Marshmello

Christopher Comstock (born May 19, 1992), known professionally as Marshmello, is an American electronic music producer and DJ. He first gained international recognition by releasing remixes of songs by Jack Ü and Zedd. His debut studio album, Joytime, was released in January 2016 consisting of its lead single and Marshmello's debut career single "Keep It Mello". He is best known for the songs "Silence", "Wolves", "Friends" and "Happier", all of which have been certified multi-platinum in many countries and appeared in the Top 30 of the Billboard Hot 100.

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Marshmello
Marshmello holding a microphone in his right hand with his left hand raised up
Marshmello performing at Open Beatz 2016
Background information
Birth nameChristopher Comstock
Also known asDotcom
Born (1992-05-19) May 19, 1992 (age 26)[1]
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States[1]
Genres
Occupation(s)
  • DJ
  • record producer
  • internet personality
Instruments
Years active2015–present
Labels
Websitemarshmellomusic.com
YouTube information
Years active2015–present
Genre
Subscribers30.0 million
(February 26, 2019)
Total views5.0 billion
(February 26, 2019)
100,000 subscribers 2015
1,000,000 subscribers 2016
10,000,000 subscribers 2018

Christopher Comstock (born May 19, 1992), known professionally as Marshmello, is an American electronic music producer and DJ. He first gained international recognition by releasing remixes of songs by Jack Ü and Zedd. His debut studio album, Joytime, was released in January 2016 consisting of its lead single and Marshmello's debut career single "Keep It Mello". He is best known for the songs "Silence", "Wolves", "Friends" and "Happier", all of which have been certified multi-platinum in many countries and appeared in the Top 30 of the Billboard Hot 100.[lower-alpha 1]

Marshmello's second song in 2016, a platinum-certified single titled "Alone" was released in May via the Canadian record label Monstercat. Having peaked on the US Billboard Hot 100 at number 60, it became his first single to be certified platinum in the US and Canada with over a million copies of certified units.[lower-alpha 1] That year, he released three subsequent singles. In 2017, after releasing singles such as "Chasing Colors", "Twinbow" and "Moving On", Marshmello collaborated with R&B singer Khalid to release "Silence" as a single, which was certified platinum and multi-platinum in eight countries. Succeeding another single, one of his best-selling singles, a collaboration with Selena Gomez was released, titled "Wolves".

His second single of 2018, titled "Friends", was released as a collaboration with singer Anne-Marie. Months later, his second studio album, Joytime II, was released with singles "Tell Me" and "Check This Out". Achieving similar charting success like the debut album with positions on three Billboard charts, Joytime II, failed to appear on charts outside the United States and was reviewed as below average by publications such as Rolling Stone and Pitchfork. Marshmello's highest-charted song on the Billboard Hot 100 and in the United Kingdom was released in August titled "Happier". He was named by Forbes in eighth place in their annual ranking of the world's highest-paid DJs in 2017 as he earned $21 million in the twelve months before June 2017.[4][5]

Career

2015-2016: Early career and Joytime

Marshmello posted his first original song "Wavez" to his SoundCloud page in the early months of 2015.[lower-alpha 2] As he released more songs, he began to receive support from musicians such as Skrillex, who reposted his song "Find Me" on SoundCloud.[6] Shortly after, he made performances at New York's Pier 94, Pomona, California's HARD Day of the Dead festival, and Miami Music Week. He is managed by Moe Shalizi of Red Light Management.[7] Having had an image of masking himself with a white bucket, Marshmello was frequently suggested to be Chris Comstock, an American DJ who was better known as Dotcom at the time, because their musical styles are similar.[8]

Marshmello released his debut studio album Joytime, consisting of 10 songs, via his label Joytime Collective on January 8, 2016.[9] One single was released from the album, titled "Keep It Mello", featuring Mexican rapper Omar Linx, and was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).[lower-alpha 3] The album peaked at number five on Billboard's Dance/Electronic Songs chart, number fourteen on the US Heatseeker Albums chart and forty-one on the Independent Albums chart.[lower-alpha 1]

Marshmello debuted on the Canadian independent record label Monstercat with the release of "Alone", which appeared on the label's compilation album Monstercat 027 – Cataclysm.[lower-alpha 3] The song's accompanying music video, released to YouTube, has received over 1.06 billion views as of December 2018.[lower-alpha 4] The song became his first to debut on the Billboard Hot 100 as it peaked at number sixty alongside charting on the Dance/Electronic Songs chart at number nine and the Canadian Hot 100 at number fifty-six, which was also his first in Canada. It was also certified platinum in both Canada by Music Canada and the United States by RIAA.[lower-alpha 1]

2016-2018: "Silence", "Wolves" "Friends", and Joytime II

Marshmello performing at VELD 2016

Marshmello performed at Electric Daisy Carnival 2016 in Las Vegas on June 19. In a gimmick attempted by Marshmello and Dutch DJ Tiësto, the latter who wore the same clothes as the former on stage, took off his helmet presenting himself as Marshmello.[10][11] It was later disregarded as a publicity stunt by fans and the media due to their conflicting tour dates and a photo of "the two helmeted DJs hanging out together pre-show".[12][13]

He announced the Ritual Tour on Twitter, in which he performed in several countries including the United States, China, South Korea, India and Paraguay from late September until early January of the following year.[14][lower-alpha 5] The tour was accompanied with his debut on dubstep musician Skrillex's Owsla label, with a single titled "Ritual", in which vocalist Wrabel was featured.[15] An official music video for the song was published to YouTube.[lower-alpha 4] Soon after, Marshmello launched his own record label named Joytime Collective and recruited fellow DJ and producer Slushii as the first signee on its roster.[16]

Marshmello receiving an award in 2017 from producers Sean Hamilton and Eric Hertzog at the Remix Awards in Miami, Florida

Marshmello collaborated with Ookay to release the single "Chasing Colors" featuring vocals by Noah Cyrus.[17] He later collaborated with Slushii to release the single "Twinbow", a song previously only known to the public as a snippet.[18] During the mid-year, his third single of the year titled "Moving On" was released, having debuted two years before receiving the official release.[19] A music video for the song was also published, having received 169 million views as of December 2018.[20][lower-alpha 4] Months later, Marshmello announced upcoming collaborations with American hip hop recording artist Blackbear[21] and Demi Lovato.[22] The collaborations, however, were never released officially as of December 2018. Following that, Marshmello released "Love U" as a single for free as appreciation to his fans. The song was described by Billboard as a "gritty dance-pop single with a pounding bass line and helium-breathed vocals."[23]

His next single, announced on Twitter, was a collaboration with R&B singer Khalid titled "Silence", which was released on August 11, 2017, via RCA Records.[24] The song appeared on the Top 200 in over 28 countries.[lower-alpha 1] It topped the Dance charts in Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States, and charted in the Top 10 of more than fifteen countries such as Germany, Sweden and Norway. It also appeared on the year-end charts of Hungary, Denmark, Austria, Belgium and the Netherlands. Additionally, it was certified multi-platinum in many countries. Among them were a single platinum by the British Phonographic Industry (United Kingdom) and the Bundesverband Musikindustrie (Germany), a double platinum by the Belgian Entertainment Association (Belgium), Recorded Music NZ (New Zealand) and the RIAA (United States), a triple platinum by Music Canada (Canada), a quadruple platinum by the Swedish Recording Industry Association (Sweden) and a quintuple platinum by the Australian Recording Industry Association (Australia).[lower-alpha 1]

Later in the year, he released his collaboration with Selena Gomez, the single "Wolves" which became a commercial success,[25] having reached the top 10 in more than 20 countries.[lower-alpha 1] It topped the charts in Latvia, Poland and Hungary, and the Billboard Dance/Electronic Songs chart. It was also his highest-charting Billboard Hot 100 song in 2017, having peaked in the Top 50 of over 50 countries and sold over 2.5 million copies of certified units. The song was certified gold in the United Kingdom, Germany, Portugal and Denmark, and multiple-platinum in Brazil, Sweden, Canada and Australia while receiving single-platinum certification in the United States, France, Italy, Spain, Belgium and New Zealand.[lower-alpha 1]

Succeeding "Wolves", the single "You & Me" was released through Joytime Collective,[26] accompanied by an animated music video which was produced and directed by Toon53. The video was published three weeks after the song's release, on his YouTube channel, receiving over 42 million views as of December 2018.[27][lower-alpha 4]

In November, Forbes published an article confirming Christopher Comstock as the individual behind the Marshmello project, with regards to existing proofs such as his real name being revealed in music royalty manager BMI's database and that Marshmello's company was registered in August 2015 under Comstock in Delaware. Furthermore, it was also disclosed to Forbes by industry insiders that the two are the same person. Previously-known evidences such as the ASCAP credit, their physical and musical similarities, and Skrillex addressing Marshmello as "Chris" were taken into account of confirming Marshmello's identity.[28]

Marshmello performing at Airbeat One 2018

In January 2018, Marshmello released a posthumous collaboration with rapper Lil Peep, titled "Spotlight". He decided to release the single only after speaking to Peep's mother, who had requested her son's unpublished musical work to be released as much as possible.[29] A month later, Marshmello worked with frequent collaborator Slushii for the song "There ×2", which was released as a single.[30] He released a collaboration with British singer Anne-Marie named "Friends", as the fifth single from Anne-Marie's debut studio album, Speak Your Mind. The song became his highest-charting song on the Hot 100 until October 2018, peaking at number eleven. It also received a single-platinum certification in Belgium, Germany, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States alongside receiving an Australian double-platinum and a Canadian triple-platinum certification.[lower-alpha 1]

Among the other singles released after the work with Anne-Marie were a song with rapper Logic titled "Everyday", which was released as the third single from his seventh mixtape, Bobby Tarantino II,[31] "Fly" and "You Can Cry", a collaborative single with rapper Juicy J and British soul singer James Arthur. On June 19, Marshmello announced on Twitter his second studio album titled Joytime II, which would be musically similar to its predecessor.[32] The album was released on June 22, 2018.[33] Rolling Stone described it as monotonous and Marshmello's decision to not feature guests as disappointing, stating "every song sounds like it has already been pre-leased for use by energy-drink companies or extreme-sports squads." The album was given a 'one-and-a-half star' rating by the magazine,[34] while Pitchfork gave the album a 4.2 out of 10 rating.[35] Two singles were released off the album in June, titled "Tell Me" and "Check This Out",[32][lower-alpha 3] the latter of which receiving an official music video published several months later.[36]

2018-present: "Happier" and Joytime III

In August 2018, he collaborated with British band Bastille to release a single titled "Happier" in August.[lower-alpha 3] It became his highest charting song in Canada, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States while becoming his third number one song on the Dance/Electronic Songs chart. The song was certified gold in Belgium, Sweden and the United Kingdom, platinum in New Zealand and the United States, and double-platinum in Australia and Canada.[lower-alpha 1] His subsequent singles, collaborations with Egyptian singer-songwriter Amr Diab titled "Bayen Habeit" and American rapper and producer Roddy Ricch titled "Project Dreams", were released in December.[37] Marshmello announced that month, he was working on his upcoming third studio album, Joytime III.[38]

In January 2019, Marshmello collaborated with the free-to-play video game Fortnite Battle Royale to throw an in-game concert, along with releasing merchandise based on the game. On February 2nd and 3rd, the concert was held, and the first amassing over 10 million players.[39][40]

Artistry

Deadmau5 inspired Marshmello's appearance and style.

Marshmello wears a custom helmet for public appearances. His identity was not known initially, but was confirmed to be Chris Comstock in late 2017 by Forbes, citing events such as Skrillex's referring of Marshmello as "Chris" in an interview, the managerial connection of Shalizi, and the similar tattoos and birthday.[28]

His stage name, an alternative spelling of "marshmallow", and his marshmallow mascot head were both inspired by Canadian electronic music producer Deadmau5, who also notably uses an alternate spelling for his stage name and performs wearing a "dead mouse" mascot head.[41] Acknowledgement of Deadmau5's contribution to Marshmello's persona is evident in the music video for "Alone".[42] Marshmello also referenced Deadmau5 with a variant of his helmet (with a third ear) featured in the original edit of "Ritual"s music video.[43] It was removed at Deadmau5's demand.[44]

His musical style includes groove-oriented, synth and bass-heavy electronic dance music.[8] Inspired by other masked DJs like Deadmau5 and Daft Punk, Marshmello appears wearing a full-head-covering white-colored bucket.[45] Despite the anonymity, his career received international recognition in 2015 when he began releasing tracks online, including remixes of Zedd's "Beautiful Now", Jack Ü's "Where Are Ü Now" and others, as well as his own single "Alone".

As a YouTuber, Marshmello has published gaming and cooking videos for his series "Gaming with Marshmello" and "Cooking with Marshmello". In an episode of the latter, American singer Paula Abdul was featured as a guest.[46] In the cooking series, Marshmello was shown presenting his methods of cooking, for foods such as meals, snacks and desserts. Appearing as non-speaker, he used body language to express himself in the videos.[47]

Philanthropy

Marshmello, together with Fortnite player Tyler "Ninja" Blevins, have won prize money of a million dollars from Epic's E3 Celebrity Pro Am charity tournament.[48] Half of the million was donated to KIND (Kids in Need of Defense), an organization providing legal counsel to refugees and immigrant children.[49] With the single "Happier" and its pet-dog-themed video, he supported the #FindYourFido campaign by American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) in October 2018, also recognized as "Adopt a Shelter Dog" month.[50]

Discography

Studio albums

Awards and nominations

Marshmello awards and nominations
Awards and nominations
Award Wins Nominations
Billboard Music Awards 0 1
Teen Choice Awards 0 3
Radio Disney Music Awards 0 5
WDM Radio Awards 0 2
mtvU Woodie Awards 0 1
Electronic Music Awards 0 1
Remix Awards 1 1
Totals
Awards won2
Nominations14

Marshmello has been awarded Best Electronic at the 2018 MTV Europe Music Awards, his first major award win. Having previously received nominations such as Best Dance Track at the Radio Disney Music Awards, Top Dance/Electronic Artist at the Billboard Music Awards, and multiple at the Teen Choice Awards in 2018, Marshmello was given them most notably for works such as "Alone", "Wolves", "Silence" and "Friends".

Year Awards Category Recipient Outcome Ref.
2017 WDM Radio Awards Best New Talent Marshmello Nominated [51]
Best Trending Track "Alone"
Radio Disney Music Awards Best Dance Track [52]
Remix Awards Best Trap Remix "Alarm" (Marshmello remix) [53]
Best Use of Vocal Won
MTV Woodies Woodie to Watch Marshmello Nominated [54]
Electronic Music Awards New Artist of the Year [55][56]
2018 Billboard Music Awards Top Dance/Electronic Artist [57]
Radio Disney Music Awards Song of the Year "Wolves" [58]
Breakout Artist of the Year Marshmello
Best Dance Track "Silence"
Teen Choice Awards Choice Electronic/Dance Artist Marshmello [59]
Breakout Artist
Choice Electronic/Dance Song "Friends"
MTV Europe Music Awards Best Electronic Marshmello Won [60]

Notes

  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Adapted from Marshmello discography.
  2. Adapted from Marshmello on SoundCloud
  3. 1 2 3 4 Adapted from Marshmello on iTunes.
  4. 1 2 3 4 Adapted from Marshmello's channel on YouTube.
  5. @Marshmellomusic (August 19, 2016). "Proud to announce the Ritual Tour! More dates are being added" (Tweet) via Twitter.

References

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  2. GQ (September 20, 2018). Marshmello Goes Undercover on Twitter, YouTube, and Reddit | GQ. YouTube.
  3. Bein, Kat (June 26, 2018). "Marshmello Launches Gaming Digital Series With Ninja". Billboard. Retrieved December 14, 2018.
  4. Zack O'Malley Greenburg (August 8, 2017). "The World's Highest-Paid DJs 2017". Forbes. Retrieved February 4, 2019.
  5. Robehmed, Natalie (August 8, 2017). "Inside Masked Newcomer Marshmello's $21 Million Year". Forbes. Retrieved December 14, 2018.
  6. "Who is Marshmello? An in-depth look at electronic music's newest mystery". Dancing Astronaut. June 26, 2015. Retrieved December 14, 2018.
  7. Stutz, Colin (November 19, 2018). "Marshmello's Manager Moe Shalizi Is Leaving Red Light to Start His Own Firm: Exclusive". Billboard. Retrieved December 14, 2018.
  8. 1 2 Sachs, Elliot (May 21, 2016). "Skrillex Confirms Rumor of Marshmello's Identity With New Instagram Post". Your EDM. Retrieved December 14, 2018.
  9. Peters, Mitchell (January 9, 2016). "Marshmello Self-Releases First Album 'Joytime'". Billboard. Retrieved December 14, 2018.
  10. Meadow, Matthew (June 20, 2016). "Marshmello Trolls Everyone at EDC Las Vegas By Revealing His 'True Identity' [VIDEO]". Your EDM. Retrieved December 14, 2018.
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  12. Staff, Your EDM (July 22, 2016). "Marshmello Posts Helmet-Less Picture on Instagram & Deletes It Immediately [SCREENSHOT]". Your EDM. Retrieved August 13, 2016.
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  37. Bein, Kat (September 28, 2018). "Marshmello and Amr Diab Debut World-Melding Song 'Bayen Habeit/In Love'". Billboard. Retrieved December 14, 2018.
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  49. Bein, Kat (October 3, 2018). "Marshmello Donates $500,000 to KIND Foundation to Support Refugee and Immigrant Children". Billboard. Retrieved December 14, 2018.
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