Virginia born; Chicago raised actor and musician Michael Epps had wanted to follow in his mother’s footsteps in acting since he was little. He scored his first gig at his first audition as an extra for FOX’s “Empire”, and from there went straight to starring as Jake Taylor in “The Chi”. Showtimes Award-Winning Series “The Chi” is about a group of residents from south side Chicago who gets brought together by coincidence and bond over their mutual need for connection and redemption. The show first aired in 2018 to rave reviews, including A.V Club stating it containing some “Emmy-worthy performances”, which we’re excited to see more of when Season 3 launches June 21st, 2020. As well as starring in “The Chi”, Michael Epps has his hand in the music industry as well. Going under the name “The monkey MIKEY” he released his debut single “drip” in 2019 and is set to drop the official music video for it later this year. Stay tuned for Michael Epps to be filling your screens with heart filling and fuelling acting and musical performances. HOLR got to chat with Michael about his upcoming projects, and their connection to the changes we’re going through now.
Can you tell us a little bit more about “The Chi”?
The Chi shows the world real events and situations that occur in Chicago every day and how they affect everyone in their own way. My character shows a problem that we have often with the youth in today’s era.
Can you tell us a little more about how “drip” came about?
My mom and I just had an idea to get in the studio one day and see what we could come up with and to see if it’s something I’d like to do more. We wanted to give people something to dance to so I got with my friend Keiton, who is like my big brother, and created “Drip.”
What is something that has helped you in your journey, personally, as an actor and as a musician?
Having a very supportive family and friends to help out. My mother gave up a lot to help make things happen. My grandmother, aunt, and cousins sometimes take turns to get me where I need to be. It’s teamwork.
The show and message you’ve been working on for a long time is finally getting the recognition it deserves, what are your thoughts on this?
That’s great! I want the world to get to know my city and know that the people here are not all bad like most people think due to all the violence you hear about.
What’s your favourite memory on set?
I have so many fun memories. One of my favorite ones is when we filmed “The Block Club Party” season 1 because I got the chance to film with all the cast and it felt just like our block parties are in real life. That was a fun day.
Have you planned out your music video for “Drip” and if so, can you tell us a bit about that?
No because this COVID 19 put everything on pause. But I know I want it to super dope and capture some of my favorite hometown spots.
Do you have any more music or other projects coming out?
No other music that I’m working on right now but I am currently working on a clothing line with my mother so stay tuned for that. I’ll be posting more information about that on pages real soon.
With everything going on, what are the changes you see happening in the TV/film and music industry?
Not sure what to expect but I see everyone has stopped all filming due to COVID 19 to ensure everyone’s safety.