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Fifth Evolution: Press

A stricken match MacLaren-Brennan lights musical fire Country, Hick, Bluegrass, Blues, Pop, Twang. Relatively-new collaboration MacLaren Brennan has been identified by all of these, but their sound is a name all its own. With a mix of classic style, original lyrics, and a catchy melody, the duo has taken their genre to the next level. David MacLaren and Jesse Brennan met at Mt.Pleasants' well known Soaring Eagle Casino and Resort. Both employees but never knowing that they share a passion for the same type of music. The determined two decided after many sessions of freestyle collaboration that they could not ignore the sound they made. So MacLaren and Brennan decided to take the next step on the path to where they hope to be as musicians, never minding the obstacles or difficulties they may have to encounter. Singers/Songwriters MacLaren and Brennan have written hundreds of songs in the past twenty years. But it wasn't until 2005 did they join to make music together. After all the time, money, and especially energy the two men put into combining forces, the outcome has proven to be well worth more than anyone could have ever expected. "We have come a long way since we started, and we have a long way before we are done," says Brennan. The talented twosome have played many venues, like The Book Shoppe of Alma, Saganing Eagle's Landing in Standish, and The Grande Pub in Winn, among others in their many travels as rising country artists. And , their dedication to a strenuous musical endeavor left the duo wanting for more. Some of their musical influence range from George Strait, Jack Johnson, Alabama, Sawyer Brown to John Mayer. Their newest album Burnt Bridges has just hit shelves all over mid Michigan, including B's Music of Mt. Pleasant and Woody's Music of St. Louis and can be purchased through Some of the songs on Burnt Bridges are "Let Freedom Ring" and "One Word At A Time". The duo will be releasing another album in the near future titled "Only A Real Man" which features the title track "Only A Real Man" and "Windfall". Samples of their music and show times are available on the duo's Myspace page at and Check out MacLaren Brennan at The Book Shoppe in Alma on October 24th, 2008 at 5:00 P.M. for a live show. -Devin Snider Mt. Pleasant Monthly Magazine October 2008 issue

Devin Snider - Mt. Pleasant Monthly Magazine (Oct 9, 2008)
Devin Snider - Mt. Pleasant Monthly Magazine (Oct 9, 2008)

MacLaren Brennan: NewsMusical duo MacLaren Brennan releases second CD - October 16, 2009
Musical duo MacLaren Brennan releases second CD
By John Fischer

"Only a Real Man" the second CD released by MacLaren Brennan
MOUNT PLEASANT - David MacLaren and Jesse Brennan have been performing what they call acoustic CoPoRo, their blend of country, pop and rock music, together since 2005 and Saturday marks the release of their second CD "Only a Real Man."

The duo will be playing Oct. 10 in Irons Park in West Branch at 5 p.m.

"We'll be playing all of the new CD, a couple of old songs and a few covers," he said. He added the cover songs would consist of Jack Johnson's "Sitting Waiting Wishing," Merle Haggard's "Workin' Man Blues," "One Night at a Time" by George Strait and "Keep Your Hands to Yourself" by the Georgia Satellites.

The CD consists of 15 songs including "Where This Road Ends," a song about thinking about leaving town and following your musical dreams and also one of the first songs they wrote together, and "Windfall," which he said is about "being an American and being in debt." Brennan said the CD can be purchased on and and will also be available Saturday.

"It's all acoustic, no drums or bass," Brennan said. He added this is also the first CD in which they've written together.

"The first CD we just took songs from our unreleased solo albums," Brennan reiterated.

According to Brennan, the two, who are both 35 years old, first met up working security at the Soaring Eagle Casino in Mount Pleasant and after discussing musical preferences, realized they liked the same music, both played instruments and both write music.

"We both take turns singing and we both play guitar," he said. "I probably play more lead but he plays lead as well."

"We both also play drums but not in the band," Brennan added.

He said they soon started to practice together, eventually leading the two to form MacLaren Brennan and compile their first record with solo songs they created before meeting.

"We've played the Saganing Eagles Landing Casino in Standish, a lot of small Alma gigs and coffee shops and a couple of bars in Mount Pleasant," Brennan said of the venues MacLaren Brennan has performed at.

His musical influences are Jack Johnson and Sawyer Brown, while MacLaren prefers Alabama and George Strait, he said.

"The Eagles, we draw a lot of influence from them," said Brennan of the band he'd most like to tour with.

"It'd be really cool to hang out with them and learn their history," he added.

Brennan said the reason they're playing Irons Park this weekend is because he grew up in West Branch before he moved to Mount Pleasant at age 26.

"My family still lives there and I come visit two or three times a month," he said, adding MacLaren lives in St. Louis.

"We are winding down a little right now and will be booking future gigs soon but we will back in West Branch in the summer for another jam for sure," he added.

He said MacLaren Brennan's goal, as a band, is to record more CDs and hopefully get signed to a record deal.

"That's everyone's goal," he said. "But if it doesn't work out that's okay, it's just for fun."

He added their other goal is to piece together a whole band with a drummer and bass player.

To see more on MacLaren Brennan or to buy "Only a Real Man", visit, or find them on

The Ogemaw County Herald October 15, 2009

John Fischer
John Fischer - The Ogemaw County Herald (Oct 15, 2009)

Singing in the rain

The men in the group MacLaren Brennan shared their music with anyone willing to listen in the rain Friday evening at the pavilion in Irons Park. David MacLaren and Jesse Brennan harmonized for the audience Friday evening, while Al Ross keeps the beat on drums.

The Ogemaw County Herald July 30th 2009

Elon Brissette
Elon Brissette - The Ogemaw County County Herald (Jul 30, 2009)

It didn't take long for David MacLaren and Jesse Brennan to discover they had a common interest in music.

The result was the creation of the country/pop/rock duo, MacLaren Brennan, based in mid-Michigan.

MacLaren and Brennan met at work and quickly discovered they liked the same kind of music and writing original material.

"After jamming together for a while, we formed a musical duo in 2005. Shortly after forming MacLaren Brennan, we started playing live local venues," Brennan said.

In 2008, they released their first album, "Burnt Bridges," a compilation of Brennan's and MacLaren's solo albums, which they had completed before forming their musical duo. This first album was co-written and recorded together.

"We have sold quite of few of the albums at our live performances," Brennan said.

In late 2009, a second album titled "Only A Real Man" was released.

"It has a simple acoustic country/pop folk feel to it," Brenan said. "In the inside credits we put 'All acoustic All heart'; not a single bass line or drum can be heard on it."

Although it is a goal of theirs to form a whole band some day, the two said they are having fun with the laidback acoustic vibe right now.

Some of their favorite songs on the CD are "Windfall," "Where This Road Ends," "Say A Prayer (Noah's Song)" and "Hit The Highway."

The duo covers some songs at shows, but they want to be known as original singers/songwriters and not just another cover band.

"Most of the songs we do are our original material and we enjoy playing them live for the audience," Brennan said. "Like many musicians, we draw our influence from many artists of different genres like George Strait, Jack Johnson, Alabama, Casting Crowns, The Eagles and lots more."

Inspiring MacLaren Brennan to play is the fact that everyone likes music.

"It's the one thing in the world that people have in common," Brennan said. "We love to hook the emotion of a song we are performing and connect it with the audience, that is a wonderful feeling."

Another goal of MacLaren Brennan is to record a Christian album and a hard rock album. Even though they are known for their country/pop/ rock songs, they are huge fans of all types of music.

The duo writes about personal and everyday experiences and also some songs just for fun.

"We are always writing new material, you always have to have a piece of paper handy, because you never know when the mood will strike you start writing songs," Brennan said.

MacLaren Brennan also has a praise band; they play at the First Methodist Church in St. Louis.

"We love to jam out at the church," Brennan. "Religious music is actually one of our many styles of music we love to play."

On July 29, MacLaren Brennan will perform live at The Summer Music Series at Irons Park in West Branch.

McLarren Brennan invites fans to check out its Web site at and to check for the latest live show performance dates. They are also on Facebook and MySpace.

Both albums are for sale at Justice Records in Mt. Pleasant, and Woody's Music in St. Louis. Their albums are also available on the Internet on such sites as and

A daylong celebration of music thrilled rock 'n' roll fans on Sept. 10 at the Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort.

Starting at 2p.m., the seventh annual Middle of the Mitt Music Festival had a total of eight bands playing until close to midnight on the Entertainment Hall Stage.

Proceeds from the annual music festival went to the Saginaw Chippewa Youth Council and the Pardee Cancer Treatment Fund of Isabella County.

The event was presented by SECR, Everleaf Music and Mad Turtle Productions.

Well-known rockers and up-and-coming local bands performed a stellar show. The groups playing were Jackyl, Riot V, Reverence, Let There Be Rock, Everyday War, Force of Habit, Fifth Evolution and Tallon Weatherby.

Rock band Jackyl emerged from Georgia in 1990 with their wild, untamed approach to rock 'n' roll. The group released seven studio albums to date, including the self-titled "Jackyl" in 1992 and the most recent "Best in Show" in 2012.

The group played a multitude of their hits including the songs "Dirty Little Mind," "I Stand Alone," "Redneck Punk" and "The Lumberjack."

For more information on upcoming SECR shows, visit, "Like" its Facebook page or add the Twitter handle Soaringeagle777.

Matthew Wright - Tribal Observer