Mingering Mike

Artist / Band / Musician
Soul / R&B / Funk

Mingering Mike 45 available now!!!

Mingering Mike is the soul superstar you've never heard of.

Between 1968 and 1977 Mike recorded over fifty albums,

managed thirty-five of his own record labels, and produced,

directed and starred in nine of his own motion pictures. In

1972 alone he produced fifteen LPs and over twenty singles,

and his traveling revue played for sold out crowds the world


How is it that such a prolific musician has gone under the radar

for the past 30+ years?

The answer is that all took place in Mike's imagination, and

in the vast collection of fake cardboard records and acapella

home recordings that he made for himself as a teenager in

Washington, D.C. in the late 1960s.

In 2003 two record diggers (Dori Hadar and Frank Beylotte)

stumbled into the world of Mingering Mike at a flea market.

There they discovered a collection of albums that were made

solely of cardboard, and each package was intricately crafted,

complete with gatefold interiors, extensive liner notes, and

grooves drawn onto the "vinyl." Some albums were even

covered in shrinkwrap, as if purchased at actual record stores.

The crates contained albums not only by Mingering Mike, but

also other unheard of artists such as Joseph War, the Big "D,"

and Rambling Ralph, on labels such as Fake Records, Inc.,

Decision, Sex, and Mother Goose. There were soundtracks to

imaginary films, a benefit album for sickle cell anemia, and a

tribute to Bruce Lee.

Baffled by the discovery, they posted pictures of the albums on

Soulstrut.com, a forum for record collectors. Mike instantly

became a cult hero, and soon everybody was dying to know

who this Mingering Mike was and why he would have made

this bizarre collection of seemingly non-existent albums.

Dori and Frank tracked Mike down, and they soon became

friends Mike revealed his story of how as a lonesome teenager

he dreamt of being a soul singer, songwriter and producer. His

dream was his and his alone - he shared it with no one outside of

his close family, and he surely never imagined that it would be

seen by anyone else. A couple of weeks earlier Mike had fallen

behind on his storage payments, and, as a result, many of his

belongings (including all of his handmade albums and recordings)

were auctioned off and sold at the flea market.

A shy kid growing up in turbulent 1960s, Mike expressed himself

the only way he knew how: through his music and his art. He

took in everything around him - the war in Vietnam, war and civil

rights protests, a growing drug epidemic, poverty and racism -

and made something beautiful out of it all.

MINGERING MIKE, by Dori Hadar (Princeton

Architectural Press), presents Mingering Mike's best albums

and 45s, finally bringing to the star the adoring audience he

always imagined he had. With a preface by Neil Strauss, an

essay by Jane Livingston, and a message from Mingering

Mike himself.
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