The MLS Is Back Tournament has been music to every soccer fan’s ear and for fans of Orlando City SC they hope the sound never stops as they take on LAFC tonight at 7:30 p.m. ET with a spot in the semifinals on the line.
We caught up with Orlando City SC midfielder Chris Mueller to hear about how music shapes his mind before games, how his teammates have influenced his musical tastes, and what he knows about two of Orlando’s homegrown boy bands.
What does music mean to you?
I love music so much. It means a lot to me and does so much for me. In times when I’m down, it brings me up, and it really enhances my mood when I’m getting ready for games.
Is music an important part of your life?
Yeah, music is a huge part of my life. I’m constantly listening to music. It’s always getting me into my right mind, whether I’m cooking, reading, or getting ready for matches. It’s always an important part of my daily routine.
Who are your favorite artists right now?
My favorite artists right now are probably Russ, Wiz Khalifa, Polo G, and I’ve always loved Frank Sinatra.
Have you been listening to music before the matches during the MLS is Back Tournament?
Yes, during the MLS is Back tournament I’ve listened to music before every game to block out all the noise. It allows me to focus on what I’m trying to do before I step onto the pitch.
What’s being played in the locker room ahead of the MLS is Back Tournament matches?
We’ve been playing a lot of Latino music and a lot of Brazilian music to get the vibe going and loosen up the guys before we go out on the field.
Who’s in charge of the music in the locker room?
Pedro Gallese is in charge of a lot of the music, Nani sometimes hops on the aux, and Robinho is a big guy, too, on the speaker.
What’s a new artist or song your teammates have gotten you hooked on?
It’s hard to say what I’ve learned through my teammates because a lot of the time they get me hooked on the Latino or Portuguese music that’s hard for me to understand, but I definitely love the vibe of it and am getting to know the artists.
What’s the best concert or festival you’ve ever been to?
The best concert I’ve ever been to was Mac Miller, back in the day when I was in college. RIP
What’s your earliest music related memory?
My earliest music memory is my dad playing Frank Sinatra in the kitchen while he cooked breakfast when I was little.
What’s the music scene in Orlando like?
It’s pretty diverse; we’ve got everything going on down here in Orlando. Whether you like country, reggae, hip hop, R&B, or rap. Everything is happening down here. I think it’s a great place to diversify and get in with a bunch of different kinds of cultures.
Orlando is the home of NSync and the Backstreet Boys. Are you a fan? If so, what are your favorite songs of theirs?
I haven’t listened to them in a while, but they had some pretty big songs back in the day. I can’t remember any specific ones now, but I would definitely know them if I heard them.