You’ve spent a lot of time competing. Now you’re a tour DJ. How do you compare the 2 experiences?
Well, you start off and you get recognized, you do mixtapes and from that you just try to tell the true tales of progressive instruments. Try to look after the future so it’s all stepping stones, you know, like building blocks. That’s what it is now. It’s 2008. I’ve been doing music for almost 20 years now.
You won many competitions and rose to fame in that way. Do you feel that being the Beastie Boys’ DJ your talents are being overshadowed?
Not at all. See, with me there are 2 identities. There is Mixmaster Mike and Mixmaster Mike with the Beastie Boys. So, I do my solo shows and they know where I’m going. As far as being with the Beastie Boys it just expands my crowd, you know? It allows me to take my art to millions and millions of people around the globe, which is a blessing. And being with the Boys is a blessing. This is all a blessing. 2008 I’m still here doing music, doing what I love to do and that’s what it’s about.
You’ve done things with some East Coast artists and are yourself from San Francisco. How do you compare the experiences of 2 different music styles?
It depends on who you’re working with. I mean working with [Grand Wizard] Theodore I pay homage to [him] for inventing the scratch, you know? For people I don’t know, for education, in order to know where you are today you gotta know where I came from. These are all universal artists and they can take it in any direction. That’s what it’s all about, not staying stagnant but exploring. That’s what I’m about. Exploring new directions and constellations. I’m on a cosmic adventure so I just try to be out there expanding.
You’ve done original equipment tricks. As an inventor in the world of DJs, what do you feel is the next step?
It’s all combinations of things, you know? Littler bits and pieces that I developed over the years and combining those trends and just coming out with new formulas. No exact names for them. I’ve invented hundreds different scratches so I stopped making names for them. They just formulate in my head. It’s all about being different and setting yourself apart.
Getting to know your style a bit more, how would you compare your art to DJ Muggs from the West Coast and DJ Scratch from here?
I mean, those are raw elements. You’re talking about East Coast and West Coast. They were 2 different styles. Now it’s all just one style, you know?
Comparing myself? Oh, man… (laughs) I mean… I guess, I don’t know. I guess I’m out of my mind when it comes to making music and performing, you know? I don’t know what it means… I mean, much respect to their styles. They helped develop what the phenomenon is today. I look at all those styles and those are all lessons, you know? Everything is a lesson.
What’s the best site for people to get to in order to know more about you?
What do you have new that’s coming out now?
Look out for the new Mixmaster Mike album for another set of crazy set of audio. It’s dropping this year, 2008.