Oct 7, 2010, 21:10

Location: New York, NY, United States Of America
Member since: July 14, 2010
Tracks in portfolio: 11  (Click here to hear all tracks)

Tracks We Like:

“Hey, Hey, Hey”

The Interview:

1) Primary instrument?

Well, my primary instrument is my voice, but I played drums when I was younger.  Drumming has an influence on my music, it definitely adds some very specific timing choices to the structure of what I sing.  I “put down the sticks” a long time ago, but we’re actually starting to add some percussive elements to our live shows that I can do up front.

2) Most embarrassing music-related moment?

I was doing a show at Bowery Electric last January – actually it was the show my cover of “Creep” was recorded during- and I was super sick, bronchitis AND pneumonia.  I couldn’t stop coughing and I didn’t know how I was going to get through the show.  My doctor prescribed a really heavy cough medicine, which I took, but then I was so drowsy I couldn’t keep my eyes open.  So I chased it with 3 Red Bulls in a scientific attempt to counterbalance the downers. I was sitting on a stool in the middle of the set, I looked down at my leg and saw that it was bouncing up and down – completely out of control.  I literally couldn’t stop it. I had to hold that leg down with both hands to stop it from going crazy through the rest of the song.  I don’t think I have a future in chemistry.

3) Moment you first knew you would be a musician?

I always kind of knew I was a singer- even when I was a kid, before I could sing. I can’t really explain it, it was just something I intrinsically knew on some level.  I would see someone perform & have a sense of “I can do that”.  My great grandmother was a Vaudeville performer, maybe it’s in the blood?

4) Advice you would give to a younger family member interested in a music career?

On the creative end, don’t try to decide what you *think* the world wants to hear.  Find your own voice.  Don’t write until you have something meaningful to say and when you do, share it unapologetically. On the business end, accept that everyone’s a critic and it’s very rarely personal.  With persistence, you’ll find the pocket of people- and there always are some- that will really resonate with what you’re trying to say.  Put one foot in front of the other and keep moving towards what feels good, every single day.

5) If you could master another instrument, what would it be?

I can pretty much learn one song on any instrument & kinda fake it, but I would love to really play the piano.  I took lessons for a year as a kid & I was pretty hopeless 🙂  All those pinches where I’ve needed a last minute accompanist, it would be so awesome to just play my own backup.

6) Favorite time of day to work in your studio?

Late night with a bottle of red wine in the studio, time kind of stands still between 11pm-3am.  Can’t think of a place I’d rather be.

8) Any studio collaboration you experienced that stands out in your mind? Why?

Timothy Schletter & I collaborate in a really different way than anyone I’ve worked with.  I write all of our lyrics and I don’t start with any kind of song structure.  I just write what I’m feeling when I’m really worked up and emotional over something.  The lyrics just pour out of me. Later, I sit with Tim & talk about it, really honestly share what was going on when I wrote the song.  He picks up on the mood and the intention behind my words and starts to build the groove that fits that experience.  The song develops itself, layer by layer, in a very organic way.  It’s a really artistic, collaborative exchange.  I try to be adaptable to new situations, but I’m spoiled now- recording any other way just doesn’t feel the same.

Big thanks to Rachel for contributing tracks that help make MusicRevolution the Production Music Marketplace.


Mike Bielenberg is a professional musician and co-founder of http://www.musicrevolution.com, a production music marketplace where media producers and business owners can license high-quality, affordable music from a online community of musicians.

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