“It is tough to get people to notice you. There is a lot of music out there. For my budget I have found Jango to be a lot more helpful in acquiring actual new fans/friends than say Facebook.”
Check out the interview with Mike Colin exclusively on Skilly Magazine Online.
Skilly: How were you able to start your journey in the entertainment business? Where did this all start?
Mike Colin: I was selected to play solo classical guitar when I was in high school at a talent show sponsored by Denver Nugget great Alex English who was also a judge at the auditions. After that is when I decided to form a band, Phantasmorgasm, and started gigging and recording which was between 1989-1998. The main drummer from that band, Kenny Ortiz, went on to be in the Flobots.
What are some of the creative ways you use to promote your music?
Stickers, free CDRs, free MP3’s, street performing. It is tough to get people to notice you. There is a lot of music out there. For my budget I have found Jango to be a lot more helpful in acquiring actual new fans/friends than say Facebook. I don’t think there is a one size fits all on the indie scene which of course lacks the cohesive machine of the Top 40 scene.
What is the greatest challenge you face in today’s entertainment business? How do you overcome them?
Exposure! The level of competition in the arts & entertainment world can be staggering and at the end of the day there are only so many breaks and chances overall with a lot of people trying to find them. If you have the material, the talent, and you keep progressing, I think eventually you’ll get somewhere.
How is the music scene like in your hometown? What do you like about it and what don’t you like?
Denver is a great place to be a musician. We have as much talent here as Austin, NYC, L.A., Nashville, Atlanta, etc. There are a lot of places to perform and there are a lot of people who want to see live music.
I was part of the local and regional scene in the 90’s. In the 2000’s I was a recluse and now I’m trying to get back out there a little bit. All along my focus has always been on writing and recording, which has probably slowed me down a little bit with the live thing. There is always time as long as you keep it up and can do it still.
Where do you think the future of music is going to be? How do you feel artists can be more a part of it?
Same as it ever was. Music is a magic that we can tap into and how we tap into it may change (e.g., acoustic, electronic, vocals, pianos, guitars, drums, live bands, recordings). But the reasons we tap into it will always be the same. Love, lust, expressions of anger, frustration, beauty, wonderment.
What advice can you give to other upcoming artists and musicians trying to achieve success?
Get good at what you do. Be original. Don’t be surprised by the negativity of some but focus on the positives offered by others. Keep moving forward. Keep making new things.
What inspires you to write your next song?
I’ve always been inspired by the idea of the song itself. From a tiny 30 second guitar piece to a 20 minute orchestral movement and everything in between. I think songs are the free-est of all art forms.
What are the steps you take to make a song?
I have several methodologies, mostly based on what I start with. Sometimes I start with the guitar, sometimes I start with the beat, sometimes I start with the vocal/lyric, and sometimes I start with the keys or a sample. I find that this keeps things fresh and keeps my ideas evolving.
What do you think makes a great song?
Even stupid songs are pretty great. I think it’s a simple matter of personal taste and atmosphere. My atmosphere is filled with rock n’ roll, hip hop, classical, world music. My favorite songwriters are John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, Mick Jagger & Keith Richards, Lou Reed, Iggy Pop, David Bowie, Jimi Hendrix and many, many more.
Where can we connect with you? Can you give us your social media links and where we can contact you?
Official Website: www.mikecolin.net | www.mikecolin.bandcamp.com
Jango: @Mike Colin
CD Baby: @mikecolin6
YouTube: Zhitkur Roswell