Houston native Marqus Clae splits his creative energy between rapping and acting. A jack of a couple of trades, the 19-year-old rising talent has been able to catch the attention of hip-hop legend Master P—the No Limit Records leader offered early support to help him step further into the rap game—while also carving out a budding television career in a short amount of time. Today, Marqus flexes his lyrical skills in a new freestyle for XXL's What I Do series.

“Bitch, don’t kill my vibe, no, not today,” raps Marqus Clae in the opening line of his freestyle, giving a nod to Kendrick Lamar. Elsewhere in his verse, he spits, “I seen the sickest scenarios of a fallen home/Lost in my thoughts looking for a place to go hide alone/Uno deep in the whip, I ride alone/Bumping that Styles P and licking shots for my niggas who died and gone/Serving like tennis rackets/Swerving the curb in a ’Burban lurking to get the cabbage.”

Then he closes his lyrical firepower with a shout out to the late great Nipsey Hussle, whose memorial procession took place in Los Angeles on April 11.

On his rise in the rap game, Marqus has also balanced an acting career. In 2017, he appeared in the Fox drama Shots Fired alongside Sanaa Lathan and Mack Wilds. The following year, the rhymer entered Marvel’s cinematic universe by landing a role in the hit superhero series Cloak & Dagger.

Juggling two careers has been a learning experience for the multifaceted artist. “It opened my eyes to realize that everything takes hard work," Marqus shares. "If you want to execute something at the highest form you have to practice perfect and private, so you can go out in public and execute."

Clae the Killa, whose influences range from rappers Jay-Z, Nas, Big Pun and Tupac Shakur to actors Denzel Washington, Samuel L. Jackson and Forest Whitaker, executes on the camera and on the mic. Look out for more of what's to come from Marqus Clae, who promises to release new music very soon. “I’m working," he says. "I’m cooking up."

Watch Marqus Clae in action in his What I Do freestyle above.

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