Marco Pavè is an activist, a musician, and a Memphis native. Earlier this year, he released the album "Welcome to Grc Lnd," which documents an exceptionally turbulent period in Memphis' recent history, including the 2016 Black Lives Matter protests at the Hernando-DeSoto Bridge and Elvis Presley's Graceland. Marco believes that artists have a unique responsibility to capture and share the stories of their communities in times of turmoil. Events in Memphis over the past several years have given him no shortage of material.
This fall, Marco and fellow rapper James Onyx Casher are launching the Universal Plug Society Tour, which they describe "as a collaborative platform for independent artists, created by independent artists, that combines music, fashion, and culinary arts to challenge the stigma around cannabis culture." As they visit cities from St. Louis to Portland, they will be working to raise awareness for common sense changes to cannabis laws and other important criminal justice reforms. Just before he left for the UPS Tour, we spoke to Marco about what he hoped to accomplish and how hip-hop can play a role in moving America forward on this issue.