What to watch / What to make

August 3, 2014

I mentioned on Twitter a few days ago that I’m planning on doing a vlog from the road on Carnivores tour; I’ll post a new video once a week.  Shoot me ideas and suggestions by following me on Twitter (HERE), and I’ll try to incorporate them as I go.  Not sure what’s going to happen or how it might evolve.

The episodes will end up on our LP Youtube channel (subscribe now!), and unlike the normal LPTV episodes, my vlog videos will be short, no-budget, firsthand accounts, probably shot on my phone.

The tour starts this week.  Until then, here’s the latest LPTV episode, following the band through the end of the tour in Europe:


Pointless Dicks: @CHVRCHES, Laziness, and Cowards.

July 1, 2014

As we released THE HUNTING PARTY, I spoke on various occasions about the inspiration of the album.  Part of the answer is that the album is a response to a surplus of danceable, safe, indie-pop music that’s taken over “rock”.  A year ago, we knew the indie-pop thing was a style that our band is capable of making.  But we were not interested in pursuing it.  Why?  Because there is a LOT of it out there.  It seemed far more exciting for us to go against the grain.

In interviews like this one and this one I plainly explained that, although I enjoy listening to bands like Haim, CHVRCHES, Vampire Weekend, Arcade Fire, M83, and Phoenix, I felt like the genre as a whole was suffering from a surplus of bands in that vein–bands that, in many cases, came after the ones I mentioned.  And I made it abundantly clear that my comment was not a dig:

Screen Shot 2014-07-01 at 5.03.02 PM

But in spite of all that, in an interview recently, the band CHVRCHES was asked to respond to the comment…kinda.  They were asked to respond to a version of the comment that was not consistent with what I actually said.  Now, to be clear, it’s a journalist’s tendency (if not their main objective) to sensationalize this kind of commentary, and make a fight where there is none.  Let’s not let them have that.

I learned a new term this year: “click bait.”  Click bait is when someone titles a piece in a sensationalized way in order to get more clicks.  It’s what I did with the title of this post.

There’s a lot I could pick apart about the CHVRCHES interview; after all, the group’s singer criticized me for “saying something that would become a tagline”…by saying something that became a tagline.  (Also notable: the journalist printed the title “pointless dick” but the actual words were “pointless dig”).  But really, my criticism is not with them or any of those bands.  I said their names because I was telling the story of how our album began: not because I hate that style music, but because I hate the volume of it.  In contrast, one way of looking at it is: the bands I named are the only ones I singled out as being on my “awesome” list (albeit, there are others who are awesome, and there are yet others who are “not awesome”, but that’s neither here nor there).

Lazy journalists will simplify words and start conflicts they don’t have to fight in.  Cowardly bloggers will take sides based on what other blogs think is cool.  In contrast, THE HUNTING PARTY is a statement about who we are and what inspires us right now.  It’s a stab out into an unknown.  Our fight is with conformity, stagnation, inspiration, and even our own band’s complex history.  And a big thank you goes out to CHVRCHES and all the bands whose names I’ve mentioned, for helping us find direction with this album.  Because sometimes, knowing where you don’t want to go is all the direction you need.



Free Linkin Park Song: “Complimentary” by Mike Shinoda for Stagelight

December 10, 2012

With Stagelight now out for Windows, a number of you guys are checking it out. This week, I wanted to do something special for all our early adopters who are helping us spread the word: I made you guys a song.

This session can be downloaded and opened in Stagelight on Windows 7 or 8. It’s not an audio file and doesn’t contain any audio so (for now) only Stagelight users get to hear it.

For those of you who haven’t checked it out yet: Stagelight is a new music-making program designed by Open Labs and me. It’s the result of years of testing on stage and in the studio. With it, anyone at any level can make a great song in as little as a few minutes. It’s powerful and it’s simple, and you can buy it for only $10 HERE.

Again, thank you for being the first to check out Stagelight.

Download COMPLIMENTARY here: http://smarturl.it/LP_StageLight

PS: I’m leaving today for Dell World in Austin; keep an eye out for footage online!


Fort Minor Fans: The Album You Thought You’d Never Hear.

September 27, 2012

I first met STYLES OF BEYOND (S.O.B.) in the late ’90s, rapping at parties and with friends in the San Fernando Valley, north of L.A.  Years later, I featured them on my Fort Minor album, on songs like Remember The Name and Believe Me.

After we wrapped up the touring for FM, the guys were signed to Linkin Park’s imprint Machine Shop Records.  Above all, I believed in these guys, and I loved the music they made.  Shortly thereafter, we began putting the finishing touches on an amazing album, Reseda Beach.  Aside from the music they self-produced, we had tracks from J. Dilla and Scoop Deville, and even a super random cameo appearance by Michael Buble (which didn’t make album, but was an amazing experiment).

It was a very exciting time–I always felt like the album they put together showcased exactly what set this group apart from other rap collectives: their knack for setting a tone and vibe, their unique sense of humor, and their classic-sounding style.

As I mentioned HERE a while back, we had every intention of releasing the S.O.B. album on our imprint label, but we ran into roadblocks.  When things got impossible, Styles Of Beyond split up, and decided to pursue separate interests. It was a terrible time, especially for them, but also for me–we had all put so much work and hope into this project, and it seemed that it might all go straight down the toilet.

But recently, thanks to persistent interest from fans, Ryu, Tak, Cheapshot, Skully, and some mutual friends decided to put out the album that we all put so much work into.

I’ve always been a big fan of this album, and I’m glad you’re all going to be able to hear it.  Here’s one of my favorite tracks off the record, The Pirate Song:

So please support the guys, check this out, and spread the word.  They’ve got a bundle that comes with a t-shirt, and another bundle that comes with a second CD (including many of the other tracks we recorded while making the album, featuring Bishop Lamont, Scoop Deville, Apathy, Celph Titled, and some guy named Mike Shinoda).

Get the album HERE


The Number One, Twitter Responses, and a New Linkin Park Video Game.

July 8, 2012

I wanted to take a moment to respond to a couple things online that caught my eye. These responses seemed worth more time than a tweet, so I collected them for answers here.

1.) First off, thanks to the fans for making LIVING THINGS #1 in the U.S. this week. Billboard says that LP now holds the record for the most consecutive #1 albums on the Billboard 200 chart since the year 2000. A surprising bit of trivia, though: the five albums are Meteora, Collision Course, Minutes To Midnight, A Thousand Suns, and LIVING THINGS…Hybrid Theory, although it did stay in the Billboard Top 100 for over 100 weeks, peaked at #2, and never made it to #1.


Help me with LP Radio

December 8, 2011

Hey guys. I’m going to updating our station at IHeartRadio soon. I need some ideas about what to do.

Post some ideas, questions you want answered, etc. below…


EDIT: For those of you outside the US, can’t you listen to it at the link?  It’s here:



New Linkin Park Remixes, Courtesy of LPA Fan Site

November 23, 2011

From LPAssociation.com…The fan site is doing a monthly remix contest.  In their words:

“October’s Monthly Mix-Up proved to be one of our most diverse and creative months in terms of overall entries. By giving Linkin Park fans the challenge of converting Linkin Park’s hard rock stadium anthems into heart-pounding dance pop tracks, musicians were forced to take Linkin Park’s music in an unconventional direction, with many experimenting with this style of music for the first time ever. While some found the genre too difficult to participate, we managed to get quite a few amazing entries and we’re very encouraged by the amount of diversity shown by participants in our October challenge, which proved to be one hard month to judge. However; without further ado we would like to name October’s Official Winners (and Runners Up!)”

Go here to check out these great tracks:



Responses To Comments: 3G Auto-Off Mode

October 31, 2011

These comments are updated, from the comments on my last post:

dcl1982 on October 29, 2011 at 1:11 pm:
Larry King had an episode on this issue a few years ago. Consequently, I started seeing a whole bunch of people using blue-tooth.
M: From what I’ve now read, a bluetooth earpiece emits less radiation.  But an even safer way to go is a wired earpiece with a ferrite bead or just plain old speakerphone…Or no cel phone.

L. on October 29, 2011 at 10:33 am:
hey Mike, my iPhone switches to wifi if i’ve turned on the setting that remembers wifi networks that i’ve previously connected to. doesn’t that mean that 3G is off already? =/

M: I don’t think so.  If you see the 3G or phone icon at the top (even if the WiFi icon turns on) then your 3G is still enabled.  Your phone may be choosing to use WiFi for most functions, but it’s not guaranteed. 

Also, keep in mind that if you have fewer bars, your phone is working harder to get signal, and therefore is emitting more radiation.


kathyxx on October 29, 2011 at 9:49 am:
This is actually a difficult subject as the media puts a lot of muddle into it. The best way to become an expert on the subject is to skip the media, skip the anecdotes, and go straight to the scientific white papers. The ones with all the big complicated words in them. As far as KATHYxx knows, the dangers of cell phone radiation is exaggerated by media (Media lied about vaccines/autism. The sun is a more dangerous source of radiation. AM/FM radio waves are harmless, and I think each other type of protocol are using different strengths.  BUT I am no expert in radiation. Talk to me about computer science, but otherwise, go to Google Scholar and read the abstract and conclusions

M: This isn’t about media, to me. The W.H.O. made a statement about this, which I take seriously. Besides, I would rather weigh statements by reputable international sources than dive into the internet abyss, trying to pretend I can decipher scientific papers.


…And there was this exchange, on Twitter, between me and someone I’ve never met:

DrAwesome37: @m_shinoda in the second sentence of the second paragraph, you spelled cell with only one “l”, just thought you should know 🙂

m_shinoda: @DrAwesome37, you forgot to punctuate your name.

@DrAwesome37: @m_shinoda I’m a fifteen year old boy, you’re a rockstar petitioning to change the OS for the most used phone in the world.

@m_shinoda: @m_shinoda is now following @drawesome37

@m_shinoda: @DrAwesome37 Even though I have no idea who you are, I’m going to follow you for a month, and see what happens.

(Follow me & the conversation on Twitter, here)


Responses To Comments: Maschine (and recording)

September 8, 2011

1oo71: Would you recommend it as a first piece of equipment, or should beginners get something simpler?

M: I think the Maschine Mikro might be a good starter…it’s $400 US, which is a pretty good deal, considering what you get.  The sound library it comes with is really good, BTW.  So you’ll be starting with a big library of good sounds, and you can start adding your own from there.

counter17: Hey Mike just wanted to know. What kind of monitors do you use for your home studio? Thnx

M: I switch between Adam A-7s and Mackie HR 824s.

kytheram: mike what did you use to make the beats on reanimation?

M: I made most of my beats and loops right in ProTools at that time.  Just clipped little sounds and laid them out in grid mode.

Radyo Plexus: Mike, if I would put my own personal studio, what would you suggest in terms of the analogue consoles and recorders? Thanx!

M: If you’re a beginner, I wouldn’t recommend going analogue right away.  Digital recording is cheaper and provides beginners with a lot of experience, since most of the software packages come with bundles of plug-ins / effects (so if you don’t know a lot about how compressors, EQs, gates, reverbs, delays, etc. work, you’ll get to play around with all of them).  Analogue recording means you need to buy tape, which you need to get every time you want to record.  Plus the tapes pile up in your closet as you make new stuff.  But if those things don’t sound like deterrents, analogue recording is a lot of fun.  Great, warm sound, and it tends to limit you to a certain number of tracks, which can be a good challenge.

DerekOswald made this awesome remix and video, which I wanted to share.

And finally, don’t forget to tune in to LinkinPark.com in a few hours to catch the inexplicable A THOUSAND HORIZONS, streaming in augmented reality…go to the site now to register and be ready to watch.


Why Don’t You Care About Me: The Vocal Minority, and Members vs. Non-Members

June 28, 2011

A couple weeks ago, the following message caught my eye on Twitter:

“LPUers r ‘First class fans’ cause they fuckin pay.the other fans r nothing to you,cause we dont pay,huh?PISSED OFF! @linkinpark @m_shinoda”

Quick recap: LPU is the Linkin Park fan organization.  It costs $60 for a year-long membership.  The details of what you get with membership are listed here.  I assume the “first class fan” part was in reference to a comment the band made at some point.  This person appears to be very (10 out of 10) upset.

It’s sometimes hard to read the nuances of intended emotion in a typed blog post, so I’ll be very clear that I’m not angry, nor do I feel defensive as I write this.  I’m calmly sitting in a hotel room on tour, with a cup of coffee and a couple pieces of toast.  And this tweet got me thinking about something that’s bigger than the “who is the best fan” question.

So, let’s answer the tweet!