Music StormMiquel Florez

StormMiguel Florez “I’ve Been To Manhattan”

There are plenty of male folk-twang Americana singer songwriters who sing about love, oppression, assimilation, and growing up an outcast in the U.S. But not many of them can say they learned to write songs at Girl Scout camp.

StormMiguel Florez (1971-) was born and raised as a girl in Albuquerque, New Mexico. More importantly, he was a kid who loved to sing. At the age of 5, StormMiguel stood on furniture and performed for his family, by singing along with Johnny Cash, the Jesus Christ Superstar soundtrack (performing all parts), Helen Reddy, and the Grease soundtrack. Soon after, he was helping his fellow Girl Scouts make up songs to perform for the camp talent show, even though they often made fun of him for “dressing like a boy.” At age 10, StormMiguel’s parents bought him a $35 flea market guitar, and he immediately began to write songs and sing them to anyone who would listen. In high school, StormMiguel was offered his first headlining gig at the show “A Feminist Coffee House” at the South Broadway Cultural Center. In his early 20’s, he fronted the pioneering all female rock band Too F.I.N.E. Minds, voted Best Band in Albuquerque by Natural Sound Records in 1994. StormMiguel moved to the San Francisco Bay Area in 1996 and recorded his first solo album “Standing Between the Day and Night.”

In the early 2000’s, StormMiguel made the decision to live his life as the gender he always felt he was. After years of agonizing about losing his singing voice to the effects of hormones, he finally decided to take the risk and start testosterone. StormMiguel sang and performed throughout his physical transition, although his voice was unpredictable, and his range shifted radically. He called this awkward period, “The Peter Brady Experiment.” Over the years, he regained much of his higher range and developed control over his new lower, more masculine voice. The NPR show, Snap Judgement featured StormMiguel telling the story of how transitioning affected his music in a piece called Storm the Bard.

In June 2010, StormMiguel released his latest solo project, Long Lost Sun, through his label, Bad Flower Music. Featuring StormMiguel’s unique and haunting vocals and Americana-folk guitar style, Long Lost Sun takes the listener through a journey of “love, vulnerability, and complete & utter faith” as described by nationally-known burlesque artist Simone de la Ghetto. The songs reflect on StormMiguel’s life and loves growing up queer, transgender, and assimilated Mexican American. While his songs are personal, his music and lyrics weave together universal themes of love, loss, family, culture, and complex identities that resonate with listeners from all backgrounds and experiences.

StormMiguel has toured across the U.S., including his recent Pacific Northwest tour with the Tranny Roadshow (2010), and has featured at the Fresh Meat Festival (2009, 2010), the San Francisco Queer Arts Festival (2001, 2004, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010), the San Francisco Trans March (2006 – 2008), as well as headling such venues as CBGB Lounge (1995), Mable Peabody’s Beauty Parlor and Chainsaw Repair (2001), and WIMIN Fest (2002).