Mikolas Josef (born 4 October 1995 in Prague) is a singer, songwriter, record producer, multiinstrumentalist and music video director. His father is half-Austrian; his mother has German-Italian origins. Being a huge enthusiast of Habsburg history, his father decided to name his son after the example of Franz Joseph as Mikoláš Josef.
Josef is the youngest of three siblings. During his childhood, he frequently moved between Prague and Znojmo. By 2017, he was living mostly in Vienna. He comes from a musical family and started playing guitar at the age of 5. He studied at an English-language gymnasium and even though he graduated it with results that could have gained him entry to some of the most prestigious British universities, he decided not to continue his studies and focus on his musical career instead.
At the age of 17, he received a gold medal with distinction from the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts for acting. Before fully embarking on his musical career, he spent nearly a year working as an international model. Working for brands such as Prada, Replay, Diesel etc. and being represented by six modelling agencies around the globe, his modelling career had seemingly kickstarted. Nevertheless, he decided to quit the job because of his disapproval of the modelling world.
“I just wasn’t happy being a model, that’s all. Don’t get me wrong – I love fashion. But this just didn’t feel like it was pushing me anywhere. If a brand wants to connect with me, I want it to be because of my music, not because of what I look like”.
After leaving the modelling world, he started busking in various European cities. “I knew I had to lose my stage fright. Playing on the street is the best way to grow as a performer. It was a time well spent for me”.
He played in Oslo, Zurich, Hamburg, Vienna and even Prague. After one year, he invested the money he had made into his productions and was able to debut with his first single “Hands Bloody”, for which he also shot his first music video.
“You know, before modelling, I worked in all sorts of places. I cleaned offices, worked at a house construction company… I did it all, including modelling, to be able to fund my productions. There are so many things you have to buy just to get started. For some time, I used to clean a professional studio here in Prague, four times a month. For that, I would get one full day in the studio all for myself”.
Josef became known to the general public in his home country with his second single “Free”, which peaked at #4 at the Czech radio IFPI chart. With his third release, “Believe”, he dominated the music chart of the most prestigious Czech radio Evropa 2 for three weeks. After that, 21-year old Josef decided to move to Vienna after he was invited by the multi-platinum awarded mix engineer Nikodem Milewski (Felix Jaehn, Sam Smith, Alle Farben, Klangkarussell and many more). Milewski became for Mikolas what he later described as something of his musical mentor.
Given the success of his music videos, Josef began shooting them also for other artists. At the age of 21, he directed a music video for the German Warner Music and created the visuals for the track “Eye of The Tiger” by Chris Meid (featuring Tabor and Phyne).
His hobbies involve mostly sports. From 2006 to 2009, he was a passionate skateboarder and snowboarder. In 2008, he took part in the biggest and most prestigious snowboarding contest Snow Jam. Today, he is mainly interested in martial arts (earlier judo, now boxing). He has also been a member of the leading gymnastics team in Prague since the age of 15. But, most importantly, he is very much into breakdance – as can be seen also from his latest music video.