Interview with singer/songwriter Mikey Wax

September 20, 2011          Comments (2)

mikeywax

Today, I have a special treat for you.

I’m very excited to be interviewing singer/songwriter extraordinaire, Mikey Wax. If you don’t know who he is yet, I’m certain you will, soon enough!

Who said a picture is worth a thousand words?

Before you continue, I strongly suggest you listen to these two songs (my favorites).

The Last Great Song” and “In Case I Go Again”.

You’ll immediately hear just how talented Mikey is.

Mikey and I went to the same high school. We were in a Peers As Leaders (PAL) class together and he always loved music (and I always loved fitness) so I thought it’d be really neat to feature him on my blog – as we’re both pursuing our passions.

Today also happens to be a BIG day for him. Read on to find out why.

1. When did you start playing music?

I started playing “the desk” in Kindergarten. I remember my Kindergarten teacher would send me to the quiet area cause I kept tapping the desk like a piano. I’d say for real I started playing piano when I was 8, writing songs when I was 10, and picked up guitar and singing in high school.

2. When did people start giving you positive feedback?

My sophomore year of college I wrote “Last Great Song”. My friends would keep coming to my dorm room and ask me to play it and that’s kind of when I knew I could write a song that people would actually want to listen to.

3. When did you decide that you want to pursue music as a career?

Very early on. Playing and writing music has always been a huge part of my life. As soon as I finished college, I knew I had 12 songs that I wanted to record for an album and wanted the world to hear.

4. If you had to describe your music to someone who’s never heard it before (and if you haven’t you soon will because Mikey is blowing up), what four artists are you a mix of?

haha. Um – I always feel like this gives me more credit than I deserve – but, 4 of my biggest influences would be spread out between classic rock of the Beatles to Billy Joel, all the way to more modern music like Dave Matthews Band and Coldplay. Keep in mind, the first music I ever learned on piano was classical. I used to break strings on my home piano like I was Beethoven or something.

5. When would you advise someone to stop going after their dream?

I don’t understand the question. Kidding. They say if you do something for 10,000 hours you can make a living from it, so don’t stop – just keep perfecting.

6. How does one go after their dream if they’re not able to make money from it at first?

Sometimes you need to invest in yourself and believe that all the other stuff will come down the road. When I graduated college I worked for my dad and lived at home. Instead of asking for a pay check I asked for studio time. It took me a year and half to finally finish my first CD “Change Again”. I didn’t have much of a social life either. I put it all towards that first album.

7. Do you think it’s easier or harder to become a famous musician today than it was 15 years ago?

It’s interesting. Probably both. It’s more flooded now because of outlets like YouTube and other social networking sites, but at the same time there’s a new YouTube sensation every week. And I can’t really complain because my feature on the homepage of YouTube was a big step forward for me!

8. What is your most proud music accomplishment?

Having my music video get featured on YouTube and receive so many hits was a big thrill. Being asked to open for artists like Howie Day or Elliott Yamin and playing for a few hundred people a night is also up there.

But in terms of my own personal growth, getting over my stage fright and just being able to perform without having a nervous breakdown was a big accomplishment. I owe that to doing over 100 intimate house concerts and to fans of my music who stood by me and allowed me to progress as a performer. Now I live to be on stage, and I feel at home when I’m out there.

9. Who are your biggest inspirations music wise and why?

The Beatles would be my all-time biggest musical inspiration. They took all the good melodies though and left every other musician to steal bits and pieces. I love jazz. I could listen to Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald all day. Especially in Winter. Same with Frank Sinatra. I love the simple lyrics from that time period.

I’m inspired by the piano work of everyone from Billy Joel to Coldplay. Vocally, I love how pure James Taylor sings, or Neil Young. Their voices are immediately recognizable. Even early Dave Matthews.

10. What would your dream music career look like?

That’s tough. I guess the dream is always to be selling out Madison square garden 10 nights in a row like Billy Joel did. So let’s go with selling out MSG and writing some songs that can live on forever.

11. I love your song “In Case I go again“! It’s so cool that you filmed it at the Syosset train station. Every time I watch it, it brings back a lot of memories of going to and from NYC when I was in high school and college. What made you decide to shoot it there?

The song is all about those college years of coming and leaving home. I liked the traditional concept of a train…for some reason it made the song feel and look more like home. The Syosset train station has this vintage feel to it, and really gave a lot of meaning to the song once we filmed it.

12. Do you ever get writers block?

Not really. If I’m not inspired, I won’t push it. I often put myself through music starvation, where I don’t touch an instrument or sing for a few days. I’ll just go out, hang with friends and be an observer. I usually come back with fresh ideas. Lyrics are my biggest challenge. You want everyone to understand what you’re saying while saying it in a unique and non-cheesy way.


13. I love how grass roots you are. I think your idea of doing small private concerts with at least 25 people is brilliant. How’s that working so far?


The house concerts are amazing! It’s really become a huge way of touring for me and has helped me build a nice following in a lot of cities. I’m always amazed by the people who put the concerts together. They are so cool and down to earth, and so welcoming to have me in their home. It’s great as a performer to have that direct interaction with my fans. No venues to deal with, no booking agents. Just me playing my music for fans in their home.

14. You have an amazing voice. Could you create a little jingle for MyBodyTutor?

haha. my body tutor la de da de da. I’m onto something, give me a couple days.

15. Tell me about your new album? Who produced it? What inspired you? What’s different about it than your last album? What can we expect? Where we can we buy it?

The New album comes out Tues, Sept 20th!! It’s called “Constant Motion”. I recorded it in LA with a producer named Warren Huart (the Fray, James Blunt, Aerosmith). My first album was a very artistic/melodic and reflective album.

This new album over all is much more up-beat and forward-thinking album. It definitely leans in more of a pop direction, but songs like “Marion” and “Fall For You” still hold elements of that artistic/melodic side.

I feel this album was a natural progression for me. The album will be available on iTunes starting today, Sept 20th, and you can also order physical CD’s from my website, http://mikeywax.com. All my current tour dates opening for Elliott Yamin are on there as well!

Thanks, Mikey. This was a lot of fun! And good luck with your new album!



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MyBodyTutor.com featured on AOL.com, more press, plus 2 things you probably didn’t know

August 12, 2010          Comments (1)

aol

AOL.com in Canada recently interviewed me for one of their web properties – That’s Fit. You can read the interview by clicking here.

Fitness couturess and fanatic, MizzFIT, recently reviewed MyBodyTutor.com. You can read her review of MyBodyTutor.com by clicking here.

All gyms offer weekly or daily guest passes to entice us to sign up. In NYC, if you’re willing to travel all over the place, it’s possible to game the system because there are so many gyms. Not sure who’d want to do that but…

Actually, blogger, Buns of Steal, does that and, of course, blogs about it. So when she signed up, I was really excited (and flattered) because that goes against her entire objective: get through 2010, working out regularly, without ever paying for a gym membership. You can read about the day the gym hopper paid by clicking here.

Choo choo! You hear that? That’s the self promotion train leaving.

On totally unrelated notes, which I add because this post would be otherwise inadequately sized, here’s how to tell if you’re buying the freshest bread possible in a grocery store:

Look at the tie that is holding the wrapper closed. Bread is delivered five days a week, Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, and the bread maker puts a different colored tie on to designate which day of the week the bread was baked. Here’s the cheat sheet:

Monday – Blue

Tuesday – Green

Thursday – Red

Friday – White

Saturday – Yellow

So, if you’re buying bread on a Sunday look for a yellow tie because it’ll be the freshest.

FedEx.

What a remarkable success story.

It also has one of the most recognizable logos in the world. Did you know there is an arrow pointing towards the right in it? (See the green arrow?)

FedEx

This is fantastic! Now, every time you buy bread or see a FedEx truck you’ll think of me and MyBodyTutor.com.

Now that I’m thinking of MyBodyTutor did I forget to mention we recently launched an affiliate program? It’s by application only. So far our limited partners are loving it. If you’re interested in learning more about it, click here.

Back to our regularly scheduled programming next week.



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My Thoughts on Happiness – My Interview with a #1 NY Times Best Selling Author

July 29, 2010          Comments (3)

happiness

As you know, I’m very interested in the subject of happiness.

Here’s a question for you: What is your goal in life?

When I ask people this question, I get a lot of different answers. Whatever your goal is, think about the answer to the next question: Why? And then keep asking yourself why.

What’s so fascinating to me is that if you keep asking yourself, “Why?” enough times, you’ll arrive at the same answer that most people do. We’re all doing what we do because we believe it’ll ultimately make us happier.

I think the end goal of anything we do is: happiness.

As Aristotle said, “Happiness is the meaning and the purpose of life, the whole aim and end of human existence.”

However, I think happiness is a very ambiguous term. Instead, I’m very interested in how I can become happier (and how I can help other people become happier). Not that I’m unhappy. I’ve always been a very happy person. But why not be as happy as I possibly can be?

These questions and thoughts are what led me to write all of these posts.

So I was very flattered (and very excited) when #1 NY Times Best Selling Author Gretchen Rubin of the Happiness Project interviewed me on her blog. As you know, I’m a huge fan of her work. Her book is a must-read.

You can read the full interview on her blog by clicking here.

I hope you enjoy it!



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Yahoo! Shine, Wes is down 54 pounds! and the Happiness Project

February 19, 2009          Comments (1)

I was interviewed by Katie McCaskey of Geezeo.com and the subject of the interview was ‘How does fitness relate to finances?’ It was an interesting topic that was certainly fun to explore. It got picked up by a number of larger websites which was pretty, pretty, pretty cool!

You can check it out here on Yahoo! Shine.

You can check it out here on Mainstreet.com.

And you can also check it out here on DivineCaroline.com.

(For my devotees no need to read all 3. They are all the same interview!)

Then Wes, a man who needs no introduction, posted this. For those keeping score at home Wes has lost 54 pounds! Check out this post I wrote on October 27, 2008. Only 4 months ago, Wes was 460 pounds. He’s now 407!

There’s no doubt about it. Wes, will get to where he wants to be. I won’t let him not! He is a warrior in every sense of the word and he understands the importance of consistency. He focuses on consistency! Not the numbers.

As Tom Seaver said, “In baseball, my theory is to strive for consistency, not to worry about the numbers. If you dwell on statistics you get shortsighted, if you aim for consistency, the numbers will be there at the end.”

And that’s exactly what I help my clients do: Help them stay consistent with both their diet and exercise. But what amazes me so much about Wes (besides his tenacity and attitude towards this journey) is how self-aware he is.

In fact, the first step to getting in the shape you want to be is to admit that you’re not in the shape you want to be in! Most people can’t do that.

Finally, Gretchen Rubin, of the ‘Happiness Project’ mentioned me on her wonderful blog. You can check it out here.

Her blog has become one of my top reads. Happiness is something I think a lot about and have written a lot about. This post is really what woke me up. Because I realized I had the “I’ll be happy when…” or, “I’ll be happy if…” mentality which is very scary to me.

Life and happiness is right here, right now. (This doesn’t mean you can’t aspire or desire. I just feel as though when you need anything or anyone to make you happy, you’re never going to be happy! When you look to the future for your happiness you’re letting your life pass by which is frightening!)

I wrote about that in this post here. What I love so much about her blog is it’s all about the small things you can do everyday to make yourself happier. And I’m really grateful for her mentioning me because Gretchen is obviously very passionate about helping people become happier and I’m very passionate about helping people become happier via health and fitness. I think the two coincide a lot more than most people realize.

Finally, I’m off to Mardi Gras for a bachelor party for the kid that inspired this post. (Easily my most controversial post ever. And no Mom, I’m not saying I don’t ever want to get married! It was just a little food for thought.)



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Sometimes I hate Adam Gilbert (a magical interview and some hateful press)

October 16, 2008          Comments (3)

Dorie, writes a very thoughtful, interesting and pretty hilarious take on her experience with MyBodyTutor on her blog here.

Thankfully, my mom (a very wise woman) always told me that hate is the closest thing to love so I’m not offended.

Greg, asks me some great questions for an interview I did to celebrate the launch of Lee Cockerell’s wonderful new book Creating Magic. We cover all sorts of interesting topics from why I believe belief is so important to why I believe the media doesn’t over react when it comes to steroids in sports to why my Auntie Anne rocks.

Kate, on Twitter (a micro-blogging platform) writes that she’s in love with me until…

And thanks to Sara for taking a bunch of pictures of me on her roof the other night for the Creating Magic interview!



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Interview – The Schiff Report

March 14, 2008          Comments (1)

“I’m a journalist based in Washington, D.C. and I am really impressed with MyBodyTutor and your blogging. I was hoping that I could interview you for my blog, The Schiff Report.”

Sure!

I really liked the thoughtful questions that Jaclyn asked me; especially the one about my dreams for MyBodyTutor.

Check it out here. Thanks, Jaclyn!

Oh and while I’m on the self-promotion train, I’m very excited that I was invited to be a part of the highly influential blogger Penelope Trunk’s new Brazen Careerist website. It’s a network of 50 young bloggers among many other things. You can check that out here.

Choo Choo!



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All I need is one mic: Radio Interview on Saturday

February 15, 2008          Comments (0)

In an effort to help as many people as I can, I’m always looking for ways to spread the word!

On Saturday, I’ll be doing a radio interview on Newstalk 1220 at 3:32 P.M. (Got to love the attention to detail!) in Sarasota, Florida.

Interesting. I wonder if my Grandma will be able to listen?

Anyway, if you’d like to listen, you can check it out via their website. It’ll be streaming live. Just click on the ‘Listen Live’ link.

Oprah – We’re on our way, we’re on our way!

“Great things are not done by impulse, but by a series of small things brought together.” – Vincent Van Gogh



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Y -Talk Radio with Guest Adam Gilbert, Founder of MyBodyTutor.com on How to Stay Fit for Life!

January 4, 2008          Comments (0)

On Wednesday evening, I had the good fortune of being interviewed on Y Talk Radio by Bea Fields and Roger Dewitt. The half hour flew by and they asked me all sorts of questions including how I got started with my company, my background, my inspiration and what gives me energy, where I see MyBodyTutor going and my biggest tip for anyone looking to start eating healthy and exercising.

My biggest tip for anyone who wants to start eating healthy, and maybe lose some weight, is to eat smaller and more frequent meals throughout the day as opposed to just eating two or three large meals.

My biggest tip for anyone who wants to start exercising is to make sure you set realistic goals for yourself. Setting out to run every single morning or getting to the gym 7 days a week is just not realistic. And if you wind up missing one run, or one session at the gym, you’re likely to get discouraged and stop altogether.

I’ll go into each of these tips more in depth and why they are so important in future posts.

If you’d like to listen to the show you can check it out here.



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Second installment for Conde’ Nast

August 28, 2007          Comments (0)

I just spoke with the great folks at Conde’ and my second series of Q & A’s is now available.

You can ch-ch-ch check it out here.

And if you haven’t read the first one here ya go.

I will be doing a series of Q & A’s every Tuesday. You can and should read ElasticWaist.com. For my XX chromosome readers, it’s highly entertaining, filled with all of the celebrity gossip you could possibly want, and of course, informative.

That’s gotta be a win-win-win.



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Lil’ interview…

June 8, 2007          Comments (0)

My friend Rohail Rizvi interviewed me for his blog. I especially liked the question about what makes me get out of bed every morning and what my inspiration is for getting into business.

Check it out here.

Thanks Rohail!



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