Raised in the small town of Olney, Maryland MNA (Matthew Nino Azcuy) watched and listened to all of the greatest rappers and musicians during the 1990s and early 2000s. During this golden age of music and music videos, Azcuy was inspired by both rappers and rock groups alike, and when he was sixteen years old decided to make his own music. After years of finding his sound, he teamed up with local producer Nemo, to make his album “Diamond Dog”. Matthew Nino Azcuy is also a published book author, avid writer, and professional movie actor.
Getmybuzzup: Tell us a little about yourself? (Such as where you are from, etc)
MNA: I am MNA (Matthew Nino Azcuy) and an artist from the Washington DC metro area. I was raised in a small town called Olney. A small town just thirty-some minutes north of the Capitol.
Getmybuzzup: How did you come up with your stage name?
MNA: I kept it very simple, my full legal name is Matthew Nino Azcuy so I thought, like some of the greats (NF, MGK etc.) let me just use an acronym that represents my full name. Nice and simple. I’m not trying to be anything I am not; I can only be myself. It’s a testament to that.
Getmybuzzup: How long have you been in the music industry?
MNA: I have been making music off and on for about 11 years or so. When I was sixteen years old I decided to make my own music. After years of finding my unique sound, I teamed up with my local partner and producer Nemo, to make his album “Diamond Dog”.
Getmybuzzup: How did you get started in the music business in the first place?
MNA: Well, I always knew I had a passion for singing and making music. I was raised in the musical golden age of the 80s and 90s. One of the best eras in musical history. I was not a good student growing up. I would come home from school and just watch music videos on my laptop until I fell asleep. I was always on my iPod, and I don’t know. Something just clicked, it’s where I wanted to be.
Getmybuzzup: What are you currently working on? (Any new songs, projects, tours, etc..)
MNA: Yes, I am very excited about some upcoming material. I am working on my YouTube cover channel. We’re so excited to bring the listeners some covers and fun renditions of classic music. I am also halfway into my next album. I was honored to see Mercenary do so well.
Getmybuzzup: Who are your inspirations in the music industry?
MNA: So many, I would say Guns N Roses, Eminem, Kanye West, Falling in Reverse, Disturbed, Hinder, Lil Wayne, & Dr. Dre. A blend of rap and rock groups.
Getmybuzzup: How do you go about writing a song and what is your process?
MNA: Well, I usually start by just going through the beat library. Either instrumental I’ve made or from my producers that I network with. Then, I pick one that really speaks to me. I listen on loop. Repeatedly. I feel it, and when I can really feel it speak to me, I hum a melody, no words. Then once I have the melody, the sound perfected, I fill that with words. It’s something so unexplainable.
Getmybuzzup: What is the concept behind your forthcoming project if you’re working on one?
MNA: Well, my most recent release was my 2022 album Mercenary. Mercenary by MNA is an album about the dark fantasy world in which rap culture and the entertainment industry exist. Mercenary, which compares a businessman to a gun for hire, is an album and story that depicts the battle inside of every entrepreneur. How fighting for one’s money, power, career, legacy, and place in the world can often resemble the personal sacrifice of war and soldiers, albeit for profit. This album was inspired by the personal successes and two-year journey of rap artist MNA and his music production company MNA Industries in the music world. “Mercenary” was recorded by City’s Best Sounds in Olney, MD, and was released on January 22, 2022.
Getmybuzzup: What did you buy with your first check-off music?
MNA: More gear. Now I need a new audio interface, Sony Camera, and some lights! It never ends. I also need to buy a new car.
Getmybuzzup: What are must-haves when you’re in the studio working?
MNA: A GIGANTIC bottle of water. You must stay hydrated to sing well. Sometimes snacks if I’m feeling a cheat or junk food day. I also need people that I trust and people who are serious about the work. No distractions.
Getmybuzzup: What is the best piece of advice in this business you actually followed?
MNA: Do it because you love it. If you’re doing this for the money, it won’t last long. Music can feel when you’re using her, and when you’re with her out of love.
Getmybuzzup: Will you be collaborating with any other artists in the future?
MNA: Always down to work with other artists. No one at the moment, but I am always open and looking!
Getmybuzzup: What artist have you had the pleasure of working with and what was it like?
MNA: Shout out to the DMV boys – WLLY, BenBoh (who opened for DaBaby), CamBoh, and Lemon Eddy. Those are my guys.
Getmybuzzup: Name artists, that you would love to work with?
MNA: Oh yes! I am obsessed with Panic! at the Disco, Ariana Grande, Ronnie Radke, Ava Max, Lady Gaga, Jared Leto, Rihanna, Kanye West, Fall Out Boy, Joyner Lucas, MGK, and of course the legend Eminem himself. Any of those I have dreamt of working with.
Getmybuzzup: Do you think your music is mostly enjoyed more for the beats or for the lyrical flow and content?
MNA: Depends on the time period. I think back in the day it was all about the lyrics. These days you seem an emphasis on crafting melodies and catchy hooks. For example, the melodic trap has dominated since 2016.
Getmybuzzup: What area do you need to improve on in regard to your career? (Example: Better production, Delivery, Stage presence, etc..)
MNA: Stage presence and believing in myself. The second one is an everyday thing.
Getmybuzzup: What’s your all-time favorite song?
MNA: Lose Yourself – Eminem
Getmybuzzup: What was the last album you listened to?
MNA: Hinder – Extreme Behavior
Getmybuzzup: Your favorite artist of all time and why?
MNA: Eminem. From out of a hard life, he rose above it all and continues to inspire. He’s also all about the words, as am I.
Getmybuzzup: Who are your fav five artists right now?
MNA: Eminem, Panic! at the Disco, Kanye West, Ava Max, Joyner Lucas.
Getmybuzzup: In your opinion who is the most influential and successful artist in your genre today and why?
MNA: Joyner Lucas. He showed us how far an incredible talent can get using the resources available to him.
Getmybuzzup: Who has been some of your favorite artists that you’ve been able to work with?
MNA: WLLY, BenBoh, Net, and my boy EnWell
Getmybuzzup: How do you feel about the current state of music?
MNA: Well in some respects I feel like it’s regressed. For example, many songs seem to sound the same. I don’t see the same uniqueness I saw 20 years ago. However, I love the fact that making music has become less expensive. Everyone can jump in now! I feel like things are freer too. You’re seeing more kinds of people having a chance, and that is beautiful.
Getmybuzzup: Any dream award shows you hope to one day play at?
MNA: Grammy’s or AMV’s. Top of the list right there.
Getmybuzzup: What is your main goal as far as music?
MNA: When it comes to my music, I would say what motivates me the most is the passion for growing as a musician. In today’s day and age, it’s so easy to get caught up in the numbers, likes, streams, popularity, and money. For me, I don’t focus on any of that. For me, there is no place I would rather be than making music. Not only is it therapy for me, but I enjoy the journey, and all the amazing producers, beat makers, artists, friends, and business associates that we meet along the way.
Getmybuzzup: Who would you say your music relates to the most?
MNA: People who were left out. People who are feeling hopeless and uninspired. I think people who don’t see their value and maybe need someone like me to show them that they can use their oddness for something great. Anyone who needs to be inspired.
Getmybuzzup: What separates you from other artists? (What’s makes you different?)
MNA: I think that I genre blend and how versatile I am. I make music. All kinds of music. I don’t set limits for myself. I am experimental and unapologetic about it.
Getmybuzzup: When you are not in the studio, What do you like to do for fun and relaxation?
MNA: Family, friends, video games, singing by myself, working out.
Getmybuzzup: If you could work with any producer who would it be?
MNA: Rick Rubin or Dr. Dre
Getmybuzzup: What’s the biggest highlight of your career thus far?
MNA: I think my song Overtime hitting over 200,000 plays on Spotify. That was wild.
Getmybuzzup: What is your dream venue to perform at?
MNA: Madison Square Garden.
Getmybuzzup: What artist music are you currently a fan of?
MNA: Everyone being authentic to themselves.
Getmybuzzup: When performing live what are some of the things you do to get the crowd involved?
MNA: A lot of jumping, a lot of energy, a lot of moving around and getting people hyped. People feed off your energy. It’s time to give them everything.
Getmybuzzup: When performing live and the crowd is singing along how does that energy make you feel?
MNA: Incredible. Like I can do anything.
Getmybuzzup: What’s the name of the last book you read and by whom?
MNA: Red Wine by Liana Valentina, my beautiful sister.
Getmybuzzup: What’s your favorite sports team and why?
MNA: The Indianapolis Colts. The Original Baltimore, MD team.
Getmybuzzup: Who’s your favorite actor or actress and their best movie?
MNA: Christian Bale, the Dark Knight series.
Getmybuzzup: Name someone famous who inspires you and why?
MNA: Most of them. I believe many of them are meant to inspire us all. I am inspired by anyone who follows their dreams, anyone who is true to themselves, and anyone who defies the odds.
Getmybuzzup: What can we expect from you in the future?
MNA: To be grateful for everything. To make as much music as I can until the day I die.
Getmybuzzup: Anything else you wanna add?
MNA: I am honored to be here. So great to be featured by such a great publication. Thank you for all that you do for artists and musicians around the world. Let’s keep making music!
Getmybuzzup: Where can the fans check out for your music? Spotify, Apple Music, Soundcloud, and YouTube under “MNA”
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