“Simply put, he is the Renaissance man of Charleston” – Art Mag.

The hard questions.

Q. What is your favorite Prince album?
A. Sign ‘O’ The Times is probably his best album. But I also love LotusFlow3r. And The Love Symbol Album. And Lovesexy. And ARTOFFICIALAGE. And Parade. And …

Q. What is your favorite Star Wars movie?
A. Return of the Jedi is so good. That hallway scene with Darth Vader and Luke? When Darth admits “It’s too late for me, son.” GIVES ME CHILLS. But, still. I love Empire Strikes Back. And The Force Awakens. And Revenge of the Sith. And …

Q. Who is your favorite artist?
A. JONI MITCHELL. The best painter and songwriter of all time. Hejira is a master work.

Q. What is the best television show of all time?

Q. Name a few things that you can’t resist …
A. Good headphones. Drum machines. Journals. Talking about Prince. The San Antonio Spurs. Vinyl Me, Please. Biking. Anything made by Teenage Engineering.

Q. What are you most passionate about?
A. My music. I also love leading poetry workshops for kids. Honestly, though, the high I receive from creating music is unmatched.

When I grow up, I want to be a rock star like Prince. – (me, at 10 years old.)


Marcus Amaker was named Charleston, SC’s first Poet Laureate in 2016.

He’s also the award-winning graphic designer of a national music journalan accomplished electronic musician, the creator of a poetry festival, and a mentor to hundreds of students.

His poetry was selected to be published alongside two national book award winners in an anthology of African American poetry, and has been featured by PBS Newshour, SC Public Radio, Huffington Post, A&E Network, Charleston Magazine, Charleston City Paper, North Dakota Quarterly, Post and Courier, Charleston Scene and several other publications.

In 2019, he won a Governor’s Arts award in South Carolina, and was named the artist-in-residence of the Gaillard Center, a world-renowned performance and education venue.

His poetry has been studied in classrooms across the country and has been interpreted for ballet, jazz, modern dance, opera and theater.

Marcus has released two albums with Grammy Award winning drummer and producer Quentin E. Baxter.

photos by Alice Keeney.