On the Record: Talking expansion with the Mmmmaven crew
For David Day and Alex Maniatis, school is most definitely in for the summer. The auteurs of Together — Boston’s weeklong, city-wide electro fest that hits town each spring — are back to their “day jobs” running the Mmmmaven Project, a Cambridge-based school dedicated to getting aspiring DJs on the tables, teaching them about the many aspects of electronic music and DJ technology.
Less than a year after opening in Central Square, Mmmmaven just expanded, adding a studio and another classroom — but the push doesn’t stop there.
“The next big thing is our online content,” says Maniatis. “That’s the big thing we’re launching in two weeks. There’ll be a lot more free online video tutorials, so our teachers can get that knowledge out there.”
Online’s international reach aside, Maniatis sees Boston as a hotbed of EDM and DJ talent eager to learn.
“Boston has a lot of young talent. It’s kinda like when kids used to go into a guitar shop and ask for a Fender Stratocaster,” says Maniatis. “Kids now go into a music shop and ask for beat-driven music production software.”
After starting their business via crowdfunding, sweat and favors, the proof of Mmmmaven’s success isn’t just in their physical expansion, but in having a staff and building a community.
“I get so much pleasure in giving people a wage for their expertise,” says Day, with no hint of hubris. “The one-year plan has come to fruition. Online expansion is part of the plan, but the physical location and collaboration is more rewarding. Getting people together and seeing them work is what gives you goosebumps.”
What’s in a name?
So, what’s with all the M’s in the name? Day explains that the Mmmmaven moniker is more than an easy Googling gimmick. (Though it’s that too.) “I was called a maven when I was younger and became fascinated with the word. I think everyone should want to be a maven in some field or other. The four M’s keeps us easy to search, but M is notation for a triangle wave. Each M has four beats; put together it’s a four-four time signature. It’s a classic dance beat.”