Interview: M!NGO Shares Origin Story, Starting A Label, Pandemic, & More

April 13, 2021 -

Justin Angle

M!NGO dropped "Outcast" to the world in 2021, a track that extends vibes he has put on display for sometime now via his streaming channels. Able to balance his own sound that's unique to him, the solo DJ/producer knows how to make a difference sonically, all things considered. "Outcast," releases on a label M!NGO owns and helped start up, titled VIBE.DIGITAL. Clearly equipped with a business side as well as skilled creative intuition, M!NGO has found more ways than one to grab attention.

Releasing music and getting industry recognition all the way back to 2016, (Plastician's Rinse FM being a notable credit), this artist has certainly stuck to his guns and reaped the positive benifits of doing so. His sense of melody and keyboard work has allowed him to stay relatvent and present. In 2017, he released a self-titled EP that took the vision to the next level, getting signed to Terrorhythm, Fyoomz, and then after creating VIBE.DIGITAL alongside artist Djedi.

We had a chat with M!NGO discussing a variety of topics, including subjects around the label, his alias, and much more.

Where did the name M!NGO come from?
The name M!NGO came from me being so tall (6'6") and one of my best mates (Britton) said, "we should call you Big Bird" and I was like "naw" but I like the bird concept. We ran with the idea for a day or so until I landed on Flamingo and shortened it to M!NGO.

What message or theme do you hope is conveyed from the single "Outcast?"
Outcast was spawned from a personal conflict I struggle with daily, finding my place. Of course we can all relate to feeling left out, or excluded from certain parts of our lives that really bother us. I have a hard time vocalizing when I feel left out or overlooked and the sound palate in "Outcast" helped me vocalize how I feel without words. I hope others can relate to my vibe instead of words.

How has the pandemic impacted you as an artist?
The pandemic has crippled multiple [parts] of my musical incomes as well as almost all of my fellow musical family members, but I've really tried to view it as a challenge that I know millions of other musicians are trying to overcome. So I've really tried to focus on staying regimented and still working on music like I have club gigs to play. That way when I actually do get booked post COVID, I have still grown as an artist and I have new material to keep my lovely fans engaged.

What advice would you give to artists just starting out?
MAKE AS MUCH MUSIC AS YOU CAN! Doesn't matter if it's a beat a month, or a beat a week, or a beat everyday, pshhh, if you can get to 3 beats a day you're a monster. Just stick with it as much as you can/feel inspired to. Writer's block is a myth, just go outside or watch old movies. Hang with people you love and feed off of positive vibes. Always good to have some sort of a reference track for the mix down / direction of your sound scape. Read up on your DAW, learn shortcuts and watch tutorials so you can keep your workflow quick and seamless, this way you don't forget where you were goin' in a track or get frustrated.

What hurdles came with starting your own label?
Starting has been such an amazing ride with my boys Fyoomz and Djedi. There would be no [label,] without the 3 of us, aka the "TRIPOD." It has been a lot of keeping our ears to the ground and trying to give our underground family the best selection of new sounds/vibes we can find from every part of this beautiful planet. It's allowed us to make family / friends in so many places I can't even list, but it's for sure been just taking one day / week at a time. Lots of phone calls and ongoing chats to keep the ball rolling and new ideas growing. Recently we worked with Beatport to help establish "Trap/WAVE" as a new addition to the genre categories.

What is coming in the near-future from M!NGO?
I can't wait to share these new tracks, I've been hoarding music for the past 24 months now and it's killing me. Somewhere in the nature of 30 - 40 tracks that I have finished during this social timeout. All kinds of new genres to explore: M!NGO, weird bass, dubstep, bass house, drum & bass, and of course the wave/hardwave realms.

As far as shows, I can't wait to get back to being booked monthly/ weekly again, tons of new mixes/edits/tracks to share with my club heads! I'm in Oklahoma City right now, starting a cannabis farm, so if you're in the area let me know.

Love you guys so much and thank you for the support and love!


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