ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — It was a simple act, with an enormous response. Spencer., a producer and musician now living in Brooklyn, decided to give back to his native Rochester by donating to the Boys & Girls Club.
He raised a total of $10,000.
$5,000 of that came directly from Spencer and his independent music label, 4AD. Another $1,000 came from sales of his song “I Had A Dream” — which was released on Juneteeth of this year, June 19th — on a day when music streaming, sharing, and hosting platform Bandcamp decided to let all the money go to the musicians, or other institutions like the NAACP.
Finally, the rest came from a matched donation from the Glover Crask Charitable Trust. According to a release from the Boys & Girls Club, “a portion of this donation will go specifically toward music programming.”
For Spencer., music and Rochester runs deep. While he lives in Brooklyn now, following a two-year stint at SUNY Fredonia studying Sound Recording Technology, he is from the Rochester area originally.
“I played trumpet in the jazz program, I was first trumpet,” Spencer. said when asked about his time at Penfield High School.
Now, Spencer. is making it full time in New York City a musician. While he thinks of himself as a producer first, going so far to describe himself as a “beat nerd,” he sings, writes his own lyrics and melodies, and plays a number of different instruments. Spencer. only graduated high school in 2016, but the big city life is suiting him just fine.
“My roommate now was just getting an apartment here because he goes to Pratt,” he said. “I was at a point in my musical career where I thought going to New York was a good opportunity to meet a lot of people.
“I have a lot of family down here, so I can visit a lot,” he said. “Having my own space is really nice.”
But what he loves about the city is the same thing that listeners can hear in his music: the diversity.
People, thoughts, and ideas are exchanged freely. Spencer.’s music covers ground from rap, hip hop, lo-fi Dilla beats, to indie singer-songwriter, to funk. It makes sense for someone named in part for Miles Davis, and loves singer Erykah Badu and bassist Thundercat.
As Spencer. tours the world, he still thinks of Rochester as his home. You can see him answering big picture questions about his hometown at the bottom of the article.