Social Club Misfits on Friends & Family Tour, Diversity, and Reaching No. 1
Last week Rapzilla put out a revealing interview with Marty and Fern of the Social Club Misfits that featured them talking about being a light in the darkness. In part two of this interview, the duo breaks down their newest album The Misadventures of Fern & Marty.
The new album reached No. 1 on the iTunes Rap/Hip-Hop Albums chart. For them, it was a thrill not only because of the accomplishment but because of the opportunity to reach more people for God.
“Here’s what it looks like when you get music from guys who love Jesus,” said Fern. “We were making music regardless. I was making music before I gave my life to Jesus. Before that, we were always making music. We were always going to rap regardless, but the fact that when we speak and we still go ahead and proclaim the name of Jesus regardless of where we are in any situation, awards, we always keep Him the focus and the forefront of what we’re doing.”
He continued, “And that is definitely the reason why Martin and Fern are right now [at the time] the no. 1 album in the country because we choose to make a conscious decision to keep Jesus in the forefront. It’s the best thing we ever did because He got us everywhere anyway. This is Jesus’ album and this is the people’s album and we’re going to continue to touch the folks and spread the message as best we can.”
Marty said the album is a cumulation of being independent for four years. To them, it felt like they had something to prove.
“Number one, if we sign with a major we won’t change. That was really important for us to do. Number 2, as an artist we can deliver many different things. Some artists are just one dimensional. You give them a beat and that’s all they do,” said Marty. “For us, we wanted to mess up the way hip-hop is done. Every song can be different, every song is eclectic every song doesn’t have to be the same. If we do a hip-hop album it doesn’t have to sound like J Cole. It can have different influences. We are who we are, we are Social Club and this is the vision of what we do.”
Marty was positive toward the direction that music is moving. He believes the lines are starting to “blur” when it comes to being labeled “Christian Hip-Hop” or just plain rap.
“People like dope music. I think that we put our own boundaries as a Christian genre. We put boundaries when we say, this is who we’re trying to reach. I have friends that listen to us that don’t listen to Christian music because they just like the vibe that we provide,” explained Marty. “We’re in a new generation where people don’t care. People love NF. They go to his shows and it’s a different audience. That’s the audience we want, the one that just likes good music.”
He was also sure to clarify that just because they are seeking a new audience with their music, doesn’t mean they have to compromise. Social Club Misfits will never swear in their music and there will always be a message involved.
“We are here to leave you happier and more encouraged than when you started listening. You can feel hype and wild out and get the same effect as whatever you listened to on the radio.”
A part of what also makes the Social Club Misfits unique or “dope,” is their diversity. In a country that in many places are as divided racially as much as it is politically, they have never been privy to this. If New York is the melting pot of the U.S., then Miami is the hot pot.
“We come from a place where racial issues are much different where we live. We don’t have segregation like they do in St. Louis,” said Marty. “We just see islands, culture, and diversity. I hope the world can eventually look like Miami where the world can just get along, the end. We don’t understand what people are dealing with. It’s kind of odd.”
He said Miami is filled with a mixture of white, Puerto Rican, Cuban, Haitian, and Jamaicans. Fern joked that Marty’s wedding groomsmen were like a U.N. meeting.
“I had six guys. A Jamaican, a Cuban, Puerto Rican, Columbian, a white dude, a Peruvian dude,” Marty said with a laugh.
“We don’t see color, we see different, and you’re allowed to be different,” Fern said. “At the end of the day, we grew up with all the cultures in the Caribbean. Going to school with everyone at the same time.”
One of the group’s closest friends represents another city and another culture. Andy Mineo, a paisano, from New York, helps Fern and Marty get in touch with their New York swag. Social Club and Andy had announced they would be pairing up for the Friends and the Family Tour. The tour was canceled and was only a one-off show in Texas.
However, there is hope that it may happen again. Social Club hinted that there are preliminary talks, and perhaps something will come in the near future.
“Andy and us, we’re always in communication. We can’t say no to anything but talks is all we’ve had,” responded Fern. “As soon as the situation arises, I’m sure that can get brought to the table. We all have a lot of things going on. I can’t put a no on that. We’d love to get on the road at some point.”
“If we do anything, it’ll end up being a once a year thing. It’s really Andy’s thing,” chimed in Marty. “We do a thing in California and Andy likes Houston. So I like that. The artists can do their once a year event and do it wherever they want it to.”
Andy being from New York led the conversation to their track, “One with the New Yorkers” featuring Amari and Wordsplayed.
The track features some hilarious dialogue in the beginning that features the stereotypical NYC smack talker. For Marty, that was the whole point of the song.
“It’s like this theme. For me, I just wanted to get the biggest guys who talk the craziest, like that New York slang. That was Wordsplayed. He and Andy are the epitome of a New Yorker. They talk to anyone, everybody loves them,” he explained. “I had to put Amari on it. The whole idea of it is that people lie. We give our best foot forward. We make people think that we are better than they are. Behind Instagram and all that stuff, it’s actually a lie. A lot of people act like they got stuff they don’t. We know how people act in real life.”
He continued, “Wordsplayed is acting like a classic New Yorker. New York is wild, people are slick talkers. A lot of my friends in New York work, but they are just making it. People act like they are ballers. My song is like hey, you don’t have to act like that anymore. We know what you’re doing. The jig is up.”
Another song on the album with an interesting back story is “Usual Suspects” featuring Willow Stephens. Musically, it’s one of the strongest songs on the album, and Willow has a haunting vocal quality that almost makes it seem like an old vinyl sample.
They said the song was recorded six different ways and rewritten a bunch of times. Surprisingly, it almost didn’t make the record too.
“It sounds crazy to say that now. At one point we felt it was missing something but Willow really brought that,” Marty revealed. “It was actually the last song we heard on the album. It’s almost like a movie. I think that’s what we’re trying to do, is to just make music that can be for anything. It can be a life song that gets you pumped up or it can be for a movie trailer. If you were to ask, ‘What’s your next move? The answer would be that we’re hoping to hit movies, TV, and get placements.”
Lastly, aside from their Misadventures Tour, Social Club Misfits has two new music videos on the way and wants to remain just as focused as ever.
“[Want to be] Christians that can win the world with this message of Jesus Christ. Nothing has changed. We’re excited and it’s an honor,” commented Marty.
Listen to them now on the Rapzilla podcast with Chris Chicago.