Interview with Canadian Idol Contestant: Mikey Bustos

Mikey Bustos is  a Filipino born-Canadian singer who has appeared on the reality television show Canadian Idol.

Sarah Velasco: What have you been up to since Canadian Idol?

Mikey Bustos: So, so much! It’s like asking a 20 year old what he’s been through since birth! LOL! In short, though, I’ve toured North America and Philippines, released records and music videos, performed alongside many artists including Christina Aguilera, Pussycat Dolls, several pinoy artistas, opened a very successful Ant Store business (AntsCanada.com), lived in several cities around North America, done thousands of shows, gone viral on Youtube birthing a fun, fresh, and new Youtube/comedy/acting career, product endorsements, won the GLOBE TATT AWARD for VIDEO SLINGER this weekend, and much more. I have been so blessed since Canadian Idol and I wake up to my Heaven every day.

Sarah Velasco: Has your style evolved since then? What has stayed the same?
Mikey Bustos: My style has definitely continued to evolve, just as I have continued to evolve since then. My music (or anything else creative that I do) and my life evolved together. Everything has matured in a way that I can't really describe. Listen to a song I recorded or performed in my early years (2000-2003) and then listen to a song I recorded or performed recently (2009-2011). I feel there's some maturity, more fun, more experience, greater informed notes, lyrics, phrasing, and tones that I couldn't have explored when I was younger.

Sarah Velasco: What should readers be looking forward to? Any upcoming projects you could let us know about?
Mikey Bustos: In terms of music, most definitely much, much more music to come. I have my sophomore album on its way! We’re currently working on a handful of exciting creative projects so keep an eye open for what’s in store. These are exciting times!

Sarah Velasco: What is your inspiration?
Mikey Bustos: Life and the divine. Sometimes I feel more like a vessel or channeler than a creator, like what I create (whether it be music, videos, art, literature, etc) comes from something far broader and infinitely more intelligent than just me. I collaborate with a Greater Source in all I do. 

Sarah Velasco: How would you describe your style? Does this differ from on and off stage?
Mikey Bustos: Well, if you are referring to music, I suppose my music can be categorized as soul. One Canadian Idol judge once summed it up well with the words “Fearless Emotion”. I think that describes my voice, art, writing style, and even garb at times. I’m a Cancerian and a Filipino… Fearless emotion!

Sarah Velasco: Do you ever get nervous on stage? Any advice on how to overcome nerves?
Mikey Bustos: Well, actually the bigger the audience the less nervous I am. I sometimes try to get myself psyched and get myself nervous when I’m about to go on stage for thousands of people, because for those big shows I’m actually too relaxed. The feeling of being nervous where the flight or fight response kicks in is such a GREAT boost which I find I need right at the kick-off of any show. For this reason, you don’t want to get rid of stage fright completely.
However, performing on stage without the nerves that are so overpowering that it affects your performance negatively, is something that comes with more experience on stage. Eventually, you simply get used to the feeling of being watched and “enjoyed”. What I do is I go to a karaoke bar as frequently as possible, because singing alone in private is NOTHING like singing in front of an audience. Handling and performing in front of an audience is an entirely different craft in itself, so karaoke is a great way to get used to the feeling of performing for a crowd. Plus, karaoke is great in that everyone is usually a great sport, everyone is completely drunk, almost everyone sounds off tune due to the drinking, and if you are still getting used to the stares, you don’t have to look at the crowd; you can look at the screen and pretend you’re reading the lyrics!

Sarah Velasco: Any advice for readers that want to get into this industry?
Mikey Bustos: Research! The music business is like any business… it’s about business. Learn the industry, buy Donald S Passman’s book on the Entertainment Industry, and surround yourself with positive people. Keep developing your craft, and the biggest secret is to stick with it until everyone around you and all your competition gives up, leaving you alone to reap the tasty flavour of success. This applies to anything in life that you want!