Maine
Profile Type: Artist
Artist
Martin Swinger

          Martin Swinger writes songs that unwrap and open like brilliant little gifts.

         Songs about Alzheimer’s, Autism, oysters, dyslexic theology, fish lullabys, adventures of Betty Boop and Buddha... songs which create a strangely familiar world in your imagination, but are unlike any songs you've heard before. His lyrics combine poetry, sensitivity, bold imagination and creativity with the skillful craft of a studied songwriter. One song inspires tenderness and another inspires out - loud belly laughs, each sung with delicacy and skill, power and panache.

       Martin celebrates the wonderful metamorphosis music leads his listener through.

       Martin is a seasoned, professional and multiple award-winning entertainer. He never tires of exploring music and loves to share his insights. As an arts educator, Martin introduces songwriting games in K-6 classrooms, then collaborates as students create amazingly witty mnemonics to remember their lesson information. His Arts in Education workshops include “Songwriting in the Classroom: A Vehicle for Learning” and “Vocal Skinny-Dipping" an improvisational singing play-shop for singers of any age. Martin can facilitate community songwriting for musicals celebrating rural living and has lead theme-based songwriting for in-school and after-school programs. Martin leads a ‘wicked fun’ family sing-along and has often been compared to Pete Seeger!

       Martin shares songs which are socially conscious, thought provoking and surprisingly entertaining. He’s a workshop leader and repeat performer at Kerrville Folk Festival. His songs have won numerous awards, and he happily counts among his fans (the late) Pete Seeger, Peter Yarrow, Paul Stookey, Billy Jonas, Ezra Idlet, Vance Gilbert, John Waters and Cherry Delight – Miss Coney Island 2014.

       The Kansas State Poet Laureate, Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg, says of Martins’ music:

       "Martin Swinger is one of those rare singer-songwriters who excels at everything: singing, songwriting, guitar-playing, and being so present with his humor, tenderness, and wild mind that his performances are also deep conversations, soul to soul and heart to heart, about the quirks, surprises, and love that brings us most alive. His songs, ranging from the little plastic parts that hold the world together, to what enlightenment comes from Buddha and Betty Boop falling in love, are whimsically and wisely original and enduring."

Martins' fees are negotiable according to the number of performances or workshops, travel distance and hospitality arrangements.

His programs are flexible and can easily arranged into a format and budget that works for YOU!

Additional Links: 
This song has won national awards.
This is one of many singing games I offer at Family Concerts
A typical songwriting class lasts 60 minutes - this is an edited look at the process. Note: the students remain engaged throughout!
This is an example of my swing and jazz performance.

I Have Worked With

  • November 2014

    I was invited to lead my workshop "Songwriting in the Classroom: A Vehicle for Learning" at their Fall 2014 Arts Education Partnership Conference

  • September 2014

    TLAN is a national organization that hosted The Power of Words Conference in Kansas City, MO in September. I was chosen to lead my workshop "Melody of Language" (about the use voice for communication and the power of prosody), and was invited to perform for the assembly when the Keynote speaker was unable to attend at the last minute.

  • August 2014

    I was a co-facilitator, performer and workshop leader for 'Bear Your Soul' men's spiritual retreat in upstate New York.

Pages

  • Artist

Contact Information

First Name: 
Martin
Job Title/Position: 
Singer/Songwriter/Arts Educator
Mailing Address: 
17 Union St
Searsport, ME 04973
Physical Address: 
52 Green St
Augusta, ME 04330
Last Name: 
Swinger
Phone: 
(207) 215-8698

About

Profile Type: 
Artist
Primary Discipline: 
Music - Folk
Additional Disciplines: 
Media - Audio / Sound
Music - General
Music - Children's
Music - Choral
Music - Folk
Music - Jazz
Music - Solo / Recital
Music - Traditional
Theater - General
Theater - Musical
Theater - Storytelling
Year Founded: 
1995
Populations Served: 
Adults
Elders
Families
General Public
Nonprofits
People with Disabilities
School Groups
Youth-At-Risk
Institution/Business Type: 
Artist (Individual)
Activities and Services: 
Arts for Social Change / Creative Activism
Arts in Healthcare
Arts Instruction / Lessons
Creation of a Work of Art (Including Commissions)
Performance / Concert / Reading
Professional Development / Training
Public Art Projects (In Free, Public Spaces)
Residency - Community
Residency - In School
Workshops / Demonstrations / Master Class
Events Per Year: 
60
Seasons Active: 
Spring
Summer
Fall
Winter
Geographic Reach: 
Multi-State Region
National

Affiliations and Accomplishments

Professional Associations: 
Children's Music Network
ASCAP
Folk Alliance International
Maine Songwriter's Association
Maine Arts Commission PK-12 Teaching Artist Roster
Maine Alliance for Arts Education
Hartford Performs Teaching Artist Roster
Transformative Language Arts Network
People's Music Network
Folk Project (New Jersey Music Association)
Folk Alliance International
Hartford Performs Teaching Roster
Education: 
Theater/performance background, some college
Vocal Improvisation (All the Way In) Rhiannon (longtime associate of Bobby McFerrin)
Various Workshops in Vocal Improv (Barbara McAffee, M
Awards: 
Kerrville New Folk Artist
Falcon Ridge Folk Festival Emerging Artist
Ossippee Valley Music Festival First Place Winner (Little Plastic Part)
Rose Garden Songwriter Competition First Place Winner (Little Plastic Part)
South Florida Folk Festival Songwriting Competition (1/15)
Solar Fest Songwriter Competition First Place Winner
Maine Arts Commission 'Good Idea' grant recipient
SAW (Songwriters of Washington DC)
American Songwriting Competition

Accessibility of Services

Access accommodations for people who use a wheelchair and have limited mobility
Access accommodations for people who are blind, partially sighted, and have low vision
I grew up on the grounds of the Georgia state mental institution (my father was a business administrator there) so I am very familiar and happily work with audiences/students with special needs.

I am a Touring Artist

I am NEST eligible
Technical Requirements: 
Access to Electricity
Fee Range Minimum: 
$700
Fee Range Maximum: 
$1,500
State of Residence: 
Maine
Minimum Number of Performers: 
1
Maximum Number of Performers: 
3

I am a Teaching Artist

Teaching Settings: 
Afterschool Program
Arts and Cultural Center / Venue
Community Site / Center
Healthcare Facility
Private Studio
School / University
Subject Areas: 
Arts Integration - English Language / Literacy
Arts Integration - History and Social Science
Arts Integration - Science / Technology / Engineering
Music
Ages Served: 
Elementary School-age
Middle School-age
High School-age
College-Age
Adults
Seniors
Certifications / Training: 
Certified Teaching Artist; New Jersey, Maine, Connecticut
Fee Range Minimum: 
$600
Fee Range Maximum: 
$1,500