Manistee musician Tim Krause is a true performer on stage

MANISTEE – Those who perform music for public enjoyment at various venues in and around Manistee County essentially fall into one of four basic categories.

There are those who sing, those who play an instrument and the third category is those who sing while playing an instrument. But it’s the fourth category that’s really special in the world of music; they are the select few who truly entertain with what they do.

Manistee’s Tim Krause is one of those people who falls into the latter category; so much so that he can be called an accomplished artist. Those attending one of Krause’s solo performances can expect high-energy music mixed with lots of laughs and plenty of entertaining storytelling throughout the night – hence the perfect entertainer.

Krause freely admits that he is not the best musician in the world and jokes that he worries about talking too much during a performance, but adds that he has a simple goal with his performances.

“There’s nothing fancy about what I do and I enjoy every minute of it,” he said. “After my first band broke up many years ago, I thought soloing was what I wanted to do. At the end of one of my solo shows, I used to tell people when you go home tonight i hope you don’t say you heard the greatest guitarist or singer in the world but if you go home and say you had a great time then i’ve accomplished what I had planned to do tonight.

Krause began performing in 1995 with a band called Trilogy which included Bob Skocelas, Tim Schultz and later added Jason Stamp and Gary Bauman.

“So we actually had a five-piece band called Trilogy,” he laughed, then added, “Some of those early gigs, we’d end up splitting $75 five ways, so we don’t. We weren’t doing it for the money.”

However, he said it was tough being a father, working a full-time job and playing two weekend nights at local bars and clubs. That’s when he started a solo career doing something that really wowed people.

“I took some time off to work on it playing Civic Club on Sunday afternoons and people seemed to like it,” Krause said. “The owner of River Street Station got wind of me then and I played there for a long time.”

It was around the time he became interested in the music of a certain well-known artist who has almost become synonymous with his own name here in Manistee.

“It was around this time that I was introduced to the Parrot Head Nation and Jimmy Buffet,” he said with a laugh. “He got so attached to me that there’s a builder in Manistee County also named Tim Krause and people were calling me and saying you were the builder or Jimmy Buffett’s guy?”

This format has earned him many concerts in marinas and bars in the region. As a result, he was even able to travel a little. He combines the story of when the real Jimmy Buffett opened a show for him in Detroit to the many funny stories he now tells while performing.

“I think (the) Detroit Parrot Heads party for about four days when Jimmy Buffet comes to town for a concert,” Krause said, barely able to contain his laughter. “So the people who were organizing the concert called me and said that there was really no money for you, but we will put you up at the hotel and give you free tickets for the concert in Comerica Park, but you have to play the Bloody Mary Show the day after Buffet’s gig. Sooo… technically, Jimmy Buffett opened for me.

Over time, Krause also played in other bands like The Wing and Prayer Band. He got to know some of the best musicians in the area at Red Apple Road Reunion performances a few years ago when he had the opportunity to play with them.

“I got to know these guys a little bit more than when I was a little teenager,” he said. “Two of them played with me…at Famous Flynn’s that night. I was like a little kid that night because I couldn’t believe some of the guys from Red Apple Road wanted to play with me. .

Krause said they forged a friendship and what came out of it was The Downtowners. The band got their start at the Elks Lodge and have included a variety of local artists at several gigs since then. He said it had been an exceptional experience for him and a lot of fun.

Playing with the band and his solo career keeps him busy, but he says that at this point in his life, the real joy comes from making music and entertaining.

“I always do solo stuff at the North Channel Brewery and they’ve been awesome about it,” he said. “…I’m still doing the Buffet thing, but I also fell in love with the music of the Eagles. There’s some country guys whose music I also love and sing a bit of it too.

He has also written many of his own songs and released two CDs over the years. He feels that a lot of what he creates has a message that the average person could relate to.

The winter version of The Downtowners will be played in March. Some of his band members left for the winter, but other musicians stepped in to fill the void. Krause said it’s a great example of the good brotherhood that exists between local musicians who step in to fill in for other bands when someone is unable to play.

“We do some of the songs that I do solo in the band that take on a whole different personality, and the Eagles music is great for harmony,” he said. “What I like about the format of the band is that it’s more classic rock, and they all brought something to the band and we all sing. I hope it will continue.”

Krause said the coronavirus pandemic has slowed things down with the local music scene, but he’s seeing a resurgence in local live music performances.

“It’s coming back, and I’m hoping for a good summer,” he said.

Find more information about upcoming performances by searching “Tim Krause Music” on Facebook.