What artist isn’t a multi-hyphenate these days? Pop stars are continually launching NFTs and nonprofits, writing autobiographies, taking acting roles, designing sneakers. Once they’ve achieved a certain level of visibility in music, the cross-promotional opportunities are simply there for the taking.
$avvy is still very early in his journey as rapper, singer and songwriter — still managing himself, still releasing his own music, including his upcoming album The POOR Tapes, still making his name. But he’s not attempting to channel his creative energy toward a single a single focus so much as follow his fits of inspiration in multiple directions, all at once. He’s not just ramping up to drop a full-length — he’s also hustling gigs for his new DJ duo GAS, designing buttons, t-shirts and sweaters for his fledgling clothing line and prepping to put out a documentary next month, “POOR TV.”
To one degree or another, each of those pursuits were fueled by the incessant activity at his apartment, a gathering place for all 15 members of the Database collective. They were eating wings one night when he proposed an idea: “Yo, we should make a documentary documenting, like, everything.”
“I don’t want it to be too scripted to where it follows a storyline,” $avvy explains. “I want it to be so sporadic, because that’s the energy in this house. Like, it literally feels like a TV show sometimes. I’ll be waiting for the laugh track. The interactions, the conversations, the sounds, I wanted to capture that essentially in a short film.”
He’s lost count of how many videographers contributed footage to the guerilla-style documentary. One roommate had a handy cam, and others began shooting with their phones.
“Whenever something was happening — it could be as simple as somebody making breakfast — we just filmed that moment,” he says. “And then it kind of just became bigger than that. We started meeting more people that started contributing to this bank of videos that we had, and we just stitched it all together. Doing the credits for it is going to be so hard.”
They managed to capture not only mundane activities, but photo shoots, the release party for $avvy’s previous project, Boys Wear Pearls, and the mini-tour that the entire collective accompanied him on, carpooling all the way.
He’ll screen “POOR TV” at Soho House Nashville at the end of May, and sell copies on DVD, but it won’t be available on any streaming platforms right away, and that’s by design.
“I want to keep the exclusivity,” he says, “because at the end of the day, it is still our life in our house. You know, you don’t let everyone into your life or what’s going on. But if somebody cares enough that they want to see it, come see it. And if they care enough that they want to keep seeing it over and over again, buy the DVD. We’ll put it on YouTube a little later.”
Until then, here’s one of the only places that you can see a sneak peek.