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CONVERSATION WITH A LEGEND: Mystikal

The Legend Himself, MYSTIKAL

They say absence makes the heart grow fonder – and so it is with Mr. Michael Tyler a/k/a Mystikal, his fans and his music.

Gone from the scene for a while, Mystikal has returned with a vengeance – in a good kind of way. I still remember the first time I heard his voice – I knew then it was distinctive and different enough, that he would make his mark on the music world – and he did just that – in an unimaginable kind of way.

Mystikal left such a huge footprint, that his return to music was imminent and swift. His fans missed him and are welcoming him back to the game with open arms – and we couldn’t be happier for him.

It’s been said that the measure of an artist’s reach can be gauged by the response of his live audience. If that is so, then Mystikal is truly a legend in his own time. He has rocked the house at every show he’s done since his return on the scene. Talk to anybody who attended his December 2010 show at the House of Blues or his performance at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival this past May, and you’ll know that not only has he not missed a beat, so to speak, but he is back in rare form. This year’s Jazz Fest had several rappers performing to the sounds of live bands, and Mystikal was no different. He rocked the crowd and gave them a performance of a lifetime.  

Mystikal brings it – and he is definitely one of our most memorable interviews – an interview in which he talks about everything from rebranding his name and his recent performances, to the loss of Tim Smooth. We had a great time with his interview and feel privileged to be able to showcase an artist of Mystikal’s caliber and experience.

Well packaged with charm, handsome good looks, intelligence, wit, and personality, we’ll be seeing a whole lot more of that Mystikal brand. Some really big things are in the works for him and it won’t be long before we see and hear him just about everywhere.

Here’s what Mystikal had to say when we spoke with him recently:

THE HEAT MAGAZINE: We hear you have a lot going on. Tell us what you have in the works.

MYSTIKAL: First of all, I’m in the process of rebranding my name – you know, getting it back out there among the stars. I’ve been doing a lot of shows. I’ve been traveling so much, man. I’m to the point now where I’m trying to figure out what it is. I’ve been off the scene for six years now. I left people with their hands in the air for six years and now I’ve come back, their hands are still up, you know? All I’ve been doing is really just doing shows and features and various projects – things like that. I’ve been getting reacquainted with it.

THE HEAT MAGAZINE: How did it feel to be on that Congo Square stage at Jazz Fest this past Spring? We hear that the crowd just went crazy.

MYSTIKAL: Imagine that. I’ve come home and people show me nothing but love. Lil Wayne’s talking about, “How to Love” … Sheeiitttttt. They are just really showing me – really showing me how to do that.

THE HEAT MAGAZINE: You have a birthday celebration coming up, don’t you?

MYSTIKAL: Now, why you gotta bring up old stuff? (LAUGHS) Yeah, on the 22nd of September. In ’94, I was a 20 year old North Pole (LAUGHS) …. They say the 40’s are the new 20’s, so we’ll see.

THE HEAT MAGAZINE: We hear you recently encountered an unusual situation where the fans were actually throwing things at you in celebration of your performance. Tell us how it was being on that stage when the Juggaloes were doing that.

MYSTIKAL: To come out there and to be a part of whatever it is that they’re doing – a bunch of these young teenage kids – I was like, “Damn!” I had the pleasure of working with Insane Clown Posse because we were label mates when I was on Jive. They were fans of mine. Insane Clown Posse had invited me to come down there so I went. They kind of do the same thing in their performances. That’s how they get down, you know? That’s what they do. If that crowd don’t throw something at you, you must not be good or something or you must not be hitting on sh*t. So understanding that, I was throwing sh*t back at them. I don’t know exactly what they were throwing, because I didn’t catch most of it, but it was fun. They were throwing stuff and that sh*t was really fun.

THE HEAT MAGAZINE: You have a lot of fans from all over, but especially Down South. What do you have to say to those fans who have missed Mystikal?

MYSTIKAL: I keep asking what it is that keeps my fans endeared to me. It never ceases to amaze me, man. I have the right mindset now and I just thank my fans and keep it moving. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., President Obama – you know, Dr. King believed every single word that came out of his mouth and so does President Obama. Not to compare myself to either of them, but I want to do just that – tell the truth – just be true – true to who I am.

THE HEAT MAGAZINE: Over the years, you’ve worked with so many different people in the entertainment industry. I know that Tim Smooth was one of the main people with whom you’ve worked and that he had been there since the beginning of your career. What do you have to say about the loss of Tim and what impact that has on the music world?

MYSTIKAL: Like I said on The Monique Show, that was my hero. Scarface – the legend from the Geto Boys – and I were just talking about this. I feel like I learned so much from Tim. I feel like the world’s been cheated out of something and that it didn’t get a chance to really see what all Tim had – on a big scale. I wouldn’t be the rapper that I am today, had I not met Tim Smooth, and that’s just real talk. I remember that day like it was yesterday. I was working on my Mind of Mystikal album with the CEO of Big Boy at the time had Tim come in and wrote some stuff for me. He was looking at us like we were just playing around, but Tim was coming in there, really taking care of business. When that man sat down at the table with me, lawd have mercy – changed my life. He was bad – wasn’t nothing like Tim. He was a complete artist, too man. Everything. That was a big loss right there – a big loss.

THE HEAT MAGAZINE: What are we going to see you doing in the near future?

MYSTIKAL: I can’t really put my finger on it you know, about what it is that changed in the game, but something has changed. Wayne and Kanye – They’ve inspired me. They better get ready for me, you know? Lawd have mercy. I see myself on something like the MTV Awards. It’s coming. Everything’s lining up. The biggest compliment I ever got was when I was told, “Man I don’t like rap, but I love your music.” That’s a compliment right there. I just can’t go anywhere without getting love. I’m about to meet the whole criteria of what a new artist is, as far as being relevant. I have a lot of things coming up, like reality shows, and I’m going to be doing it all. I’m getting back into the mix.

EDITOR’S NOTE:  We wish Mystikal the best of success in all of his endeavors. We are glad to see him back on the scene!

You can follow Mystikal on Twitter at @ItsMystikal and on Facebook at 1Mystikal. Check out his You Tube channel at YouTube.com/1MystikalTV.

Arlene Culpepper, Asst. Editor-in-Chief
Arlene Culpepper, Asst. Editor-in-Chiefhttp://www.mikodreamz.com
Vice-President & Asst. Editor-in-Chief of The Heat Magazine, Arlene is a Louisiana native, Certified Paralegal, Publicist, Owner of MIKODreamz PR, co-owner of 504Diffusion, writer, producer, and jack of all trades, who is heavily involved in her community as well as serving as Media Advisor for New Orleans Union for Entertainment (NOUE), Member of the NOLA Music Awards from 2012-present & Member of the Press Club of New Orleans. Her work is published across the web. Her PR work has been highly recognized & awarded. She was/is publicist for the late great BTY YoungN, 0017th and more. She is also working on her first novel & aspires to turn it into a film & is currently writing the authorized biography of the legendary Pimp C of UGK. She can be reached via email at Arlene@theheatmag.com. Follow her on Twitter - @CategorySeven & Instagram - @hurricanearlene.
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3 COMMENTS

  1. THANKS MIKE FOR THOSE SPECIAL WORDS ABOUT MY BROTHER (.TIM SMOOTH.) KNOW THIS…HE LOVED YOU THE SAME Way……NY SON WOULD SAY CERTAIN RAPPERS WAS COLD….TIM WOULD SAY…BOI,ME N MYSTIKAL WOULD TEAR THEM NIGGAS ASSES TO PEICES…LOL …

  2. im so maddddddddddddddddddddd about this bdaybash i want to b there wilding out with u but i guess not when u cuming back to brunswick ga a holla at yr girl the 1 n only mrs.cornbread

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