Mik Artistik and the Jackson Pollocks

Jamming with a Leeds legend.

When I first went to Leeds in 1995, my Dad and I were sat in a pub on the Meanwood Road when a man approached us carrying a clutch of brown paper bags and a pencil.

“Hi, I’m Mik Artistik”, he said.  “I draw people on paper bags”.

I later discovered  that in addition to his portraiture endeavors Mik was a jazz-punk poet who came to jam sessions and open mics to perform self-penned classics like “Somebody Stole My Plants”, “A Little Bit Of Elvis In All Of Us” and “Crooklock Don’t Work Anymore”.  I got a scratch band together of musicians from the Duck and Drake jazz sessions (Al Morrison on guitar, Loz on bass and Sam Hobbs on drums, with myself on piano) and went with Mik into a rehearsal studio where we spent two hours jamming songs to a pair of ambient mics and a tape deck, resulting in the never-properly-released album “Mik Is Rock”.

Since then Mik’s fame has spread beyond the confines of Yorkshire and he is now something of a cult figure across the UK and a regular favourite at the Glastonbury festival with his band the Ego Trip.  You can follow his adventures here .