Michael Bell

About This Project

Mandolin and Banjo

Born in Providence, Rhode Island, Mike Bell cut his musical teeth with the Outhouse Shouters, a family string band with his two brothers, his father, and an older cousin. Since then, he has played in many groups, most notably the Barn Owl Band, with whom he recorded three albums and appeared on the National Public Radio Show A Prairie Home Companion.


Mike is both a classical and a grassroots composer, and he composes much of Graminy’s music.  His folk tunes have been recorded by many folk artists.


For his day job, Mike is Vilas Distinguished Achievement Professor of Community and Environmental Sociology, and Director of the Center for Integrated Agricultural Systems, at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He is an author or editor of nine books. You can read more about his day job, and also more about his composition, HERE.