On today’s episode of Creative Space, we have the pleasure of speaking with Calvin the II, aka Calvin Winbush,  a musician, actor and dear friend of mine with quite an inspiring journey. Originally from Detroit, he started playing music at a young age and followed that passion to intern at Atlantic Records where he learned the ins and outs of the music business, working on Lupe Fiasco’s Food & Liquor album. He eventually moved to Los Angeles, where his acting career took off. You may have seen Calvin playing guitar in the beginning of Childish Gambino’s iconic music video, “This is America,” or guest starring on the hit TV show Nashville.

We cover a lot of ground in this episode, especially given that Calvin is a talented actor, musician, and music producer. We learn about his upbringing in Detroit and how he got inspired to be an entertainer while in the marching band. We learn how Calvin went from working in craft services on the set of shows like Lipstick Jungle to soon becoming a working actor himself. He even shares many of his secrets when it comes to the creative process as well as learning multiple instruments.

For more on Calvin the II, visit: calvintheii.com.

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1:11— We go way back

2:19—Relearning how to be in contact with people post pandemic

4:20—Office culture and the creative process

5:30—Being a Navy Brat and life in Detroit

8:50—The secret to learning multiple instruments

11:53—From Guitar Hero to the real guitar 

12:25—Early musical inspirations

13:00—Remember getting CDs from Columbia House?

16:20—How acting and stand up made him a better musician

20:00—Not every song has to be about me

21:30—Calvin’s definition of creativity

24:15—Don’t create and edit at the same time

27:21—Why you’re never not creative

34:55—The art of creating musical moments

36:43—The moment Calvin decided to be a full-time artist

39:02—The impact of his high school music teacher

41:20—Why acting is so much easier to make a living at than music

43:00—From craft services to being a working actor

47:22—Find out quickly if you could be good at something

48:48—What I do is less than 1% of humans do