Every year through the John Hancock MLK Summer Scholars Program, ZUMIX hires 5-10 youth to work with us for the summer. Positions range from assisting with our music programs, working with our Development & Communications team, or helping to plan community arts events. For many youth, this is their first paid job.
This week, we interviewed Maurice, a rising freshman at University of Massachusetts, Lowell and will be studying Sound Recording. Coming from a family of musicians, Maurice has sung and played guitar and drums since he was young. After hearing his friend’s band perform at ZUMIX, Maurice decided to join ZUMIX. At ZUMIX, Maurice teaches beat-making and recording lab, and hopes to help youth make sweet music. See the full interview below:
How old are you and where are you from?
I’m 18 and I’m from Jamaica Plain.
What do you like most about your job? What about your job are you most excited about?
Teaching new things to new people. I can’t wait to see everyone’s end product and what they’re most proud of—that’s going to be fun.
If you could be a musical instrument what would you be and why?
I don’t know, but not the drums cause I’d be hit in the face all the time.
What do you hope to accomplish musically?
I really want to be a recording engineer.
What’s your favorite song and why?
“Same drugs” by Chance the Rapper. On Chance’s Reddit, someone asked what Chance meant by drugs and Chance said the song is about a person he was in touch with but they’ve grown apart, and hence not the same drugs anymore.
What’s your earliest memory of music?
Although it’s not the earliest, I have one that really sticks out to me. At a family reunion, my uncles were playing music and did Godzilla monster calls. My Uncle Albert, who was drumming had a Godzilla head mask and I was so freaked out. My uncles are actually members of the 80s rock band Blue Oyster Cult.
Who is an artist that you have been inspired by recently?
Chance the rapper because he’s super positive and does a lot of charity and youth work in Southside Chicago, where he grew up.
What do you think is the purpose of music? What does music mean to you?
Music serves a lot of purposes. For me, it’s for fun but also relays some sort of message. There’s a lot of music that’s fun to listen to. Putting out a positive vibe. But I think it can also send messages to people that may need it.
Do you think music can change the world? In what ways?
I do think it can change the world. You can change the mindset of youth through music and if you can put out positive vibes, it will return.
If you could change one thing in the world, what would it be?
Everything feeds into another thing. So its hard to say, but I guess I’d take away prejudice.
What do you think is most important for people to know? What is most important to you?
I think its important for people to know that they have the power to do whatever they want as long as they put their minds to it and don’t listen to people who tell them otherwise. All the people in my life that support me and are positive influence in my life.
If you had to give advice to someone younger than you are, what would it be?
Practice makes perfect.
What dreams do you have?
It would be really sweet to have my own recording studio.