Rapper Tony Maccevelli Talks on Powering Through Life’s Challenges Like an Android

By: Miya Jones
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Rapper Tony Maccevelli Talks on Powering Through Life's Challenges Like an Android

“I climbed on the Red Bull truck and started performing on it and I just remember looking down and I was like, ‘Wow that’s mad people,’ I was mad nervous at first, but once I had the mic, I just dove nose first into it.”

This was the scene where Rapper and Long Island’s own Tony Maccevelli performed in Jacksonville, Fla. at Mellow Mushroom in front of the biggest crowd he’s ever entertained. This was a long way from his self-described half-hearted free styling efforts at school and parties when he wasn’t sure if the music scene was for him.

Despite his father being a reggae artist and dabbling in music here and there, he still wasn’t sure, but what sealed the deal for him was a night out where he was just dropping bars for fun. At a party, he did a natural free style and the next day he woke up to a video of it online with people applauding his skills.

“I thought if I get this attention when I’m not really trying, imagine if I actually sat down and put together some tracks, so then I started taking my music seriously,” said Maccevelli. “Music just kept coming back to me, so I was taking it as a sign.”

Fast forward eight years later, Maccevelli released his first seven-track EP “Androids Don’t Feel Pain.”

“My friends always say, ‘Yo Mac you’re like a cartoon character, like a robot,'” explained Maccevelli. “I liked it because I’m a cartoon character that went through a lot, and I’m still bringing myself up. So I’m an android that doesn’t feel pain. Every time you see me I’m just a happy lit person, but deep down I be going through a lot.”

One of the obstacles he had to go through was being accused of a crime he said he didn’t commit and being locked up for six months.

“I had my foot in the door with music, then I went to jail,” said Maccevelli. “I had to overcome that jail mentality and probation. I came home in an ankle bracelet and I wanted to do trips and perform, but I really couldn’t.”

Maccevelli thought that he would have to start from ground zero all over again, but his team was still hard at work.

“I kind of leveled up times 10,” said Maccevelli. “My team made Free Maccevelli shirts, my manager had control of my Instagram account. When I came home my name was already going around.”

?: @onewordatname

Once his ankle bracelet was taken off in February, he was relieved and his grind continued.

“The minute they took it off, I was in Manhattan that night turning up,” said Maccevelli. “Then I was in the studio dropping song after song.”

Maccevelli would describe his music as turn up music with hints of feeling and subliminal messages that highlight unfortunate real life circumstances. Despite those hardships in the form of inner doubt and incarceration, he still stuck to his robotic ways of getting back up after being knocked down by life’s trials to get things done.

You can check out “Androids Don’t Feel Pain” below and be on the lookout for his new single “Prius” coming soon:

Miya Jones

Miya Jones

Miya Jones is a Long Island native and the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Shades of Long Island. She's been a journalist since the age of 17 and is a diversity advocate. Follow Miya on Instagram and Twitter: @miyajones1996 and on Facebook as Miya Jones.

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