Artist Spotlight - Mobley
(Photo Credit - Andrew Bennett Photography)
We had the pleasure to interview the ultra-talented one-man band that is Mobley. He is an alum of Lollapalooza, Austin City Limits, and many other fests and shows throughout the country and by far one of the best live performers we have ever had the pleasure to witness. He can literally do it all with his music and will hypnotize audiences with his skills on stage as he is able to perform solo music that should take multiple musicians to perform. Needless to say, dude has skills and if you haven't been paying attention, you need to, like yesterday. Check out what he had to say in our interview and check out his latest single "Swoon: Stagger" at the end of the piece!
1. How did you come to pursue music and how long have you been at it?
"I hardly remember how this all started. I remember filling notebooks with melodic ideas, even before I played any instruments well; when I was a child, my family would sing together, and I’d hear counter-melodies and harmonies in my head. College was when music became a serious, almost obsessional pursuit; I would sneak into the music department after hours and teach myself new instruments".
2. Could you walk us through your process of writing music?
"There’s no single way that things start for me; ideas tend to come from all kinds of sources in many different forms. Usually, most of the writing happens in my head, sometimes all at once, and then it’s just a matter of hunting for those sounds until I either capture them or they elude me. Approaching songwriting this way has forced me to stretch myself and learn a lot over the years".
3. What artists have inspired you in your career?
"So many….I’m hesitant to mention other musicians by name, for fear it might sound like I’m comparing myself to them. As far as artists in other media, poet Claudia Rankine and writer James Baldwin have been quite influential, and in fact, they are featured alongside some other writers on the cover art for my latest release, Fresh Lies, Vol. I".
4. Do you have any favorite music gear (guitars, amps, effects pedals, keyboards, etc) that you love to use? If so, what’s the story on them?
"I custom-built a keyboard show-controller rig that I call “The Mothership.” It runs my entire show, including effects, visuals, and lights. If you’d like a detailed description of it, you can check out this article in Keyboard Magazine: https://www.keyboardmag.com/artists/inside-mobleys-mothership-keyboard-show-controller-rig. I am in the process of completely overhauling The Mothership, though — I’ve disassembled it and am building a new and improved setup that has the added benefit of being more modular and easier to fly with. That’s been absorbing me a lot the past couple of months, ever since I got back to Austin after Lollapalooza".
5. Can you describe the vibe at your live shows? Also, what do you enjoy most about a venue when you do a show?
"I try to create high-energy, transportive experiences for audiences. I encourage a lot of audience participation, because art is made in conjunction with the audience, and I try and remind them that the whole exercise is absurd without their participation. So, for instance, I’ve designed instruments that require audience interaction. I create visuals and lights to accompany my music and hopefully help create an immersive atmosphere".
6. What is one thing you want the public to know about your music?
"Honestly, I’d just direct them to mobleywho.com, where they can check out my music without preconceptions. Whenever possible, I like for listeners to encounter my songs with fresh ears and open minds. I’d point them to Fresh Lies, Vol. I, which I released in April of this year".
7. Do you have any upcoming projects you would like fans to know about?
"One of the singles off Fresh Lies, Vol. I is called “Swoon.” When I’m writing a song, I explore countless variations while crafting its arrangement, and “Swoon” went through multiple incarnations. But who’s to say that the Fresh Lies version is the definitive or truest version of the song? I thought it'd be fun to let people in on some of the parallel universes I explore when I’m working on a record. So I’m releasing one variation, a track called "Swoon:Stagger,” Thursday, November 8th. It's is the first of three versions to be released through the end of the year".
To listen to "Swoon: Stagger" visit the following link.
FMI on Mobley, visit www.mobleywho.com.