( ENSPIRE Feature ) Call Me Ace Explores the Importance of Community and Artists Giving Back
ENSPIRE Contributor: Keegan Kerns
No matter what success he achieves, Call Me Ace continues to believe in the essential relationship between artist and community. As he has continued to climb the charts, it has allowed him to star in the West Coast installment of the Ford Mach-E commercial by Insider Studios and, in doing so, show off the community that helped build him. Additionally, as he travels throughout the Bay Area, which has helped form him, he’s able to show off different important cultural hotspots, such as Jack London Square (Oakland Waterfront), Blue Nile, Miss Ollie’s, Great American Music Hall, and Lake Merritt, which all have inspired Ace’s musical endeavors beyond their own aesthetic and cultural importance.
Ace’s connection with the community has been consistent throughout his career, even before he reached the point where he had the opportunities to do advertisements for Ford. On the extended edition of just his second EP, Working From Home, he could use the pre-orders and Google’s gift-matching program to raise over $10,000 for Faith In Action’s Life Free campaign to end social injustice while generating significant buzz around the issue.
Ace talked in-depth about his relationship with his community and how he feels artists and community contribute to one another in a symbiotic relationship. He stresses the importance of community in cultivating artists, saying that “Artists don’t exist without the community that actually champions and lifts them up, so it’s the responsibility of the artist to pour back into those very people.” With his efforts to raise money and awareness around community issues such as social injustice, we can see how seriously Ace takes this responsibility. He continues, saying that “Community is incredibly important to any artist–the businesses, venues, restaurants, everything–and it’s embedded into the artist’s workstreams and just the way they do life. Be a servant as you’re thinking about your artistry. Instead of thinking, what can I take from people? How about, what can I give? Your time, your lyrics, your effort, your resources, and your energy. You need community.”
Not only can we see this in Ace’s direct community efforts, but his second album, Out Of Office, highlights again many of the issues that people face from his community in the Bay Area, whether it’s social injustice or one of the many other issues that disenfranchised communities face.
Importantly, Call Me Ace uses his musical talents to entertain and inspire and bring attention to issues that face his community. This connection to community and understanding of the relationship and responsibility between artist and community makes Ace’s music so potent, and it’s clear how close this community connection is to him. Whether it’s his music roadmap in the Mach-E commercial that showcases all the different places in the Bay Area that have influenced him or his own initiatives for the community, such as his involvement in the Faith In Action’s Life Free campaign, Call Me Ace provides an excellent example of an individual willing to work and give back to the community that helped him succeed.