Mitski performs in The Current studio

"Nobody" is the lead single from Mitski's 2018 album 'Be the Cowboy' (MPR Video / Nate Ryan)
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Mitski performs in The Current studio (full session + interview)
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  • Mitski performs in The Current studio (full session + interview) 15:28
  • Mitski - Washing Machine Heart (Live at The Current) 02:08
  • Mitski - A Pearl (Live at The Current) 02:31
  • Mitski - Nobody (Live at The Current) 03:07

Mitski's latest album is called Be The Cowboy. "It's definitely not based on any real working cowboy," Mitski explains. "I'm talking the movie cowboy; the caricature of a cowboy; the Clint Eastwood cowboy; Marlboro-commercial cowboy. Just the idea of walking into a room like you own the place and maybe kind of being a lone figure."

It was a real-life instance of being a lone figure that led Mitski to pen Be The Cowboy's lead single, "Nobody." After touring in Australia and Asia, Mitski realized a flight back to the U.S. during the holidays would be too expensive, so she instead traveled to Malaysia for the end of December. "What happened was I was all alone in a country where no one knew me during the holidays when everyone I knew in my family was kind of together, and I just felt very desperately alone in a way I didn't expect because I thought I was a solitary person," Mitski recalls. "I didn't plan for loneliness at all. I didn't have any instruments but I wanted to write a song, so I walked to the nearest Toys R Us, I got a toy piano — it had about two octaves — and I wrote 'Nobody' on it to kind of dispel that feeling of loneliness."

Now, Mitski is far from being alone. The day after playing a sold-out show at First Avenue in Minneapolis, Mitski and her band stopped at The Current studio to play some songs and to talk with host Mac Wilson.

Playing First Avenue was special for Mitski. "Oh my gosh, I mean, just the history of the place," she enthuses. "Being onstage and knowing of all the other artists that I admire that played on that stage. Of course, there's Purple Rain. And I played 7th Street Entry a few times, and every time I would wonder what it [would be] like to be in the Mainroom, and then I was really in the Mainroom and once I played there, I understood why it was so special: just something about the energy in the room was just wonderful."

Use the audio player above to listen to the complete in-studio session.

Songs Performed


"Washing Machine Heart"
"A Pearl"
"Nobody"
All songs from Mitski's 2018 album Be The Cowboy, available on Dead Oceans.

Hosted by Mac Wilson
Produced by Derrick Stevens
Engineered by Michael DeMark
Visuals by Nate Ryan
Web feature by Luke Taylor

External Link

Mitski - official site

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  • Album of the Week: Mitski, 'Be the Cowboy' 'Be the Cowboy' is one of the strongest releases of 2018 and further cements Mistki as one of the most exciting talents in music.
  • Interview: Mitski's many lives Mitski's new album 'Be the Cowboy' explores the singer's roles onstage, in relationships and as a woman in the world. The artist talked to NPR's Ailsa Chang about how there's no such thing as one identity.

7 Photos

  • Mitski performs in The Current studio
    Mitski performs in The Current studio. (Nate Ryan | MPR)
  • Mitski performs in The Current studio
    Bassist Jeni Magana performs with Mitski in The Current studio. (Nate Ryan | MPR)
  • Mitski performs in The Current studio
    Patrick Hyland and Jeni Magana perform with Mitski in The Current studio. (Nate Ryan | MPR)
  • Mitski performs in The Current studio
    Drummer Bruno Luis performs with Mitski in The Current studio. (Nate Ryan | MPR)
  • Mitski performs in The Current studio
    Marie Kim performs with Mitski in The Current studio. (Nate Ryan | MPR)
  • Mitski performs in The Current studio
    Patrick Hyland's guitar during Mitski's visit to The Current studio. (Nate Ryan | MPR)
  • Mitski, 'Be The Cowboy'
    Mitski, 'Be The Cowboy' (Dead Oceans)

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