Checking in with Pete Mako
Written by Sandeep Sehbi
Pete’s a hardworking guy. He plays a lot of shows, takes the time to get photoshoots done. He’s recorded a great solo disc that did pretty well. Being a guy who does a lot of these conventions, he’s got access to a market that most of us don’t touch, and there’s a lot to that. His bands coming along well, and I’m excited to see the whole thing put together. It’s also rad to see him finally getting to string together some tours. And the fact that he’s gotten involved in organizing so much is also pretty awesome to see.
TUNED UP: So you’re going on tour?
Pete: Yeah, that’s correct my first official tour.
TUNED UP: You’ve been super busy lately, you lost your old job? And your apartment tried to get rid of you?
Pete: Yeah, things personally have been shaken up, but I’m not letting that slow me down. My job status is still up in the air. My apartment complex is kinda difficult, so it’s whatever. Music is number one, my dedication is serious.
TUNED UP: You’ve been playing a ton of shows, you’ve been calling Northern Ohio a second home? How’s it been up there, why is it so central to Pete Mako right now?
Pete: Northeast Ohio is home to an amazing music scene, I feel like it’s minutes away from booming. I know so many talented bands and musicians up there. I just started going to shows and then playing them up there, and the scene room a shine to me. They are great people. I’ll always have a show there and as multiple club owners have told me, I’m welcome anytime. I’m also working for an awesome radio station up there. I’m going to be bringing Columbus music to them, and Northeastern Ohio music to Columbus.
TUNED UP: How’s the Pete Mako band coming along?
Pete: We are a three piece and the talent I’m working with is unreal. My bass player Caleb… Top notch. Ed, the drummer, this kid has talent. He fit in right away. I hold them both in very high regards. We are debuting on October 16th at Wild Goose Creative for the BOTU: Animation+ event! We are opening for We Are The Movies who have shows with national touring acts Coming up. It’s exciting.
TUNED UP: You recently played an anime convention? How’d that go? How’d you get involved with that?
Pete: I’ve been doing conventions for years. As an artist, as a panelist, and as a musical act. My music fits well in the scene and I have tons of friends, nationwide, that do these events. The event went very well, I recently posted some pics and vids on my Facebook from the event.
TUNED UP: You’ve been helping organize the London2Calais mixtape and the upcoming Live at the Garden 5, how’s all that been? Your thoughts on philanthropy and large scale events?
Pete: Working with the London2calais and LATG5 is just a natural fit for me. I like the ideology behind both events and what they mean for their respective scenes. Anytime you have a chance to do good or help make a positive change, you should. Jump on it. Of course with large scale projects and events there is a fair share of hurdles you have to jump, but I feel like this is one of my callings, facing adversity, and beating it.
TUNED UP: You’re also working with Best of the Underground with an anime based show, tell us a bit about that?
Pete: The event I’m planning is going to be pretty rad, I have an amazing line up of folks from my convention scene crossing over into the music scene and vice versa. It’s like I’m bridging a huge gap. We will have music, cosplay, gaming, arts… A little bit of every thing. As I’ve mentioned we have We Are The Movies and The Trulie awesome joining us! I’m so excited to be debuting my band as well. This is like a night catered to the things I love, and I get to share it on such a grand scale.
TUNED UP: One of your hallmarks is your active blog, where’d the idea come from? Is it hard to stay on top of?
Pete: My blog is of my own design. I thought of ways to post about not only me, but the bands and acts I’ve worked with. So far, I’ve played with bands from 18 states and 4 countries. For a relative unknown from Ohio, that’s pretty rad. It’s hard to keep it up, when your as busy as me, but I can’t let my readers down. They support me, so I keep the goodness flowing. It’s hard work, but I love it.
TUNED UP: You’ve been playing with a lot of international artists lately, how has that felt? Does it lend you some perspective you didn’t have before?
Pete: The fact that I’ve had the chance to meet and play alongside so many international artists is a blessing. There is so much to learn from them. In total I think I’ve played with 8 Canadian bands, a band from New Zealand, a band from Costa Rica, and a band from Japan. The music scenes all have their similarities and differences across international waters. So any chance I can take a bit of knowledge from them I do. My perspective is certainly more in focus now than it was before. The level of talent out there is amazing, and I have to work that much harder on my craft to keep up. Who knows maybe I’ll go on a Canadian tour, or European tour one day. That’s the dream.
TUNED UP: What are your plans for the rest of 2015?
Pete: As for 2015 goes, it’s all about maintaining my output levels, but also recording with my band. Writing, writing, and more writing. I’ve been testing many styles and I think I know where we are headed. Hopefully December we will have a 5-6 song EP finished up. I personally am going to do at least two tours by years end. 2015 still has a ways to go, but I’m always looking deeper into the future, I already have conventions shows booked well into 2016. So things are happening far into next year. All I can do is bring my brand to the masses and give as many people as I can a great quality show, and music.