We had the good fortune of connecting with Lavelle Mitchell and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Lavelle, what do you want your legacy to be?
I think about my legacy a lot. The time we spend here is limited so I always wonder what is it that I’m going to leave behind. Honestly, the one thing that rings in my head from the moment I wake up till the second I fall asleep is I want to be one of the people who have changed the entertainment industry for the better, for good. I have always disliked this business, I grew up around it so I’ve always been fairly familiar with the way a lot of things actually happen. It’s dark. And the one thing I’ve always believed humans can’t live without, that isn’t food or water, is entertainment. It’s our escape, from either the mundane or the unpleasant. Living is hard, especially now with so much access to information, knowing all the bad terrible things that are constantly happening how can we possibly wake up every day without some type of escape occasionally. So, why are the people who are baring their souls to us, risking all sense of privacy or anonymity, risking any type of stability, why are they being treated this way? Why is every answer I get, “well, that’s just the way things are done”? If there’s anything that I leave behind it will be a safer industry.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
My career has kind of been all over the place and I never really paid attention to how much I was actually doing until pretty recently. I fell in love with producing my sophomore year of high school once I saw my cousin using FL Studio, because it combined 2 of my favorite things at the time; music and computers. I went to Full Sail University thinking I would be learning how to produce and ended up mainly taking classes about engineering. That’s when I fell in love with mixing. My issue at the time was I didn’t know any rappers or singers in Florida to practice on, so I started writing that way I could practice recording and mixing. Little did I know, that’s when the love for making music all came together. I graduated, went back to Full Sail to get my masters in entertainment business and not too long after that my dad signed me to his indie record label as an artist. At this point I was producing, writing, recording, mixing, and mastering for every artist that was already on the label including myself. At the same time, to make money I was working with some friends from high school who had started their own production company, Subplot Entertainment, and I was doing sound for TV and film. I ended up leaving the label a few years later because I wanted to really try my hand at being an artist, which for the first couple years was going well, but the problem was I never felt truly fulfilled doing everything by myself. The only time I remembered truly enjoying the process was being in a room with creatives helping them make their art. Once the pandemic hit I took a look at everything I was doing and figured out what I really wanted to do was develop artists, but I have always felt this insecurity that if I wasn’t successful as an artist myself what artist would want to listen to me as an executive. I had to become the best, but I was getting older and I had dreams outside of being an artist I wanted to have a family and my own house and a dog. Becoming an artist that’s able to comfortably have all of these things is next to impossible and even more so now with how easy it is to make music. Then I decided why don’t I just start especially if it’s the one thing that gets me excited. I went to talk to my dad about getting his label up and running again since he had stopped working on it for a few years, but I didn’t want to only be an artist on the label. I wanted to run it. After months of talks and meetings I finally signed my contract and have become the president of Franchise X Entertainment. I know my story is really just beginning but the one takeaway I got from everything I’ve done to this point is really stay true to yourself. I found that anytime I was trying to force my music to fit into what was going on currently it never worked the way I wanted it. Once I let go of all the expectations that I felt the world was placing on my art and me, and started to just do what I felt was right everything started to align. Opportunities began to open up, I was able to create easier, and I was just able to make better music in my opinion at least.
This industry is INCREDIBLY difficult and a lot of times we feel like we have to do so much on our own, but that is so far from the truth. Ask for help, ask for guidance. As artists we feel like if we don’t do things on our own maybe people will judge us on how we got to where we are and it will detract from the art itself. I wasted so much time avoiding opportunities that were being given to me because I was worried that people would say I didn’t do it on my own. This is the stupidest thing artists do. We don’t know everything and we never will, so surround yourself with people that have the answers to things you don’t know, and if there is an opportunity that could improve your career take it.
I have been an artist in so many different ways so I really do empathize with how artists feel. We don’t always know how to say what we want to say or how we feel so we bottle it up and release it in a format that is true to us. I want to make this industry a safe space for all walks of life to express themselves not in just their art but in their daily lives as well, so that we can push artists forward and so we can push music and entertainment forward. There are so many more stories we have yet to see or hear, I just can’t wait to start telling em.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I love food so I would absolutely take them to restaurants. First things first Boo’s Philly Cheesesteaks. Now I have never bee to philly to have an authentic cheesesteak BUT these cheesesteaks at Boos are so damn good I’m not really sure I need to go anymore
Then Dave and Busters. I love games whether they be board or video, so we would have to definitely do that.
Manhattan beach. I rarely go to this beach because it’s a bit of a drive from me but it’s one of my favorite beaches in California.
My parents house. My parents are always up to some type of shenanigans so it’s usually pretty fun to bring my friends over there.
Probably hit some dispensaries for… research.
If it’s a Sunday definitely try and hit Smorgasburg for their food fair
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I’d like to shoutout my dad, Xavier. Almost 10 years ago he started a label that he actually signed me to, but as time went on other projects started taking priority of his time. I came to him a couple months ago after the label hadn’t being active for a few years and told him I wanted to take it over as the president. I’m truly grateful that he’s seen my growth and trusts me to take on such a huge undertaking and I can’t wait to make good on my word. Thanks Pops !