A profile of StreetMule, one of more than 350 members of the MTA’s Music Under New York Program.

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WHEN I WAS A LITTLE KID, I WOULD DRUM MYSELF TO SLEEP BY PUTTING MY EAR TO THE MATTRESS AND PLAYING THE MATTRESS AND THEN I WOULD HUM TO IT.

WHAT I'M DOING NOW IS NOT REALLY MUCH DIFFERENT THAN THAT.

I CAME UP WITH THE NAME STREET MULE BECAUSE I PLAY SO MUCH ON THE STREET AND THEN THE SUBWAY.

AND IT IS A SHORTENED VERSION OF MY LAST NAME.

I DECIDED TO AUDITION FOR MY SOLO ACT BECAUSE I WANTED TO BE ABLE TO EXPRESS MYSELF ON MY OWN TIME.

IT'S VERY DIFFICULT BECAUSE THERE'S MAYBE 300 ACTS THAT WILL APPLY EACH YEAR.

THEY WILL TAKE 75.

TO AUDITION AT GRAND CENTRAL, I FAILED MY FIRST TIME.

I WENT BACK THE NEXT YEAR, GOT A STANDING OVATION AND WAS ACCEPTED.

THIS PROGRAM SPEAKS OF LOVE AND DIVERSITY AND EXPRESSION FOR BEING WHOEVER AND WHATEVER YOU WANT TO BE AND NEW YORKERS EAT IT UP.

I LOVE NEW YORK FOR THAT.

AND I LOVE THE PROGRAM FOR THAT.

♪♪ PEOPLE ASK ME ALL THE TIME WHAT THIS MUSIC IS.

I TELL THEM, IT'S SWEATY.

WHAT I'M TRYING TO DO IS PROVIDE THE PEOPLE THAT SEE ME WITH 15 SECONDS OF ENERGY.

THE SOUND IS MORE OF AN IDEA OF THE NEW YORK CITY OF PEOPLE COMING TOGETHER FROM ALL OVER THE WORLD AND FINDING SOMETHING NEW.

I CONSIDER REALLY EVERYTHING AN INSTRUMENT.

THERE'S HAND DRUMS, LIKE THE MIDDLE EASTERN HAND DRUM.

AND THEN A PERU RHYTHM BOX THAT I SIT ON.

AND THEN I PLAY A PLASTIC WIND TUBE THAT COULD BE A PVC PIPE, A FIBERGLASS TUBE.

THEN PERCUSSION ON MY HANDS AS FAR AS BELLS OR SHAKERS AND MY FEET AS WELL.

IT'S A WHOLE BALANCING ACT.

ATLANTIC PACIFIC IN BROOKLYN IS A GREAT SPOT FOR ALL MY LOCAL PEOPLE.

IT SOUNDS REALLY GREAT.

IT KIND OF LOOKS LIKE A TRUMPET.

THE DIMENSIONS ARE SUCH THAT THE SOUND IS COMPRESSED A BIT.

BUT THEN IT OPENS UP.

SO FOR MY SOUND IT KIND OF BILL BILLOWS OUT LIKE THAT.

I PLAY TO THE PULSE OF THE LOCATION THAT I'M PLAYING IN.

I FIND THAT MY CREATIVITY IS BEST IN THE MOMENT.

IN THE SUBWAY, THE MOMENT TO ENTICE SOMEBODY TO COME BY AND STOP EVEN OR JUST SLOW DOWN IS SO SHORT THAT I HAVE LEARNED TO SLIDE IN AND OUT OF TIME FLEXIBLE AS FAR AS WHAT I'M DOING AND THAT HAS, I THINK, HELPED MY RHYTHM EXPERIENCE, BECAUSE I'VE BECOME MORE AGILE.

♪♪ THE BEST THING FOR ME IS WHEN I SEE A CHILD, AND BECAUSE THEY ARE SO MUCH MANY THE MOMENT, THE PEOPLE THAT ARE WATCHING OR THE ADULTS, THEY WILL REALIZE THAT THAT'S THE POINT OF PLAYING STREET MUSIC.

PUT DOWN THE TECHNOLOGY AND JUST DANCE, CONNECT.

THAT'S ALL.

♪♪