For the people, here is an exclusive interview with MGM's Mi$tro. With the release of his latest, self-produced track '5AM' and the conclusion of King Lil G's 'Lost In Smoke 2 Tour,' Mi$tro barely has time to even sleep. When one of your main focuses is to really connect with your fans, you do what you must to solidify that connection.
The 'Lost In Smoke Tour 2' is currently 35 shows in and finally coming to an end. Originally lit in Santa Ana, C.A., the tour has come back in rotation to finish up in Fresno C.A. 2 p.m on a muggy Tuesday in August, Mi$tro finally had a break in touring to get a quick interview in—of course not without a glass of Hennessy by his side.
Check out our exclusive interview below where he dishes about touring experiences, upcoming work and meeting the impossible Jay Electronica.
Where are you right now?
Where I am—I am back in Virginia, we just got off the tour so this is like my first real sleep.
So with all of the tour dates being back-to-back, how do you find the time to release a song?
Hahaha. The biggest thing was that I had to take my black ass in the crib! I was like “man let me get back.” Cause the thing is, it’s easy to write but I thought I would have time for sessions, but you don’t have time cause we leaving the show at probably 3:00 in the morning, depending on the hours of the city, we have to be in the same place in a different city at 5:00 p.m for the sound check, get the green room, so you don’t really get too much time especially when it comes to like rapping.
How has the back-to-back touring experience been for you?
Oh my god. It is amazing! The biggest thing that we like was touching the people. This was my first time really, really, touching the fans. We came through the door and we had a moment where I saw a fan outside and she just broke down crying and I was like “damn, I didn’t know we could affect people like that.” It was just stuff like that that was just real humbling and talking to these kids and kids telling you man, “I'm at this point in my life, man, I listen to your song 'The Underdog Story' and that's my motivation.” A lot of things are changing I guess you could say from the tour, from them telling me about how so many people enjoyed it and stuff like that. I'm going to name my next project ‘The Underdog Story’ and I ain’t even told nobody that yet. That just came outta no where because I hear a lot of people talking about it and they could really resonate with the song. the whole tour is just touching the people, you going from city to city. The NY show was probably my favorite because you know everybody say NY is a tough crowd and we did not have that problem because they was fucking with us heeeavy. It’s was just dope man, touring has been amazing. No sleeping though.
What would you say is the most valuable thing you've learned from your first project up until now?
That’s deep. Quality over Quantity. Because I dropped a lot of projects like you said, and it was like when you in school you just dropping music because it’s the thing to do. You ain’t got a song bubbling for 2 weeks you're like, “f*ck it, ima drop another one.” So as the time went by, the release got slower and slower to a project a year or a project in 2 years and that’s when I would start being like, "nah let me get into the substance. Let me break this down. Let’s get a theme—let's make a street album." When it came to the things that mattered like getting national recognition, I definitely slowed down and made sure I got that quality and everything I learned from really slowing down. Everything is about strategy. We already have half our winter planned out and pretty much by the next two months we’ll have next summer planned out. Especially with my manager Michael, we have everything planned out. With that whole quality over quantity thing—oohh we been winning ever since!
So you talked about having the next few months already planned out, is there a project coming soon?
Yeah. There’s definitely something coming soon. The biggest thing we’re about to do is now once the tour wraps up, we getting right into the music. It’s definitely gonna be some singles dropping. Definitely gonna be some videos dropping. And like I said, we’re gonna title the project ‘The Underdog Story’ and we got a couple special things coming. I’ve been making phone calls for the past day and a half trying to line everything up. The whole thought of me dropping a project just happened—like maybe 2 days ago. The first thing I did was call my manager. I said let me call my staff. So we've been planning everything out. Expect in the fall that real sh*t.
On your self-titled EP, Mi$tro, there were two songs I particularly liked, 'Take A Shot' and 'Bend Over.' They were club bangers for the ladies. Can we expect more of that?
Ohhhh! I mean the fact that you said it, I gotta put something on there for the freaks. That project was fun, I produced every record on there that’s why it was self-titled because I was like I produced it, I ran my own session, I mixed and mastered it. So that was the biggest thing about it being self-titled. 'Bend Over' was the second beat I ever made in my life so it worked out.
'5AM.' Tell me about the inspiration and everything that went into the track.
This is deep. It’s all about trying to balance a relationship while being on tour. So you have a scenario where your shawty—let’s say you in a relationship or something and everything is peachy but things are starting to change. You start becoming busy, you're not the same person. If I used to call you everyday a 5:00pm, I can’t call you at that same time no more. I’m busy. I gotta do soundcheck. First, the girl is understanding. You start having conversations like, "uhh I don’t think this is gonna work." But I’m in a position where I’m doing what I’ve been planning on doing. The whole time we been together we been planning for these types of things cause there was gonna be a time where this happened so now that it's here, she’s telling me “uhh, I don’t think this is gone work.” I’m in here debating like, "uh, yeah. I think you right. Let’s just separate cause I’m not about to just stop this." That’s what 5am was. 5 in the morning/cup got me chilling/missed calls from my shawty cause she always in her feelings. You feel what I’m saying? I produced it. My father always played Sade he loved Sade so it was just one of those days. I just called my pops like, "yo what was that song you used to play when I was a kid?" And boom! He played it and it just worked. We was just vibing and I didn’t even write the song I was just vibing.
So how do you feel about producing for other people?
One of the biggest things about me now announcing that I produce, working with somebody just has to make sense to me. Biggest thing that matters to me is that I know what type of vibe I make. I spend a lot of time writing my music so I'm not gonna sit here with a hundred thousand beats in every genre. If we just vibing, we in the stu, you pretty much like how my music comes out, we can definitely work that out. I don’t have a problem with it. I can work with n*ggas fa sho.
You received a cosign from Jay Electronica. Explain what that experience was like for you.
That’s my n*gga. Shout out to the God. That was definitely life changing because, we was just chilling at the festival. This is when I was a young pup. It was just so big you know trying to be everywhere you can be. Just trying to be at the right place and we just happened to walk outside and I’m like “oh sh*t. The n*gga right here!” So we young and just like what do we say? We don’t wanna f*ck it up so we sitting there and I'm with my brothers, J-Real and Nilo, and it’s all 3 of us listening and we got merch—we got all the MGM stuff. So Nilo is telling J-Real like, “yo, we need to give that n*gga some clothes!” I’m sitting there like “I don't know if that’s the best idea. That's kind of weird, you know?” Nilo is just adamant like “nah, bro. do that sh*t” and long story short, we start the introductions, boom. We kicking it and he just start giving us like a whole bunch of crazy advice like telling us about life in general. It wasn’t even too much about music so it was just like make sure you got a plan in life, if you you got a plan in life your plan in music will follow. Stuff like that so it was just real gems so when the conversation ended we just like you know, "here's some clothes."
The craziest part about the MGM merch was that we had a grey crewneck and he took it. He just put it right on and we take the pics and stuff like that. 15 minutes after he left, our phone is blowing the fuck up. We like, "what the f*ck is going on? yo, you see what's going on?" So come to find out from that moment, it’s now on the internet before we posted it because you're realizing the presence of Jay Electronica. So, so many other people are posting him on the internet with our clothes on. I’m in my phone trying to edit, and put the filter on my pic but it’s already out so I’m like "oh sh*t! We may have just did the unthinkable."
By the time that night came, I wanna say we saw that picture like 2,200 times on the internet. Come to find out he wore the crewneck throughout the day so it was a big picture of him and Mike Wonder—he has it on. He was with Cosmic Kev—he had it on. You already know what happens, we put the crewneck on the website and we cashed out! We called the grey crewneck 'Jay Electronica' and we gonna develop a shirt with our picture with him on the crewneck but it’s gonna be real limited so we gone really capitalize on that so shoutout to the God.
Can you describe him to someone who doesn't know him?
Jay Electronica is a real dude like I’m not even gonna say a real n*gga because that almost limits it. Like, nah that’s a real ass guy. Like, because the amount of people that were hyperventilating around him and us having the most calmest conversation like he doesn’t even realize that they're doing it. Like we’re just talking about anything like, candy, Twizzlers, jewelry, cause he had the chain on, the big ass chain that Jay-Z had on with the 'Breakfast Club' we just talked about anything. We just kicking it. He's talking to me about my siblings, and he talking to J-Real about his life. From that moment, immediately we exchanged contacts. It was just the utmost respect I'm like, "man. Jay Electronica." That's one of the biggest inspirations, man, he's real and so it's just crazy man. It's weird to talk about.
After your life changing conversation, what would you say changed the most?
The biggest thing was the fact of who he was to talk to me brought me to show how people people are.