(Photo from Billy Mick’s Facebook)
It’s been over two years since Billy Mick first began his music career full time. Although the pandemic put some of his plans on hold, he’s now back in full force performing live on stage and has a new single, “Pretty in Pink,” ready for his fans.
Mick will hit the stage Aug. 13 at HÄOS on Church for “Billy Mick: The Power of Love” where he will be sharing his discovery of love in its many forms through his music. Mick sat down with Watermark to discuss how he got his start in music, the musicians he looks up to for inspiration and what people can expect from his upcoming single and shows.
WATERMARK: How did you get your start in music?
BILLY MICK: Anyone that I interacted with told me that I wouldn’t make it in the music business as an out, gay male. So, I stepped away from it and did a lot of theme park performing and local theater around Orlando. Then when my husband and I had gone to Manchester in 2018, they had two stages and they had a ton of acts, big-name acts and people were there all day and I was like, “Well gosh, I think this might be a good time in life to start a career.” So, I went back to my hotel at the Velvet and I wrote what would end up being my first single, which was “Flesh and Bone.” It’s all about just what an amazing experience that was in Manchester and all of that. Then I came back home and I was like, “You know what? I’m just going to start recording,” and I did. That was the first song I came out with, “Flesh and Bone.”
How long has it been since then?
That was July of 2019.
What do you like most about performing?
I just love jiving with the audience, it’s really nice. During quarantine, of course, I got the opportunity to perform virtually a whole lot which was nice because I kind of came into my own as far as what kind of performance I wanted to put out there. So when HÄOS on Church opened, I started performing there and it was just incredible. It was just such a different feeling.
What does your songwriting process look like, when you sit down to write new lyrics for a song?
Honestly, most of the time I just start singing. Something just comes into my head and I just start singing. I have like 8,000 voice memos on my phone of unfinished songs. So I’ll sit down and I’ll start playing around in Logic and find the beat I want and the rhythm I want. Usually, once I put that together, I just kind of sit down and I sing the whole thing through. It just usually all comes together. Every now and then it’s a little harder and I have to go back to a song later but most of the time it just kind of just comes out.
Are there any musicians that you look up to for inspiration?
Actually, there are so many. I’m a really big fan of Robbie Williams. I think he would probably be the pinnacle for me, mainly because he’s very eclectic like I am. I like doing all different kinds of music, you know? I mean, I have some disco here, I have some rock and a little punk. I have what a lot of people consider country. I kind of like all of that and Robbie Williams is really one of the only artists I think that does that consistently like he is not afraid to step up and do something completely different than we’re used to hearing from him.
Have you performed outside of Orlando?
I performed for Space Coast Pride in 2019. I was slated to do it again last year and of course, that didn’t happen. Then I decided to do it again this year and they just canceled. So far, that’s the only place I’ve performed outside of Orlando.
What is it like performing in Orlando? Being that it is your hometown, what is it like to have that home crowd?
I have to say it really is an amazing feeling. We have such a really fantastic, strong community. Every aspect of the community: the LGBTQ+ community, the faith community, the theater community. Everyone is so strong and together here that when you have an audience and you are there with them and everyone is vibing that love that is in that room is overwhelming.
Tell me a little bit about your show that’s coming up and what audiences can expect.
Well, this is my third time doing a show at HÄOS. I did my first one back in April and the first couple were really more biographical, like it was me kind of singing my songs and telling my life story. This one is all about love. I really wanted to talk about all the different types of love [that] there are in the world, you know, it’s not just between two people. It’s loving yourself, it’s the love from your friends, it’s finding true love. It’s all of those things. It’s caring about your fellow man. That’s love, just all about love because really at the root of all music that’s what it all comes back to. If we could all just love a little more, the world would be a much better place.
What are your music goals or aspirations that you’d like to achieve? Maybe there’s a certain place you’d like to perform?
I’ll be honest, my ultimate [goal] is just to do the Pride circuit. Like if I could just do Prides, I would be so happy doing that, you know, or maybe do a concert adjacent to one of those Prides or something here and there. To perform at Pride is really what I would like to do. My music speaks a lot about loving yourself, loving others and it’s something that I think is very relevant in the LGBTQ+ community. So to be able to reach that audience, that’s the most important thing to me.
What do you having coming up you want to tell your fans about?
I have a new single coming out tomorrow called “Pretty in Pink,” which is very self-empowerment. It’s all about telling haters to get lost. Then, I’m doing a variety show at HÄOS on Church. I have a Bette Midler impersonator, I have a guy that did a fabulous show for Fringe and I have an aerialist. I’m trying to bring back the ‘70s variety show. So I’m calling it the Throwback Thursday Variety Show. That is Thursday, Aug. 19, and then I have a new music video coming out that I actually filmed in Wilton Manors in Ft. Lauderdale. I’m so excited about that.
It’s so funny because we got a lot of friends of ours to the Worthington, like a big group of us and we had gone to the Alchemist and I didn’t realize that it was this whole thing. So we were looking at all the art and everything I was like, “This is a perfect place to come and film this video.” So the very next weekend, we actually drove back down there and went on vacation to all these different spots and filmed the video because there’s just so much out there. There are so many gorgeous backdrops in Ft. Lauderdale from Wilton Manors. It was neat to be there.
I’m actually from the Ft. Lauderdale area. I’ve been to the Alchemist and I know exactly what you’re talking about.
It’s amazing. Then they have a building in the back that’s kind of blown out and it has all the paintings on it. It’s just gorgeous. It was just so neat. We were there like every day. I was glad we got to see Ft. Lauderdale like that because I feel like we’ve been there a couple of times and I’ve not actually ventured out that much, so I was glad to really be able to appreciate it more.
Do you have an idea in mind of when the video will be released?
I would venture to say about two to three weeks, probably closer to two. Yeah, we’re just getting it to the editor right now.
“Billy Mick: The Power of Love” will be at HÄOS on Church Aug. 13 at 8 p.m. Doors open at 7 p.m. and tickets are $10. For more information on Billy Mick and his upcoming shows and music, visit BillyMick.com.