1.) When his older brother started guitar lessons, bringing Santana, U2, the Doobie Brothers, Boston, Led Zeplin, Eric Clapton into an otherwise classical/sacred music household.
2.) When he met David Billingsley and Deontario Stevenson in College- two highly contagious and loving individuals who introduced him to the likes of Joe Pace, Israel Houghten, Kirk Franklin, Fred Hammond, Marvin Sapp, and John P. Kee. Their leadership and guidance inspired the Michael to start a Gospel choir at the Church where he was currently the music director, Tabernacle of Praise, in Eau Claire, WI. Michael spent countless hours over those four years learning the music through arranging, directing, leading, and writing his own gospel music. The style has since never left his sound as a writer. When the music got too advanced for the resident musicians, Michael solicited the help of musicians from Jazz 1 at UWEC, a state school renowned for its Jazz program. The musicians struck a chord, and would spend time talking about music, philosophy and faith over Pho, egg rolls and coffee. These musicians included Sean Carey (Bon Iver, S. Carey), Jeremy Boettcher (Regional Jazz Bass extroardinaire), Steven Hobert (Composer, performer), Andrew Detra (Air Force Band), Aaron Hedenstrom (Jazz composer and Saxaphonist), Brian Claxton (Jazz Drummer and Instructor), Matt Gullickson and Ben Lester (Field Report, S. Carey, The Ericksons) A remnant of that crew continued to meet in an impromptu bible study at 6am on Thursday Mornings.
3.) January of '09 marked the lowest point in Michael's life. Steeped in a skewed sense of duty, despair, and emotional dishonesty as the worship leader at his church, Michael plummeted into depression. Taking things into his own control, he advanced into the arms of another woman, nearly killing his marriage of 6 years. Michael credits the grace of God, honest friends, and his wife's faith that re-established their marriage. It was in his renewed faith and sense of emotional freedom that his songs were inspired. This 'real freedom' Michael attributes to 'a God-love so profound that while I am the worst of sinners, he died for me.'
At the encouragement of his Wife, Chris, the Michael Rambo Project started in the Autumn of 2009 as a means to get the music that had been in Michael's head out to those who needed the same hope he had received. After a hard-drive crash stifled 2 years of effort in the recording process, the MRProject has released two singles in April 2012 (Touch and Everything), an EP in August of 2012 (Things Within), and a full-length Album in August of 2013 (What Do You Want?)Though it's members have changed, the project strives to be an inspiring performance platform to promote life, justice, and peace, as well as unity with Creator God and freedom through Jesus of Nazareth as recorded in the bible. They hope to challenge individuals and communities to dig deep and learn who they are designed by God to be. Michael notes: "We acknowledge that all of us who have claimed to follow after Christ have marred his image through stupid and selfish crap we do as humans, so if you would like clarification on what we mean by "Christian," here is a page that can explain that."