With a career as an artist spanning more than three decades, singer, songwriter, producer, and actor Marshall Titus epitomizes what it means to be a renaissance man whose music, style, and attitude are matched only by his dexterity, passion, and longevity as a soul music artist. Still, to reduce his body of work to soul music would be a grave injustice for a man who has been co-writing, singing jingles, and acting as early as 1979. Chicago’s own Marshall Titus is the embodiment of a man who lives through his art and whose success is measured by his passion and perseverance. As unique as the voice that resonates and quakes with sensual agility, is his heart: empathetic, spiritual, courageous, and adoring. He is a man whose creativity is infused with social consciousness; where “soul” not only references the visceral effect of his music on audiences, but those powerful and empathetic eyes. They are windows to the soul that illuminate the resilient spirit of humankind through the soulful channeling of his own life journey. Says Marshall: “My music is a true reflection of who I am: an artist who is not dictated by current tends or bound by tradition. I am guided by the yearning of my soul's creative desire." Marshall desires a world where music can create change, not unlike soul artists before him who understood the responsibility that comes with having a voice.
Marshall Titus is an award-winning performer who began his musical career singing with local bands and vocal groups before becoming a much sought-after session singer/songwriter. He has also recorded radio and TV commercials for national brands including: Coca Cola, McDonald’s, Coors Beer, Kentucky Fried Chicken, and Sears. However, it was Marshall’s impressive four wins on the TV talent show Star Search that propelled him into the international spotlight. Marshall Titus is today continuing a legacy that includes his former membership in the classic top 10 pop/R&B group Champaign (How ‘Bout Us and Try Again). His song “Belong” was a marker of his time with them. He has also opened concerts for artists such as Jennifer Holiday, Melba Moore and Karen White; written songs for classic pop/R&B hit makers Linda Clifford and Dennis Edwards of the Temptations, as well as recorded and produced his own hit solo recordings. An actor as diverse in his creative expression as he was as a burgeoning talent, he even landed a role as an actor in the box office hit film Barbershop.
As a solo artist he has made his mark as a singer and songwriter in a diverse international market. His solo debut CD release Titus Vol. 1, recorded in London and Cologne, Germany, featured the top 10 dance single, “Don’t Worry ‘Bout Me,” and received international radio and club play. His follow up The Reality of Dreams Project, released in summer 2003, broadened his experience as a gifted singer and songwriter whose songs have been recorded by the renowned gospel artist Walt Whitman and the Soul Children’s Choir of Chicago (“Stop the Tears”) and Dennis Edwards of the Temptations, who covered his ballad “Naturally”.
Where the diversity and depth of Marshall Titus’ creative legacy are concerned, he has few rivals. He is a global soul artist, not easily defined by market-trending soul categories of the moment. Featured in the acclaimed French filmmaker Joel Santoni’s Mort un Dimanche de Pluier (Death on a Sunday in the Rain), the film and soundtrack contain three songs performed by Marshall that were produced and written by one of Europe’s most distinguished composers, Cannes Film Festival award-winner Vladimir Cosma. Beyond Marshall’s remarkable run as on Star Search or his award-winning role in the Chicago production of Dreamgirls; his International acclaim in the dance charts or the social commentary of videos like “Fallen Leaves” or “I Will”, his ability to evolve and stay relevant enables his journey, like his voice, to have a timeless quality that is the marker of only an iconic talent.
In an industry marked by popularity over principle—one where perseverance and redefinition are crudely overshadowed by one-hit wonders and trends, Marshall Titus stands as a testimony that there are artists still motivated and inspired by the lives they impact and who stay true to themselves. And his artistry, every aspect of it, is all epitomized by that voice, the deep passion of it, the dark longing and fine gravel of it. Listen as it soars; listen as it travels through triumphs, through loss. Hear how it captures moments like some aural camera snapping elusive photographs. See it, feel it, vintage, carnal, earthy, delicious; but do not lose sight of the songwriter, the actor, the director, the man who refuses to retire from what surely keeps him alive. He is a man whose spirit and soul are inextricably bound to his creative genius. As long as he is here, expect to experience, not a period artist, but one who creates through ellipsis, commas, semicolons. Marshall Titus is the Renaissance man who realizes that making a mark is a journey, a blessing… a story to be continued.