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Mika Says He Is Part of the New, Credible Wave of Pop Music - Epoch Times


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Epoch Times


Jun 01


SYDNEY—British singer-songwriter Mika considers himself part of a new wave of performers who can proudly and credibly call themselves "pop" artists.


"Pop became a dirty word after the 1990s. Pop lost its way. But now it's certainly coming back on track," the 23-year-old said in Sydney today.

Mika's debut single Grace Kelly has been a hit around the world and cemented itself in the top 10 of the Australian ARIA singles chart for the past 11 weeks.


A virtuoso pianist with a four-octave vocal range, Mika's influences range from the opera he sang as a child to the great self-made masters of reinvention such as Prince.


In Australia as part of a globe-trotting promotional tour for his debut album Life In Cartoon Motion, Mika admitted he fears the huge global success of his first offering could see him pigeon-holed and destined to disappoint fans on his next release.


"It's all quite heart-warming, but it's early days," he said.

"So don't get sick of me yet."


Born in war torn Beirut, Lebanon, Mika and his family fled to France and eventually settled in England. Much of his growth as a musician came when he trekked around the United States working with as many creative minds as he could find.


Such a journey has developed Mika as an artist who is proud to be "placeless" and not bound by the expectations of any country or style of music.


"It's about the album as a body of work and songs, as opposed to singles. I'm not Crazy Frog. I'm here for a long time," he said.

Mika said he considered himself a writer more than a musician and music is simply a tool to his story-telling.


"Because I embrace and adore the concept of a pop song and the challenges of writing pop songs, I seem to often be misunderstood for someone who is a manufactured product, who isn't actually a serious musician," he said.


"I mean pop music as it was in the 60s and 70s. Now pop is coming back, records are infused with so many different influences. You've got Amy Winehouse playing soul-pop, Lily Allen making reggae-pop, Christina Aguilera making pop in the old swing and big band style and its' so fun, and its production is so sophisticated."


He describes his own work as "psycho-babble hyper-pop".

"It's all pop. Pop is good now, and it's getting better," he said.


Ironically, Grace Kelly is a song which thumbs its nose at the music industry in much the same way Australian country-crossover singer Kasey Chambers did with her breakthrough single, Not Pretty Enough.


When this is mentioned to Mika, who obsessively collects designer toys and pop music from around the world, he breaks into his own word-perfect version of Chambers' song.


"I told you I have a massive pop anthology from around the world. I know that song, it's great," he said.



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