Whenever I am asked to mentor and whenever I am consulted by musicians who are just getting into the gospel music scene I always end up asking this vital question.
I usually start from, “why music?” Then I ask “why gospel music?” Then eventually I ask “what drives you as a musician?”
You can easily be deceived by the glamour you see on the red carpet or on stage. the lights and the cameras. The nice cars and the beautiful reception they get when they arrive at an event may trip you. Their selfies on Instagram may entice you too but……believe me, that’s just one side of the story.
They haven’t told you how they were crushed by life at different times in their past. Some are presently in exrrememly tight spots right now but you have no idea cos all you see is their smiles.
Most fans of Frank Edwards know how he and his mother were impoverished while he was a child so I’ll leave his story alone, it has been beaten enough. Let’s talk about Gabriel Eziashi, the man who cane out with the popular praise song, “wetin I go give to you?…my praise!” Yes, that guy, internationally celebrated musician. From Europe to North America, Africa to Asia. This guy was once a conductor, yes, bus conductor….not the classy ones,the desperate ones.
TD Jakes the most popular preacher and most influencial Bishop on the globe today was in a mess at some point in His life. He is a music producer with a record label, a movie producer with popular movies to his name, he’s one of the most respected and most admired faces of gospel in our day but if he doesn’t say it, you wouldn’t know that at one time, he had his car reprocessed. At one time, he had to hitch a ride with strangers just to go and preach prosperity and success. He had to battle with poverty even as a man with a wife and kids.
Guys, the truth is that all these guys had when things were rough was their drive and that drive wasn’t found in natural things but in spiritual things. Believe me, you can’t achieve that vision on your passion alone. It will fade one day. The devil will make sure that happens because he invests more resources in stopping people who have the capacity to change a thousand lives than in stopping one person at a time.
If you have a dream to bless lives with your music, you better realize that the devil is coming for you and your zeal and passion and determination is not enough to keep you going.
Some of these celebrities are currently going through hard times but they know they will come out of it because they have been well built over time to withstand adversity. Their drive is more divine than carnal so they overcome these trials without breaking a sweat or faking a smile.
So before you make that big step into this world of music, especially Christian music, ask yourself, what drives my music. Am I driven by fame, fortune, glamour, or a desire to heal the souls of hurting people. You must wait till you have a strong drive because your drive will be tested by disappointments, rejection, disregard for your gift and contempt. People will underestimate you, some people will not give you a chance, some will shut you down even before you open your mouth. You will go broke. You will take public transport to shows even as a special guest. You may not be given an honorarium even when it was promised. You will squat with people who have jobs and they will question your music dreams. They will tell you to go get a real job and leave this hobby of yours. You will go for gigs on empty stomach. You will go through a lot but if your drive is from the right place, you will overcome.
So I ask again, what drives your music?
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