Michael DeGreve: A Rising Star
by Cecil Johnston Wyoming State Tribune

Appearing six nights a week at Cheyenne’s Hitching Post Inn leaves little time for the creative aspects of his career, but somehow Michael DeGreve has managed to put together some great songs, which he hopes to release in album form in the near future.

The probable title cut of the album, “Gypsy’s Lament,” is a tune written by DeGreve and recorded as a “demo” in Hawaii with the vocal assistance of a long time friend Graham Nash, of “Crosby Stills, and Nash” fame. Nash is currently married to DeGreve’s ex-wife, actress Susan Sennett.

DeGreve came to Cheyenne from Los Angeles in 1977 to fulfill a two week contract to perform in the lounge at the Hitching Post Inn and found he liked the area so well that he decided to make his home here.

“I came to Cheyenne at a time in my life that I was ready for a change. I was recently divorced and fed up with the big city life, the smog, the crowding, and the hectic pace,” he said.

“I came to Cheyenne and found a world I had been missing. It was quite a contrast. I had never lived in a small town. A great friend of mine had recently moved to Evergreen, Colorado, and told me that I just had to see this part of the country’” he said.

DeGreve took his friend’s advice, arriving in Cheyenne during the spring.“ You know how beautiful the summers are here. I just couldn’t leave,” he said.“ Cheyenne is now my home. I have a 40-acre “ranch” about twenty miles out of town, complete with my new recording studio. You couldn’t ask for a better place to create.”

Although he says he probably doesn’t have enough drive and ambition for the big time music world, DeGreve has certainly not shown a lack of either quality thus far in his career.

As a high school basketball player in his senior year, DeGreve received scholarship offers from more than 100 universities across the country. A back injury caused by an auto accident crushed his basketball hopes.

At 19, DeGreve went to work for the Los Angeles Times , doing reviews of rock groups. Los Angeles in 1966 was an exciting part of the rock world and through his role as a reviewer, DeGreve was in frequent contact with some of the legends of the industry, such as Jimi Hendricks, Janis Joplin, and Jim Morrison of the “Doors.” “Some of those people were my pals and others were just acquaintances,” he recalled.

After two and a half years of doing rock reviews, DeGreve left the Los Angeles Times and joined a band called, “The Lid.”

“If I couldn’t play basketball, then I knew that the music world was for me,” he said.

“Music is a chance to express your feelings. The music of the 60’s had a great influence on me and my music, especially the Beatles and Bob Dylan.”

The early 70’s were busy years for DeGreve, as he was involved in various bands and recording sessions with people such as Daryl Dragon, the captain and Tenille, and Don Peterson, who now plays with a band named Home Grown.

1973 found DeGreve portraying a minister on an episode of Ozzie’s Girls television series, as he expanded his role in the entertainment field. During his one-time appearance on the series, which co-starred his ex-wife, Susan Sennett, DeGreve played a minister called upon to perform the marriage rites for Ozzie and Harriet Nelson, when they decided to renew their vows on their 40th anniversary.

If the situation warrants it, sometime in the future, DeGreve will go on the road because he knows “that is one of those things you have to do to make it.” Although he doesn’t really look forward to that aspect of his career, he says that if he able to get his album released and if he gets a good reception, he knows tours will be in the cards.

Currently, Michael DeGreve is looking forward to performing with some of the acts which will be coming to the University of Wyoming’s Arena Auditorium in the future.

Originally scheduled to perform with Jefferson Starship and Dan Fogelberg at their concerts at that facility, DeGreve found himself not appearing at either concert at the last minute, for different reasons. Although these were disappointments, he hopes he will be invited back in the future.

“ I’m not getting rich here, but I love the people,” he said. “I wouldn’t trade it on a permanent basis.”

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