Once upon a time, the head of rapper Marcus Manchild‘s label, AMG, told him that he “rapped weird.” About three years later the 22-year-old from Houston was prepared to face a notoriously fickle crowd at New York’s S.O.B’s night club. Any butterflies in his stomach were probably pickled in vodka, but the nerves persisted. This is no country for weird rappers.
“I’ve performed before with a different type of crowd at the Best Buy Theater during Smokers Club but with this type of crowd….They’ll boo you. Quick,” he says recalling the show the next day. “And that’s what they kept telling me. If you didn’t get booed then it was a success.”
Well, Marcus didn’t get booed. In fact, the show went really well. Bringing out hometown hero Paul Wall didn’t hurt, but Marcus held his own. As it turns out, weird is the new black. Or purple.
“In my eyes, it was amazing. Just to come up to New York and see a packed out house and never performed in front of that type of crowd. So I go out and they start rockin’ out with me, even if they weren’t super rockin’ I could tell I had their attention.”
The former High School point guard is aware that he’s in a whole new game now, but he’s ready to play. His remix of ASAP Rocky’s “Purple Swag” is a defiant reclamation of his hometown’s hip-hop legacy. Being influenced by his city is fine, but he’s got a firm grip on the Houston torch and isn’t letting it go to just anybody. Check the video to “We Wrong” featuring Slim Thug for proof.
“There a lot of legends out from Houston…you got Scarface, Bun B, Slim Thug and all them and they made a name for themselves and made an image for Houston that you can’t let down,” he says. “Can’t let the people down.”