Road to Return

Featuring eight original vocal compositions, two instrumentals, but no acoustic guitar solos- a departure that shocked some acoustic purists- this collection is unique among Michael’s released recordings. These arrangements of Michael’s compositions include keyboards, harmonica, alto flute, drums, and several guitars.

Listen (not fully available)

Watching My Life Go By - Michael Hedges

Behind the Album

Road to Return HeadshotHedges’ fifth studio album was inspired by a Becca Coté painting called “Road to Return.” The concept album that followed was composed of mostly vocal tunes.

The Road to Return was produced and engineered by Hedges and released in summer 1994 on Windham Hill subsidiary label High Street Records. While there was plenty of impressive guitar work on The Road to Return, the extensive instrumentation on it signaled a departure from previous Hedges albums.

The recording studio itself became Hedges’ primary instrument on this project; and he used his studio in the redwood forest of Northern California to maximum effect as he brought together drum machines, keyboards, bass guitars, flutes, harmonica, various guitars, hand-held percussion instruments, and vocals.

Hedges played all of the instruments on the album (except a saw on the song “Prelude”). His friend Pipa Piñon also contributed vocal chants on several tracks. Some of the album’s songs (“Prelude” and “Sister Soul”) were previously used by Hedges on a children’s movie soundtrack, and others date back as early as 1978 (“A Midwinter Night’s Dream,” previous called “City Scenes”). Still others were fan favorites that Hedges played on the road for years (“Follow Through” and “India”).

Photo credit: unknown 



Liner Notes


  1. Prelude
  2. Road to Return
  3. Communicate
  4. Sister Soul
  5. Guardian’s Trust (Hedges, Cate McNider)
  6. India
  7. A Midwinter Night’s Dream
  8. Follow Through
  9. You Can Have Anything You Want
  10. Road Music

Album Credits

Produced and engineered by Michael Hedges
Recorded at the Speech and Hearing Clinic, Mendocino, CA

Mastered by Bernie Grundman at Bernie Grundman Mastering, Hollywood, CA

Graphic Design by Craig Hedges

Childhood Photos by Ruth Evelyn Carroll

“A musical and spiritual homecoming for virtuoso acoustic guitarist Michael Hedges.”

– review by Jason Anderson,

Album Stories

Have Your Own Story to Share?

This website is a collaboration between Michael’s family, friends, collaborators and fans. We’d love to hear your story about seeing him live, meeting him, or anything else you’d like to share!

Well-written stories with 1-5 high quality images (minimum 800×600 pixels) and 3-5 paragraphs of text will be published on the blog if they meet our standards for quality and respectful communication on this website.

Please write your story and upload your images using this form. We’ll be in touch when your story is published on the blog so you can share it far and wide!


Featured Image
Accepted file types: jpg, jpeg, png, gif.

Michael Hedges & the Harp Guitar

In 1984, Michael Hedges walked into a San Francisco guitar shop and discovered his next musical pursuit: an acoustic relic from the 1920s called a harp guitar.

Join the Newsletter!

Be the first to know when new stories, learning resources, merch, video and music are released on

You have Successfully Subscribed!