What kind of artists do you listen to?

All kinds really. I tend to lean towards some indie-rock mixed with some Southern (American) hip-hop, topped off with a little bit of alternative!?? Anywhere from Arctic Monkeys, EarthGang, Jetpack Jones, Lan1 Del Rey, Flyleaf to Wet Leg…

Honestly, it just depends on what I’m feeling in the moment. Here, lately, it has been more of my stuff since I have been working on my production skills. I tend to tune out the world, that way my music doesn’t come off as being “like” another artist. Untainted inspiration if you will.

Where do you get your inspiration from for your lyrics?

That is completely random. It always starts with a thought, something I am feeling, or something that I remember feeling. Then I usually have an idea of a melody in my head that I use to find one word. That one word will sum up what I am feeling in that moment. Once I have it (that one word), I just free write or freestyle some lyrics. I like to work freely, which is great for creativity, but may also slow me down. I get a little side-tracked from time to time! So, really my inspiration comes from random feelings that I translate into some tantalizing words.

What advice would you give to someone wanting to start a music career?

Just do whatever it is that you want to. It is about your experience and growth through this entire process. If you go in with a specific set of goals, or an “idea” of how you want things to look, then you may end up stifling your creativity.

Music is a creative art. It is not something you can force or completely control. You may start at one street and end up on another going a completely different direction. You have to be open and willing to learn. Willing to experience your successes AND failures.

If I had to sum this up into one quote then it would be this: “Slow is smooth, smooth is fast”. Just take your time and be honest with yourself every step of the way.

What does an average day in your life look like?

I’ve been taking a hiatus from IT (Which I’ve been in for years now), to free up more of my time to spend with family, focus on my music, and to become more at peace with myself. Since entering this new way of life, my days have been filled with “working on something”, that’s if I’m not chilling with the fam (my daughter does love my attention).

I typically wake up before everyone. I may just start my day by writing, working on a be1t that I may or  may not finish, or by getting in some reading/studying on my various interests. I’ve got my own home studio that I have been adding to for a couple of years now, so I just he1d into there and follow whatever flow catches my drift. When the house stirs, I tend to blend my time with family and my craft. It’s been a very peaceful experience that has helped me develop my “sound” and steady my mind.

How has making music changed for you since the beginning of the pandemic?

Technically, it was around the time of the pandemic (slightly before) that I started with music. I’ve always just been a closet writer (mostly poetry) my whole life. I’ve won a few contests growing up, but I have been pretty much private up until a couple of years ago.

Because of the pandemic, I’ve had a lot of time to go from not understanding a thing about music (outside of a listener’s’ perspective or making drums out of whatever hard surface I can use) to being able to track my own vocals and to produce a song that is worth listening to, though I am definitely not where I want to be production-wise on my own. That’s okay though. It’s all about progress, not perfection.

The amount of time this pandemic has afforded to me has helped my progress with music immensely for which I am extremely thankful for! I don’t know if I would have had the intestinal fortitude  to have kept going if I was still “stuck” at my office job. Just decompressing from that stress alone took up a lot of my creative availability.

Do you feel pressure to keep up a public image on social media?

I don’t have this sense of pressure to keep up my social image; however, I do feel pressure about my consistency. I do know that I have to be consistent if I want to do music full-time. I have to build a fanbase. I feel pressure to keep producing content, which can be wildly expensive, so I tend to do it myself and adds more pressure by trying to take on more things at once (production, promo content, etc..). So ya, I feel pressure, but in the end, if you love what you do, then no amount of pressure is too much. At least, that is what I am currently telling myself!

What would you say your aesthetic is?

Chill and colourful— that is definitely my aesthetic. Not just bright, vibrant colours, but incorporating colours of all intensities into my outfit. Greens are my main thing, but tans and pink also sit well with me. It’s all about the vibe, really, and I just dig it! Chill, because I like to be comfortable (haha). If it checks those two boxes, then that’s right up my alley

For our sustainability readers out there, what (if any) sustainable brands do you wear/like?

I haven’t put too much thought behind this; I kind of collect clothes on a whim instead of shopping often. Frugality, if you will. I think it would be kind of cool, though, to mix more eco-friendly items into my wardrobe. I’ll have to do my research and find some brands that fit my style!

Do you have any upcoming news/announcements you wish to share?

I’ve just released a new EP, called Reality, on the 11th of this month with the help of the folks down at AltruCreative* in Nashville, TN, including _grawg (for the polish and two of the beats), John Lane (for all my visuals), and Epik The Dawn (for the be1t for ‘Isn’t Realʼ).

This EP is very short and sweet (A little V-day reference there) with only three tracks— ‘What We Spoke’, ‘Real Love’, and ‘Isn’t Re1l’. The dope part about Reality is that ‘Real Love’ and ‘Isn’t Real’ have the same verses (Different hooks though and a verse is extended on ‘Isn’t Real’) but completely different vibes. I’ve also just started to branch out with my sound, so this is the first set of tunes that I’ve been able to express a “different” me.

I kind of like to be ranged; I don’t want to bog myself down with just one thing, ya know? Sort of a Jack-of-all-trades.

That’s not all though; I have a music video called Reality (named after the EP) that is ‘Real Love’ and ‘Isn’t Real’ combined, coming out March 11th, with some more content coming out not long after! So, a lot of cool new Mushu is coming down the pipeline. Just trying to keep things heated up! Of course, all of this will be found on my socials as I post tidbits of information along the way!

Social Links/Music:

Instagram: @yaya_thisismushu

Facebook: @thisismushu

Spotify: (Spotify)

Apple Music: (Apple Music)

*not affiliated with Altru Creative

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