Passenger – Live at the Waterfront Hall, Belfast.

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Michael David Rosenberg (born 17 May 1984), better known by his stage name Passenger, is an English singer-songwriter and musician. Previously the main vocalist and songwriter of Passenger, Rosenberg opted to keep the band’s name for his solo work after the band dissolved in 2009. His most successful single, “Let Her Go“, has topped the charts in many countries. In 2014, the song was nominated for the Brit Award for British Single of the Year, and he received the British Academy’s Ivor Novello Award for Most Performed Work.[1]

Early years

Rosenberg’s father (a film production worker) introduced him to ex-Faithless member Jamie Catto in 2001, leading to a two-song spot at the Free Burma Campaign benefit gig at the Royal Court in London in 2002.[10] On the night, Rosenberg met his future writing partner Andrew Phillips and established contact with the IE Music label. Back in Brighton, Phillips and Rosenberg pooled their musical influences (from Simon And Garfunkel to DJ Shadow), and started to write songs at Phillips’ in-house studio in Hove. During 2003 they formed the Mike Rosenberg Band, engaging Marcus O’Dair (bass), Alon Cohen (drums) and Richard Brinklow (keyboards) through connections within the Brighton music scene.[11]

2003–2009: Passenger

Rosenberg did his first performance when he was 16. He founded Passenger with Andrew Phillips in 2003 in Brighton and Hove. The name of the band was stylised as /Passenger. (with a slash at the beginning and a dot at the end). The five-person band’s debut and only album, Wicked Man’s Rest, was released in 2007, on Chalkmark.[12] Rosenberg wrote the majority of the album’s tracks, with the exception of “Four Horses”, which was written by Phillips. The band broke up in 2009.

2009–2010: Solo career and Wide Eyes Blind Love

After the break-up of Passenger, Rosenberg kept the stage-name Passenger and took to busking for a solo music career. He first took his act in October 2009 to Australia, where he supported acts such as Lior and Sydneysiders Elana Stone and Brian Campeau, and then played One Movement, a major music industry-focus festival in Perth. This earned him a big following in Australia and he was selling out 500-seater venues across Australia. His debut solo album, Wide Eyes Blind Love, was released in 2009, produced and mixed by former bandmate Andrew Phillips (who also provided backing vocals, and played guitar and other instruments) and vocally supported by Isobel Anderson. He also played various shows in the United Kingdom during this time, including a support slot for Turin Brakes‘ tenth anniversary show at Theatre Royal, Drury Lane in London.