You may know Titus Makin Jr. from his acting career in shows like The Rookie and various films. But it’s his recent launch into the music world that you need to pay attention to.
Going by the moniker Butterfly Ali, Makin is making a name for himself as an oldies-inspired musician. He just released his debut EP Preacher’s Kid on June 11 and it perfectly captures a fresh new take on old-school R&B and soul. The album touches on themes such as social activism, religion, and, most importantly, love in every form.Butterfly Ali, “Testimony”
“Each song I wanted to make sure I was writing from a perspective on how I love. So whether it’s how to love people through racial injustice, or how to love people in relationships, or how I love myself—each song is a different depiction of what love means to me,” Makin tells BTRtoday. “So if you really want to get to know me, this EP will let you know all the different colors.”
Though Butterfly Ali is the first music project Makin is going all-out with, music making isn’t a new creative outlet for him. The multitalented artist used to perform singer-songwriter songs on acoustic guitar, and when he was really young he would write his own raps on the bus to school. He admits he doesn’t come from a family of artists—though his parents always had blues, soul, or country playing in the house. He does, however, give his family credit for nurturing his talents and helping him be able to pursue those creative dreams.Butterfly Ali, “Truth Is”
Now, live performance is one of Makin’s most beloved passions. When he writes music, he tends to revolve the creative process around that eventual performance. The pandemic has really thrown a wrench into Makin’s usual routine, though, since he hasn’t been able to perform any of these Butterfly Ali songs live.
“I write music thinking about how I want to perform it live or in a music video—that’s where my energy is,” he says. “That’s what’s so crazy! Normally, I would sing these in front of people before even releasing these songs, so by the time they come out people would be familiar with them—but that’s what so weird about this season, it’s like, no, I have not live-sang any of these songs.”
Though he doesn’t currently have any upcoming shows lined up, he’d love to perform at a festival and expose his music to people who otherwise would never have discovered him. Until then, listen to the entire interview with Titus Makin Jr. aka Butterfly Ali on this week’s episode of The Music Meetup along with the entire Preacher’s Kid EP.