Columbia High School graduates Coobee Darcelin, Ralph Ravix and Bolu Gbadebo (Class of 2017) are taking their burgeoning film, editing and marketing skills and using them to lift the towns they love.
They’ve launched a new YouTube channel titled “MapSO Juice,” where they will be posting interviews with local business owners in the area, as well as “creatives, artist, educators and more.”
Darcelin, a 19-year old motivational speaker and marketing student at Union County College student (with plans to transfer to Rutgers), has been promoting the first episode — an interview with Village Coffee proprietor Ketan Patel — on social media. Darcelin reports that the plan is to post a new video every Sunday.
“I would really appreciate it if everyone would tune in to watch and support me on this endeavor,” wrote Darcelin recently on SOMA Lounge.
Everyone did. And the reviews were raves.
“This is extremely well-done,” commented culture and music writer Donny Levit. “We’ve become a quick-hit reading/viewing culture and it’s nice to see a thorough interview that takes its time. Congrats to you and the team.”
Darcelin, who has lived in Maplewood since he was 7, told Village Green. “I’m doing this for the love of it. I get to meet great people and discuss questions that I myself have and maybe even other members in the community have.”
But he’s not ruling out turning this into a his day job. “Once we expand or audience, and I see that this could be a potential business venture, I’ll go for it. Getting paid to do what you love is always a great feeling!”
All the filming and editing is done by Darcelin’s partner and best friend Ralph Ravix. Another best friend, Bolu Gbadebo, is serving as co-host. “I owe him [Bolu] a lot because he encouraged me to continue to work on Mapso Juice. Right now we brainstorm and think of subjects that people would find interesting. But we are more than open to hearing pitches and suggestions.”
“This platform is for the community to thrive, connect, and support each other. To contact us, you can email us at [email protected] or comment under our YouTube or Facebook page,” said Darcelin. “We will always respond!”
The first episode, posted on June 25, 2018, was filmed and edited by Ralph Ravix and features original music by Mia Gladstone.