Madison born and bred, Anthony Lamarr says he’s always been a performer at heart. He got his first taste of the musical stage about 15 years ago as part of the a capella group Not From Concentrate, both as a singer and producer on the group’s two albums. He now has five albums to his name as a solo artist, as well as seven Madison Area Music Awards, including Song of the Year in 2011 for “My Tomorrow” and Pop/R&B Performer of the Year in 2014. While continuing to record and tour, he also works as the volunteer coordinator for the Urban League of Greater Madison. He also previously served on the Overture Center for the Arts Community Advisory Board and the Madison Arts Commission.
Rank your top five MCs. God is the ultimate MC. He inspires everything and everyone. With that said…
- King David (one of the main authors of the Book of Psalms)
- William Shakespeare
- Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
- Minister Malcolm X
- Theodor “Dr. Seuss” Geisel
Honorable Mentions: James Brown, Cassius Clay a.k.a. Muhammad Ali, Stephen Sondheim, Busta Rhymes, and Lin-Manuel Miranda
Which motivates you more: doubters or supporters? Honestly, neither group motivates me. Your drive has to come from within. A strong spiritual core, followed by discipline, endurance, and patience will keep you moving.
What does it mean to be black in Madison? Alone. Blase. Conscious. Determined. Empowered. Frivolous. Glorified. Hesitant. Intelligent. Jealous. Knotty. Laudable. Mighty. Necessary. Outlandish. Popular. Questionable. Ready. Supportive. Thankful. Unremitting. Vainglorious. Worthy. Xenial. Yappy. Zoetic.
What three leaders in Madison under 50 have impressed you the most? Renee Moe, Kaleem Caire, & Beth Kille
Honorable Mentions: My siblings, Ashley Brown and Shia Fisher
What’s the biggest stumbling block in Madison to turning the corner on our racial disparities? Pride. C.S. Lewis called it “the great sin”. Pride was the first sin and has been the root of all of our problems world-wide. If the city of Madison, and the citizens who occupy the space, would move collectively and completely towards humility, we would not just turn the corner on our racial disparities, but we would obliterate the notion altogether.
What are your top three priorities at this point in your life? God first, family second, work third
Name your top five local MCs? In no particular order…Rob Dz, D.L.O. the Iceman, Smokes, Clifton Beefy, & A.N.T. Da Hope Boy
Honorable Mentions: Folie Stasis, J. Dante, & Swisher Sweez
Your album Jump Start the Soul has a mixture of piano and strings backing a hip hop track. How would you describe your music and who influenced your musical style? My music is current, contemporary, in the moment. It would be considered “Pop” music, as is all music right now. My musical influences range anywhere from the classical greats like Mozart, Beethoven, Haydn, Prokofiev, etc., to James Brown, The Temptations, Miles Davis, Frank Sinatra, Marvin Gaye, Michael Jackson, Daft Punk, Adele, Fleet Foxes, Raphael Saadiq, Timbaland, Justin Timberlake, CeeLo Green/Gnarls Barkley, Esperanza Spalding, Andre 3000, NEEDTOBREATHE…
Your real last name is Brown. Why do you use the last name Lamarr? Simple. Lamarr is my middle name. My father, the late, but certainly great, Dr. Anthony L. Brown, and I shared a full name for 26 years. During this time, and In order to have my own identity in the Madison community and arts scene, I chose Anthony Lamarr for entertainment purposes.
Who is Anthony Brown? Anthony Brown is a son, a brother, an uncle, a nephew, a partner, a cousin, a friend, a neighbor, an activist, a supporter, a cultivator, a musician, a vocalist, a dancer, a writer, an actor, an athlete, a survivor, an achiever, an organizer, a dreamer, and most importantly, a believer.
What makes you decide to stay and live in Madison? God is my guide. He has me here in Madison for the time being. If He wants me to move out of the city, He will make that happen.
Recommend one album, one book, and one movie. Album: Daft Punk – Random Access Memories | Book (Non-Fiction): The Bait of Satan by John Bevere | Book (Fiction): The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein | Movie: Back to the Future