joe facilitates songwriting workshops and has written many songs with groups of kids and adults in a variety of settings. Using a collaborative approach that cultivates students’ abilities to listen to their inner creative voices, Joe facilitates a writing process that can be applied to any curriculum topic and grade level. By sharing his own creative writing method with the group, Joe is able to help others get in touch with their true selves and find the courage to express their voices.
Joe has been an artist-in-residence at the Islandwood School in Bainbridge Island, Washington (2011, 2012), the Michigan Alliance for Environmental and Outdoor Education Conference (2010, 2011), and the Great Lakes Bioneers Traverse City (2010) and Detroit (2011) Conferences.
Joe has recorded seven albums of his music, including two children’s albums of environmental songs, Children of the Earth (2007) and Let’s Go Outside (2011). Children of the Earth was featured on National Public Radio’s Living On Earth program in 2008. The title song from Let’s Go Outside was selected as the official song for National Get Outdoors Day in June 2011.
The Earthwork Music collective believes in the intrinsic and historical power of music to raise both community and self-awareness and serves to facilitate and encourage original music in the state of Michigan and beyond.