Mod Sun, a Minnesota native, began his journey in 2004, drumming for rock bands until 2010. During 2009 he simultaneously branched off finding his path releasing a slew of mixtapes and singles. Make sure to check out his debut, full-length album, “Look Up,” which just dropped this past March.
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Mike O’Keefe: Coming from Bloomington, right outside of Minneapolis, describe your hometown’s atmosphere. What’s something you’d suggest a first-time visitor to see?
Mod Sun: Alright, I was born completely in Minnesota and lived on a farm until I was six. Then I moved to Bloomington — straight suburbs man. Minnesota is very special to me because it has every single season. You get the hottest summers and the coldest winters. When you’re in 4th or 5th grade, you have to go stand at the bus stop while it’s still dark outside. Minnesota really taught me to find a way to enjoy everything.
Photo courtesy | m01229
MO: Yeah, absolutely. Strap on your winter boots.
MS: Plus the environment I was from, specifically Bloomington, is suburbs. All my neighbors were 80 years old. There were no kids that lived by me. Growing up in the suburbs, for me, music was like pop-punk, punk rock and [stuff] like that — skateboarding too.
The counter-culture thing kind of hits you for some reason when you live those suburb areas. I grew up there, was a really good kid and followed all the rules with good morals. When I got older I wanted to break out and travel the country — all that. Growing up there gives you a whole different idea of youth. Makes you think about what you want to do when you get older man. It’s a dream world.
MO: I understand that. I’m actually from the suburbs as well, outside of New York City, so I can relate to that. Now, you currently live on the West Coast. What do you like about living out there?
MS: Dude, I didn’t really love it at first. Then I recently moved into this new crib, right now actually, over a canyon. It’s definitely a strength building thing for me out here. When you first get here you want to taste it all. You want to go out in Hollywood, party all-night-long, but that’s not what it’s about for me. I wanted to see what it was like as a dude moving out to California.
At this point, a year and a half later, I have a great connection to California. The energy here is a little bit more inspiring, because literally everyone here is up and on the go. This isn’t the promise land though. I’m going to live in Paris — all that.
Photo courtesy | Nicki Varkevisser
MO: How was Vans Warped Tour? Out of all the cities you performed in were there any that stand out in terms of crowd atmosphere?
MS: Warped Tour was really cool to me honestly. This is kind of the first point in my journey where I’m starting to see people that are like, “Yo! I literally just heard you two-three weeks ago, yesterday even. We came out to see you and your tight!”
It’s been a really gradual build, and I recognize all the people that come out to my shows. I just dropped my first album and that’s a pivotal moment, where what you want to happen, happens. People who never heard you start to hear you. I’m starting to really see new faces, so that’s great. The best city I played in besides my hometown, was Pittsburgh — without a doubt. Pittsburgh showed me mad love over there.
MO: Does traveling play a role in writing music?
MS: I’m in a very inspiring place with music right now. I really love music more than ever. I’ve been making a lot of music man. I like making new songs every day. I don’t really like songs that are depicted by actual instances that are happening. Let’s say something happened last night. I’m not the type of dude that’s like, “I’ve got to write a song about it.” My songs come from a different place. So, I just kind of like to think wherever I am and feel comfortable. I don’t feel foreign anywhere.
MO: Everyone has a bucket list, what are three destinations on yours?
MS: Destination wise, I’m actually taking a nice trip to Spain. I’ve been wanting to go to Spain forever. So, I’m going there in about a week. I’ve always wanted to go to Alaska and Tokyo. Tokyo is dope!
Photo courtesy | Joseph Umnak
MO: Was being involved in music something you always wanted to do or was it an evolutionary process?
MS: Well, well remember that band Hanson? When that band was around I was like 9 or 10. I saw three kids that are like my age playing arenas and touring. I was like this is so cool, because what I was into before was all these things that you see adults doing. When I saw that I was like, “This is something I would do right away.” The first step the next day I got a drum set.
I’ve always wanted that lifestyle. I just didn’t know how I was going to get it until I went through all these things. I playing drums in rock bands and started to play guitar. It’s definitely something I’ve always wanted, but I didn’t go the regular route where it’s like, be the best guitar player around. It was like, “I don’t know what I’m going to do, but I’m going to do it.”
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For more on Mod Sun visit his website: