Union Transfer

1026 SPRING GARDEN STREET, PHILADELPHIA, PA 19123 Ι 215-232-2100

Mika

An intimate evening with....

Mika

Mon, April 8, 2013

Doors: 8:00 pm / Show: 8:30 pm

Union Transfer

Philadelphia, PA

$29.50

Sold Out

This event is all ages

Mika
Mika
"I grew up listening to every thing from Joan Baez and Dylan, to Serge Gainsbourg and Flamenco," says Mika, a 23-year-old singer, songwriter and producer whose sparkling debut album, Life in Cartoon Motion, has just been released. "My musical tastes have become more eclectic as I've got older, but I'm always going back to great artist songwriters, people who make great records to their own vision. Prince, Harry Nillson, Elton John, even Michael Jackson. These people make amazing pop records that couldn't be performed by anybody else, and that's what I always wanted to do."
Fun, smart, musically adventurous and thematically provocative, the thirteen songs on Life, all of them written and produced by Mika, combine euphoric rushes of melody with darker unexpected elements. They range from bright daytime melodramas to night-time tales of love, loss, abandonment, hope and happiness. Each is a splendid blend of fresh imagination and deft pop craftsmanship. They are songs, Mika says, "about transitions," about people in the process of becoming whoever they want to be. Sort of like Mika himself.
"Transitions are important, because that's when everything gets destabilized, and that makes you question and re-evaluate everything," he explains. "For songwriting, that's an endless source of inspiration, because it makes you look at things. You can't take anything for granted."
A self-taught piano virtuoso, gymnastic vocalist and born entertainer, Mika has music in his bones. His four-octave voice, which he knows when to restrain and when to unleash, needs to be heard to be believed, and he uses it to powerful effect on Life. Whether praising the delights of the larger-framed woman on the funk-rocking "Big Girl (You Are Beautiful)," describing the journey of a married man who discovers that he's attracted to men on the burlesque "Billy Brown," or simply celebrating the joys of being alive on "Love Today," he is unafraid to revel in the pleasure he takes in making music. "I wrote 'Love Today' when I was happy, really happy," he recalls. "When you're on a buzz, you assume that everyone in the world feels the way you do. So I put it in a song." Motorola has licensed "Love Today" for online and mobile-phone spots in its RED campaign The moods on Life in Cartoon Motion swing wildly - as do the rush of musical surprises that continually tumble forward. That sense of delirious unpredictability accounts, in part, for the album's title. "Inevitably when you put certain subjects into a pop song, a cartoon-like quality arises," Mika says. "It's like how Homer Simpson can talk about anything from politics to Michael Jackson's weirdness to homosexuality and get away with it because it's a cartoon. That's where the title comes from."
These songs all reflect Mika's distinctive touch - they are simultaneously theatrical and intimate, accessible and gleefully subversive. "'Why not?' is one of my mottoes," Mika says, laughing. "I always knew that the first album I ever made would have to be a completely 'No apologies' album. There's a kind of youth to that as well. This is the kind of record that I knew I would only be able to make once in my life. It's my coming-out-of school, leaving-university album -- that whole transition period from childhood to adulthood. That energy keeps it alive."
And it is just the beginning of what Mika is capable of delivering musically. "Playing live is where it all comes together for me," he says. "I often get stressed when recording -- it's so full of decision making. You're constantly deciding what should stay on the song forever. I love undoing all that in my live sets, and going places where I wouldn't necessarily go on the record."
Venue Information:
Union Transfer
1026 Spring Garden St.
Philadelphia, PA, 19123