I got a lot of friends who are artists. Here’s an interview on my friend, Miko who recently dropped one of the best debut projects I’ve ever heard, even though he took me off of his album. I brought him over to my place and turned on his album and asked a few questions.
Havi: Ok the first thing that jumps out to me as soon as the intro starts…I’m hearing a lot of birds and sounds from nature, you do this throughout the album, why?
Miko: Its part of the overall concept. I wanted to put the listener on a journey through a forest and have the music be their guide.
Havi: Why a forest?
Miko: A few years ago I went to a park with my then-girlfriend, somewhere out in Collierville and it was really…..tranquil.
Havi: Did yall do it? Did y’all break up in the forest?
Miko: No it wasn’t’ anything dramatic. I was just captivated by the experience, the tranquility and the silence and the sounds of birds.
Havi: You had two prominent rappers in me and Preauxx on this project because we fuck with you, but neither one of us made the album. What made you take us both off?
Miko: In the beginning I was thinking that if I had a couple prominent artists on the project – even if they were off subject, they could’ve helped push the project. Later on, though, I felt lie it would’ve done the album a disservice to stray from the concept. Even though both of y’all had really great verses.
Havi: What was Preauxx’s verse about?
Miko: Mostly about being a black man in America. About niggas dying out here.
Havi: I know my verse was on some crazy shit. Atom bomb shit.
Miko: Yeah, Death The Destroyer of Worlds shit. But Preauxx’s verse gave me an idea for another project and you’re gonna use our song together for your own project. I think it’ll all work out in the end.
Havi: So art over politics?
Miko: Yeah. Most def.
Havi: Every time?
Miko: Eh…who’s to say.
Havi: So you’re pretty young, just 20. But you have a lot of older guys in the art scene that fuck with you. What do you think it is about you that made us say “yes” when you asked “Hey can you be on my debut LP?” Or “Hey can you be a part of this all-Radiohead samples project I’m working on?”
Miko: I guess it just comes from my appreciation for the music that comes from Memphis. Anytime you, Preauxx, my Unapologetic family, Rare Nnudes drops something new, I’m on it. I’m listening.
Havi: No interview is complete without shoutouts. Do you want to shout out the artists who helped on Come With Me?
Miko: Yeah man, I want to shout out Sandier Lambda, Papa Shun, the homie Trees, The Sidewayz, IMAKEMADBEATS and the rest of the Unapologetic fam for inspiring me to push the body of work forward.
Havi: You interned at Unapologetic’s Dirty Socks Studios for a while but things took a turn and you lost that internship. What happened and how did it affect this project?
Miko: I interned there for 7 months. Around that time I was dealing with a really bad breakup for one.
Havi: With the chick from the forest?
Miko: Yes, with the forest nymph. Actually the day she broke up with me was the same day I found out I got the internship. But yeah during that time, I kind of just fluctuated between being really motivated to do shit and feeling like I wasn’t worthy of any of the good things I had in my life. Like I didn’t deserve working with Unapologetic.
Havi: How did you turn that all around? How’d you pick everything back up?
Miko: It was just seeing the frustration on all of my role models faces mixed with knowing that I was really own my own mixed with trying to prove myself TO MYSELF. Through this project I was able to find myself again. And at first I wanted this shit to be a huge spectacle of a debut album and the stress of it was crazy until I had to back up and tell myself “you’re not being honest.” That’s what, I think, happened with the verses from you and Preauxx.
Havi: You dropped out of college. What led you to make that decision and do you ever thing about going back.
Miko: Man I don’t know if I’ll ever go back. In college I had panic attacks, thoughts of suicide, plus a lot of bullshit prerequisite classes. It’s bad enough that I had to take on thousands of dollars in debt but I had to take classes I didn’t want to learn about too.
Havi: Did your parents go to college?
Miko: My mom hasn’t even graduated from high school yet. She knocked out her principle when she was pregnant with me and got expelled. My step dad went for two years but never finished.
Havi: Do you think you made the right decision?
Miko: I think I made the best suited decision for myself. College was the least of my interest and I wanted to get better at my craft.
Havi: Your music seems pretty romantic. Do you consider yourself a romantic guy?
Miko: I’m a lover boy. I have a lot of love for my music, for the people in my life, and there is a love in my life right now too. But mostly I’m just too goofy to be a big time romantic.
Havi: Do you have a girlfriend?
Havi: Does she consider you romantic?
Miko: I think she does. She also considers me corny as fuck too though…
H: Same thing man. Are there any tracks inspired by her on the album?
M: Track 10, “Anywhere You Go.” One night could tell something was bothering her yet she went to bed without telling me what was wrong and I just stayed up to make that song. Instead of overthinking the conversation we had I decided to channel that into something I could actually control. And then I brought in Sandie to sing the lyrics I wrote at the end.
H: Why isn’t there more singing from you on the album? You’re also a really good singer.
M: Basically in my music there are two different versions of me. There’s Spekulate the Philosopher who helps you find yourself and then there’s El Moreno who is trying to find himself. I thought about singing on more tracks but I don’t want to cross those two worlds too much just yet.
H: Who’d win in a fight Spekulate or El Moreno?
M: As of right now I think Spekulate is winning. True El Moreno is always angry but Spekulate is gonna make you look foolish before you even land a punch. Spekulate is Muhammad Ali dodging and floating. Until El Moreno learns to channel his energy, he’ll always lose.
Havi: What’s your favorite cartoon show of all time?
Miko: Ed, Edd, and Eddy.
Havi: You, Trees, and Rudy Rhymer, Who’s who in the trio?
Miko: I think Trees would be Eddy because I get the feeling Eddy would smoke a lot of weed. Rudy would be double D and I’d be Ed. I’m a big goofy ass nigga so I’d have to be Ed.
Havi: If you were God what would you do differently?
Miko: I’d claim right to all the memes. And I’d restore the balance between good and evil because it seems to be out of whack these days.
Havi: How do you feel about the city you live in?
Miko: I think the higher social classes need to realize that everyone is just trying to survive. And as far as art goes, I think we’re all slowly realizing that we have to come together to do just that. Survive.