Hope Rocks Artist of the Year, Ian Flanigan “inspires a nostalgic sentiment akin to wistful escapism… emotional without being weepy, vulnerable without being pitiful, and conceptual while still remaining relatable” (Gallagher, SUNY editorial). Flanigan's sound—an eclectic blend of progressive folk-pop and percussive fingerstyle—is reminiscent of the road less traveled, paved with poignant lyrical truths of his past.
“Imagine Tom Waits as a member of Mumford & Sons playing songs by the Lumineers, with a hint of Chris Stapleton. That’s my impression of Flanigan, whose smoky barroom voice provides contrast to the melodic plea he unleashes with an urgency. Overall, Flanigan offers the kind of optimism that is hard-won after losing on the kind of bets that alter the trajectory of a life—bets you make on yourself, bets you make on others, bets that fail to deliver more often than they come through” (John Barry, Poughkeepsie Journal).
Local to upstate New York, Flanigan’s songwriting features his rich, husky voice and evocative lyrics highlighting the rural landscape of his compositions. Each song serenades the unity of life and an affinity for atonement—a sound that's provocative, and familiar. Flanigan is a celebrated Kerrville New Folk Festival finalist, Emerging Artist for Falcon Ridge Folk festival, and an alumni of the Dripping Springs Texas Songwriter Festival. Flanigan has had the pleasure of sharing stages with Corey Glover, Sean Rowe, The Pedrito Martinez Group, Session Americana, Chris Knight, and Dwight Yoakam.
Ian’s arrangements and compositions have been described as “rhythmic, engaging, compelling and very creative” (Bob's Music Box), while his voice is praised time and time again as having a “great depth and richness“ (Podcart), as well as “unique and powerful” (Argentina TOP/VIRAL HITS) with a “smoky Waits vibe... leaning towards pop folk” (Austin Town Hall).
His most recent release, “Picture You” received accolades both internationally and regionally, marking the success of a milestone collaboration with three-time Grammy winner and Hudson Valley local, Justin Guip (co-producer, engineer, percussionist). “Flanigan paints plenty of pictures on “Picture You,” and he frames each one with meditative finger-picking that evokes John Martyn. At the same time, lyrics slip in and out of one another while mood and meaning rise and fall. Momentum comes from chord progressions that could likely prompt a double take from Sting” (John Barry, Poughkeepsie Journal).