Sunday, July 25, 2010

Mingering Mike

Mingering Mike is a fictitious funk and soul recording artist created in the late 1960s as the subject of works of album art by a young Mike Stevens. More recently, Mingering Mike was rediscovered by law firm investigator Dori Hadar and his friend Frank Beylotte, who came across the art work at a flea market. Mingering Mike had created a whole complex, yet nonexistent music career (including a Bruce Lee concept album), and had released more than 50 album covers in 10 years. When Mike was rediscovered, it was learned that he had yet more unreleased material from the same time period as his first releases and it is in the process of being released as a real album. Mingering Mike at first refused to release his real name or allow a photo to be taken of him, because he's afraid his new celebrity status will cause him to lose his two day jobs.

In 2007, Dori Hadar released a book of Mike's work entitled “The Amazing Career of an Imaginary Soul Superstar,” published by Princeton Architectural Press. On June 17, 2008, the digital download service eMusic made the first Mingering Mike full length, Super Gold Greatest Hits, available to its subscribers. The album consists of tracks Mike recorded to reel-to-reel as a teenager.

In 2010 Mike's original record cover work will be featured in the exhibition The Record: Contemporary Art and Vinyl at the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University.

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