After receiving a low-cost Casio keyboard from a friend, the Brooklyn, New York-native began composing music at age 17. Band and Rose Royce, Maxwell began to teach himself to play a variety of instruments.
Recording sessions for a new album took place during 2007 to 2009 at Chung King Studios, Bowery Digital, and Platinum Sound Recording Studios in New York City.During this time, and after seven years of not performing, he appeared as a surprise musical guest on the 2008 BET Awards, where he performed the song "Simply Beautiful" in a tribute to soul singer Al Green, shocking fans and the audience alike with his ability to still perform well, but also with his new look, his trademark dreadlocks and pork-chop sideburns gone, replaced with a more relaxed and mature look.On April 17, 2012, Maxwell announced that he and his eleven-piece band would embark on a six-day tour, Maxwell Two Night -M2N tour 2012 – two nights in three cities, scheduled for the cities of Los Angeles, California – Staples Center (July 20 and July 21); Atlanta, Georgia – Phillips Arena (July 27 and July 28); and Newark, New Jersey – the Prudential Center (August 3 and August 4).Maxwell was to perform his discography in its entirety.Maxwell was able to gain access to a 24-track recording studio and started to record songs for a demo tape, which he circulated among his friends.
Maxwell began working with songwriter Leon Ware and noted guitarist Wah Wah Watson to record his debut Maxwell's Urban Hang Suite in the early 1990s. Til the Cops Come Knockin'", debuted on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks at number 87 in May 1996.full of overwrought, underwritten songs with obscure, fancy titles revolving around a sort of sexual gnosticism." Later in the year he released "Fortunate", a single written by R.Kelly and featured on the soundtrack for the 1999 film Life.The first day of the tour Maxwell was to perform songs from his first album Maxwell's Urban Hang Suite and second album Embrya.The second day of the tour Maxwell was to perform from his third and fourth albums Now and BLACKsummer'snight, respectively.Despite facing ridicule from classmates for being shy and awkward, he progressed and continued to develop his musical abilities, and he also adopted the look of a more bohemian style outwardly in his clothing, growing long sideburns and letting his hair grow out wildly and combed in an extreme style, or sometimes putting his hair in long dreads.