Mike Park: Owner of Asian Man Records
By Tom Bastian
Asian Man Records is a record label that has put out CD's by such bands as Johnny Socko, Korea Girl, Alkaline Trio, various Punk and Ska compiliations, as well as CD's by Mike's own bands the Chinkees and the Bruce Lee Band. Check out their webpage at www.asianmanrecords.com
1. What year did you start up Asian Man Records and why did you decide to start up a record label?
1996, but I've been putting out my own records since 1989. Basically, it was something I felt I could do well. And I wanted an outlet to release my own music.
2. So you have been in many bands, could you give us kind of a personal
timeline of the bands you have been in?
Bruce Lee Band(1995-present)
3. What are some of your future plans for Asian Man Records?
Continue to release music by bands that inspire me. Try to work with more
politically oriented bands, i.e. bands that have a message of positive thinking.
4. Are the Chinkees going to be going on a national tour anytime soon?
Unfortunately not. We will be going to Europe in November, but nothing is
planned for the states.
5. You helped put together the Ska Against Racism tour, do you feel as
though it was pretty successful, and do you have any future plans for another tour like that, if so tell us a little bit about it.
I thought it was a great success and am certain that the impact will be shared by many for future generations. I have started working on a new organization
called the PLEA FOR PEACE FOUNDATION. Things are still in the works, but the
basic ideas of educating people on acceptance and reaching out to the youth.
Giving them activities to participate in where they can stay away from drugs
6. What do you think of the state of racism in America? Do you think
organizations such as Artist Against Racism have much of an influence on the youth of today?
My only contact with AAR is looking at their website. So I don't know the full impact of their work, but it's always a good thing to say against racism. The state of racism in America is at an all time high. Look at the burned churches, the mindless murders, the KKK marches. It's alive and burning and breeding hate.
7. What are your feelings on bands such as Ghoti Hook, MxPx and Five Iron
Frenzy, just to name a few? Bands that many people feel don't belong in the"general punk rock" scene due to their personal faith in Jesus Christ? For example many times I read in zines or hear at shows how the messages of Christianity does not belong in "punk rock".
Well, I certainly don't agree with ignorant people automatically putting
something down. Especially when they are going into it blindly. These bands
should be judged on the merit of their music, not their faith.
8. What style of music, or newer bands have you really been into lately?
I like everything from Soul, funk, jazz, punk, ska. I basically listen to
everything as long as it sounds good.
9. If a kid came up to you and asked you for some pointers on how to start
up a record label, what would you tell them?
I'd say just do it. Pick a band you know and know needs help. Put out their record and together you can learn how to sell that record. Work hard and do whatever it takes. By just saying "I'd like to start a label" won't cut it. You just need to do it.
10. Whats the three most important things in your life?
My family, Christ, and my music.
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