YouTube archivist Martyy McFlyy on giving a voice to pluggnb

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I recently read a tweet from underground curator Pinkrollie saying, “How you like pluggnb and never heard of Martyy McFlyy?!” If you were tuned into the scene before TikTok, you’ve probably stumbled upon this man’s YouTube channel trying to find some unreleased two minute Yung Bruh song. In 2016, Martyy began uploading songs that would define the early pluggnb wave, like David Shawty’s “Honda,” Lil Fly’s “Frozen” and Hella Sketchy’s “Spent a Check.” Martyy was ahead of his time, pushing a genre that didn’t even have a name yet, classified by its hard-hitting 808’s, bubbly drums and Auto-Tuned melodies. 

When we think about “SoundCloud Rap,” we think about…well…SoundCloud! But lost in that genre name is the influence of Youtube. While it was never as popular a platform as SoundCloud for internet rappers to upload their songs, it was the ideal setting for digital curation of these scenes. Channels like global and astari were focused on creating communities around alternative and emo-rap, credited with the rising popularity of artists like 6dogs, Hella Sketchy, and Lil Peep. Trillphonk played a huge role in this too, highlighting some of $uicideboy$ and Ghostemane’s best work for a broader audience.

Martyy Mcflyy showcased producers from the original BeatPluggz collective like Stoopidxool and Mexikodro, not to mention ascendant rappers like NOLANBEROLLIN and ssgkobe. He introduced people to a sound that stuck, creating a foundation for the next generation to achieve national success. Now nearing 20,000 subscribers, he’s focused on featuring both veterans and up-and-comers of the pluggnb community. I caught up with Martyy to talk about the Bahamas, Lil Tracy, 90’s R&B songs, and putting people on to the underground. 

Maria Kate: How did you first get introduced to the pluggnb scene?

Martyy McFlyy: I got into pluggnb from dreamthug666 SoundCloud. I was listening to his tracks on SoundCloud. He had a lot of pluggnb songs and artists on there. I think it was starting to get popular around that time in 2016/2017. The melodies that the producers used just sounded so happy and cheerful. Sounded like Zaytoven’s beats but just smoother, and as time went on and more people started sending me more music of that genre, I just got really into it and never looked back.

So, did dreamthugg’s channel inspire you to start curating that type of sound?

Uh no, not really.

Alright cool, so then what did?

Uh, pluggnb? It was just the wave at that time I guess, like what was popular. Everybody was sending me like good fucking music, I guess. I didn’t really start with that though originally.

What were you posting originally?

Like, shit like Spaceghostpurpp, Pollari. Really underground stuff, like Yung Bruh. Lil Tracy. That’s it, I think.

That’s so cool! I remember when you used to post that kinda stuff. That’s how I got introduced to Pollari and Tracy.

That’s what’s up!

How did you come across those artists and their music?

I was always listening to the underground since high school, so I was really tapped in from YouTube channels like Trillphonk and astari, so they were always posting like dark rap and sometimes pop rap, so I got into them from those channels.

Did you like it personally, or were you just posting it?

Yung Bruh was just different, I could relate to his early music.

Where are you from? Like, what’s your background?

I’m from the Bahamas. I’ve lived here all my life.

Do you like it there?

It’s no better than America, that’s for sure. I mean, music wise, like everything is mainstream here. But I don’t really let it affect me. I stay on the underground. I’ve been listening to the underground stuff like all my life basically.

That’s so cool. So, like, you’ve always been doing that. What’s been your proudest moment since starting your channel?

Uh. My proudest moment?

Yeah, what’s that been?

I mean, people will show me love for what I do. But I think my proudest moment has been Lil Tracy using my artwork.

That’s so cool! Was it, like, random?

Somebody showed me it, and I was like what the fuck? I didn’t expect it at all.

Did he hit you up?

Nah, he just used my artwork and I fucked with it. I think that would be my proudest moment so far!

That’s awesome! What was your main goal when starting out then?

It’s just to broadcast music that is not appreciated. A lot of lowkey artists make some beautiful music. My goal is to broadcast it. Like, Yo listen to this, it’s fire and you should check it out. Like, check out the underground, basically.

Are those songs just your personal taste?

In the beginning it was like that. But now, people will just send me random shit. If I like it, I’ll upload it. Or like it if it sounds nice.

Has anyone ever been weird to you about something you’ve posted?

Nah, people are pretty nice. But like, who gives a fuck? Like, if I don’t like it, it’s not getting posted if I’m being honest.

What about other music outlets? How do you feel about what they’re doing covering the underground?

Like Soundcloud and stuff? It’s cool or whatever. I feel like they’re just doing it for clout. Soundcloud is like a dying breed and they’re doing it just to stay relevant and popular. It’s corporations! They’re doing anything to get by—like, anything.

Yeah, they’ve changed a lot! They post a lot of the newer stuff now too which is weird. What’s your opinion on that?

It’s neat or whatever, like the hyperpop stuff. It’s not really my type. As long as they’re getting money and shit, props to them! Do what you gotta do.

That’s right, do you listen to any of it?

As long as I like it, I listen to it!

Nice. So, what have been your go-to’s recently?

I’ve been listening to a lot of 90’s R&B music recently. Like, Toni Braxton, Aaliyah. It’s a vibe.

Do you have any future plans for what you post?

I’ve tried to quit, like, numerous times. I’m getting older, and I’ve got a lot of responsibilities and shit. I don’t have time like I used to. But, I’m gonna keep at it. Like keep uploading and keep doing what I do. That’s basically it.

Awesome, I hope you do. I really appreciate it!

Thank you!

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