Featured Artist: Middath [Exclusive Interview]

Hey again! So it’s the middle of the week, which for some can be pretty rough. To put some pep into your step today, I would like to present to you one of my all-time favorite artists, Middath.

I first heard of Middath when the Celebrations album came out on This Ain’t Bristol. The album was chock-full of some incredible tracks and one of them happened to be Middath’s “Choppin n’ Cuttin“. I was completely mesmerized and it became one of my favorite tracks to date. I’m honestly never going to get sick of that track (I’m literally listening to it right now as I write this haha).

Middath, what does music represent to you? 

Music is and has always been an escape for me.  It’s been the only constant thing I’ve had in my life since I was 12 years old.  And to this day, nothing compares to the feeling I get when I create something new in the studio.

Where are you originally from? What were you doing prior to music? 

I am originally from Cape May County, NJ.  Prior to music, I’ve done lots of things and held lots of different jobs from flipping pizza’s to outside sales, worked at a county jail, opened up a commercial recording studio and managed a blockbuster lol.  

What do you do when you aren’t producing?

I’m currently a Warehouse Manager and have been working 9-5 for the same company for 7 years now.   

How’d you decide on pursuing music? 

My fiance actually got me into house music at a time where I almost gave up on music all together.  I definitely needed a change. I was originally a rapper and hip hop producer for almost 10 years at that time and got tired of it.  Creatively I felt “boxed in” as a hip hop artist. The scene was so predominantly focused on image and social media presence in comparison to the house scene which is truly focused on the music, not the DJ, which is how it should be.

How long have you been DJ/Mixing and/or Producing?

I’ve been making music for about 18 years now but have been DJing/Producing dance music since 2013.

How’d you come up with the name “Middath” as your artist name?

Middath was a nickname given to me by two of my best friends back in the day.  Kind of an inside joke. To explain the story in detail as to how I got my name would require a 5 page essay from me so I’ll make it short as possible and break it down for everybody lol.  
1) My middle name is Michael

2) When I was a rapper, my stage name was Mike Middle

3) Joe Namath is a retired NFL quarterback who used to play for the New York Jets

4) Middle + Namath = Middath

LogoFINAL2Black(1)What’s the music scene like out in Florida?

The scene is very prevalent in Florida.  Most people assume Miami is the reigning capital for dance music here but the truth of the matter is that the underground scene has grown exponentially the past few years.  So many of us got sucked into the “Big Room Boom” 5-6 years ago and as we’ve all grown a bit older our taste in music has matured and evolved as well. From there, so many up and coming scenes have sprouted throughout the state.  Tampa, Orlando and Jacksonville specifically. But even outside those cities you’ve got areas literally in the middle of nowhere hosting festivals like Distant Dimension and Dirtybird Campout. There’s also Okeechobee Music Festival and you can’t forget about Miami Music Week either.  Music is everywhere down here.

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It must be so surreal traveling around and playing shows. Any clubs, venues, or festivals you have played so far that really stuck out to you? 

Last year, I opened for Claude Vonstroke at the Cuban Club in Tampa, FL.  The reason this show was particularly awesome was not only because of how packed it was but because the venue is said to be one of the most haunted buildings in the world.  After I finished my set and Claude took the stage the sound goes out 30 seconds later. Then it came back on but the bass was off for like 20 minutes. Then the lights began to flicker.  This coincidental concoction of spirit meddling ensued for the remainder of his set.

If you could play anywhere in the world where it would be?

Elrow in Barcelona, Spain.

Where do you draw your inspiration from?

Any time I get to travel, attend a festival or throw down a killer set almost always leads to me making a bunch of new tunes afterwards.  A change of scenery works wonders for me.

What do you feel is one of the most frustrating aspects about being in this scene? 

For me the most frustrating thing is submitting music to labels and having to wait weeks sometimes months for a reply that usually never comes lol.  Some labels will at least send you an automated “we’re not interested” email. But most won’t respond to you at all unless they want to sign your tracks.  This, in itself, is quite the mind fuck.

Do you feel like nowadays you can’t experience the music the same as you did when you were just a listening to it?

Yes, this is a constant struggle of mine since my brain has been conditioned to always analyze music.  It’s hard for me to let loose as a listener in the audience at a show or festival when my initial instinct is to figure out how and why something sounds the way it does.             

One of my favorite tracks of yours is called “The Treble”. What exactly were you thinking about when you created that track?

The Treble was one of those rare tracks where everything just fell into place for me very quickly.  Sometimes in the studio I’ll search and search and search for sounds that compliment each other and then I’ll switch things out as the track evolves.  This time around though each sound and instrument I chose happened to work well with everything else the first time around. I think the track took me maybe a day from start to finish.  All I was missing was some type of vocal and I knew I wanted it to be some type of old school hip hop thing. And sure enough, the first acapella I played was “1nce Again” from A Tribe Called Quest and “The Treble” was born 🙂       

https://soundcloud.com/audiophilexxl/sets/middath-treble-ep

How did you get involved with This Ain’t Bristol?

I sent my first demo submission to TAB back at the end of 2015 and ended up getting a response from Billy Kenny saying my track wasn’t right for the label at that time but he was keen to hear more from me.  My next demo submission I sent them a week later caught their ear and Seb from Maximono reached out to me about signing “Freaky Lookin Trick” to his Maximono Selections Compilation.

Favorite Artist or Favorite Track right now? 

Dateless has been on fire lately! Really loving his stuff at the moment.  

Tweet Middath to let him know what your favorite track is!

Can we hope to see you play in San Francisco sometime soon?

I sure hope so!  I’ll be playing at Vanguard in Sacramento, CA August 24th though.

Last question, why haven’t we seen you on a Dirtybird Campout lineup yet?!

I was originally supposed to play Dirtybird Campout East Coast this past year but couldn’t make it happen due to radius clauses and all 😦 Hopefully next year though!

Be sure to follow Middath on Facebook and Instagram! You can take a sneak peek at what he’s been cooking up lately in the studio ;).

Thanks everyone and stay tuned to see what other artists I’ll interview!

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