Get to know Mosa Wild, the indie band creating "cinematic, alternative" tunes.
Mosa Wild formed like many of the best bands – completely organically. “I first met Alex when I was in year 3, I was the new kid at school and Mrs Simmons sat me next to him… We got split up a few days later for talking too much and we haven’t stopped talking since,” Jim recalls. “We met Charlie and Winnie from playing little club nights around London, we became friends and then we became a band.”
Mosa Wild is comprised of Jim Rubaduka (Lead Vocal/Guitar/Keys), Alex Stevens (Guitar), Edwin Ireland (AKA ‘Winnie’, Bass), and Charlie Campbell (Drums), who all hail from Ashford in Kent. Their moniker was sentimentally inspired by Jim’s grandfather, named Mosa.
In terms of their creative process, Alex explains that the band usually takes on and tries out everyone’s ideas, as “you never know what might work so it’s always worth seeing through someone’s idea.” Through it all, they ensure that they’re honest with each other. It sounds like a recipe for success – one that has been working well. Not only do Mosa Wild have gigs at Reading and Leeds Festival, but they’ve recently been announced as Virgin Money Emerging Stars!
Through the new initiative, Virgin Money has identified exciting new artists to watch from around the U.K. The lucky musicians will be supported and amplified by the company in order to help them achieve their career dreams. In Mosa Wild’s case, the band plan to use their Virgin Money bursary development fund to record and create new content. “Lockdown has required us to rethink some of the ways in which we create music and content, so the bursary will help go towards funds to make that process much more effective,” Alex said. “Hopefully this will allow us to reach people that don’t know about us just yet.”
We caught up with Mosa Wild about their favourite gig, the power of social media, and the importance of good management.
How does it feel to be one of the first Virgin Money Emerging Stars?
Lovely! It’s always nice to feel supported and for bands at the start of a career its especially vital. Given the strange times that we are living in, it’s nice to have some extra financial support.
Do you have a pre-show ritual that you stick to or any superstitions?
We always do a group huddle before a show, rub the back of Alex’s neck for good luck and make sure Jim has his capo.
If you could be on the line up with any artist, who would it be and why?
Alex: Foals, they always put on a great show and I’d love to be part of that.
Jim: Prince – because I’ll never get the chance to see him play live.
Charlie: Arcade Fire because they’re Arcade Fire.
Edwin: Kate Bush because I can’t think of anyone else I’d rather see play live.
How important is it to support emerging musicians, especially right now with the current effects of COVID-19?
It’s pretty much essential, the music scene is such a vital part of our culture, and unfortunately one that gets overlooked by government policy. Musicians, venues and all the other contract workers that contribute towards the music scene need a great deal of support.
What would your advice be to music listeners to help up and coming artists?
Engage, social media is a powerful tool for artists and bands these days, if you find an artist you like, give them a follow and engage on their social media platforms, it really does help.
What has your favourite live UK performance been and where was it?
I think our headline show at Omeara is the one to beat.
Money is often a difficult subject for many musicians who are at or near the beginning of their career. Which lessons have you learnt through your professional journey as an artist that have helped you to manage this part of your work?
Be frugal. Expect to make your money go further than you’d initially thought. We’ve often hit a few hidden costs, especially whilst touring.
Invest in equipment that is going to help your musical development. Having a home studio setup where we can demo to a decent quality has been a massive bonus for us.
Do you think enough value is placed on musicians and their financial worth in the industry? And does this also extend to other creative industries?
Without being an expert on the economics of the music business, it seems quite obvious that most of the vast sums of money that are floating around are not necessarily floating into the pockets of artists anymore.
Do you think young artists are taught enough about publishing and other revenue streams early enough in their careers?
I guess it depends what kind of support the artist has and what kind of industry education they’re exposed to, but the chances are that they might not be. Two out of the four of us went to music college and not only were the business modules we did pretty dry, but they were out of date by the time we graduated. The industry has moved so fast over the past decade that you need to constantly update yourself about everything that’s happening. We’re trying.
What sort of bad business practices would you advise other young and emerging artists to watch out for?
That’s a good question, I think having good management really helps. Thing is making sure that you have good management.
Must listen to song?
Christian Lee Huston – “Talk”.