Keeyen Martin, A North Carolina native whose sound is said to be a perfect melodic blend of Soul and R&B, is no novice to the music industry. As a vocalist he has been performing and traveling with his talents since the age of three. Martin’s journey took flight after receiving the prestigious Michael Jackson Scholarship to attend Morehouse University in near the Atlanta, Georgia republic.
In only the precipice of his musical career, Martin has shared the stage with some of the most iconic and accomplished acts including Stevie Wonder, Aretha Franklin, Kanye West, Michelle Williams, Peabo Bryson, KeKe Wyatt, PJ Morton, Common, Elle Varner , Teyana Taylor, Lalah Hathaway and BeBe & CeCe Winans.
In reflecting on his career thus far, Keeyen recalled at time where “…someone called me an electrifying R&B Prince — so I’m claiming it in advance!”.
Regardless to the ever changing landscape of the music business especially in 2020, Martin has continued to excel and push forward. In the past six months he has released three singles and soulful visual accompaniments for his projects and His most recent showcase performance was sponsored through the live virtual experience platform Axis Replay pioneered by rap star Offset of Migos.
Keeyen’s smash hit single, “Girl I’m On The Way” not only premiered on Itunes Top 100 Chart but also earned over 500K streams on Spotify – an amazing feat for an Indie artist who is creating his own R&B, Soul and Pop sound. His 2019 “Sofar Tour” sold out across the United States and was even extended across seas to Europe. The last leg of the “Sofar Tour” was met with open arms to Keeyan’s international audience throughout Italy, where he successfully completed the tour.
Today, 20th November 2020, Martin drops the groovy, retro-sounding ‘Tell Me Your Name’- a song that anyone can vibe to. Written while reminiscing on the older days of wanting to get close to his school crush, although she kept slipping away, ‘Tell Me Your Name’ is a song that anyone can relate to when they think of the nostalgic times of being mesmerized by their crush and not quite expressing their truest feelings because they first need to know the name!
We got a cool chance to ask Martin about His musical journey thus far and what legacy He plans on leaving with the new single and of course all the amazing music to sure come!
Pink Illuminance: Some artists come from families that encourage studying disciplines that can project a young person to immediately secure a J.O.B. in corporate America upon graduating. Being You were a Michael Jackson Scholarship recipient and Music Major, how important is it to have support from your nucleus family – parents and siblings – or those You consider family?
Keeyen Martin: Family is extremely important and I am very fortunate to have a musical family. This made it very easy to pursue it as a career. When you come from a very close and engaging family, its inevitable to want their approval. I’m always happy that for the most part my family has always supported and championed my decisions of doing music full-time.
P.I. After a sold out tour in 2019, what changes did you implement to make 2020 just as exhilarating and fulfilling to your goals musically?
KM: Well all my 2020 plans unfortunately got derailed due to the pandemic, but I’ve been able to find solace in enjoying reflection. Simply taking time to sit and reflect on all the work, opportunities, memories, and moments I’ve made thus far. I’m very proud of all the hardwork I’ve put in and I had to tell myself that its perfectly ok to celebrate that. This has certainly aiding in me experiencing fulfillment in a new way. Pausing and reflecting on the journey has been awesome this year!
PI: You have such a grand international fanbase having ended the Sofar Tour in Italy! How important is it to make music that transcends cultures?
KM: I think honestly I just focus on creating music that is from an authentic place. In some divine way in doing so, I’ve been able to make a cool impact internationally. Its really exciting and low-key scary “lol” , but its so awesome to see the songs I make be sung be audiences all over the world. I guess you never really fathom people from other places singing your songs. Once that happens you feel even more empowered to continue creating from that authentic place.
PI: Some artists suffer from “Imposters Syndrome” where they feel like they don’t belong ‘in the room’ with other phenoms. How did you prepare yourself to share the stage with the likes of the late Aretha Franklin, Stevie Wonder, Kayne West, among other legendary musicians?
KM: I always prepare. I’m pretty disciplined in understanding that you have to live and operate in the greatness that want to experience. Telling myself that I am good enough and putting the work in each day, always makes it easy to celebrate those legendary moments.
PI: We read the new single “Tell Me Your Name” was inspired by a walk down memory lane to a time when You couldn’t get that special chance with a highschool crush. Is this someone who You’d still be willing to have that opportunity with after becoming a global Soul/R&B sensation?
KM: You know I haven’t thought of it honestly “LOL” but given the opportunity, I just may shoot my shot.
PI: I haven’t seen a telephone booth in what seems like forever! What inspired the cover art for this single?
KM: The coverart takes me back to the days when you could just sit on the house phone for hours talking about any and everything. I wanted bring back those feelings and have some nostalgia in a way.
PI: What legacy do you intend on leaving with your musical creations?
KM: That we’re all the same and different in so many ways. Music connects us all and I want my music to be indicative of the stories each of our lives live and experience.
PI: What are three words that describe Keeyen Martin?
Check out a sneak peek of the song here and be sure to follow Keeyen on all platforms to stay in front of His phenomenal releases and super entertaining content!