MATTHEW FRENCH is a Minneapolis-based singer, songwriter and Gibson guitar collector who creates music to connect people through shared stories of love and loss. The former minister has grown a loyal fan base through his engaging performances, wry sense of humor and warm, community-minded spirit.

Raised in a small town outside of Dayton, Ohio, French grew up playing music in the church. He sang with various bands and flirted briefly with the trombone and cornet before falling in love with the guitar at 16. French played in bands through college and started performing music professionally. French moved to Minnesota in 2005, but it was not until several years later that he truly immersed himself in songwriting catalyzed by a painful divorce in 2014.

“Songwriting was my way of saying things I didn’t know I needed to say,” French says. “It was the best therapy.”

Inspired by songwriters like Peter Bradley Adams and David Ramirez, he started performing some of his own songs out at open mics and released his debut EP Home in 2015, recorded by Danny O’Brien (Annie Fitzgerald, Al Church, Meg Kirsch) at Hot Dad Labs studio. Since then, French has immersed himself in the Twin Cities music scene, performing and recording with some of Minnesota’s top folk/Americana artists including Sarah Morris, Annie Fitzgerald and Ben Cook-Feltz. He released a second EP, Winding Road, in 2016 followed by his first full-length album, Sweet Love.

During the pandemic, he has focused on writing and recording, releasing two new singles -- a cover of Simon & Garfunkel’s “Song for the Asking” (recorded with Sarah Morris) and “Man in the Yellow Chair,” written for his grandfather. The song’s moving video premiered on The Current on Father’s Day. His new album, Two Sides, is available now on all streaming platforms as well as CD & Vinyl.

When not writing or performing, Matthew French likes to run and research more about vintage Gibson guitars. A staple of the Twin Cities music scene, he can also be seen at clubs around the Twin Cities, supporting his favorite artists and occasionally hopping up on stage to sing harmonies.