Getting noticed is always a challenge for young musicians looking to make a career out of their music. But D.C. area rap artist Ice the Villain is making noise with his direct method of communication with fans and collaborations with fellow area artists.
Ice the Villain (Anthony Poole) said in an interview with The Eagle that after moving around as a military kid when he was very young, his family settled down in the D.C. area when he was 6 or 7 years old. He said moving around a lot helped him to get used to working with different kinds of people, and he said he feels that his move from the D.C. suburbs to the city to attend Howard University, where he’s studying audio production, helped expose him to different ideas and gave him more to talk about in his music.
Still, making music in D.C. is not easy. The biggest challenge, he said, is acceptance, because aspiring artists often worry that if they support other artists’ music they’ll detract from their own fan base.
“Anybody that’s really confident in their art of the craft should be able to support others,” he said. “But I think the hardest thing is building a steady fan base.”
To reach out and get recognition, Ice does shows in the area, primarily open mics in the U Street area, he said, and also reaches out on his blog, icethevillain.com, his Myspace - myspace.com/ice935 - and his Twitter - twitter.com/icethevillain.
Through those electronic means, he has promoted his recent release of “The L.@.me Mixtape,” an acronym he said stands for “Look at Me.” For Ice, the mixtape is a chance for people to get a look at what he does.
While “The L.@.me Mixtape” is a compilation of the work Ice has been doing for a long time, and he said he considers it an introductory project, he has different plans for the future.
“I’m aiming to go toward more conceptual mixtapes,” he said. His next project, “The Relationship,” is already in the works. It will follow the usual course of a relationship, from meeting to the break-up.
In addition to planning for his next project, Ice said he is focused on getting his music into the right hands.
“There are so many rappers and so many artists right now that I feel have a platform to say something and don’t,” he said. “I don’t want to go out to change the world, but I’m trying to make quality music for people to listen to.”