gratiot lake road

Who We Are

“Gratiot Lake Road is the modern folk music of husband and wife Ben and Emaleigh Jensen. Their songs vary from soft ballads to upbeat jams played in a style that has been described as haunting, bittersweet, and eerie.”

See More

Follow Us

bandcamp facebook twitter

About


Biography

Gratiot Lake Road is the modern folk music of husband and wife Ben and Emaleigh Jensen. Songwriter Emaleigh sings and plays melodies on a closed-back banjo and Ben sings harmonies while fingerpicking an acoustic guitar and stomping with ankle-percussion. Their songs vary from soft ballads to upbeat jams played in a style that has been described as haunting, bittersweet, and eerie. Since their 2009 inception while living in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, Gratiot Lake Road has released two albums and performed at festivals, art galleries, historic theaters, house shows, bars, and dives throughout the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic.

Read More

Gratiot Lake Road’s recent release, Read This If I Don’t Make It Home, is the product of a two-year collaboration with drummer Matthew Radue and bassist Tony Laux. Recorded in living rooms, bedrooms and historic churches in Michigan and Virginia, the album expands on Gratiot Lake Road’s live sound with synth and distorted guitars, and features Virginia musicians Mike Glass on electric guitar and Ben Lassiter on steel guitar. Altdaily.com said, “The whole album feels like reading a novel co-written by Bram Stoker and John Steinbeck. When people say that ghosts are real this is what they mean. They mean that musicians can create works that put a ghost in your head.”

Gratiot Lake Road’s first release, Stamp Sand Shores, pays homage to the Keweenaw Peninsula in Michigan where they lived for nearly ten years. Historically known as the Copper County due to significant copper mining operations there at the turn of the century, many of the peninsula’s beaches are lined with stamp sand, a coarse black sand made of crushed rock produced by the many stamp mills used to extract copper from rock. Many of the songs on this album are set in or named after Copper Country locations such as Freda, a remote community on top of a red sandstone bluff overlooking Lake Superior, Dollar Bay (they say the bay is as round as a dollar!), and Coles Creek Road (I hear the smelt fishing is good).

Gratiot Lake Road currently resides in Virginia where they can see the sea ospreys fishing, mohawked herons stalking insects, and the damp air mixes with the smell of low-tide, and a subtle southern drawl can be heard on most, save for two Michiganders at least.

Hide


Listen

The culmination of the Gratiot Lake Road 4-piece with Tony Laux on bass and Matthew Radue on drums. Primarily recorded in an apartment above downtown Calumet Michigan. This second full length album features songs touching on the subject of death and loneliness with an ambiance of bitter cold and snow.

Debut full length record and homage to the Keweenaw Peninsula. Drums by Matthew Radue and a last minute addition of bass by Tony Laux marks the formation of the Gratiot Lake Road 4-piece. Primarily recorded at the historic Orpheum Theater in Hancock Michigan in very cold winter weather.


Tour

2015 Shows


2014 Shows

  • January 14: The Orpheum Theater in Hancock, MI w/Charlie Parr
  • February 28: Fifth Street Loft Fest in Calumet, MI
  • March 23: Hunter at Sunrise Radio Show in Norfolk, VA
  • April 4: The Orpheum Theater in Hancock, MI w/Steve Leaf, Tony Laux
  • April 5: The Fitz Opening Party in Eagle River, MI w/Steve Leaf, Graham Parsons
  • April 27: Messages Project Benefit at Norfolk Taproom in Norfolk, VA
  • August 14: 757 Crave on the Harbor in Portsmouth, VA
  • September 4: Hunter at Sunrise Radio Show Live at the Victoria Station in Phoebus, VA
  • September 6: Whitehouse Cove Marina in Poquoson, VA w/Bill Miles Band
  • September 12: Buckroe Beach Arts in the Park in Buckroe, VA
  • September 27: County Grill in York County, VA
  • October 3-4: Aiken and Friends Fest in Smithfield, VA
  • October 11-12: Ocean View Art Show in Norfolk, VA
  • November 21: CD Release Show at The Hampton Taphouse in Hampton, VA w/River Whyless

2013 Shows

  • January 18: Root Notes in Laurium, MI w/Shadow Arcade
  • January 19: Beaumier Coffee House Series in Marquette, MI w/Jeff Krebs Trio
  • February 1: Cafe Rosetta in Calumet, MI
  • February 22: The Orpheum Theater in Hancock, MI w/Pioneer Parade and Electric Park
  • February 23: Bremen Cafe in Milwaukee, WI w/Scott David
  • March 1: The Orpheum Theater in Hancock, MI w/Michael Waite
  • March 2: Engineers Without Borders Benefit at The Orpheum Theater in Hancock, MI
  • ------------------------------------
    DRIVE TILL THE ROAD ENDS TOUR 2013
    ------------------------------------
  • March 8: Java and Jive in Powers, MI
  • March 9: Box Factory for the Arts in Saint Joseph, MI w/Nathan K.
  • March 10: Old Dog Tavern in Kalamazoo, MI w/Nathan K.
  • March 11: Checkers and Trophies in Kent, OH w/Ian Penter and Cinder Bones
  • March 12: The Purple Fiddle in Thomas, WV
  • March 13: Pretty Penny Cafe in Hillsboro, WV
  • March 14: The Hilton Tavern in Newport News, VA w/Scott Slay and Mike Glass
  • March 15: Cafe Stella in Norfolk, VA w/Scott Slay and Longfellow St.
  • March 16: Webster's Bookstore Cafe in State College, PA
  • March 17: Muggswiggz Coffee and Tea Co. in Canton, OH
  • March 18: Trust Fall Records in Grayling, MI
  • March 22: The Irish Times in Laurium, MI
  • ----------------------------------
  • April 4: Peter White Public Library in Marquette, MI w/Troy Graham
  • April 5: The Blue Lounge in Marquette, MI w/Troy Graham
  • April 6: The Joy Center in Ishpeming, MI w/Troy Graham
  • June 15: The Thirsty Fish in Houghton, MI w/Sparrow Tree
  • June 28: The Orpheum Theater in Hancock, MI w/Charlie Parr
  • July 4: The Fitz in Eagle River, MI
  • July 13: Lazy Days of Laurium in Laurium, MI
  • July 19-20: Hiawatha Music Festival in Marquette, MI
  • August 2: Keweenaw Coffee Works Grand Opening in Calumet, MI
  • August 9-11: Farm Block Fest in Ahmeek, MI
  • September 6: The Orpheum Theater in Hancock, MI w/The MQT Generals
  • September 21: Benefit at Quincy House in Hancock, MI
  • October 12: Root Noes in Laurium, MI w/Austin Miller and Dan Lawrence
  • October 19: EWB Benefit at The Orpheum Theater in Hancock, MI
  • November 1: All Saints Day Party at The Orpheum Theater in Hancock, MI w/The Board
  • November 6: The Orpheum Theater in Hancock, MI w/Breathe Owl Breathe
  • November 9: Edmund Fitzgerald Commemoration at Shute's in Calumet, MI w/Dark Matter
  • December 7: Hillside Place at MTU in Houghton, MI w/Dan Lawrence