The actor and singer talks about his new funk-filled single “5 Minutes”, and transitioning from acting to music.
From the hallways of Glee to entering the soul scene with his upbeat sound, vocalist and songwriter Titus Makin aka Butterfly Ali is making sure all avenues of the entertainment industry are covered. Now, the singer is ready to further his musical range with his funk-filled new single “5 Minutes”. While his previous singles saw the singer channel a more soulful sound, “5 Minutes” sees the singer break into a new genre with pumping energetic bass lines and rhythms that’ll have you gravitating to the dance floor.
Opening up about the new track, the singer said, “5 Minutes feels to me like the song we all need to just jam out to after a hard day of work and struggles. It’s that let your hair down and get funky kind of song. It identifies with all the times we as humans have to keep a tight rein on our tongue and have a little patience with all this crazy world presents. I got five minutes then I’m moving on… not gonna let you stress me out.”
The New York Conservatory for Dramatic Arts graduate has built himself a solid career over the years with credits in hit shows such as the ever-addictive Pretty Little Liars and Grey’s Anatomy tucked firmly under his belt. We caught up with the singer, getting candid on transitioning from the small screen to the stage, finding his sound and all the new music he has been working on.
Check out the interview below…
Hey Butterfly Ali! How are you? How’s lockdown been, how have you kept yourself busy?
I’m doing well, thank you for asking. Obviously there have been many ups and downs within the past few months but overall been able to stay productive and get a lot of zoom meetings and studio sessions done. Pretty much adjusting to the new Los Angeles normal.
Congratulations on your new single “5 Minutes”, what inspired this song? –
Thank you! “5 minutes” to me is just one of those songs that everybody can identify with. When things get super busy or crazy and people/situations are wearing your patience thin, you take a breath, give yourself five minutes to deal with it, and then move on. it also just inspires you to get up and dance and release all of those worldly stresses for a little bit.
This new tune breaks away from your previous sound, what made you want to explore a more upbeat funk-filled sound?
I’ve always considered myself a soul/funk artist. I’ve always been inspired by funk bands and R&B/soul artists that have funk rhythms in their music i.e. Marvin Gaye. I went down the funk upbeat lane for my previous song “Righteous” and wanted to release another upbeat funky jam for the people.
You’ve had some amazing acting credits from Glee to Pretty Little Liars to Grey’s Anatomy, how did you get into acting and do you prefer acting or music?
I didn’t decide until my senior year of high school that I wanted to give acting a try, thanks to my sister being an actress as well. The school I ended up going to in New York offered both acting and music so it seemed like a place for me. Upon graduating from there I moved out to LA and started hitting the pavement trying to get representation in order to get bigger auditions. And thank the Lord it actually worked. I’ve been doing music The entire time, since I was in middle school, writing my own songs and raps at the time. I’m very happy to be in a position where now my music can take the lead. I love both acting and music for different reasons. With music, I can express a lot more of my own voice, artistic opinion, and vision. With acting it’s cool to jump into somebody else’s shoes and tell their story for a little bit.
What do you want people to feel when they listen to your music?
I want them To experience a sense of nostalgia. I love honouring throwback music. The feeling of true instrumentation and grooves, coupled with modern sounds really get me excited. And hopefully will for them as well. I was raised on the oldies, I just want to keep sharing them through my music.
What is your creative process like?
I personally like to go into a session letting the instrumentation guide my mood. I will sometimes start off very specific with a topic or poem that has been affecting my personal life during that time, but the majority of the time I like to let the music lead.
Who are your inspirations and why?
my top inspirations musically have always been Marvin Gaye, Andre 3000, Anderson .Paak, Pharrell Williams, and Bill Withers. I feel like all of these gentlemen have been examples to me of people that take a creative left turn in a very standard genre that people try to place them in. I like that they’ve taken risks and have been very eclectic and innovative with their music.
What’s next for you, what are you most excited for?
I’m honestly extremely excited to continue to release all of the music we’ve been working on. I also look forward to having my music break down some of these very well sealed industry doors.