David Trejo (Mixest) – Interview


I am sure you all remember Mixest, a website I reviewed last month that let you discover new indie bands in a very easy and smooth way. I really liked the site, so I am very glad (not to mention thankful) for having had the chance to interview David Trejo, one of its creators.

Here you have the conversation in full.

Tell us a little about your startup. Why focus on indie bands only? What do you see in them that you don’t see elsewhere?

Mixest isn’t really a startup. We’re a bunch of friends who banded together to create what we hope is a great listening experience. We enjoy Indie music and wanted a way to discover the latest music with ease. Indie musicians are particularly interested in reaching listeners and spreading pleasure with their music, and we’d like to help them do that.

What are Mixest’s most distinctive features in your opinion? In which ways is it an improvement over other sites that let you find and listen to indie music?

Mixest is about the music and the joy of the listener and nothing else. We streamline the music discovery process—no need to waste time setting up an account. Just go to our mixest.com and listen to music. You don’t even have to hit ‘play.’ It just works.

What was the original launch date?

We first announced our service on July 2nd.

What has been the response so far? In which countries has it been more successful?

We’ve had an extremely positive response so far. The feedback we’ve received so far has helped us improve and yet stay true to our values. We have listeners from all over the globe, and but we’ve gained the largest followings in North America.

What features can we expect to see implemented in future revisions? What have users requested directly?

We recently finished twitter sharing and direct links to songs. Users have requested a veritable plethora of features, many of which are in progress. We love user feedback and we’re being especially careful about to stay true to our minimalist philosophy (which is what makes many people like us in the first place). An android version of Mixest will be released soon (Wanna beta test? email feedback@mixest.com).

There is a certain tendency to demonize the Internet in the music industry. I think it is all a matter of perspective – it all depends on the uses it is put to. What is your opinion? In which areas has the Internet left an unquestionably positive mark?

The internet has made it easier for musicians to create and grow an audience for their music. More and more musicians are under independent labels as they would prefer not to sign with a large company. We hear that large companies that make money from their music but give little in return. They also try to influence what the artist creates. We hope offer an alternative to this situation by providing artists a platform from which to promote their music.

What advice could you give to anybody who is launching a music-related
startup in the future? What are the obvious mistakes that should be avoided?

Mixest is not really a startup. Our biggest mistake was one of communication. We encouraged a friend of ours from college who studies computer science at Brown University to check out the site. He is very interested in security, and while poking holes in mixest he deleted all favorites for all users. Oops! Thankfully we were able to repair all damage, as we do frequent backups. It ended up being a good thing as it prepared us for the traffic we received later that week (more exposure means more people who want to hack your site :). All in all we’re glad it happened.

So far Mixest has been a lot of fun and we look forward to improving it and making it even more enjoyable for our listeners and more helpful for artists.

Please send any thoughts on how we might improve to feedback@mixest.com or @mixestmusic.

If you are an artist, make sure to send your information to new@mixest.com and we’ll review your music for posting!