Here at IYE, one thing we love is some positive, soulful, and plain ol’ funky melodies and lyrics. Local Twin Cities hip-hop artist Xavier Marquis knows exactly what that sounds like. Because he creates it.
A few weeks back, I had my radio tuned into 91.1. Nina Clark did a story for Minnesota Public Radio’s Art Hounds, featuring Twin Cities-based hip-hop artist Xavier Marquis. From that moment of hearing snippets of his tracks, I immediately loved his sound, his energy and bought tickets to witness him as an opener at Cause in Uptown Minneapolis. A month later, here he is on IYE, sharing his thoughts on one of my favorite tracks on his mixtape, “Lovelee Day.” *Mark your calendars: Xavier Marquis will have a show w/ Munqs at the Triple Rock Social Club this Saturday the 16th, 2013 at 8pm! Tickets are available here. -Adjoa
Creating His Lovelee Day
“After I laid the the synth, everything just fell into place. It’s a really simple beat. Usually when I write, I make a scratch recording of lyrics. Most of the time the scratch recording makes no sense. It’s full of made up words, but I get the feel for what I want to do vocally from that recording. Then I write and turn those scratch vocals into real words.
I was in a good place when I wrote the song [Lovelee Day]. Generally, my songs reflect how I was feeling at the time of creation. I never approach a song with the mindset that it’s for “the club” or for “the ladies”. It’s an expression of self and it comes pretty genuinely. I make it to express what I’m going through or how I’m feeling and sometimes it just so works out that people can relate to it. I do enjoy when that happens.
Mind Over Matters
“One of my favorite quotes is one from Maya Angelou: ‘If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude. Don’t complain.’ I am a strong believer in the power of the mind. I’m not the deepest person you’ll meet. I’m actually quite simple, but I believe that mental strength is more important than just about anything. Life is what you make it and if you are weak in the mind you are in the passenger seat of your own life. You let every person and every life experience dictate your thoughts and feelings.
“A wise man once told me that we get so caught up in what other people do, that we lose sight of who is responsible for ourselves. We get in the habit of saying, “you made me so mad,” or “you messed my day up,” and we lose all accountability of ourselves. Someone may do you wrong or try to hurt you, but ultimately, it’s your decision to let those things affect you. That’s where a strong mind and positive thinking comes into play.
It’s hard to be happy and positive all the time, and sometimes life will beat you down. Just remember, a simple smile can turn a day around. There have been times when I was feeling down for whatever reason and I’ve gone to the mirror and smiled. I ended up laughing at myself because of how stupid I looked standing in the mirror, smiling at myself; that totally changed my negative energy into something positive. Positive thinking brings positive things to fruition. I like to think I made that up, but surely someone said that before me.”