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AWOE Magazine Sol J INTERVIEW: A DRIVEN HEART
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AWOE: Sol J Where did you grow up?
Sol J: I grew up in the city of Santa Ana California, the most populous city in Orange County and home of the Santa Ana winds. A diverse city with many different races and cultures along with the high population comes the high crime rate, drug and gang activity.
AWOE: How did your home life shape you?
Sol J: Growing up without a biological father took its toll on me emotionally as a youth but thank God for a strong mother and my step-father whom came into my life and accepted me as his own. They did a great job molding me to who I am today and before I was saved I strayed but because of their firm grip on me I was placed back on the righteous path.
"I wanted a better life for myself and my family.
I did not want to be selfish and put my family
thru the hurt and pain of having a love
one stray in the wrong direction."
AWOE: When did you finally come to Christ?
Sol J:I came to Christ in 2001, at the time I did not have a relationship with God, a close friend of mine invited me to their siblings Gospel cd release party. I didnít know what to expect being that I never really heard gospel rap before and I was such a big fan of secular music at the time. The music was so powerful that night , a seed was planted in my heart I was touched and inspired like never before. That night I gave my life to Christ my relationship with God began.
AWOE: How did you escape the negatives of drugs and violence that surrounded you?
Sol J: I was very active in sports that was my escape it played a big part in my life. I also seen the consequences and repercussions of my friends and family members who fell into drug addiction, gangs and violence. I wanted a better life for myself and my family. I did not want to be selfish and put my family thru the hurt and pain of having a love one stray in the wrong direction. Though I did not grow up in the church as a youth I know Gods hand of grace and protection was over me.
AWOE: Do you think that your mind really has to be renewed before one can truly walk away from those temptations?
Sol J: Definitely, the word says to renew your mind daily and I think it specifically states that because we face temptation daily. Temptations of the world come in all shapes, forms and disguises and with a renewed mind we recall who Christ is , who we are in Christ and know that we can not give into the things of this world.
AWOE: Why did you stray away from your friends and how did that help you become the man of God you are today?
Sol J: I never liked being a follower, I wanted to be a leader but without God that was always hard to do. As my relationship grew with Christ I became more appreciative of who he was and what he did for me. I began to see that my friends did not have the same desires as I did, the desire to seek God, to be like his son Jesus and to walk that narrow road. At the time I was not strong enough spiritually to not give into the things they did so I separated myself from them. Doing that I grew spiritually became a man of my own and now Iím able to go back to those friends and share God's truth and love with them.
AWOE: How can one be motivated by pain in a positive sense?
Sol J: Romans 5: 3 says ďrejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseveranceĒ. Pain is part of the process of becoming a stronger person, we have to go thru the fire for God to refine us. The word tells us God will never give us anything we can not bare, when we are weak he is strong so thru him we are able to press on and move forward.
AWOE: What is it about your relationship that has developed Food 4 Ur Soul?
Sol J: God put Food 4 Ur Soul in my heart as the foundation of everything I do. As physical food is good for the body , needed to survive the same goes with spiritual food, for the soul. When I say Spiritual food Iím referring to the word of God; ďMan is not to live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth GodĒ Matthew 4:4. My music and clothing is a reflection of the word of God geared to uplift and edify the soul.
music and clothing is a reflection of the word of God geared to uplift and edify the soul.
AWOE: What is the mission behind the music?
Sol J: Spread Godís love and truth through music and song across the globe. Inspire everyone who listens to the music and spark the same flame inside of them, thatís burning in me as the outro of the album says. I really try to connect to the listeners through each song, I say my music is what my feelings sound like and I hope to reach the people out there whom feel the same why I do and as well as those who donít.
AWOE: Who are some of the people that has helped shape your music?
Sol J: God would be the obvious being that music is inspired by him and for him. My Sister in Christ Ila aka Ephony whom you hear through out the album and the rest of the fam I worked with on the album. My Pastor and First Lady whom bring forth the word and plant that seed in me thru services and bible studies. My grandpa has played a big part in my music not because he was musically talented but because of his drive, his will to succeed in life , that part of him is in me and is a reflection of my music, to continue on to keep striving.
Sol J pg 2