“Can’t stop, won’t stop”
On stage Christopher Lee Marshall, better known by his fans as Crizzly, bounces around behind his laptop and turntables as a huge gold chain swings back and forth around his neck.
With heart-stopping strobe lights flashing around him, Crizzly shoots invisible guns into the audience as the beat drops and the bass booms.
The heads of the concert-goers bob in unison to the mix of hip-hop and dubstep that Crizzly calls “crunkstep.” As the familiar tune of his remix to “The Way we Ball” comes on, fans don’t hesitate to sing the words as loud as they possibly can.
Girls are pulled onto the stage to dance and water bottles are emptied onto the heads of the crowd, as well as a full pizza. It’s safe to say that a Crizzly concert/show is nothing short of a party.
You could assume that with a show like this, Crizzly leads a pretty wild life. While certain aspects of his life may be crazy, he’s actually just a normal guy who enjoys playing Grand Theft Auto and chilling with his friends when he isn’t producing or performing.
“I don’t actually, like, party or anything,” Marshall said, revealing that his down time is a large part of who he is.
His animated stage presence counters his soft-spoken and down-to-earth, off-stage personality. With his hood up and hands crossed, Chris has a quiet energy, but he’s far from shy. His voice fights to be heard over Figure’s set, which booms loudly in the backstage room even with the door closed, but that doesn’t stop him from talking about his favorite video games and his recent visit with his best friend who lives in Kansas.
“We bro-ed out you know, and just hung out.”
After a few minutes of conversation, it isn’t hard to believe that his personal time is as normal as he says it is.
“If I didn’t DJ, I probably wouldn’t be at bars or anything, unless it’s for music,” Marshall admits.
Down time isn’t exactly something he’s had a lot of recently though. Him and fellow artist Figure have teamed up for a jam-packed fall tour. The “All Black Everything” tour started the end of October in Wisconsin and continues through mid December, hitting 16 different states along the way.
“For me it’s super exciting, kinda just being thrown into the whole DJ circuit. It’s crazy just the amount of traveling I do,” Marshall said.
“I’ll have 10 plus flights in a week or more usually. It’s pretty crazy. It’s like a rocket-ride.”
Born and raised in Texas, Crizzly began to take over the EDM world in just a few short years. He quickly began playing large festivals like EDC Vegas and venues in states like Hawaii. On the outside, it may seem like Crizzly’s success happened overnight. He confessed that it doesn’t feel like it happened as fast as it seems.
“It’s not a long road or anything,” he quickly confirmed, “it’s just been work.”
Despite his growing fame, Chris manages to stay humble about his success.
“For most famous people, and I’m not talking about myself,” he adds modestly, “it’s always hard work and opportunity that got them to where they are now, it’s not an overnight thing.”
Contrary to what his fans might think, Chris enjoys playing smaller venues. He likes the personal vibes of a small show and the fact that they’re usually sold out and packed with people. After experiencing him play a small venue, he isn’t kidding! By the end of the night the fans with crazy outfits are easily recognizable and it’s fairly common to make a few friends. When Crizzly talks into the microphone, it almost feels like he’s speaking to a close group of friends. It definitely feels more personal.
“At the same time I would hate to just do that and not play at a festival or something,” Chris said, “I just prefer smaller shows, it just feels more punk. I like shit like that.”
As he walks off stage, the crowd begs Chris for just one more song, knowing that he can’t resist. With a casual smile, he returns to his booth and grants the wishes of his fans, extending the party just a few minutes longer.
- Article/Interview/Post by Amy Leet