Jónó Mí Ló: Interview
“That’s the idea; it’s to take on other dynamics of this characterized role and bring more depth to it.”
Jon M. Lockhart gave up his name miles back. As soon as he began traversing IRL and URL timelines in different cities and states, Jónó Mí Ló immersed and became one with his entirety of self. The fellah has been and done and collab’d and sounded out everything. Maybe. But if you’re being introduced to his work via this interview or having traipsed across him VERY LIVE, or on SoundCloud, or on Bandcamp, or right here on Tiny Mix Tapes: CONGRATULATIONS. You’ve just found one of my favorite humans making music.
Having grown up around the same areas, Lockhart and I get into some deep zones involving hidden influences, mysteries of the Midwest kind, bad energy bars, traveling wherever the music accumulates, and freaking on some fishy stuff.
I gotta finish Monday Night Raw…
How does professional wrestling effect your creative process?
Well, yeah, so that… We’ll talk about this later. There’s just a lot to it. I grew up really young watching professional wrestling; when I was eight. Like most guys, I guess… There’s an AGE you just become aware of the phenomena of it. But then the older I got, it became a cult of personality.
Did you collect those rubber wrestler dolls?
I collected all sorts of that stuff. Granted, my collections were nowhere near what the other guys had. But at that point, I was collecting a lot of stuff.
Where again in Dayton, Ohio, did you grow up?
In Huber…. Huber-tucky.
HuBRIAR Heights? [Laughs]
[Laughs] Huber Fuckin’ Tucky. There’s not enough Google in fucking Huber, OMG.
Damn. It’s hilarious I get to tell you all this. Well, this one year, around 2003-04, I went to Detroit for an electronic festival. I’d hang around the city; try and hang around and meet people; get friends to come on up. There was this third stage doing this thing with Ersatz Audio, a showcase. And I went THERE to see ADULT., but had to wait in a parking lot through all these other live shows, [and] I’ve already lost all my friends. And if I wandered away, I know it’d take me hours to find ‘em, and would never get back for ADULT. in time. So I decided to sit through whatever was next so I could catch ADULT. and then leave, and it was Wolf Eyes.
And it was just them in this parking garage, and I’m watching all the people and the energy and their set, and it just made me want to seek out music like that, but mostly in Southwest Ohio. I felt like I evolved myself because there was music there after that. I joined/created a band called To-Night Golden Curls with my friend John (from Dayton) and Nick (from Toledo). A friend of mine was doing a radio show at WSU, so I tried to play stuff I was into through there, and other blogs and message boards. But we’d all talk to each other on WSU during this radio show in, well have you been to Fairborn?
Yeah, I lived in Fairborn right off the Yellow Springs exit. Yellow Springs is a shitty name because it means people piss upstream from you.
But it’s so beautiful there! Anyhow, in Fairborn, have you ever passed Teleperformance USA? It’s in that corner. Oh, what is that corner? It’s like two exits before Yellow Springs coming from 70.
Yes, with the dollar store and a crappy Mexican restaurant; middle of nowhere.
YA! And there’s a bar there and some cheap head shop. But I used to work at that call center there with my girlfriend at the time; I was using her car to go to work and I’d be listening to the WSU radio show, hearing them talk about the new Burning Star Core record, so I’d call in and tell ‘em about how I just bought this record and was right down the block in Nowhere, OH. And that’s how I met Nick and John. From there, we began working on music together and this project with us together, but at the same time, I had a separate thing happening, which is what drove me to want to be in Michigan more than stay in Ohio. Ypsilanti first then Detroit.
And did you do noise in Detroit when you were there?
Absolutely. The Midwest is amazing for music.
Well, where along the line do you feel you made a transition between being more abstract to driven by a beat?
I don’t know. I just wanted to be able to find a way to bridge the gap between the two: DJ and performer. So, I went from Ypsilanti to Detroit and..
I was in L.A. and… We were outside a store around Sacramento (weird northern Cali cow town) after this show, had NO money, I tried to steal a Cliff Bar and on the way out, and they caught me.
…Is Michigan where Champion was first conceived with uh — OH! I got something to talk to you about…
Yes, T.E.A.M.S.: SEAN. It was him with Mykki Blanco on NYE in the city on 23 St., and his performance bombed because a sound guy fucked up his levels, and he wasn’t able to hear HIMSELF onstage, just an echo in the audience, and would come down and walk up to the sound booth, come back, yell more and not hear himself… I just tried convincing people it was a collaborative performance piece between him and the venue’s sound dude.
Wow! I can’t believe that was New Years Eve. I should ask Sean about that.
When did you initially meet up with him?
MAN! Well, we started out talking on Facebook. This it was so long ago… [Drifts] …Taco Bell!
That’s the name of the house we lived at. There is where I tried to bridge a solo creative career in DJ, music, trying to make experimental music, while also making a joke out of all of it, involving that DJ culture and screw music, and [Sean and I] just blended our styles.
And WHAT a blend! So, you and Sean haven’t done anything Teamm Jordann since, right?
Oh, no-no. Sean put out an album Sierra City Center last year and on IT is a Teamm Jordann “edit” of a track.
Different agendas took you away from each other?
It’s more like the arrangement just worked so well for Champion that it’d be hard to replicate now.
You’ve collaborated with people online as well as in person… What works better for you?
Honestly, it depends. I’d really like to (again) try to find my solo creative career, but this time bridge it to professional wrestling.
… I want it to be a meta-narrative involved with club theater. I want people to have a reason to like and want to do IRL again. I want to try to find some way to generate what it means to be IRL again. So, in answer to your question of real or online collaboration, it really just depends on the project.
Where in your music do you see this divide? Your DJing being Jónó Mí Ló and the project is… Daytime Television?
See. And then again, man. I dunno. [Makes explosion sound.] To me, now, Daytime Television just means a lot of different things to me. Not that I’m DONE making music as Daytime Television, but just not now.
Yeah, hell yeah!
What happened with Logo and why did they reject the mix?
Well it was up on YouTube, and I wrote their contacts — I had sent what is heard as Eco Reject Mixtape to Sean, and wanted to just do a Teamm Jordann mixtape together, but it never turned out, so I took it off YouTube. I wrote Sean about it and just figured, “Let’s not say it’s Teamm Jordann. I don’t want to say it’s ME, but just had a difference in HOW to share the name.”
Dag. Well, Bootleg Tapes is beyond an excellent label to be on. HAH Was the Splash Tapes YOUTH WITH SKULL IV the last tape you did as Daytime Television?
I believe so.
How do you get in contact with label people generally?
See, that’s what I’m saying by regenerating IRL for people. But I also feel like we’re immersed with stuff. Like with the wrestling thing. It’s a meta-narrative. When you watch it now they are anticipating what people think, and the simulation is SO real now…
In comparison to real-time internet shit with how you feel, what’s your thoughts on SPF 420 still kicking?
It’s like this… The whole thing made me irritated. Then at the same time I didn’t want people got get some weird competitive idea of VAPOR WAVE-B. That’s not what HD Ghettos was about. And those live parties are just so NUTS.
Those just crash out my computer. But you stopped doing HD Ghettos?
It just got to be too much.