George Floyd death anniversary marked by protester and musician BLM Leicester one year later
Marik Erskine, 18, stood in front of nearly 4,000 people at a protest in Leicester last year, demanding a change.
The protest was one of many protests that erupted across the country as part of the Black Lives Matter movement following the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
During his speech, Marik called for a change in government policies, education and British attitudes in a speech so moving that people asked him to record it and make it available to share.
Almost a year later, the music student is preparing to release a two-track single, which will include “ George Floyd’s Song, ” a track he wrote days after Mr. Floyd’s death, which has since led to the conviction of a police officer. Derek Chauvin for murder.
Marik said: “I created this track in response to the racism that I see around me every day.
“He wasn’t the first unarmed black man to be killed by a police officer in broad daylight, but the death of George Floyd was a catalyst for change at a time when the world could finally watch and listen.”
Although Marik’s words resonated strongly with protesters in the crowd, the 19-year-old is hopeful that it will be people who “don’t believe that racism and systemic racism exists” who will listen to his music.
“Whether it’s on TV, online on social media or in the outside world, racism is a problem that needs to be tackled. In America as well as in the United Kingdom.
“I am neither an activist nor a freedom fighter. I’m just a teenager who doesn’t want to grow up in a world where my skin color is a big factor in how someone perceives them initially, ”he said.
After graduating from college last year, Marik became a student at the British and Irish Modern Music Institute (BIMM) in Birmingham.
His musical endeavors began at a young age, showcasing his talents in school performances while living in Antigua, playing guitar and forming musical groups including a rap collective.
He also developed his art at religious events and experimented with genres like reggae, soca, and dancehall.
Marik was born in Leicester but lived in Antigua for most of his childhood before returning to the city at the age of 16.
Two months after his return, while he was walking down the street with a friend, a man who was passing in front of him in a racist race insulted him.
It was a moment that, according to Marick, gave him a “glimpse of what to expect” for the rest of his life.
Throughout his college years, Marik said he and other black students were often underestimated by teachers.
“People were almost surprised at the way I behaved in college, because it’s like they expected you to be out of control,” he said.
He said this often led him to be used as an example by teachers to show how other black students should behave, which Marik said he “hated.”
Following the global response to the Black Lives Matter movement over the past 12 months, the music student said he welcomed the positive changes he saw, but said “there is still a long way to go. to browse”.
“I think the coronavirus has really shed light on racism and I honestly don’t think that if it wasn’t for a lockdown people wouldn’t have been paying the attention they’ve been paying,” he said. -he declares.
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The 19-year-old recalled that the Black Lives Matter protest in the city center was an “emotional day” for him and many others.
“In my speech, I just wanted every word to connect with people,” he said.
And it did. The reaction to his speech reinforced for Marik that there are people “out there” who care and want to support “change”.
He hopes his music will receive a similar response.
May 25 – anniversary of the death of George Floyd – Marik, whose artist name is “Mar! K ”, will officially release a two-track single called“ George ”, including his protest speech.
The single will be available on Spotify and other major streaming platforms.