Mykey May (mykeymay.com) is one of the newest music stars ready to take on the music world with his much-hyped about first single Mad Man. Combining an edgy mix of rich, hip hop, punk and party beats, Mykey has created a new energy amongst his current fans and newcomers.
Mykey, a former band manager and producer from a small town in Louisiana who has worked with the likes of Lukas Rossi, Master P and Ginuwine, is now shinning the spotlight on himself and we here at The Levity Ball just had to sit down with him to learn more…
How did you become interested in becoming a musician, and how old were you when you started?
I don’t consider myself as a musician. I dream and hear sounds/lyrics all the time, but can’t express them through instruments. I hum the melody or concept to my producer. I would say I’m artistic, but I would be better described as a messenger. I’ve been artistic all my life, but I never knew how to express it until recently. I produced music for over 12 years, and I just became a recording artist about 18 months ago.
Your latest single, Mad Man, is very personal it seems… What do you hope people take away from the song after listening to it?
I hope that people find hope in themselves. Outlets, such as music, can be an inspiration, but only the individual can figure out what’s best for their own life. I hop e people believe, no matter the dream or circumstance, that anything is possible. You have to believe in yourself, have faith, and never give up. You have to learn habits of being consistent, persistent and stubborn to the nay-sayers. We are all messengers. We must all find our own way to express our gifts and skills to share with the world – or how I like to say, “Impact the world till kingdom come.”
What type of audience do you hope your music reaches?
The ill. I hope to reach the ones that no one else believes in – the doubted, the average Joes, the addicts, the damaged, the underdogs, the shameful, the sinners, the dirt, the victims, the bottom of the barrel. ‘Cause that’s who I am. I release in my music and relate on all levels. MYKEY MAY music is relevant to anyone hoping to find themselves.
Who are your biggest influences in music?
My biggest influences are 2Pac, Biggie, Jay Z, Eminem, Kid Rock, Linkin Park, Limp Bizkit, Co-Ruff, Hunter Greene (late founder/lead singer of Southdown – band I produced), and my producer, Lukas Rossi.
Which other artists have you enjoyed working with the most so far?
Having just become a recording artist in past 18 months, I’ve had the pleasure of working with my producer Lukas Rossi, hip hop artist Co-Ruff, upcoming talent Erin Porter (aka ELP), guitarist and songwriter Matt Rhodes, and my ‘Godfather of Music,’ a killer guitarist, Gene “Geno” Giles. Previously as a producer, I have worked with Master P, Ginuwine, C-Murder, Silk The Shocker, former South Louisiana Rock band Southdown, and hip hop artist Co-Ruff.
How do you define rock music these days, and where do you feel you fit into that definition?
Rock music is cool, but I don’t really like to classify myself into genres because it creates limits. To me, good music is good music, and shit music is shit music. I always say, “If the music takes me out of my element – mission accomplished,” whether it’s classical to modern day, or just simply worded choruses and vibing beats. Artists get lost sometimes if they are being produced to sound a particular way instead of just going off of their feelings. Sometimes the technical side can outweigh the artistic influence. Follow your gut. Follow the feeling. If it feels good, then f**k it!
How has growing up in a small town influenced your sound today?
In a small town, you listen to more music. There isn’t much to do besides drugs, sex, alcohol, run-ins with the police, and fighting political bullshit. You have to conquer the bad habits before they conquer and destroy you. Music is my drug and therapy. I still battle the demons, but I’m not the devil and I’m damn sure no angel. I’m just a human being trying to live in this crazy, beautiful world.
Is it difficult to balance having a family and also being on the road / having a full-time career as a musician?
It is definitely difficult. There are only so many hours in a day and only so many days in a week. My family keeps me motivated. My father was able to provide and build something for his family. Now, it’s my turn to do the same for my family. My pops always says, “Take it one day at a time,” and “Figure it out.” That’s all I can do, along with an, “I love you.” I’ve got to put in work. It’s just another day, another dollar.
What tips would you give young artists coming up, or what do you wish someone would have told you when you first started out in the music industry?
First tip, be honest and stay true to you. You have to develop gator skin – be able to take criticism and handle stress. Be patient. Be kind. Be tough. People will f**k you over quick over a dollar. Get an attorney to protect you, and learn your own way to protect yourself too. Educate yourself. This shit does not come easy. It takes years to even have a chance to survive. Overnight success can result in overnight destruction just as quick. Learn to create longevity. Reinvent yourself and continue to create new opportunities, but always follow your heart. Set the bar. Don’t cry over spilled milk – go build a dairy farm. I wish someone would have told me, “You are f**kin’ crazy,” or, “What the hell are you doing?” – Oh wait! They did. No one can understand how you feel or what you want in life except you. You have to follow your heart.
What is the best piece of advice you have ever received from someone?
“Invest In Yourself.” Master P told me this in 2012. It finally registered the following year, when I lost my business and everyone else around me scattered. I was left with just me. That’s who I started investing in.
Where do you see yourself in a year from now?
In the studio with Jay, Kid Rock, and Em, recording some MYKEY MAY tracks.