BE Modern Man: Meet Emmy Award-Winning Violinist Damien Escobar - Page 2 of 2 - Black Enterprise

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Black Enterprise Magazine January-March 2019 Issue

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For all of his accomplishments and notoriety—the Jamaica, Queens, NY native still finds the time to give back to the community. “It’s one thing to talk about your impact in the community but its another thing to be impactful within the community. Everybody who knows me knows that giving back to youth is my highest priority. I’m a board member of the Jamaica, Queens YMCA. Every year we do a charity concert, where I raise money to send kids to camp for free. Last year we raised about $60,000 to send 1,000 kids to camp. This year we’re taking it to another level by doing a concert featuring Chrisette Michele and Dru Hill, on October 9th at Resort World Casino.”

Another important thing to know about Escobar: He’s on a mission to change the conversation about mainstream music. “I’m not concerned about being the number one violinist in the world. I’ve been told that for many years. I’m not going to stop until you say Stevie Wonder and Damien in the same sentence or Damien Escobar and Drake in the same sentence. That’s when I’ll take a break.”

“Music programs are non-existent in schools. My non-profit, “I am Me,” puts music programs back into schools. So this Fall, I am kicking off an initiative with 20 NYC public schools. I’ll turn high school and middle school auditoriums into Madison Square Garden, I’ll do a concert, and I’ll bring basketball players from the Knicks and Nets, so that we can empower kids to embrace their unique self.”

While many of us are drowning in social media distractions, Escobar offers some powerful insight and words of advice. “Social media has everybody showing up looking like the next person, without fully understanding that nobody puts their imperfections on social media. So ultimately, we’re striving for a sense of falsification. I want to empower kids to embrace who they are. When you set out on a mission, or have something that you want to accomplish. You have to just do it, and put your blinders on, just like horses on the racetrack who can’t see what’s going on to the left or right of them.”

Not one to shy away from the hustle and the streets that gave him his first dollar for his talent, Escobar periodically takes his performances back to the streets with impromptu concerts throughout New York City.

The BE Modern Man team salutes Damien Escobar for his remarkable talent. We thank you for helping young men and women to see the world beyond their immediate surroundings, and embrace their individuality.

It’s our normal to be extraordinary.  Follow @blackenterprise and join the BE Modern Man conversation using #BEModernMan.

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