Carvin G. Haggins (pronounced: Hay-Gins)
…is a Grammy Award-winning songwriter and producer. He has worked and collaborated with notable artists in the music industry, including: Will Smith, Jill Scott, Musiq Soulchild, Chrisette Michelle, Justin Timberlake, Mary J. Blige and Chris Brown to name a few. The multi-platinum songwriter has received 21 Grammy nominations and 10 ASCAP writer awards. Haggins is also Co-Founder of Karma Productions, Co-Creator of Forever Music Inc., Videographer, Director, Radio Show Host, Creator of Ethical Music Entertainment and Founder of “Rage Against the Ratchet” campaign.
A Philadelphia native, Haggins listened to various music during his childhood and was inspired by musical greats, Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff, Barry Gordy, Quincy Jones, Lionel Richie, Burt Bacharach, KRS1, Chuck D, Michael Jackson, James Brown, Prince and Ike Turner. Haggins knew at a young age that he wanted to write songs that people could feel, similar to the music he was listening to. As a teenager, Haggins became intrigued by the sounds of hip-hop, where he began his musical career as an MC (master of ceremony or mic controller), writing his own lyrics and rapping at various local shows throughout the city of Philadelphia.
After his experience and stint as a hip-hop artist, Haggins worked for Up & Up Productions owned by Harold Russell, where the two produced commercials for all of the local radio stations. Following his time with Up & Up, Haggins began working at DJ Jazzy Jeff’s A Touch of Jazz studio with Keith Pelzer, Andre’ Harris, Vidal Davis and Ivan Barias and Darren Henson who joined the team two years later. This experience is what catapulted him to become creative and independent with this process by writing and producing local talent.
In 2000, after his time working with A Touch of Jazz, Haggins was inspired to form his own production company which he established with friend and co-founder Ivan Barias. The production company was named Karma Productions and the duo utilized this platform to write and produce songs for many artists by incorporating the “Philadelphia Sound” that was created by legendary producers Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff, combining modern soul and hip-hop influences, which became their signature sound. Haggins and Barias (known in the industry as Carvin & Ivan) have written and produced songs for Ledisi, Lala Hathaway, Jazmine Sullivan, Jill Scott, Musiq Soulchild, Justin Timberlake, Mario, Chris Brown, Raheem DeVaughn, Keyshia Cole, Jaheim, Estelle, Floetry, Skillz, Faith Evans, Rick Ross and many others. Haggins also earned a reputation in the industry for composing music that is about “real-life experiences” that are relatable to the average person. Some of the well-known Billboard hits that have this feel of “real-life experiences”, include: “Love” (Musiq Soulchild), “Customer” (Raheem DeVaughn), “If You Leave” (Mary J. Blige and Musiq Soulchild), and “Finding My Way Back” (Jaheim), just to name a few.
As passionate as he is about music, Haggins has a strong responsibility to his community. He was named Philly 360 Creative Ambassador of Philadelphia. Also he serves on the Board of Directors for the Community Angel Foundation; and he is often invited to speak to young people about his life journey and experiences at various nonprofit organizations and functions. In addition, Haggins is also a Minister and Sunday School teacher at the Southern Baptist Church in North Philadelphia.
Haggins states, “My greatest influence is Jesus Christ and I now understand my mission in this life is to be subservient to my calling to help others through his name.”
In 2014, Haggins’ passion for putting positive music on air led him to start WEME Radio, an internet radio show dedicated to “feel good” music. Haggins produces and co-hosts the show with Allen Irvin, that can be heard weekly on the Survival Radio Network. The show has already been acknowledged as one of the “most listened” to shows online by Blog Talk Radio. Also in 2014, Haggins has formed a movement entitled: “Rage Against the Ratchet” – to bring forth a call-to-action against radio stations that continue to broadcast overly, misogynistic and sexually explicit lyrics that are degrading to women and have a negative impact on today’s youth. The movement has received national press and continues to build awareness about the cause to the community.
Currently, Haggins is also leading the charge to bring “respect” back to radio, starting with his Ethical Music Entertainment label and his new artist BriaMarie, whose songs “Bye Boy,” “IDK,” and “Celebrate,” have been featured on MTV, VH1 and BET. Haggins’ mission at this level of his musical career is to make music that is positive with unadulterated lyrics that have a powerful message.