True Knowledge of Self

The Power Of One's Testimony To Overcome Obstacles

Three Angels Broadcasting Network

Program transcript

Participants: Lance Wilbur (Host), Dwayne Lemon


Series Code: TKS

Program Code: TKS000001

00:29 Hello, my name is Lance Wilbur.
00:31 And I'm Dwayne Lemon.
00:32 And we'd like to welcome you to TKS,
00:34 A True Knowledge of Self,
00:36 where we get to know ourselves from a biblical perspective.
00:40 Now, Dwayne, you understand that
00:43 as we go through this program,
00:45 we're going to be dealing with some controversial subjects,
00:48 we're gonna deal with some subjects
00:50 that people might not be exposed to
00:52 or it might be new for them.
00:53 And we're gonna be kind of using
00:55 as a backdrop, this conflict.
01:00 And in the Bible, in the Book of Revelation Chapter 12,
01:03 it talks about a war.
01:05 And we're needing to help everyone understand
01:08 that we're engaged in this war,
01:09 there's a conflict or controversy.
01:12 Now it talks about a war that started in heaven
01:15 but it also goes on to say in verse 12
01:18 that this war came to the earth.
01:21 And we have to understand that the war
01:23 or the battle is over the minds of humanity.
01:27 Something also interesting in verse 11,
01:29 it talks about how humanity overcame
01:32 or gained the victory in this warfare.
01:34 And it talks about the overcoming of humanity
01:38 by the blood of the Lamb,
01:39 which we're gonna talk about extensively in future episodes,
01:42 and by the word of their testimony
01:45 and this in fact, is what we're gonna be
01:46 talking about in today's episode.
01:48 We're gonna be talking about the power of one's testimony
01:51 to overcome obstacles.
01:52 That's right.
01:54 To have the power, obtain the power to save
01:58 and not only for us as individuals,
02:00 our own stories, our own testimonies,
02:02 but the power to transform others' lives.
02:05 So we're gonna be dealing with your testimony today.
02:08 And I'm gonna start by asking a very simple question,
02:11 where are you from?
02:13 Well, I'm from New York,
02:14 specifically Hollis, Queens to be exact
02:17 and you know, coming from New York
02:20 and the East Coast, there is a lot of things
02:23 pertaining to urban life that you find
02:26 are several types of origins in New York.
02:29 One of them, of course, is one of the things
02:31 that we're gonna be addressing a lot in our episodes,
02:32 which is the hip hop and R'n'B culture.
02:35 I was heavily exposed to that,
02:37 you know, from a childhood growing up.
02:39 And I'm the youngest of eight,
02:41 grew up in a home that had both mom and dad you know,
02:45 and I was privileged to have that.
02:47 But at the same time,
02:48 even though mom and dad were there,
02:50 I found myself at times
02:52 you know, receiving love from my mother
02:54 as best she knew how to love, receiving it from my father
02:56 as best as he knew how to do it,
02:58 my siblings, I have four brothers, three sisters
03:01 and even though we all had our own lives,
03:04 we tried our best to connect together as a family unit.
03:07 But I think just you know, being an individual
03:09 growing up urban life style,
03:11 there was no religion of any kind.
03:13 So there was not Christianity, Islam or Judaism
03:16 or any other connecting dots that are,
03:19 you know, bringing us back to these major religions
03:21 but nevertheless, we were household
03:23 that tried to do good to the best
03:25 of what we understood to be good
03:27 and we thought in our minds
03:29 that we were a pretty well-to-do middle class family.
03:33 Yeah, now let me help the audience understand
03:35 what we're dealing with.
03:37 When we're talking about hip hop culture
03:39 and we're talking about New York City.
03:41 New York City is the birth place of this culture
03:44 that now spreads across the globe.
03:47 And Hollis, Queens is one of the flashpoints
03:51 for the hip hop movement.
03:54 And so understand that this family,
03:57 your upbringing is in the middle
04:01 of this culture that is screaming forward
04:05 that some people think as a fad
04:07 but is actually taking New York by storm
04:10 and soon to be taking the world by storm.
04:12 That's right, because you know,
04:14 when you think about New York especially,
04:16 when you're looking at the 1980s going into the 1990s
04:20 which is of course, my era, you know,
04:22 you're talking about some of the greatest hits
04:23 to ever hit the hip hop and R'n'B industry.
04:26 Everybody from of course, Run- D.M.C,
04:28 I said Hollis, Queens so you know,
04:30 that's where Run- D.M.C. were from.
04:31 And then all the way down to LL Cool J,
04:34 you know, Q-Tip and five from A Tribe Called Quest,
04:37 I mean, all of these different, you know, major rap groups,
04:40 major hits today, this is where they got their origin,
04:43 right there in Queens, New York or somewhere adjacent to it.
04:47 So you're right, we were right there
04:49 entrenched in all of this.
04:51 So tell me a little bit more about
04:54 how now your childhood and your upbringing,
04:57 your household kind of formed you
04:59 or shaped you as a man
05:00 and or the things that you ran into growing up.
05:03 Yeah, I mean, you know, everybody,
05:05 you know, the Bible lets us know
05:07 that we all have purpose,
05:09 you know, we were brought into this world for a reason.
05:12 We are not the results of same bang
05:14 or some freak accident that just took place.
05:16 We have purpose in life.
05:17 Now when I'd look at the book of Isaiah 43:7,
05:20 it tells us that,
05:21 "When God made us He made us for His glory."
05:23 I didn't know that of course,
05:25 because again, there's no religious background
05:27 but I had the hunger and the passion
05:30 from a child to find out, well, what is my purpose.
05:32 So I looked around.
05:34 When I looked at my father, he was a jazz musicianist,
05:37 he was drummist specifically,
05:38 and very, very talented at what he did.
05:40 My mother was a corporate woman,
05:42 my brothers, for the most part,
05:44 were musicians as well, my brother Leslie,
05:46 he played several instruments.
05:47 My brother Vernon instruments, my brother Michael you know,
05:51 I know that he likes to sing a lot
05:52 and a guest being around that musical upbringing,
05:56 plus I grew up in a house where were very musical,
05:58 you listen to music all the time.
05:59 We listen to a lot of rhythm and blues,
06:01 we listen to a music style that was called funk
06:04 and you know, there were a lot of guys like
06:06 you know, the P-Funk Parliament Movement with
06:09 you know, Clinton and some of these other guys
06:13 but you know, their names elude me right now.
06:14 But the point is when I was around all of this music,
06:18 obviously it's started to mould me as you asked.
06:21 And I'm trying to figure out well, what's my contribution
06:23 because I can't play the drums, I can't play the base,
06:25 I can't play anything and I can't sing.
06:27 So it was at a young age that I discovered
06:29 whenever music would come on, I would just start dancing.
06:32 I mean, I would just start dancing,
06:34 my legs would just start moving in voluntarily.
06:36 And it was at a very young age
06:38 that I started to develop a skill set for dancing
06:43 and I got real good at, at a very, very early age.
06:45 Right, so explain as well that
06:48 there's different elements to the culture.
06:51 We're not gonna simply just be talking about the music
06:54 and the partying
06:56 because there is all different dimensions
06:58 of the influence of hip hop, but specifically, you get,
07:00 now involved in the dancing aspect
07:02 or the breaking aspect.
07:04 And this is one of them--
07:06 At least, probably it's the earliest recognized
07:09 exposure and aspect of hip hop
07:12 that kind of went out to the world,
07:13 the break dancing and the dancing culture
07:15 is extremely large.
07:17 Oh, yeah. And it's everywhere.
07:19 So talk about your experience
07:21 as you started getting into that in the street level.
07:23 Yeah, I mean, because again, my mother and father
07:25 because they didn't have major heavy guidelines to,
07:28 to guide me in growing up,
07:30 I was heavily exposed to the street,
07:31 I was exposed to street life.
07:33 So even though I didn't live "street life,"
07:35 I was exposed to it because I was surrounded--
07:37 By different friends. Oh, you were around it.
07:39 Yeah, I was just around it all the time.
07:40 So as a result of that I found myself meeting some brothers,
07:45 they were into the break dancing.
07:47 We started to form a break dancing group
07:49 and we would walk around with our little cardboard boxes
07:52 and then we just tear them open pour little talcum powder on it
07:55 and everybody would start doing everything from backspins,
07:56 the head spins and you know, all this stuff.
07:58 There was a difference between the break dancer
08:00 and the one who did pop.
08:02 And I was the guy who did pop,
08:03 which is usually, when they use the arms
08:05 and all these different things.
08:06 Hey, don't do it now. Yeah, yeah, you know.
08:07 And these were the guys who did more of the pop
08:10 and that's what I did.
08:11 So I found myself more so the guy always standing
08:13 and doing the upper movements
08:15 than the guys who were down on the floor
08:16 doing all the dirty grimy spinning and everything else.
08:19 So I found that this was intriguing me,
08:21 this was pulling at me
08:23 and dancing became an outlet for me
08:25 because I didn't think I was a good looking guy,
08:27 I didn't think I had anything
08:29 that could really draw people to me to make me feel
08:31 that kind of special guy that I wanted to feel,
08:33 girlfriends, things of that nature.
08:35 But dancing became an outlet for me to get attention.
08:39 And as a result of that, I found that
08:41 dancing became this medium for me to get glory.
08:44 Again, I didn't understand
08:45 this whole Bible principle about us giving God glory.
08:47 So everything was about giving myself glory.
08:50 So dancing became the outlet for me to do that.
08:52 So I got into the break dancing and then eventually you know,
08:55 just growing up and eventually getting to high school level,
08:58 we started to transition
08:59 in more different forms of dance
09:01 which is still connected to the hip hop culture.
09:03 And I started to bring that talent
09:05 and those skills and those abilities
09:06 into the high school arena.
09:08 Right, so you're going parties, you're getting recognition.
09:11 Yep.
09:12 And now there is a flashpoint or at least at the local level
09:15 you start to blow up, so what happens?
09:17 Yeah, I mean so, can you imagine,
09:19 at one minute you're walking down the street
09:21 and people actually initiates saying hello, to you.
09:24 One minute, the young ladies
09:26 that you used to look at far off
09:27 and wish that they will give you some attention,
09:29 now all of a sudden you're getting attention.
09:32 So I became kind of the local
09:34 real, real local neighborhood celebrity.
09:37 But when I went to high school,
09:40 I found myself in another realm,
09:41 but once again I'm not known.
09:43 Once again I don't have a lot of friends
09:45 and now I have to try to find a way to you know, grab
09:48 and get people to be friendly.
09:49 To establish ourselves.
09:51 Yeah, just to kind of establish myself,
09:52 make a name for myself.
09:54 So I knew again, I didn't have anything about me from dress
09:57 or looks or any other type of talents or skills
10:00 to draw people to me but I knew I could dance.
10:03 So I found out that in high school,
10:05 they had something called Homecoming King,
10:07 Homecoming Queen Pageant.
10:08 And that was basically a talent show
10:10 and everybody got a chance to go on there
10:12 and demonstrate whatever their talent was.
10:14 In my case it was dancing.
10:16 So I got a chance to perform and when I began to dance,
10:20 lo and behold, you'd probably see,
10:22 the picture come up on the screen here
10:24 where you can see now
10:25 that I became the Homecoming King.
10:28 Next to me is a young lady by the name of Melinda.
10:30 She was the Homecoming Queen, she was a wonderful singer
10:33 but for myself it was the dancing
10:35 and at that point, I'm not gonna lie to you,
10:37 I felt like I was on cloud 999 at the--
10:40 So you got the glory, you have the glory now.
10:42 I got the glory now.
10:43 And you know, it's, it's interesting
10:45 looking in hindsight
10:47 because when I began to study the Bible,
10:49 and I began to read about the characteristics
10:52 of the being that was known as Lucifer
10:54 who eventually became Satan is,
10:57 when you read Isaiah 14:12-14, the Bible shows that
11:01 His whole motive was about bringing glory to himself.
11:04 He was not satisfied with the gifts,
11:06 the talents and the skill, and the abilities
11:08 of which he had plenty of with God,
11:10 he wanted God's position.
11:12 And therefore, he said I want that glory that belongs to you.
11:15 And that's why the Bible says, "I will be lifted up."
11:17 "I will ascend above the stars."
11:18 All this I talk.
11:20 And I found myself in my I stage
11:22 at that point in high school.
11:24 Now as the story goes in Scripture
11:26 and as a story goes from many of us,
11:29 there is a crisis movement.
11:31 There is something that happens as you can continue
11:32 to build yourself up, you build yourself up,
11:34 things are going well and something intervenes,
11:37 you know, there's some humbling experience.
11:39 So what happens with you that makes that transition,
11:41 where that crisis movement
11:42 where you had to think differently.
11:44 Well, one of the things that happened was
11:45 when I was in school,
11:47 again, I feel like my school became my congregation.
11:51 So now when I go there
11:53 as the minister to that congregation,
11:55 the minister of dancing,
11:56 you know, I expected to get praise,
11:58 I expected to get glory.
12:00 Well, there were some visitors who came by the school
12:02 and when they came down to the school,
12:03 they were also dancers.
12:05 And as they started to dance at a talent show,
12:08 the whole auditorium was responding to them,
12:10 to the point they were even lifting up their hands,
12:12 you know, which we know is an act of worship.
12:14 I'm sure they didn't know that
12:15 and I didn't know either at that time
12:17 but nevertheless it is what it is.
12:19 Here it is that I'm watching these brothers dance on stage
12:22 and I'm watching how the auditorium
12:24 is just giving them all this praise and everything
12:28 and jealously rises up to my heart.
12:29 Yeah, you feel disrespected. That's right.
12:30 And you know, and when a brother feels disrespected,
12:32 he wants to handle it.
12:33 So that's what I did, so I got a few friends of ours
12:36 and we went up on the stage
12:37 and we started to make a move around the stage
12:40 while we're walking around the guys in a circle
12:42 kind of like how the shark circles around its prey.
12:44 But to dancers, that was communication
12:46 that I'm about to battle you, not a fight but battle.
12:49 Challenge.
12:50 But the problem was is that the teachers
12:52 and other people didn't understand
12:54 that body language.
12:55 So they thought we came up to fight.
12:57 So they told us get off the stage,
12:58 I got off the stage and long story short,
13:01 before you know it somebody thought
13:03 I wanted to fight those guys, I didn't.
13:05 And they started to fight with those guys,
13:07 started to beat them up and the whole auditorium
13:10 would seem went to get my back to start beating those guys up
13:13 and a major fight broke out, people got hurt real bad,
13:16 police cars, ambulances, everything is showing up
13:19 at my high school now
13:20 and when I came back just to few minutes later,
13:23 because I left, took a little walk,
13:25 came back, saw all the police cars
13:27 and ambulances and then when I came inside,
13:29 people said "What are you doing here?"
13:30 I said, "What do you mean what am I doing here,
13:32 I just wanted to see what happened."
13:33 They said, you need to get out of here,
13:34 you, they're saying, "You started to this fight."
13:37 And I was like, "What? I didn't start anything."
13:38 And the long story short of it is
13:40 they were convinced I started the fight,
13:43 the guys who were dancing were part of vicious gang
13:46 that was known in Brooklyn, New York
13:48 called The Decepticons,
13:50 from the cartoon, "The Transformers."
13:51 Hey, we heard about them in Massachusetts.
13:53 Oh okay, see. That's how that was.
13:54 Yeah, there you go.
13:56 So I mean they were part of The Decepticons
13:57 and that, anybody who knew about
13:58 the gang knew that they were no joke.
14:00 They were not the kind of people you wanted to mess with.
14:02 So I found myself going home that night.
14:05 And when I got home, my mother called,
14:07 my mother opens the door.
14:09 She has a phone in their hand, tears in her eyes
14:10 and she's saying, "Why these boys are calling me,
14:12 telling me, they're gonna kill my son.
14:15 These guys called Decepticons."
14:16 And I was like, "Are you serious?"
14:18 And you know, mom said yes.
14:19 And long story short, that crisis moment,
14:22 I had to drop out of high school
14:23 because my mother said and my father,
14:25 "We're not gonna let you go back to school
14:27 because if you do, these guys will kill you."
14:29 So as a result of that it was through death threats
14:32 that I could no longer go back to school,
14:34 anywhere in Queens.
14:35 And my mother and father said, "You're not going,
14:36 that you just going to have to figure out something else."
14:38 So that was a crisis moment that kind of kicked in.
14:40 So that kind of escalates. Does it die down?
14:43 What's the end result of the conflict?
14:45 The end result is I had some good friends
14:48 who knew that I didn't start the fight.
14:50 So what they did was they got in touch
14:52 with some of the guys on the other side.
14:54 Told them Dwayne didn't do it.
14:56 And they pointed out the guy who did it.
14:59 And the guy who did it or got--
15:01 You know, started the whole fight.
15:02 They did end up killing him.
15:03 So again, these guys meant business,
15:06 they were gonna do what they said
15:07 they were gonna do.
15:08 My life was spared now
15:10 but when I went to my mother and father
15:11 and told them, I said, "Okay, so everything's okay.
15:13 Can I go back to school?"
15:14 They said, "No, we don't want you to go back to school still.
15:17 You just gonna go ahead and need to find a job."
15:19 So now I'm on a hunt trying to find a job.
15:21 I have absolutely no skills,
15:22 talents or degrees or certificates.
15:24 How old were you at this time?
15:25 At this time I'm 16 years old, no 16 going on 17.
15:28 So I'm like what am I supposed to do now.
15:31 And then this is when I found myself
15:34 trying to get odd jobs working at UPS in different places.
15:37 Hated it, I mean-- I understand.
15:39 Yeah. I hated it for several reasons.
15:42 So I knew that I needed to make money.
15:45 My parents knew I needed to make money.
15:46 But the problem is I didn't have
15:48 any skill sets to do it except one.
15:50 And that was the dancing. So here I am.
15:52 I'm always sitting down watching music videos,
15:54 I'm watching people perform.
15:55 I'm watching people do all these things.
15:57 The thought started coming to my mind.
15:59 "Why can't I be on the video?
16:00 Why can't I be one of those guys?"
16:02 So therefore, I started to hear about auditions.
16:05 For the first time, heard about auditions.
16:07 How did you hear about them?
16:08 Well, when you go to house parties,
16:10 a house party is always gonna lead to a club.
16:13 Because you go to a house party,
16:14 you meet people, especially, if you meet dancers.
16:16 If you meet the dancers, the dancers are gonna tell you,
16:19 hey, have you ever heard of the Palladium?
16:21 Have you ever heard of this place that place.
16:22 So I started finding about all these clubs
16:24 throughout Queens, New York,
16:25 some in Brooklyn, most in Manhattan.
16:28 And therefore, I started to go to the clubs in Manhattan.
16:31 In the clubs in Manhattan,
16:32 sometimes you have celebrities come by.
16:33 Right, what people don't realize also is that
16:36 as hip hop is growing in popularity
16:38 and making money for major companies
16:40 and major labels,
16:41 they are actually sending workers,
16:44 scouts and A&Rs, talent scouts are going now into the club.
16:47 All the time.
16:48 So even locally in the boroughs but mainly Manhattan.
16:51 All the time. If you've got.
16:52 if you you've got to that level in Manhattan
16:53 showcase there somehow,
16:55 then it attracts the attention definitely.
16:58 Exactly, so before you know it,
17:00 in going to the clubs, you meet people
17:02 especially, when you meet the other dancers.
17:03 And there's always a battle.
17:05 You know, if you win the battle, then that's huge.
17:08 That's huge.
17:10 You see what happened was I knew that
17:11 I needed to get with the dance groups,
17:13 so I didn't want to kind of do everything myself.
17:15 So at this stage, where I started to transition
17:17 from a high school, now going into the club scene,
17:22 I didn't go by myself I had kind of a group with me
17:24 and there were three brothers
17:26 that I was part of a dance group
17:27 where we were called Quiet Storm.
17:29 And the words Quiet Storm meant we walk soft but we hit hard.
17:33 And that was the whole concept.
17:34 The quiet storm, you know, walk soft but hit hard.
17:37 And I actually have a photo of them.
17:39 You know, of some of the brothers
17:40 that we worked with.
17:42 And you know, these are some of the guys that I work with,
17:44 the one on the fence his name is Lonnie,
17:46 his stage name was Shadow.
17:48 And it was because you know, no matter
17:50 what anybody could do on the dance floor,
17:51 he could shadow it and do it better than them.
17:53 So that was his concept.
17:55 Because you know, stage names was huge in hip hop culture
17:58 and it still is.
17:59 So he was Shadow.
18:01 The other brother with the dread standing
18:03 in the front that was Excel.
18:04 The other brother, light skin guy
18:06 standing in the back, that was my good friend Damien
18:07 but you know his name was Dagger.
18:09 And then my name was DES.
18:11 And you know that sounds real corny
18:13 but it did have a meaning.
18:14 And the word DES, it was D-E-S, it stood for dark
18:18 'cause that's obvious.
18:20 Then there was ecclesiastical, which was interesting
18:22 'cause even before I gave my heart to the Lord.
18:25 I did feel I was a spiritual brother.
18:27 You know, so I just accept the spirituality
18:29 in its general sense.
18:30 So ecclesiastical and then the S was skillful.
18:33 So that was DES, dark ecclesiastical and skillful.
18:36 So now we are all partners.
18:39 We're going into the club scene.
18:41 We're dancing and performing and doing all these things.
18:43 And then eventually, we started to meet people
18:45 who said, "Hey, have you ever heard about an audition?"
18:48 I was like, "What's that?"
18:50 They said, "Well, this is where you can go
18:51 and meet some of these artists and you can perform.
18:54 And if they like you enough,
18:55 they will put you in their music video.
18:57 And they will also pay you."
18:59 And this and that and the other.
19:00 And I was like, "Man, can you imagine getting paid to dance?"
19:03 Yeah, 'cause I'm dancing for free just--
19:04 In my opinion, I'm just loving life.
19:06 But now to get paid for,
19:08 now there's a business aspect to this.
19:10 That has blown me away.
19:11 So before you know it I started to go on some auditions.
19:14 And so how long did it take-- How many did you go to?
19:17 You know, what was the climate like
19:19 and when did you get a break?
19:21 Well, there are several scores and scores of auditions
19:26 that you typically are gonna go to
19:28 because the best talent in New York City
19:31 is gonna come to those auditions.
19:32 Especially, if there's a big artist.
19:34 So if it was like a local rapper
19:35 or something like that then you know
19:37 you probably want to have a large turnout,
19:39 the competition is easier.
19:40 But when it came to the big names,
19:42 especially, in those days,
19:43 you know, we're talking early 1990s,
19:45 you know early 1990s, late 1980s, early 1990s,
19:49 you got some really big names now,
19:51 you've got the LL Cool J,
19:53 that was a huge name in hip hop.
19:54 You had Run-D.M.C., of course, huge name in hip hop.
19:57 Queen Latifah, huge name in hip hop.
19:59 So if you had anybody like that,
20:02 that's where, you could literally go up
20:03 against up to 500 to 1,000 dancers.
20:07 And then you got to be scaled down to be number one pick.
20:10 Right, so they're casting for videos,
20:11 they're casting for tours.
20:13 Exactly. Videos and tours.
20:15 So I went on several of them and there were several
20:17 I did not get.
20:18 The one that was probably
20:19 the greatest breakthrough for me was Queen Latifah.
20:22 Queen Latifah ended up holding
20:24 an audition and she wanted to bring
20:26 some people with her on what was called
20:28 the Public Enemy Apocalypse World Tour.
20:31 And it was led by-- Massive tour.
20:32 Massive tour, it was Public Enemy,
20:34 Leaders of the New School which included Busta Rhymes,
20:37 A Tribe Called Quest, Queen Latifah,
20:39 several hip hop artists,
20:41 major hip hop, Naughty by nature.
20:43 So when I went to that audition,
20:46 I performed and I was dancing before Latifah,
20:48 Latifah was sitting just a few feet further
20:50 from where you're sitting, she was sitting back there
20:53 and she had to watch me dancing.
20:54 I was right in front of her and I just put on my best.
20:56 And when I performed, she looked at me
20:59 and she kind of had this smile on her face like she approved.
21:02 So I was really happy.
21:03 So I went home and my phone rang
21:06 and when my phone rang
21:08 there was this woman's voice saying,
21:09 "Hi, could I speak to Des?"
21:11 And I was like okay not everybody calls me with Des.
21:13 You know, scaling it down, eventually I said,
21:15 "Who's this speaking?"
21:17 "This is Queen Latifah." And I was like, "Oh, okay."
21:19 And you know, got a little excited.
21:20 I had-- you got to try to keep cool
21:22 but nevertheless got excited.
21:26 And then from that she said, "Congratulations,
21:28 you've been chosen to go on the tour with us."
21:30 So it was from that point
21:32 that I was able to really transitioned
21:35 where now, I'm not the guy
21:37 sitting down watching the videos
21:39 but now I'm the guy that was in the videos.
21:41 All right. So you get the break.
21:44 You go, are you going on tour, is this a video?
21:46 This specific one was for the tour.
21:47 The Apocalypse tour. Yeah.
21:49 So you go on tour now and this obviously
21:51 is gonna lead to other jobs.
21:53 Oh, yes. Other spots, other slots.
21:55 So to what extent did you, you know, blow up as they say?
21:59 Okay, well, I got a chance to work with several artists.
22:02 Some of them were really, really known in the time
22:06 when I was performing.
22:07 Some of them are not as known today
22:09 and then there are some artists who are.
22:10 The artists that I don't know how prevalent
22:12 they are today in the hip hop and on the industry,
22:15 but there was a gentleman by the name of Tony Terry.
22:17 He was he was a great singer, great singer, very talented.
22:20 And I worked with him. There was a--
22:22 When house music was a big hit,
22:23 today you don't hear a lot about house music.
22:25 But when house music was a big hit,
22:27 one of the big names behind it was CeCe Peniston.
22:29 So I got a chance to work with her.
22:31 There was also a lady by the name of Lisa Lisa,
22:34 Hispanic sister.
22:35 And Lisa Lisa and the Cult Jam.
22:37 That's what they were called. The Cult Jam, I remember.
22:39 Yeah. And you know.
22:40 So these were the folks that I don't know
22:41 if they're as known today.
22:43 But nevertheless they were pivotal at that time.
22:46 Again, late 1980s, early 1990s.
22:48 So other artists that are known.
22:50 The artists that are known are more so like Queen Latifah.
22:52 Obviously. Okay.
22:54 Naughty by nature, then there was Wu-Tang Clan
22:57 which of course, has Method Man there,
22:58 which a lot of people still acknowledge in hip hop realm.
23:02 Then there was of course,
23:05 what's the other one here, Brandy.
23:07 Brandy was a major breakthrough.
23:09 I got a chance to go on tour with Brandy, Keith Sweat,
23:11 Boyz II Men, the group, the R'n'B called Silk.
23:14 Brandy is still a major hit today.
23:16 So I didn't just perform for them
23:20 and go on tours with them and do the videos with them,
23:24 but then it got to a point that
23:25 it moved me even to a higher level
23:27 which took me to more of the business
23:28 aspect of dancing which was choreography.
23:32 I never knew this. I could--
23:34 I was very creative in putting together dance steps.
23:37 That was something that I knew how to do.
23:39 So it was consistent that every time I perform,
23:43 people would say, "Hey, can you make up some of the steps?"
23:46 One day I was asked by a group to go ahead
23:49 and create about 12 routines.
23:52 When I said, "Okay, what will you pay me?"
23:55 And when I discovered the amount
23:57 of thousands of dollars that you could get paid
24:00 just for creating one song,
24:03 that's when I started to realize,
24:04 wow, there's a business aspect to this whole thing.
24:06 'Cause you know, again I'm the kind of guy,
24:07 I was happy just to dance.
24:08 Right, so it didn't make sense to do the dancing per se
24:11 but now go to that next level and choreograph
24:15 and make crazy money.
24:16 Exactly. So now here it is.
24:17 I'm now in the hip hop and R'n'B industry.
24:20 I'm entrenched in it. Now I'm in the videos.
24:22 Now I'm going on tour.
24:23 Now the limousines are dropping me home at night.
24:25 Now all of these things are happening.
24:27 I'm making thousands of dollars.
24:29 And as far as I'm concerned, I have arrived.
24:33 That little void that was in my heart
24:35 from way back, even as a child growing up
24:38 of just a point of satisfaction
24:39 that only God can fill, it was still there.
24:42 And it was amazing that you can make money.
24:43 It was amazing that you could be in the limelight.
24:45 It was amazing that you could have
24:47 people wanting your autograph and all this other stuff.
24:50 But still there's an emptiness inside.
24:52 There are people who often think
24:54 how could a multimillionaire actor or actress
24:57 or somebody kill themselves?
24:59 What in the world they're sad about?
25:00 But they don't understand, you can make lots of money.
25:02 You can be in the limelight, you can have people watching
25:05 over you and "loving you."
25:07 But at the end of the day
25:08 there's a void in every man's heart
25:09 that is designed only for God to fill.
25:13 And it was because I didn't know that
25:15 that going through the industry,
25:16 now here's where it gets deep.
25:18 When you do not have
25:22 that void filled, you try to fill it.
25:26 With the stuff. Exactly.
25:27 You try to fill it with stuff.
25:28 And this is why it is very typical in entertainment
25:31 that there's always somebody buying the latest car.
25:33 There's always somebody getting
25:35 that unique iPhone that only they have.
25:38 There's got to be something unique,
25:40 there's got to be something different.
25:41 There's got to be something special
25:43 and extravagant that stands out
25:44 that can bring about this temporal satisfaction
25:48 that only God can fill in truth with eternal satisfaction.
25:51 Right, and now, I mean, we're gonna have to transition
25:54 because in our next episode
25:55 we're gonna go through that journey.
25:57 Of how that transition, what sparked it.
26:00 Why make the change, why even consider a change,
26:03 considering the fact that you're at,
26:05 at least somewhere in the top
26:07 of your craft of your skill set.
26:10 And that's the thing.
26:11 Like you said, as we get into an area
26:16 where we find "success" there's still the social needs
26:20 that aren't met by money.
26:22 Or you might try to seek it through relationships.
26:24 Or like you said, you might seek it
26:26 through things, material items.
26:27 And there's that spiritual side as well,
26:29 and this is what we're gonna be focusing on
26:31 and talking about what true knowledge of self,
26:34 hip hop is rampant with spirituality.
26:37 There's a religious undertone that kind of guides
26:40 and governs that at least the thought process
26:43 and the thought leaders of hip hop.
26:45 And so it's out there.
26:46 So we're gonna talk about, you know,
26:48 some of those transitions, some of those interactions
26:50 and the different encounters
26:52 you had with those various religions.
26:54 And what kind of led you to consider something
26:56 greater than yourself and move into
26:59 what we now know to be the truth.
27:02 So I want to encourage the audience
27:05 to continue to tune in, to invite a friend,
27:10 and consider when we talk about true knowledge of self,
27:12 we're talking about hip hop culture.
27:15 Does it really have it or is there more to the story.
27:18 Is there truth in Scripture?
27:21 Is there a way to escape without having to sell drugs,
27:25 without having to having to become an athlete,
27:29 without having to go into the music industry
27:31 or the entertainment industry.
27:33 Is there another way to escape the trappings of the city?
27:37 So we thank you for tuning in to TKS,
27:40 True Knowledge of Self.
27:41 And we want you to continually remember
27:44 as it says in the Bible in Proverbs 2:6,
27:49 "The Lord gives wisdom and out of His mouth
27:54 cometh knowledge and understanding."
27:57 Remember these things. And we hope to see you again.


Revised 2016-02-04