When it comes to love, Marcus Cooper ain’t too proud to beg, plead or please. The hard-edged crooner hangs his heart out to dry and drip all over his new self-titled solo sophomore LP, a three-years-in-the-making emo opus. “Everybody’s so swagged out now—no one wants to say they’re sorry,” says the former front man of sex-singing quartet Pretty Ricky. “I wanna tell the women what they need to hear, take it back to love and romance. That’s my m.o..”
The man born Marcus Ramone Cooper has been sharp-shooting Cupid darts since he was a kid, charming classmates and winning talent shows with renditions of Immature’s “I Will Never Lie.” Born with soul coursing through his veins—Mom and Dad both formerly sang in small-time bands—the Carver Gardens, the Florida native idolized R. Kelly, Jackson 5, Usher and Jodeci. Yet growing up in his mother’s strict Jehovah’s Witness household stunted his early stardom ambitions, particularly a near signing with Ruthless Records. By middle school Marcus began to rebel, landing in a juvenile hall and under house arrest after burglarizing cars and homes with older teens in the neighborhood. Music became his life raft as he began songwriting during those isolated times. He recorded and peddled his demo in high school with little luck until a 2004 meeting with Joe “Blue” Smith, manager and father to the members of local rap group Pretty Ricky. Immediately following the initial studio jam session that produced the red-light playlist staple “Grind With Me,” which would become the group’s breakout smash, Marcus donned himself Pleasure P and joined the group. After financial disagreements, he eventually went solo.
After a 3 year break Marcus hit the restart button, leaving Los Angeles to return to his hometown and record his back-to-basics second album, Marcus Cooper. “In L.A. I was working with people I’ve never worked with before, testing out different sounds,” recalls Cooper of his eOne debut’s infantile sessions. “Moving back home I went through things, went through a breakup. So now in the studio I can speak about them—those are the heartfelt records.” In Jan 2018, Marcus Cooper joins the new series Love and Hip Hop Miami (Season 1) on VH1 network. The cast includes Miami heavy weights Tricky Daddy, Trina, and Gunplay from Maybach Music.