I recently got in touch with the young, multi-talented hip hop artist Marvil Martin, aka Marvillous Beats, who makes magic in the D.C. area, which just so happens to be my homeplace!  Not only have I been lucky to live near this musical beast, I was able to witness his creative genius at a local Busboys and Poets!  His passion of crafting his own beats, rapping about real-world issues, and masterfully playing the violin make Martin a triple threat to modern hip hop culture, and inspires Black youth to be the change they want to see in the world.

What is your fondest childhood memory?

My fondest memory would be my earliest memory – moving to New Rochelle, NY the 90’s on a sunny day to this big new house. I remember my little brother, and my uncle. I remember how my crib use to look when we first moved there.

How did you discover your music tastes?

I discovered them through my father and older sister. He use to play a lot of gospel and sunday praise music on his tapes from Jamaica and his traveling singing group. My older sister started taking violin lessons and I wanted to do it to. I really liked it when my father got me a violin and I started taking lessons.

1779163_2278120356958_903296955_n.jpgWhat 5 artists have had the most  profound impact on your life?

My little brother Cullen aka Len Lama, This kid Andrew Morejon I met in 3rd Grade, My cousin Darren aka Jonforce, Kanye West, and 9th Wonder.

4.  What made you want to move to DC?

My sister and my girlfriend already moved to DC to go to college. My mother also wanted me to get out of New York [my hometown being Rochelle, NY] and grow. After graduating community college I applied to a bunch of schools in DC. I got into a program at UDC and the rest is history.

5. How has music changed your life?

It has given me a medium to express myself. Creating music that both I like and that moves people is a challenge that I’m drawn to. It has introduced me to amazing people and has provided me with authentic self fulfillment.

 What makes you different than other hip hop artists?

I have a tendency for the conscious, classical, and soulful substance. I’m far less into and about materialism, misogyny, and brute masculinity than what’s commercially accepted in hip-hop today. As a classically trained musician I feel I have an upper-hand in songwriting and production.

 If you could do anything else creatively, what would it be?

I’d love to act again. Nothing intense but something supportive and comedy-relief like. On a larger scale, I’d like to create a new economy. I’d like to create a better system of education and a culture that is truly caring of the earth yet still prospers technologically. One which doesn’t withhold truths.

What motivates you to do what you do?

 I am aware of my potential now more than ever. I understand what needs to be done to be successful. I was raised to work at being the best at whatever I set my mind to. I’m motivated by my passion, respect, recognition and compensation – in that order.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

I see myself comfortably living and practicing as an architect. I see myself continuing my music passion on my off seasons and off days. I’d like to live off sales from awesome records that touched people so I concentrate on doing the passion rather than making the money. I see myself being an instrumental asset in the rehabilitation of the environment and economy where the lower to middle class of the world can sustain themselves without much fiat.

Wow, it is extremely refreshing to know that twenty-somethings like Martin exist in the Hip-Hop community!  Although we do have our modern-day freedom fighters, there is nothing more comforting than to see young Black artists use their talents to build social awareness.   Martin frequents in open mic nights, Hip-Hop jam sessions, and other events across the D.C. area, and will not quit for as long as his strong message of global equality remains needed. You can find him on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and his personal site, Marv Beats!