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Secret Weapon Volumes 1 & 2

by Marcel

Released 2004
Bombay Recording Company
Released 2004
Bombay Recording Company
Inspired by Prince and his albums Dirty Mind, Sign O'The Times, and LoveSexy, this is Marcel's "Funkiest" album.
‘Secret Weapon Volumes 1 & 2’ is Marcel's fifth and final release recording as Marcel. Along with the release was a world tour promoting all of his material from 1998 to the present in select cities and countries. Inspired by Prince and Meshell Ndegeocello with a very funk influenced sound, Marcel feels that this project was his funkiest album to date! If you enjoyed Prince's albums Dirty Mind, Sign O' The Times, and LoveSexy, then this album is for you! The album was promoted with the singles “Secret Weapon”, “Cosmopolitan”, “Body Electric”, “Music / Afterparty”, “Got 2 Get Up”, and “You Blow My Mind : Frequency feat. Jarrod”. Tracks from the album received radio airplay worldwide, including in Australia and garnered accolades in the country.

After the passing of his grandmother in December 2003, he legally changed his birth name from “Andre Marcel Wilson” to “Andre Marcel Ajamu Akinyele” in 2004 to reflect more of an African heritage. He realized that blacks in America were the only culture that did not have its own last names. He stated, “White people carry their family birth last names, Asian’s have their cultural last names, Latin’s have their own cultural names, yet blacks in America are the only culture without their cultural last names due to slavery. Therefore, taking the slave masters last name. My former last name ‘Wilson’ was given to me by someone who didn’t even know me, my family, my ancestors, nor had respect for my people. My new last name ‘Akinyele’ is a gift from the Universe. I have embraced my new life force and within I’ve become Andre Marcel Ajamu Akinyele, meaning ‘Strong Warrior’ – pronounced Ah-ja-moo Ah-kin-yeah-lay.”

Additionally, in changing his name, he wanted to depart from the Prince influenced sound to a more self-defined sound to honor his grandmother. Thus, “Cyber Jazz” and the Pearl Jazz Recording Label was born. After the release of the ‘Secret Weapon’ album, he formed the jazz/funk/fusion band Gemini Soul and began recording as Ajamu Akinyele. He would not return to the Prince influenced sound until the release of his 2012 album ‘The Potomac Syndrome’ as Andre Akinyele.

The song “The Secret Weapon,” powerful in itself, is where he announces he is now “Ajamu Akinyele.”

Marcel declared, “When your life begins to come in full circle, you take on a new life force that represents a new beginning within.”

Marcel has recorded under numerous names including Michael Angelo (in 1989 releasing a single titled "Brina Brown" in Europe) and Ajamu Akinyele as a jazz artist. His last recording under the moniker Marcel was 2004's 'Secret Weapon Volumes 1 & 2.' He was also the bandleader of the jazz/funk/fusion band Gemini Soul. He now records as Andre Akinyele.

As Marcel, his entire catalog from 1998–2004 can be purchased right here at CD Baby, so look for the following titles:

The Diary of Marcel "1998"

Spice : The Alternative Hip-Hop Experience "2001"

Uptown : 2025 A.D. "2003"

Uptown : 2025 E.P. "2004"

Secret Weapon Volumes 1 & 2 "2004" (His last recording as Marcel)

Fun Facts:

He has developed other ventures, including his Orange River enterprise that consists of a record label, book publishing company, and film studio. He produced albums for Jon O’Bergh. He is the bandleader, guitarist, bassist, and lead singer of the rock group Looking for Lester, working under the pseudonym Rebellion and producing the album under the name Messiah Superstar. He is also the lead singer, drum programmer, and keyboardist for the electronic synth-pop duo Lavender Lush, also working under the pseudonym Chambliss Charlie. He co-authored the book ‘Elliptical: The Music of Meshell Ndegeocello.’ Aside from music, he is also the owner of Akinyele Design Firm, which focuses on graphic design and visual arts. Also, he is the owner of Ajamu, a gaming and software development company. He authored the tech book ‘So, What’s the Big Deal About Scrum? A Methodology Handbook for Developers.’ In addition to holding an Associate's of Arts degree in Music Technology and a Bachelor's degree in Legal Studies, he also holds a Master's degree in Information Technology (IT): Software Engineering.


Multi-instrumentalist, producer, and composer André Akinyele has recorded under the names Marcel and Ajamu Akinyele, exploring multiple music genres. He is the bandleader and bassist of the jazz/funk fusion band Gemini Soul, the vocalist and guitarist for the rock band Looking for Lester, as well as the vocalist and keyboardist for the electronic synth-pop duo Lavender Lush. He is also the co-author of the book Elliptical: The Music of Meshell Ndegeocello.


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