WASHINGTON — Mika fell in love with the acoustics at DC's Sixth & I Historic Synagogue Wednesday night, which led to two performances off the mic — something he said he'd not done in public since he was a child.
Asking if the audience would be quiet — and could still hear him — before doing so, Mika pushed away the mic for a performance of "Stardust." After that, he mused that he could sing the rest of the show without a mic — but decided it was better kept in use for some of the rest of the set.
Later, however, he pushed the mic away again for "Lola."
In the run up to Wednesday's show, the out gay artist spoke with Metro Weekly's Doug Rule about the impact of his being more open about his sexuality recently.
Your last album, last year's great The Origin of Love, seemed a little lighter and sunnier and happier than the first two. I wondered if becoming more explicit about being gay had any bearing on that.
MIKA: I actually have to agree with you — I think that it probably does. It's a kind of fearlessness, right? There's less deflection. You get this much more candid — yet sometimes quite brutal, and brutally optimistic — un-judgmental way of writing lyrics. Which is kind of what happened.
My albums are a reflection of my life at this time, which for some reason in pop music people find that hard to believe. It's like you assume that pop records are just these constructs from the back of [super-producer] Dr. Luke's empire. Some think that seems to be where pop comes from. But it's not, actually.
Pop can be brutally honest and very reflective of the life of the artist. It was totally a reflection of that. The more brutal and honest and open and candid we are with what we write, the more potential we have to actually be moving or to say something that makes you feel something.