Fatal Jamz can simply be described as rock-‘n-roll aficionados who make “songs for wild bitches”. This band embodies glitz and glamour, heavenly vocals, and romantic yet rugged instrumentation reminiscent of the ‘80s. It’s the kind of music you listen to cruising down the freeway as the sun sets. This band is so LA, and we love it.
Fatal Jamz consists of lead singer Marion Belle, guitarist Andreas Emmanuel, drummer Nick Johns and Paris Yavuz on bass. Their first album, Vol. 1, was released in 2013 by Burger Records. They released an EP, 17 & Hung, August 2016, and their latest full-length, Coverboy, was released by Lolipop Records September 2016.
For the entire month of June, Fatal Jamz has been playing their residency every Wednesday at The Constellation Room to showcase Coverboy and get acquainted with Orange County fans.
“It’s been a rush playing for a new crowd, love the energy. The Observatory’s the best. And sharing the home stage with our homies Alex Knost and The Pesos and so many more all stars,” Belle tells the Weekly.
Marion Belle is a visionary who is unapologetically himself in everything he does. He performs with an enchanting and sensual stage presence, all the while rockin’ lipstick, big hair and tight mesh shirts I could only dream of being able to pull off.
“Creating for me is kind of its own survival mechanism. I believe in what I’m doing, and I have to find transcendence in it. That’s what does it for me, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy all the time to find that expression,” Belle says.
Belle grew up in Pennsylvania to educational and musical parents. When he was young, he picked up singing while his father played jazz standards. It was then he first fell in love and knew he wanted to become a singer. It would eventually pave the way for his journey from PA to CA.
In the meantime, Belle grew up observing and soaking in the world around him. At the time, he was inspired by passionate and romantic figures like F. Scott Fitzgerald, Axl Rose and Tupac. Combine those and toss a few more into the mix like Nikki Sixx, Debbie Harry, Al Green, along with Iggy Pop, and you get the Marion Belle we know today. He developed a love for rap music and rapped with friends in school. It wasn’t until a close friend of Belle’s in high school played his own music every weekend and inspired him to do the same – to make his dreams a reality.
This time was a time of self-discovery and allowed Belle to get in touch with the feminine mystique he had always sought out. The women in his life, regardless of who they were in relation, taught Belle how to do his hair, shave, wear earrings, etc.
“I definitely wasn’t the guy in middle school or the early part of high school where you would walk into a room and I was the one who was getting the most attention. I felt overlooked a lot,” Belle says. “It made me look and find what I really did see as beautiful within myself. You have to find the glamour of yourself. No one else is necessarily going to give you that or make you feel that. I think I was born with an innate self of that. Maybe it’s a survival thing too.”
With no set plan but a vision of what he wanted, Belle decided it was time for him to move to LA. He packed his car with all his belongings, brought his friend along, and together they made their journey across the country.
Belle went from being an observer in his city to becoming an active participant in Los Angeles. He bought a drum machine and aspired to do nothing but make fatal jams, all the while being inspired by those he grew up idolizing from Los Angeles.
“I came to LA just determined to dive in and create albums…I was so excited. It was this feeling of almost like crossing the sea. It felt as wild as going to Japan,” Belle says. “Creating the world as you feel it, that’s what I love most about cities like LA; you’re not creating an all set universe, you’re creating a universe you know as true.”
Fatal Jamz’ music can be compared to cinema in how it offers a world to walk into a journey to take. The Coverboy record is the first of the lead singer trilogy and is the anchor that gave Belle some sort of direction. Each song on the record represents a character he has been in different parts of the world or different parts of his lifetime. There will be two albums to follow it – the next one is expected to be released sometime in early 2018.
The most essential driving force behind Fatal Jamz is for Belle to express himself in the ‘most mythic and most beautiful way’ he could and to tell all his secrets that have been kept inside that would give him an opportunity to say everything he’s wanted to about his time and experience living in LA. At this point in his life, LA is in his blood and he has had many wins and losses in the city as well as lived a vast number of different lifetimes.
“There were times and there are times when you want to quit because you think about times in life that were so carefree. If it’s your passion, you have to fight for it every day…I’m glad I didn’t give up,” Belle says.
Fans can expect fireworks and wild hearts for Fatal Jamz’ last show for their residency on June 28th. They perform at The Constellation Room on Wed. June 28, 8 p.m., free, all ages. For more details, click here.
Yvonne Villasenor is often in a sleep deprived daze daydreaming about ’90s heartthrobs, dogs, upcoming album releases, and what she’s going to eat for dinner. When she snaps back to reality, she writes about OC’s latest music and artists.