From Chucky Cheese to the hills of LA - rising R&B talent Marco McKinnis is bringing soulful vocals to a whole new level as our latest Internet Crush!

Two years ago, Marco McKinnis was working at Chucky Cheese, now he is signed musician celebrating the release of his new EP, “E’MERSE”.  It’s a story of rising talent that is often reserved for the movies, but for 21-year-old Virginian R&B singer Marco, it is very much a reality.


Marco started out as a rapper, drawn to the style because he was too shy to sing. That is, until releasing music on Soundcloud led to a growing following that fostered his confidence in his vocal talent. Listening to Marco’s music we are very grateful that he found it – the incredible power of his voice is only matched by the rich, nuanced layers of the tracks he composes.


Marco’s soulful RnB is interwoven with melodies and counter harmonies that reflect his keen ear for hooks and his dedication to the craft. His new EP embodies this, with 6 beautifully thoughtful tracks that champion quality over the current trend of chasing quick hits.  Now signed to Republic Records, based in LA, it is clear that while Marco is an old soul, this unstoppable talent is just getting started.


You have a clear passion for photography, how does that play into your wider work as an artist and musician?

Visual work helps my creativity as a whole just flow. I’ve found out that if I’m not expressing all of my gifts, my flow of creativity becomes stagnant. It’s something about capturing a genuine moment on camera that ties into writing music more honestly.

What advice would you give to yourself if you could go back 2 years?

The only thing I would say is live and love a lot more. I’d understand what I mean lol.

Other RnB artists that inspire you right now?

Hmm. Prince for his authenticity and knowledge in music, he’s flat out soul. Frank Ocean for his authenticity and creativity for sure.

What was the inspiration behind ‘Deep’?

Hahaha, that was a song about my partnership with a seasoned Woman. I wanted to ask her how Deep her love was for me, as well as reassuring her about a couple of things.

What do you do when you are in a creative rut or need motivation?

Literally I go straight to tumblr, my bookmarked instagram accounts with mad references, watch interviews, and pray. Sometimes I can work towards a new project when I’m in a creative block, but sometimes I have to let my mind go through its course.

What do you hope to bring to people with your music and your art?

I honestly want to bring soul, honesty, truth, love, and understanding.

How has social media helped you find your platform as an artist?

Social media has helped a LOT for my platform. It saves a lot of ‘word of mouth’ work for my team and I. We don’t mind doing it but social media allows people to view my work and profiles even if I’m nowhere near them. The share button is my best friend.

Describe what you hope for the next year in one sentence.

Hope for is an understatement ha! I will be elevated, in love, stimulated, inspired and forward moving. Doing the unthinkable, to be honest.

Check out Marco McKinnis on COLORS below!

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