If encouragement had a name, I would give it to Shep the shepherd. Every time I hit Shep up, he gets right back. He also shouts us out all on social media and tells us who to holla at. It was a privilege and a pleasure to sit down and chop it up with Shep. Shep is an upcoming Leader of the CHH Flock. Enjoy the interview and check out Shep’s latest project, “Quorban.”
How did u get into CHH?
I have been listening to rap n’ hip hop since the 3rd grade, I just felt connected to the music. When I was a Children’s Ministry Director years ago, I felt convicted about listening to mainstream music but didn’t know there was such a thing as CHH. I asked the Youth Minister like, “Man I can only listen to so much Air-1.” He gave me a mixtape cd and also 1 name, KJ-52. About a few years ago, I decided to do music again, I hadn’t recorded/performed in 15 years. I’m not joking about this next part… the Lord stopped me on the way to work… I still remember the intersection, Foothill and Haven, in Rancho Cucamonga, Ca, He said to my heart, “Your going to be a Christian Rap Artist“, I was like, “Are you joking? Is this for real?“. I broke down in tears as he confirmed it, I was trippin’ out, I didn’t even know where to start.
How are you changing the culture for God?
My hope is to be transparent, to change the illusion I put out that I was a “Perfect Christian” with the “Perfect Life” so that others can identify and find that there is hope in Christ. There is only perfect in Christ.
Who are you listening to that we should be listening too?
What do you hope people will get out of your music and your new album?
Well, to see that you can have struggles and still be loved by God. Sin is sin, and He can help you. You can bring it to him; we are all in need of the Savior. I’m calling it a playlist, others may call it a mixtape.
Who influenced you the most in music and in life?
Before CHH: Del the Funky Homosapien, 2-PAC, Kool Kieth, Wu-Tang, Eminem, DJ Shadow.
After CHH:KJ-52, Grits, Eshon, and my J’s: Monty, Givens, and Sanders
In life: Wow, uhm… I have taken a piece of info from everyone, I never really had a mentor, a father in the home. I guess my homie Trev inspired me, the young Fasheaux. They both helped me out when I was in a deep dark place.
Who would you like to work with in the future?
To be honest, anyone that wants to have fun doing this and wants to be a part of the movement. My schedule with work and home life keeps me running, but if I was ever to “sign”, it would be NFTRY because I agree with what they are doing or Heaven Razah Music because the Wu is nostalgic for me and the transformation of Hell Razah to Heaven Razah is just straight dope and inspiring.
How hard is it to separate business and your ministry?
As of right now, my plan is for all free content. I am trying to get my kids clothing line off, but I plan on that being a ministry and not really to make money, also.
On your longest day and hardest battle, what scripture do you find strength in?
I know it’s cliche’ but Psalm 23:4, “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.”
I’ll be using it for the clothing line, because I literally felt like I was close to death.
How much have you grown on this project, talent wise and spiritually?
Well those around me say I improved with each song. I would say maybe I’m kinda like a kid growing up before your eyes, in relation to Hip-Hop and doing music for the Lord. Spiritually, I’m constantly seeing my shortfalls and faults, it keeps me humble.
One of the biggest topics in the music business now is streaming. How does that affect you as an artist?
To be honest, I never set out to want to make money. I have been blessed with a great job that pays the bills and totally stresses me out at the same time, lol. I just want to reach people on any platform that will spread the music. I would like to shut down the mainstream Hip-Hop that’s poisoning the people. It’s funny, I never dreamed of making a living any other way until right this second. Guess we’ll wait and see what’s on the road ahead.
More from Shep:
Shep the shepherd talks about some serious things that he dealt with and still does in, “Sumn Days.” Shep references a blindsided Church hurt, a deep depression he was into where he even contemplated checking out.
“The feedback I have been getting is that people relate to it because it’s real, and I feel like I pointed them to Christ from my darkest hour.” Shep
Visualy clean outside, inward bloody.
Opposite of how Christ died, he’s oh so lovely./
Took my sin, exchanged for whole new cov-en-ant.
Faith in him, he’s gracious, Jesus is ru-di-ment./