We had the good fortune of connecting with Marquell Byrd and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Marquell, what do you attribute your success to?
The most important factor behind my success is God! Being from Virginia I normalized many things that I found in my life were not normal and moving to New York City being on my own I started to unlearn trauma. I sold my car a week after my high school graduation to move to the big city. I went through a lot to get where I am but unknowingly was afraid but always kept my feet moving and nothing was going to stop me from becoming what God had already predestined over my life. I attended church, school, navigated depression, suicide, while interning for studios, cleaning bathrooms, working as a security officer. Doing whatever it took to save up to create my own recording studio in NYC. When I actualized the vision and it became a success God put it in my heart to build studios in some of the most economically deprived communities in New York City to give back. I worked with local nonprofits in Harlem, The Bronx, East New York Brooklyn and the New York City Department of Education to give an opportunity to those who may or may not have access to a recording studio. I was doing all of this while operating Mixed By Mark Studios in Queens. I became an educator, a business owner, and author of my first book “The Journey God Chose” to what seemed like overnight and now I am still applying those same fundamentals in the midst of a pandemic at our Compton CA location. Before building studios I remember when I got married. I felt so ashamed because my wife and I didn’t have money to eat. It was extremely embarrassing to me. I felt like such a failure that I wasn’t capable of doing the things I was supposed to do for my family. I had those moments by myself but never in the care of someone else and regardless of our financial situation my wife still supported my dream of creating The Variety Group and Mixed By Mark Studios. My wife really helped me through some of the hardest moments in my life and I think my success, mishaps, and life would not be anything without my relationship with God. I am a living, breathing, walking testimony and that in itself is success.
What should our readers know about your business?
The Variety Group is a company that works in the multimedia field within the community and educational institutions. We help make your multimedia room, studio, classroom or non-traditional educational space a hands-on experience by installing the latest media-technology to educate. We believe that a multimedia room, recording, or film studio should not only be used for experienced musicians, producers and artists but also be utilized for beginners to learn the craft of film, music, business, and production. We take pride in installing the best media equipment in communities that usually may not have access and give an overview along with training to understand how to use the technology properly. If we do not provide access, there isn’t opportunity. We also understand having access to equipment doesn’t provide an opportunity of employment so we have developed partnerships with other companies within the entertainment industry that participants can apply for after completing our certificate program geared toward film, music and business.
In regards to where TVG is now I honestly believe and know it will be even more successful but I make an effort to have a balance when it comes to work and family. My family comes before my business. A lesson I have learned is to trust God and allow everything else to follow. I want the world to know you have a gift in whatever field you are in and you can either shine light on it or darkness, so always be the light.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
If someone visited, I would take them to my home and play vinyls while eating a home cooked meal. I think music over food and laughter is one of the best experiences that we often overlook.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I would like to thank God, Color Compton, The Variety Group, Family, Friends, and most importantly my wife and amazing children.
Abigail Lopez-Byrd took those photos