The Big Break Spotlight:
Growing up in Peabody, Massachusetts, Marc Predka, a.k.a. Tha Trademarc, was inspired by the sounds of hip-hop music. In regards to his hip-hop moniker, Predka states simply, “When you trademark something you make it official and one of a kind, that’s exactly what I intend to do with my music and my writing.”
A hip-hop music fan all of his life, Tha Trademarc was inspired to become a writer and MC by artists such as Rakim, NWA, The DOC, EPMD, KRS-One, Bumpy Knuckles, Gang Starr, De La Soul, A Tribe Called Quest and many others.
Tha Trademarc’s love of the hip-hop culture impressed his first cousin John Cena as well. Trademarc would get all the newest releases and he and his cousin, who was more like a brother, would listen and study the records for hours. Trademarc knew just what he wanted to do and that was to become an MC. Trademarc has been on the mic for sixteen years writing lyrics and then recording them in basements.
The passion that Tha Trademarc and John Cena had for hip-hop eventually paid off when they wrote and recorded a track that became Cena’s WWE theme song. The song was well received by WWE officials, and more importantly, embraced by WWE fans. Their talent and chemistry could not be denied and eventually Trademarc and Cena landed a recording deal with Columbia Records. The production of their first album was not an easy road. You Can’t See Me took more than 2 years to write, record and release.
“The studio recording process of You Can’t See Me was crazy,” says Tha Trademarc. “Late nights and working around John’s non-stop WWE schedule. But when it came down to business, we were all that, just business.”
Recorded in Chaos and Order Basscamp Studios during Cena’s rare breaks from the ring, You Can’t See Me features 17 original tracks. Paying tribute to the classic two-man rhyming crews of the past, Trademarc and Cena nimbly trade verses throughout the record. Hip-hop legend Freddie Foxxx a.k.a. Bumpy Knuckles can be heard on the album as well. Foxxx originally met Trademarc and Cena at the legendary Hot 97 studios in New York and eventually came to the table and put his stamp on the project.
Trademarc is every bit as laid back and smooth in everyday life as he is on the microphone. Behind his quiet demeanor lies the heart of a true lyricist and writer. “I write whenever I get inspired” says Trademarc. “Sometimes I’m glued to my notebook, other times I let it breathe for a week.” Writing is at the heart of any hip-hop artist and Trademarc takes pride in what he describes as not going for the obvious. “I like to spit rhymes that people have to think about. Rhymes that people need to listen to 2 or 3 times and finally say that was one of the hottest lines I’ve heard.”
Tha Trademarc and John Cena started strong with You Can’t See Me, reaching number 15 on the Billboard Charts Top Pop Albums. The debut album successfully remained on the Billboard Charts Top 200 for four months. You Can’t See Me is acclaimed in the United States and internationally; achieving gold status in Italy. High demand in Italy led to a promotional tour which included a live televised performance as well as, a live concert at the renowned Rolling Stone club in Milan.
A solid fan base and high demand for live performances in the United States led to cross-country tour dates. This includes a performance for Wrestlemania Week at The House of Blues in Los Angeles, a live televised appearance on the WWE program Monday Night Raw as well as a performance at The Southern Sports Awards.
Tha Trademarc is comfortable in front of both a live audience and a camera. This can be seen in the music videos for the hits singles “Right Now” and “Bad, Bad Man.” Both of which were featured on channels such as MTV, MTV2, VH1, BET and part of the regular programming for the WWE.
However, hip-hop and wrestling fans were not the only ones who have gained appreciation of Tha Trademarc’s music. The single “Bad, Bad Man” was used for the season premier commercials for The Shield which aired frequently at prime time. Tha Trademarc’s music debuted on the silver screen as part of the soundtrack for The Marine which appeared in theaters nationwide.
With the great success of You Can’t See Me, Tha Trademarc has built a solid fan base that anxiously waits to see and hear more of his creations. However, they won’t have to wait long for creativity is the force that drives Tha Trademarc’s life. He knows that is only a matter of time before he has chauffeured the entire world around on his artistic ride. This is only the beginning of his journey.
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