Milano w/ The Lit Lords & DrewFilament @ The Bailo Featuring Lunatix show; March 2016
Interviewed By Zak Aslane
Intro By RayTrill
Milano The Don is what you would call a versatile music entrepreneur of sorts. A Jack of all trades and also a master of quite a few. Milano Raps, Produces & DJ’s along with providing tons of behind the scene support and running labels and collectives. Milano has a way with vocals, it’s an edgy hard style with an unyielding delivery; probably the reason why so many harder artists have picked him up for vocals. His discography is extensive, his mixing skills are superb and with support from some of the biggest names in the game we expect everything that he comes out with to be incredible.
Milano has close ties to the TRILLVO team, from spending a weekend with our family at Stereo Live, working closely with us to deliver contest judging and prizes and mixing one of our favorite guest mixes. Get to know this musical architect a bit better.
ZAK: Whats up Milano thanks for taking your time out to do this with us today! How’s Jersey?
MILANO: It’s good. Summer is right around the corner and you really can’t beat Jersey in the Summer.
ZAK: You are kind of a jack of all trades, you produce, you DJ, you rap & you write! What do you enjoy the most?
MILANO: Definitely producing. I’ll always have love for rap, though. Producing and rapping in the Hip-Hop world in the early 2000s is how I got started in music.
ZAK: Where do you see your career in 5 years?
MILANO: Tough to say, really. Things have been progressing at a steady pace for me the past few years so I plan to keep it moving. In a perfect world, I’d be making a living off music. Doesn’t have to be millions, though obviously that’d be ideal. To be able to live comfortably doing what I love, that’s always been the dream.
ZAK: You make a lot of tracks that incorporate hard styles of music such as hard trap, jersey bounce, and all mixes in between. What attracts you to the harder styles of EDM?
MILANO: EDM in general is something I shied away from for a lot of years. Probably because I was only being exposed to the more “radio friendly” side of the genre. It wasn’t until I got tired of the hip-hop that was being released that I decided to dig into the EDM sub-genres a little. That’s when I discovered Trap. I look at Trap as the electronic world’s answer to hip-hop and it seems the more time that goes by, the more the genres seem to blend.
ZAK: Lace us up on your history in music, what got you into making music and what music were you listening to growing up?
MILANO: This is where I’ll end up babbling on forever. I’m an 80s baby, so for me it’s always been 90s “Golden Era” Hip-Hop. Growing up in Northern New Jersey, that’s all anyone ever played. From the more popular artists like Biggie, Nas, Jay, Em, Wu-Tang, Mobb Deep, to the more underground shit like Bootcamp Clik, all the Rawkus Records stuff, Elzhi, Royce Da 5’9. In my teenage years, I was a huge fan of Dipset, Fabolous, all the NY/NJ/Philly mixtape shit from the mid 2000s like A-Team, Joe Budden, Grafh, Cassidy, Stack Bundles.
Producer wise, I still idolize Alchemist, DJ Premier, & Havoc. I love that dark, sampled, boom bap hip-hop.
To me tho, Royce da 5’9, Grafh, and Elzhi are the ultimate gods when it comes to putting a verse together — interesting rhyme schemes, complicated punchlines, and flow. Those guys inspired my lyrical style the most.
ZAK: Tell us about the GHGH Collective and where you hope to help take them in terms of artists, music, etc.
MILANO: GHGH Collective was basically this collective of hard artists started by DrewFilament and LUNATIX a few years back. When I first started producing, I looked at all these guys in GHGH like “This is where I want to be. This is the group of artists I want to surround myself with.” Soon after, I became good friends with Drew and the LUNATIX guys and we’ve been working closely ever since. They recently brought me on as of one of the curators for the collective and we’ve been planning some interesting things for the future. We hope to start releasing music from artists outside of the group, get a merch line going, and even organize some events centered around performances from the collective’s artists.
ZAK: You have done collaborations with many names such as Lit Lords, DrewFilament, Lunatix, and RicharddSly to name a few. Who have you learned the most from and what’s your favorite collab you’ve put out?
MILANO: I learn from everybody I work with. I feel you can always pick up on little tricks of the trade when you work with different artists, which is one of the reasons I enjoy collaboration so much. Lit Lords are probably my closest friends in the industry and we have a great chemistry for banging out monster tracks. Between trap and rap shit, we’ve probably done ten tracks together, a lot of which have been released and some that will never see the light of the day. LUNATIX and I have some interesting things in the works as well in terms of live performances, and hopefully if some of these looming opportunities end up coming to fruition, we’ll be able to share that with the world. If I had to choose a favorite collab though, I’d probably say Hard Screech Legacy with Lit Lords or GH GH with Lunatix.
ZAK: What has been the best and most memorable moment for you in your career?
MILANO: Probably the Houston Stereolive show and everything surrounding it, and I’m not just saying that because this is a Trillvo interview. It was great to spend the weekend hanging in real life with a lot of people I’d become close with on the internet. That was the first time I met Bailo, DrewFilament, and Lit Lords in person.
ZAK: Being a diverse artist, do you tend to keep a diverse rotation of tracks? What are some of the tracks you have in rotation right now?
MILANO: I do keep a diverse rotation of music. I listen to a lot of Alt Rock, 90s and 2000s hip-hop, and a lot of different trap and jersey stuff. When I was younger, I’d listen to the same song a hundred times in a row. I feel like nowadays with the insane amount of music that’s released daily, you can always be experiencing tracks for the first time. And I love that.
ZAK: Do you have anything coming out that you could tell us about exclusively for our Trillvo audience?
MILANO: I’ve got a ton of tracks stashed up and I’m always working on new shit so there will be a ton of new Milano the Don music coming this summer. In terms of something exclusive, that I haven’t talked about much, I’ve finally decided it’s time to work on an EP of sorts. If it takes me forever to do it (and it might), that’s ok. I want to do it right and I want it to incorporate a little of everything that makes me who I am as an artist.