Hilltop Views alumni on starting music charity, life after college


Courtesy of Oscar Moreno

San Martin (middle) can be seen performing at a DIY-style concert. These types of performances are common in the underground San Antonio music scene.

Former Hilltop Views editor-in-chief Matt San Martin, who graduated from St. Edward’s University last year with a Bachelors of Arts in communication with a focus in digital media and journalism has decided to go above and beyond with a new project that will bring together his community and his passion for music and helping others.

San Martin started making music in his hometown of San Antonio back in 2015. What started as a “do-it-yourself kinda thing” grew into a hobby that is now used to help his community. 

His current project, SA Covers For A Cause, was formed from an idea he had two years ago while still at St. Edward’s, where he felt disconnected from the San Antonio music scene. The project highlights the local music of his hometown with established musicians covering songs by other artists. 

The daily challenges that students face were no different for San Martin, and his project was put aside towards the end of his college career. However, when the infamous spring semester of COVID-19 hit, it became the perfect reason to bring his idea to life. 

After a few days of brainstorming, San Martin landed on the idea of making a cover album. With COVID-19 hitting his hometown and its communities hard, he decided to donate all the proceeds of his cover album to the San Antonio Food Bank, which takes the responsibility of feeding those in need during the pandemic. 

“It just made perfect sense to take my idea and use it to give back to the community during the time it needs it the most,” San Martin said. 

For San Martin, it is still a shock when someone buys the album, but he feels happy as this means more money for the food bank.  

“This is sort of a testament to this specific time right now in history, where we are able to connect a bunch of musicians and people and get them to create art that is, in return, helping the community,” he said. 

San Martin’s college education played a major role in the making of this project. Through Hilltop Views and the digital media center, he learned the ropes of interviewing and analytics, which aids in the creation and marketing of the project as a whole. 

San Martin is currently attending Syracuse University’s Newhouse School of Communication, studying to earn his M.S. in journalism innovation. He wishes to learn all the tools he can to tell engaging and impactful stories in as many ways as possible.

His dream job right now is to own and operate his own online journalism publication  based in central Texas and centered around Chicanx media. With his masters degree, San Martin is hoping to find more ways to organize projects that both help his community and engage people with local journalism. 

As of Sept. 16, the album has received $1071. 

“I would like to give special thanks to my mentors and my St. Edwards family,” San Martin said. “Thank you for everything.” 

You can find the charity album at otheryoumedia.bandcamp.com.