Blisswave is the creation and longstanding project of electronic music composer, producer, and multi-instrumentalist Michele Leonard, whose background in music spans more than four decades.
Based in Michigan, Michele became fascinated with music and sound from an early age, and the power it has to transform consciousness. The ability of certain music to open up a window into the human spirit and the deepest aspects of the self has driven her to embark upon a lifelong journey of creative self-realization.
Starting on piano at the age of six, Michele studied music for ten years and went on to learn how to write and compose. In the mid 1990’s, she established a home project studio based around the Kurzweil K2500XS and the Yamaha MD8, becoming familiar with sequencing and multi-tracking as she worked on material for an album.
In 2001, life threw out a hardball when Michele became life-threateningly ill while traveling through Mexico, and her musical journey became a journey of healing. Despite this setback, she never gave up on her music, continuing to write and record while hatching the idea for what would eventually become Blisswave.
Several years later, she decided to go back to school, enrolling in an online music program to learn how to mix and produce. That experience introduced her to the world of DAW’s. Delving deeply into various genres of electronic music, sound design, and computer sequencing in Logic Pro were game-changers in Blisswave’s evolving sound. The result of years of determination to see her vision through and have her dream come to fruition took the form of Blisswave’s first album, Journey Through Laniakea, which came out in 2017.
Manvantara, Blisswave’s second release, is an evolution from her debut album. Going in a more “psybient” direction, Manvantara draws upon ambient, drone, and world music elements to further define the Blisswave sound. Combining the ancient with the technological and futuristic to explore the depths of the ambient genre, her new set of tracks evokes a sense of mystery and otherworldly, often cinematic soundscapes to take listeners on a mystical journey into the far reaches of the imagination.
In addition to composing music, Michele loves spending time outside enjoying nature, going hiking, and swimming. She is a vegetarian, enjoys writing, and is also a huge photography buff who loves to travel and explore new places.
“Life has taken me in many different directions, from fun jobs working in bookstores and a chocolate factory shop, to volunteering for several non-profit yoga based organizations, creating websites and blogging, doing a gig as a kitchen manager at a yoga retreat in Northern Michigan, and spending time traveling through India. I am always on the lookout for new adventures!”
Michele plays piano/keys/synthesizer, hammered dulcimer, djembe/hand drums, and assorted percussion instruments. She has played in a couple of loosely organized world music bands, participates in drum circles whenever possible, and has recorded two CD’s: Journey Through Laniakea, which was released in 2017, and her latest album, Manvantara, released in 2019.