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HIP-HOP SPOTLIGHT: COMMISSARY INTERVIEW
AWOE: First I want to say it’s admirable to know a young man who is
going after the will of God for his life. Pursuing the anointing God has given you
takes nner strength. So tell me who the Commissary is and how you became
committed to the will of God for your life?
COMMISSARY: Commissary is a man after God's own heart like David was. There's
nothing special or extraordinary about me except for the fact that I live to please Christ. I became committed to the will of God because of His grace and mercy. I knew since the age of seven that I was supposed to be doing something for Him and His Kingdom.
AWOE: How did you know you were supposed to be a rap minister?
COMMISSARY: I didn't know truly until about three and a half years ago. When I
formed my group, A.I., with a few guys from my church, a light bulb went off and I received confirmation that this was my calling and my purpose.
AWOE: Why did you run from your calling?
COMMISSARY: I let the enemy get the best of me. Instead of surrendering all to
Christ from the get go and putting Him in charge of the battle, I thought that I would go out and do my own thing, and when I was ready, get serious.
AWOE: What happen to cause you to follow the will of God?
COMMISSARY: I heard a sermon by Dr. Barry C. Black on December 31, 2004 entitled
"Don't Quit." The message really got to me, and being on the brink of 2005, I made a new years resolution to get closer to God. I promised to pray more, study the Bible more, and just follow His will. That sermon and that resolution changed my life and I have never been the same since that night.
AWOE: In a society where hip-hop and rap is filled with sex, murder, drugs
etc, how do you see God using you to reach people in the world?
COMMISSARY: Well anytime that the devil intends something for bad and tries to
pervert it, God is totally capable of intervening and using it for His glory. Richard Twiss, an Indian minister of the Gospel said that "All cultures are stained with sin, but Christ can redeem any culture. Instead of honoring the devil, Christ's blood made it possible to honor Him with any given culture." And that can be evident with Hip Hop or any other
culture that hasn't come to know Christ.
AWOE: What has been the difference in the secular venues vs. the Christian places you’ve performed in?
COMMISSARY: I've experienced more spiritual opposition in secular venues.
Sometimes the microphones are too low so the audience isn't able to hear me or
sometimes the instrumental isn't loud enough, so it's hard for me to stay
on beat. I experience spiritual opposition in Christian venues as well, but I'm all for ministering at secular venues, despite everything, most of time, going wrong. We're called to be lights in the dark and if we go in Christ's name, we go to transform, not to conform.
AWOE: What do you think about the people in the church that run the youth out by ragging on the way they dress? Do you think the inner man is reflected in the outside?
COMMISSARY: It's sad to me because clothing doesn't define what's on the
inside. Godly pastors wear suits and careless pimps filled with greed also
wear suits. Both men look presentable on the outside, but they stand for
two totally different things. I just point any adult or anybody who
disagrees with the way the youth of the church dress to 1 Samuel 16:7. "For the
Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but
the Lord looketh on the heart."
AWOE: Now you have worked with some amazing artists such as Manwell, Ron
Kenoly, Jr. a.ka. Bingo, and Ayiesha Woods. What have you learned from
being around them both professionally and spiritually?
COMMISSARY: I've shared the stage with all of them, but the only one that I've
actually talked to one on one with is Manwell. He was supposed to come out
to my CD release party in August, but I think he was on the road. He's
signed to a major label now so he's constantly busy. But all of them are
very professional and very spiritual. The night I shared the stage with them, they each had a wonderful testimony and strong encouraging words for
the youth. It was amazing.
AWOE: What have you enjoyed most about making your EP ‘The Inception’?
COMMISSARY: Ummm, the release party was definitely a night to remember. All of
the hard work paid off that night. That was like my first official concert as well. I mean, I've been apart of a lot of events, but with my release party, I was involved behind the scenes with the planning, booking opening acts, etc. But the definite highlight of that night was when over ten people went on stage for the altar call and gave their life to Christ. All of the hardships and hard work that went into "The Inception" was
out shined with the salvation of those souls.
AWOE: Your song ‘Move Now’ sounds like you just want people to be
free to worship God in their own way. Growing up did you have that sort of
freedom at church and at home?
COMMISSARY: At home, yes, at church, no. My church is very conservative when it comes to Holy Hip Hop. My church is known for their praise and worship, but
when my group A.I. ushered in the teenage Christian rap movement, they were
kind of hesitant. The Word of God tells us to live as free men, and since
there is freedom and liberty in the name of Jesus, we can worship God
anyway we know how. There isn't a right way, or a wrong way, as long
as we are doing it to uplift His holy name.
AWOE: What would you say to your peers who idolize rap artists who
monopolize violence, sex and money? Do you think their upbringing determines their
COMMISSARY: It's hard to talk to them because some of them are stuck in there
ways. And I was talking to my one of my friends who is searching and
extremely hungry. He says he wants to change so bad, but he can't because he's a
product of his environment. That's a lie from hell. The past does not determine the future because I wasn't always a righteous man. I've done things that I shouldn't have, and I know I keep stressing His grace, because if it had not been for that, I would still be stuck in my past and not concerned with where God called me to go. You can't change
unwillingly you have to do it with all of your heart, repent of your sins, and ask
Christ to come into your life.
AWOE: How would you say God has changed your life?
COMMISSARY: Where do I start? Haha. Well, He has definitely changed my mindset.
Before I came to Him, I was very materialistic. I had to have the latest of the latest everything. Don't get me wrong, I still like nice things, but it's all meaningless if you look at the bigger picture. I was girl crazy too. I don't shun the ladies, but if you aren't about my Father's business and you want to pursue something with me, keep it moving.
AWOE: And why do you think Jesus would make a difference in an unsaved
COMMISSARY: Because the unsaved have nobody to really confide in and turn to
when times get rough. Parents are always working, especially in this day in age,
most teachers don't help like they used to, and friends can't always be reached. And we live in a prideful and self-conscious society, so a lot of people try to suppress their emotions. But when you come to know Christ personally, you have a friend who will always listen to you, no matter what. And not only will He listen, He will help you through your problems, and that's better than what any parent, teacher, friend, counselor, or psychologist can do.
AWOE: Finally, how can people purchase your EP and book you to perform?
COMMISSARY: You can only purchase it at my live events at the moment because I don't have a distribution deal yet. I'll be opening up an online store through CD Baby to distribute my project within the next few weeks, so keep an eye out for that. But in the meantime, hit me up at either www.myspace.com/Commissary or CommissaryVM@yahoo.com if you want to buy an
EP or if you want me to come out and/or perform.