Sun. Nov 27th, 2022

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — Typically even the largest impediment could possibly be a blessing in disguise.

This was the case for Mariners Harbor resident Justin Mills, who, together with many Staten Islanders misplaced virtually the whole lot he owned when Hurricane Ida hit in 2021.

Mills was residing within the basement residence of his childhood residence when the storm water rushed into the ceiling degree. On the time, Mills wasn’t even residence, he was in Brooklyn was simply getting his toes moist within the music trade, simply having accomplished his formal training with a diploma in audio engineering and manufacturing from the SAE Institute in Midtown Manhattan.

A photograph of the remnants of Ida within the Mills residence. (Courtesy of Justin Mills)

“My brother informed me there was a lot water within the basement that my mattress was floating,” mentioned Mills.

Though there was ultimately some help from FEMA, a whole lot of that ended up going to the utilities.

“I misplaced my mattress, I misplaced garments, I misplaced photos that I by no means backed up. I additionally misplaced onerous drives and a few of my music tools,” he added. “I believed to myself, rattling; how am I going to seek out sufficient work to exchange the whole lot that I would like?”

After the water subsided and the mud settled, Mills mentioned he discovered a renewed ardour for the music he was creating.

“Wanting again, a whole lot of what I misplaced was simply materials issues. Wanting again at it they have been simply distractions actually. It allowed me to lock in on music as a result of I actually didn’t have the rest to do.”

Platinum producer Mitch Mula, who based “the Stadium BK” music studio in Williamsburg took in Mills and his cousin Senora Cole, displaying them the ropes of the trade.

The workers of the Stadium BK, from left, Sinora Cole, Cassius Mohammed, and Justin Mills pose for an image within the Williamsburg music studio on Oct. 25, 2022. (Staten Island Advance/Jason Paderon)

Earlier this 12 months, nevertheless, Mula knowledgeable the cousins that he was transferring to Florida, leaving the way forward for the studio up within the air.

“My cousin and I have been attempting to scrap collectively any cash we may so we may try to purchase the tools from Mitch when he prompt we simply take it over,” added Mills. “It was a blessing.”


To make ends meet, the 26-year-old Mills works part-time hours at Autozone in Tompkinsville together with sporadically taking shifts on the Amazon Fullfillment Middle in Bloomfield.

Moreover, Mills serves as a Cross Nation and Observe and Discipline coach at Moore Catholic, having beforehand starred within the sport on the faculty, then ultimately Port Richmond after which ultimately on the School of Staten Island the place he helped the Dolphins earn their first two CUNYAC Championships in 2013 and 2014.

In his sophomore 12 months nevertheless, Mills got here to the belief that he was simply going to CSI to run, which led him to his calling in music.

Mariners Harbor resident and audio engineer Justin Mills works on his craft the Stadium BK in Williamsburg. (Staten Island Advance/Jason Paderon)

“I discovered myself skipping class to make beats. I’d be within the library not finding out topics however finding out music.”

“I don’t remorse my time at CSI although as a result of it helped me fulfill my potential as a runner. I used to be capable of see my onerous work repay and that’s an enormous purpose why I went into teaching. It gave me my work ethic. I wish to try to pay it again by displaying the following technology.”


“With Mitch gone we had to determine methods to maintain the studio working as a lot as potential,” added Mills who says they’ve since expanded their choices to video and photograph manufacturing.

Chris Valentine, a Staten Island rapper well-known for having his music “S.I.N.Y” featured on Tom Brady’s Instagram, works on a music with Justin Mills on the Stadium BK in Williamsburg. (Staten Island Advance/Jason Paderon)

“I wished to open up our doorways particularly to the Staten Island artist neighborhood as a result of I really feel like we don’t have something like this over there,” he added. This attracted the likes of native artists like Chris Valentine, who rose to notoriety when Tom Brady used his music on his Instragram web page in 2020.

It appears as if Mills’ luck has lastly turned. And because the saying goes, “Luck is created via onerous work” and Mills is the embodiment.

To contact the studio take a look at their Instagram web page @thestadiumbk.

By Admin

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