Emerging

Marcus Connolly

Sounds likeMNEK, Yungblud, Jay Park
LocationManchester

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Marcus Connolly’s music finds itself somewhere in between nostalgic dreamy bubblegum pop and explosive sassy dance music. Painting a vivid yet surreal picture of events from his life and experiences. Marcus (aka. Marcu⚡️) pulls musical inspiration from J-pop/K-pop, PC music, and 00’s club pop hits in his debut mixtape titled ‘Digital Dreamland’ which explores his experience’s ranging from toxic relationships into experimenting in the club/party scene and tackling and confronting internet addiction.

‘It’s definitely a time capsule of my life at the time and represents a lot of the things I was dealing with when I wrote it’

Connolly’s music captures feel good bubblegum pop hooks, and a somewhat melancholic melodramatic undertone and merges them perfectly into a campy digital dream world that will for sure be stuck in your head for days.

‘My biggest inspirations are artists like Madonna and Prince,
Personally I don’t think my music sounds very much like theirs but I love what they stood for and how experimental and forward thinking they were’

Marcus Connolly’s music may be the most bubblegum left of centre indie pop you’ll find currently and this is enhanced by the talented and colourful production provided by Robodruma, Parix and Black Rose, all who are credited on the mixtape.

Tell us a bit about yourself?

I’m Marcus, I’m a singer/songwriter and pop musician from Manchester UK. I’m also a graphic designer and create all the visual campaigns for my music. I’m mixed race and bi/pansexual, although I don’t really like boxes and labels. I’ve been songwriting since I was around 13, I was just super interested in telling stories through words and imagery and always have been and I think music really enables me to do that.

There are a lot of emerging artists in the UK right now. What sets you apart from the rest?

I feel like being an artist who’s unashamed to be doing pop music and have a love for pop music at the same time is rare. I personally love pop music and I think there’s something really intricate about telling a story through the traditional pop formula. It’s also very therapeutic to write in them constraints, it’s kind of like taking a problem you’re struggling with and deconstructing it and forming it into art. At least that’s how I look at it.

But I also love the idea of being more experimental and emotional with pop music, I feel like a lot of my music is like the traditional pop formula with an edge whether that be with the production I choose to work with or the way I choose to sing. I’m definitely not a clean bubblegum pop star, I feel like there’s always a left leaning influence to everything I create.

What's your back story?

I’ve always written down my emotions and feelings, ever since being an early teenager and I just felt like it was time to put that into music form once I finally had the confidence to use my voice.

I’m very grateful to come from a background where my parents embraced my creativity growing up and I can’t thank them enough for being the person I am today. A lot of people are confused by my background because I come from a mixed Jamaican, Asian, Irish, Scottish family and was raised Catholic but the music and art I create doesn’t represent much of that on surface level but I very much feel like a bit of a child of the internet and that definitely shows in my music at the minute. Not that I’m shunning the idea of exploring my background in my music but I feel like right now it’s not what’s inspired me to make the music I’ve made. The music I’ve made right now was inspired by right now and I think that’s what makes it fun rather than a really deep personal memoir.

I started making music and youtube videos a couple of years ago and just posting stuff up on the internet but really started to fall in love with the art form of songwriting and that’s what I love doing most right now, I’m really focussed on getting a publishing deal after this mixtape. That’s the dream for me.

What are you working on at the moment?

I’m currently working on promotion material for my mixtape ‘Digital Dreamland’ which is coming in June, it’s been a project I’ve been working on for like a year now and I can’t wait for it to be out. I’ve been releasing music and promo singles and demo's on Soundcloud for about a year now to see how they’d be received and I’m so ready to put out my first project now I’m just making sure it’s as perfect as I can get it for when it comes out.

Other than that, I’m always writing, I have some things in mind I want to do next but I’m just focused on the mixtape for the time being.

What's the first song you remember hearing? Barbie Girl - Aqua (I think)

You're in a Karaoke Bar - What's your go to song? Toxic - Britney Spears

What was the first gig you went to? It was actually this really random Christian girl group called ’TBC’ that came to my primary school when I was a kid but that’s kinda lame so my first ACTUAL gig was Charli XCX at Manchester Academy in 2015.

Which song do you wish you'd written? Everybody Wants To Be Famous - Superorganism

Which song changed your life? Wonderland - Natalia Kills

Which song would you like played at your funeral? The Power Of Good-Bye - Madonna

What song is stuck in your head right now? One of my own that's on the mixtape it's called 'Too Cool'

What was the first Album you bought? Elephunk - The Black Eyed Peas

Which song made you want to play music? To be honest all of Britney Spears' discography.

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