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Arts & Culture

Thursday is 'Michael Stanley Day' at the Rock Hall, Set to Celebrate the Legendary Cleveland Musician

Michael Stanley albums
Kabir Bhatia
/
WKSU
Michael Stanley's first two albums were produced by Bill Szymczyk and featured backing from Joe Walsh. They received heavy airplay on FM radio with cuts like "Rosewood Bitters" and "Let's Get This Show On the Road." Stanley collaborated for the rest of his life with Szymczyk, including on the forthcoming "Tough Room" album.

Thursday has been declared “Michael Stanley Day” in Cleveland. The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame is honoring his five-decade career with a free ceremony and the unveiling of songs from his final album “Tough Room.”

Legendary record producer Bill Szymczyk has worked with The Eagles and Joe Walsh. He’s also worked with Stanley from his self-titled debut album in 1972 right through to the new record, which he executive produced.

Thursday is 'Michael Stanley Day' at the Rock Hall, Set to Celebrate the Legendary Cleveland Musician
Szymczyk on working with Stanley for the past five decades.

"I would make comments [such as], 'This could use this, that could use that,' sort of like an executive producer but mostly just as a best buddy," Szymczyk said. "And then when he was all done, I would load up a bunch of gear in my car and drive up to his studio, plug my gear into his studio, and we'd spend two to three weeks mixing and hanging out and having big fun."

“Michael Stanley Day” takes place on what would have been the legendary Cleveland musician’s 73rd birthday. He passed away earlier this month after a seven-month battle with lung cancer.

Details and a live stream of events, which begin at 10:35 a.m. (a nod to the song “In the Heartland”), are at www.linelevelmusic.com.