Five Questions With Wayne Marshall
There is no doubt about just how talented Wayne Marshall is. For years, the reggae and dancehall artiste, born Wayne Mitchell, focused his talents on music, delivering hits such as Overcome, Why You Doing It, Marshall Town and Glory to God. Now the 41-year-old has turned his attention to social media. With the help of his family – wife, Tami Chin Mitchell; sons, Jaxen, Atlas and Oz; his little brother Alex and nanny, MoMo – Marshall is a mainstay on YouTube with the Meet The Mitchells channel racking up views and subscribers. The family channel showcases unfiltered and entertaining vlogs centred on family dynamics and realities, with a heavy dose of comedy, camaraderie, creativity and love.
“A lot of people don’t understand how much creative vibrations goes into the vlogs. It is all about creative vibrations; it keeps me on top of my game,” he told The Gleaner, adding that Meet the Mitchells was a welcome reprieve with the global COVID-19 pandemic halting the music and entertainment industry. “There have not been many opportunities to earn from music. Yes, we still do our projects and put [out] music [here and there], but for the most part, I am holding my songs [for] when the world opens up back, when we can travel and tour in front of a crowd [and] not have to fear,” he said, adding that his fans can expect new music soon.
Not only is Marshall excited about what he will release, he is encouraged by the great support system he and his family have developed via YouTube, and believes both – a YouTube channel and having an established a music career – help each other to grow and help him to be more connected with his audience. Marshall even finds that he is more vulnerable in the vlogs than he is when doing music. “When doing my music, I would never share certain things because I thought people would use it against me,” he said, noting that now his vulnerability has allowed people to better connect with him.
Meet the Mitchells got its start during the pandemic, and proved to be a great creative outlet for the Mitchell family. Marshall told The Gleaner that the platform uncovers his family successes, failures and perspectives. “We all face similar things as humans, which makes it a relatable aspect and [also] people admire our parenting style.” The channel’s growth is a testament to the undying love from his supporters, which he shares a great appreciation for. “It is very exciting, the prospect of growing with our support [from the MTM family]. It is overwhelming at times when you think what the movement is and what we have created over the last year.”
Growing in a tight-knit family and having established a close relationship with his mother, late father and younger brother Terike, Mitchell said that the values instilled at a young age have allowed him to be goal and family-oriented. “My parents taught by example to work hard for what you want in life and how to be responsible,” he said. Now, as a father of four, he imparts these lessons to his sons. He says watching them grow, and seeing their personalities unfold in different ways is one of the most rewarding benefits for him as a father. See what more he has to say in this week’s Five Questions With.
What inspired you to start the Meet The Mitchells channel?
We always thought about it for years … doing a reality show as I believe we are an interesting family. Though, it was mostly Tami. She always had a dream to do a family vlog, and she convinced me to give it a try. I tried, and it felt very natural because we were doing it as ourselves. This is what attracted me to it. I could be myself and realise that people were interested in our family life, its structure and dynamic … as well as the narrative that played itself out from us being who we are.
What was your first job, and what age were you?
My first job was music. I left high school and started music as an 18-year-old. I did a business course at the Institute of Management and Production. I didn’t finish the course and left, and I went straight into music.
Creating content can interrupt family time. How do you balance the demands of your career and family life?
It comes with good time-management skills. Spending time with my family is on the top of the list. I prioritise based on importance in my life and things that need attention. If I see that something needs attention and I put it at the top of the list, and then I get to it and service it. I step back and analyse again, seeking out the next thing that needs servicing and attention.
How do you rest and recharge?
Creativity is what I use to take the edge and stress off. I pick my guitar and make a song, or I pick up a book and read. Luckily, I have the vlog … so we tend to do a lot of staycations. Even though we are working during some of these engagements, there is always time that we take for ourselves to unwind, reflect and hold a vibe. Any place with a beach, pool with my family and music that’s a great spot for me. I also like to unwind anywhere with nature, specifically Portland, Ocho Rios, Montego Bay and Negril.
Apart from your musical career, what other passions or talents do you have?
I like art and drawing. I also like doing skits based on the skits on social media. Many people have been saying there is an acting career somewhere there. There is a possibility of me writing scripts.