5 Reasons to give Mix Master Mike the Key to the City


Jason Clark
Jason Clark

on 10/23/2015

Our esteemed Mayor Greg Fischer challenged me last night for 5 good reasons why Mix Master Mike deserves the key to the city. This wasn’t a difficult list to produce, because Mike’s career is amazing. Here’s what I’ve come up with in the last couple hours. Please add to the conversation on Twitter and the Hellhouse event page on Facebook.

@clarkster @mixmastermike maybe. Give me the top 5 reasons why.

— Mayor Greg Fischer (@louisvillemayor) October 23, 2015

Mayor Fischer, I humbly present these 5 reasons to give Mix Master Mike the keys to the city.

1. Louisville Values Innovation

Mike has been an musical innovator since the beginning of his career, utilizing an instrument (turntables!) that has just recently in the speck of time in history, gained respect and legitimacy. To quote my friend Ria, “The Beastie Boys are the Led Zeppelin of hip-hop & he was their Bonzo.” He is also known for using a wah-wah pedal, usually reserved for guitarists, with his turntables, and developed many signature scratch techniques. Mike has blurred the borders of musical genres, having performed with the likes of Ozzy Osbourne, Herbie Hancock, and more. He is named one of the greatest DJs of all time by USA Today magazine.

Advance to 7:30 in the video below to see Mike perform Rockit for Herbie Hancock, Barack and Michell Obama, and more!

2. Louisville Values Music, of ALL TYPES

From the Jazz Studies Department to our indie music scene to the Forecastle Festival and more, Louisville has always been proud of our connection to music. Acknowledging Hip-Hop, Turntablism, and Dance music as legitimate genres is critically important to show the world that we are energetic and progressive. Mix Master Mike might be the only DJ in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Let the kids dance!

3. Louisville Values Community Service

Mike regularly performs and supports causes that he believes in. For Hellhouse 2015, when his team learned that it was a fundraiser for the MS Society, they brought all the support possible, and made it a priority to work with our budget and resources to make it happen. He was also the featured talent of the 2015 Special Olympics World Games.

Pretty awesome how @mixmastermike started a dance party @SpecialOlympics #LA2015 pic.twitter.com/gQU6WTDAFA

— Mariecar Mendoza @ #AAJA20 (@SFMarMendoza) July 26, 2015

4. The Spotlight on Louisville is More than Bourbon and Derby

Mike is an influential celebrity, and his experience in Louisville is one that he’ll take back and express to the world.


The Beastie Boys are one of the most influential musical acts of the 20th and 21st Century, having blurred the lines of musical genres like no other. They only played Louisville once, in 1987, and were promptly banned for some inappropriate hijinks, and never returned. From that point in their career, the Beastie Boys went on to dominate the music world until MCA (Adam Yauch) lost his battle to cancer in 2012. The Beastie Boys took hard stands on human rights issues, helping organize the Tibetan Freedom Concerts and much, much more.

If you’ve landed on this page and you want to know what all the hubbub is about, we’re sponsoring Hellhouse 2015, a Halloween celebration and fundraiser for the MS Society.

Thanks! ~jason


We did it!

@clarkster @mixmastermike these are five great reasons. So, a key it is. I'll have my people get with your people on Monday.

— Mayor Greg Fischer (@louisvillemayor) October 23, 2015

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