Wired for Sound
Out of Mind Experience. The process began as Michael Michael & Raphael Groten joined forces creating O.M.E. and their unique music style, "World Soul Electronica". A blending of live and electronic instruments and sounds, O.M.E. reaches across genres and draws influences from the Americas, Africa and the Caribbean. Out of Mind Experience offers a beautiful mesh of hip beats, funky, smooth, danceable grooves, lyrically flowin, positive vibes from the soul, making the moment feel good music. That's what inspires O.M.E.
Michael Wojcik a.k.a. Michael Michael was born and raised in the Chicago music scene. He is a lead vocalist, producer, songwriter, programmer, percussionist and performer. Michael Michael was the president and owner of Chicago Music Complex from 1989 to 1995, the largest music facility in Chicago at the time. For over thirty years Michael Michael has been producing, composing, performing and professionally recording a variety of musical genres. From Latin Jazz to Punk Rock and everything in between, his unique approach and techniques have kept him on the cutting edge of sound production. He has also released several CD's and videos, created film scores, music for fashion runway events, television and radio commercials.
For over 25 years Raphael Groten has been studying, playing, and performing music. Although classically trained on saxophone, it is Raphael’s self-taught finger style guitar which sets him apart as a musician. Raphael describes his music as world guitar: a unique blend of folk, funk, jazz, and classical music, mixed with influences from around the world, including Cuba, Brazil, and Africa. He has released and performed on several CD’s and his latest solo album, Life is Strange was produced by Michael Michael. . Playing with heartfelt intention Raphael aims to lift his listeners to heights of consciousness. We were delighted to catch up with the duet from the Windy City to have a little chat....
R. How did you become involved in the type of music you play/sing now?
O.M.E. We've been friends for 17 years. We both come from very different musical styles but we had a lot of common interests & tastes. I produced Raphael's previous music project. We decided to work together, combining our styles, blending Raph's World flavors with my electronica. After one rehearsal, playing with one idea, we new we were on to something special. Out of Mind Experience (O.M.E.) The initials were our way of spreading the spiritual sound "OM".
R. What are your songs about? (What specific themes do they cover?)
O.M.E. Our lyrics are about being positive. Sharing peace & love. Understanding that everything is alright. We feel there is so much fear & negativity in the media, we just want to be uplifting. There are many beautiful things happening all the time. We'd rather focus on the good & the idea that we are all connected.
R. What do you think your "biggest break" or "greatest opportunity" has been so far in your musical career?
O.M.E. One of the greatest opportunities to come our way is our fans. We are thanked endlessly for making people smile & making them feel good. We're always singing "get out of your mind" which refers to get into your heart, body & spirit. We have found that our fans encourage us to keep doing what we're doing. O.M.E. loves creating cool, danceable, music that spreads positive vibes.
R. What do you feel distinguishes "an artists" from just a musician?
O.M.E. Artists work very hard on completing their projects. We all love to master our instruments but digging in your soul, challenging yourself to the fullest, stretching your horizons & writing thoughtful songs with depth is a greater opportunity for personal growth.
R. How long have you been together now?
O.M.E. 2.5 years
R. Do you feel the economic crunch has hurt the industry, or do you have some other promotional tips to help support your music?
O.M.E. Getting very personal with our fans. Through technology, you can speak with them on a daily basis. Let them know how important they are.
R. Do you have your own favorite type of music and is it any different from what you guys play now?
O.M.E. No favorites, we like too many styles. We both love to groove out to some good funk. Sly & the Family Stone, George Clinton, etc... We love exploring the unorthodox mixes, creative musicianship & genius teachings from our elders.
Last but not Least…
R. You've heard of the term "starving artist" before, how do you cope with major obstacles?
O.M.E.You believe in yourself & your creative works. You keep working hard & walking your path. There really aren't any obstacles just, opportunities. We love the challenges, they inspire O.M.E.