BOHH talks Beats, Hip Hop across Borders, and Women making moves in DJing with producer & DJ Mio Soul!
Strong in spirit and her smile, when Mio Soul walks into a room, ready to rock her set, you know its going to be an electrifying experience. Vibrant colors, a side pony tail, and even wearing PJS when she DJs, can only bring her intoxicated vibes to even higher plateau. Mio talks to BOHH about connecting cultures, music influences in her production, and why we need more women spinning on the 1s & 2s in the club!
BOHH: Who is Mio and what is her Mission?
Mio Soul: Sometimes I like to call myself an “adventurous mermaid”, she swims through the ocean going to places and explore new heights. She is mysterious yet passionate and fun. She is just a girl that knows what she likes and do what she likes to do. Her goal is to travel all around the around and share what she loves while making friends. Out of everything, she likes to express herself through making music and playing.
Her mission is to spread love through the music she makes and to encourage all the kids to the adults that have a dream and live with no doubts. Never give up and you will make it!
BOHH: When did you start producing? DJing?
Mio Soul: I’ve been producing since late 2011, and DJing since 2015!
BOHH: How does Hip Hop inspire you and how do you incorporate the Hip Hop culture in your music?
Mio Soul: I grew up in many places (Tokyo, New Zealand, Los Angeles…) but Hip Hop has been always around me and it became part of my life. I used to dance when I was younger as well. (Side note: I was also into the performing arts, so I had the opportunity to do a little of everything, acting, singing, and dancing, but as I got older I got into street dancing and break dancing.)
I grew up listening to classic old school music: R n’ B and Hip Hop as well as church music. Those genres of music have influenced me to make the type of beats that I create and play. But I felt the culture more, especially when I lived in the states than living in other countries and of course even more since moving to New York.
BOHH: Is there a way that you incorporate your culture in the music you make?
Mio Soul: My cultural influences are so mixed! And with my culture…the traditional Japanese (or Chinese) music to anime sound tracks and cartoon music that I listened too and watched inspired me as well. And I still love to watch anime and Japanese movies today! I like a lot of the Asian culture affect the music I have been making. The thing is I never really did it on purpose not paying attention to it, but the influence is bigger than I imagined!
BOHH: Where have you lived and traveled?
Mio Soul: Ohio, LA, San Fran, Japan (Tokyo) Taiwan,
New Zealand and New York (Recently!)
I’ve also traveled Florida, Texas, Philly, DC, UK and Canada
As far as I remember lol!
BOHH: As a female DJ, what advice can you give to young women who want to break in this industry?
Mio Soul: Just start and tell people that you DJ and you grab an opportunity to connect! Make sure you rock it so that more opportunities will come to you. Practice is important! Use social media put your music or mixes out and let people know what you do. For women, it’s hard for women to get that exposure in the industry. It’s still male dominated, which it’s sad to say, but don’t let that stop you from making that imprint. Let no one take your shine! I’m still in the middle of the journey but I’m working very hard to make my presence known. We just got to keep doing our thing, keep making noise, and keep making good a$$ music!
BOHH: What are your inspirations when making new beats?
Mio Soul: That’s a good question! It kind of depends on my mood. Sometimes I decide specifically what kind of genre of beat I want to make before I start making a beat! But again, most of the time it just depends on my mood LOL.
This is between me and you (since this is an interview so everybody’s gonna know but lol) …
When I’m in love I make a lot of sexy smooth lovely music, when I’m happy I make uplifting music, when I’m frustrated maybe I make some crazy music that just because I want to go crazy to. When I’m full of energy I want to make #TurnUp music! When I’m down I make experimental stuff or some aggressive music to pick me up. I’m a positive person so most of my music sounds happy.
But my music tells my story by itself. It’s a reflection of my damn life.
BOHH: How is Hip-Hop embraced in the international countries you have lived in?
Mio Soul: Especially in Japan, the Hip Hop culture influence is HUGE out there. There are a lot of clubs and parties that throw specifically Hip-Hop parties! A lot of music festivals invite old school rap legends to new rappers over there to perform and rep the culture. People really catch up with the stuff that’s popping out here. Some dope DJs come to the states or live here and have brought some parts of the Hip Hop culture here back to Japan.
BOHH: Who are your musical influences?
Mio Soul: My favorite DJs are Steve Aoki and Atrak but there are many more! I have too many favorite producers but the influence comes from cashmere cat, giraffage , flume, I love rl grime and nghtmre style too.
BOHH: Where can musical lovers hear and find your work?
Mio Soul: You can find on me instagram @immiosoul and SoundCloud @iammiosoul
And I got some performance videos and remixes out on YouTube! I’m going to get on Spotify this year and put out and ep that I’m working on!
BOHH: What’s next for Mio Soul?
Mio Soul: Putting out an EP
Since I got so many kinds of beats it been taking time to put them all together and I’m taking time doing it, but I want to work harder to finish the project.
I have met a lot of great people (artists) last year and I’m so happy to be a part of MDC (Midnight Dreams Collective), check them out! I’m excited to keep doing shows with them!
As well as trying to do festivals this year! I just want to keep performing and collaborate with other producers too.
Support MIO! Follow her on instagram @immiosoul and SoundCloud @iammiosoul