The Daily Tar Heel
Printing news. Raising hell. Since 1893.
Thursday, June 20, 2024 Newsletters Latest print issue

We keep you informed.

Help us keep going. Donate Today.
The Daily Tar Heel

This week Diversions staff writer Nina Rajagopalan sat down with UNC’s own Mipso Trio. The whimsical bluegrass threesome is comprised of Joseph Terrell on guitar and vocals, Jacob Sharp on mandolin and Wood Robinson on double bass. Read on to find out how the group is finding its footing in the local scene.

Diversions: How did Mipso Trio form?

Wood Robinson: Last year Joseph and I played in a project called Funkasaurus Rex, which was a party cover band that we did with a few other people.

Jacob Sharp: Joseph and I met before we came to UNC and we played for fun but we weren’t writing together much at the time. In a guitar-mandolin duo, there’s just something missing. It’s not very dynamic, but then we found our dynamic aspect.

WR: That’s me!

JS: It suddenly made a little more sense when we started playing with a bass because it’s a more encompassing sound.

Joseph Terrell: I knew Wood in the context of electric party bands, but found out he was sick at the upright bass, which not every guy can play.

Dive: Have you had the opportunity to work with other artists in the area?

JT: We played a show last week alongside Kerri Lowe from Greensboro, Tally Ho from around here and Plume Giant from Connecticut. They’re all really cool folk bands. We have a show coming up with Mandolin Orange on April 8 to benefit Student Action with Farmworkers.

JS: For me, as far as local stuff, Lizzy Ross and Mandolin Orange are the two artists that stick out because they’re younger and doing things in a different way. We know them as friends but haven’t met them musically yet.

Dive: What are your impressions of the local music scene?

JS: I think the scene around here is funny because you get a mix of campus-influenced music. It’s not necessarily people who are students, but people who the campus is able to attract.

Memorial Hall attracts something distinctly different than what the 506 is after. I guess the Cat’s Cradle borders along what CUAB brings, artists that are a little more mainstream, bigger names. Because of that mix and a selection of coffee shops, you get a wide arrangement of bands that can insert at any level.

You don’t have to be established at all to make a name for yourself in Chapel Hill. Look at us — we haven’t really done anything in Chapel Hill and yet we were able to get a gig at the 506 pretty easily. I think that really speaks to how open the community is and not to us having done something to deserve it. There’s a lot of room for expression and new ideas.

JT: But do you think it has a lot to do with Carrboro? Could Carrboro exist as a music scene without Chapel Hill? I see the University as a satellite to Carrboro. Stuff around the University is formal, and every university has that.

WR: I think the University really feeds it. A lot of the musicians in Carrboro are students or have been at one point. I don’t think either one is reliant on the other — I think they’re mutually reliant.

Dive: Is there an overarching theme or feeling you were shooting for on the EP?

JT: I’ll say I’m happy with the feeling of the EP. Its not just six songs separately. I’m happy that the finished product has a feeling unto itself.

JS: And I think that’s unusual because most people go into it initially with an idea to get a holistic thing. This EP is a lot of our individual stuff that was fleshed out through the three of us.

Dive: What’s in the future for Mipso Trio? Any upcoming plans?

JS: It’s funny being a student band because inherently you’re supposed to be focusing on something else. It’s also funny to be at a point where you have a lot of freedom to do whatever you want as a musician because you’re not taking yourself that seriously since it’s not the only thing you’re doing.

To get the day's news and headlines in your inbox each morning, sign up for our email newsletters.

But it’s not unrealistic to think that in late fall we could do a full length album, maybe more of a concept album.

It takes a long time when you’re forming a band to figure out who you are together, so now we have a better idea of that. My next goal is to continue to build at least a bit of a name in the area so that we’d be in a better position to release a full length album.

MR: I think to a certain extent we’re just taking it as it comes.

JT: But it’s been a lot of fun.

Special Print Edition
The Daily Tar Heel 2024 Orientation Guide