Monday, September 14, 2009

YPJ Calls for Order

Since Tonex opened up about his closet on the Lexi Show, Facebookers and Twitterers have opened up dialogue about the state of gospel music and the need to do something about the most recent buzz topics in the gospel industry today (i.e., the PJ Morton/Tye Tribbett secular vs. sacred debate on CNN, the Mary Mary & Ne-Yo collaboration, Whitney Houston's emergence as gospel star with "I Look to You").

Seems like YPJ wants a piece of the action. And he's calling all cars to the scene of the crime.

Don't know who he is? Well, we don't either. But he's making some noise with his viral Facebook video calling on major gospel artists (including Deitrick Haddon, Mary Mary, Fred Hammond, Tonex', Tye Tribbett, Kirk Franklin, Donald Lawrence, Kierra Sheard, and Donnie McClurkin) to rise up using the spirit of prevention with the hopes to create a healthy dialogue about these and soon-to-come situations.

A brief snippet on YPJ's profile: he's part rapper, part preacher and a Tye Tribbett admirer. His biggest moment in the gospel spotlight was his cameo appearance on Israel Houghton's A Deeper Level project where he raps on "Surely Surely."

It would have been nice if he didn't have to call out the Who's Who in gospel music in the video. Some are in trouble, some are not, some are superstar gospel artists and some are just trying to move away from a murky past. YPJ, on the other hand, does his hardest to bring all the junk into one video. It just seems that the guy, who so happens to be an artist himself, is in desperate need of attention. If he's any good at doing music, I think YPJ needs to focus on the greater good and perfect his gift. The desperate need to bring everybody into one room to try to unify (something that is probably impossible to do in these end times) is like trying to morph Republicans and Democrats into one single political party. YPJ, get in the studio and try to make some music. That's if you can.

In the video, YPJ summons gospel artists to come together and talk about these matters at his state of the art facility.

"I offer you my facility. I have a 2,000 seat sanctuary, 88,000-square foot plaza, which has the accommodations necessary for those of you who may be celebrities and stars, if you need different dressing rooms, whatever you got, whatever you need, I can handle it. I'm offering my facility for free."

By the way, at his request, YPJ is urging gospel audiences and fans to "repost the daily." Not just the message. He wants you to spread the word about the messenger and his video. How clever.

To view the video, you must be a member of Facebook.



Elton Taylor, Jr. said...

I really do believe there's more to this, J. After watching the video clip, I heard the voice of someone crying out for solutions. This isn't about finding out what high profile gospel artists are struggling with. It's about defining where Gospel music is headed and what exactly does it mean when someone says they're a "Gospel Artist" or in "music ministry". The line has become far too blurry, and the divide between mainstream and not-so-mainstream Gospel is widening dangerously. I applaud YPJ for stepping out and encouraging dialogue.

Rick said...

I am in agreement with Elton. I don't fully agree with YPJ's method. He seems to take some unnecessary jabs at some of those on his list which may deter them from taking him seriously. One thing is evident, it is time for Christians with high public profile to use their platforms and join those of us who suffer for the gospel's sake and take a stand for holiness in deed not just in word and melody. A dialogue is overdue and the enemy doesn't want it to happen. These people wield powerful influence with Christians and some non-believers as well. To this point, much of their ministry falls on the entertainment side of life than the edification side.

Armando said...

I TOTALLY agree with you. We know the game. Gospel music has always had scandal and issues, ALWAYS!!! Nothing new today. Gospel music will be around even with all of that. I don't mean any harm, but the issue for me here is something that me and a friend of mine noticed in his music, he always talks about, "Did you hear that chord", or "some people aint gonna like this music," "this is too much for some of yall, "this ain't never gonna win a grammy because it's too different"... If it is good, and it's different, us REAL gospel aficionados will notice it, you don't have to point it out all the time! I think you're right, sounds like someone wants attention, even about his "big" church.


@ Elton. You know how I feel about it. We just disagree.

@ Rick: I thought the great commison was to go into all the world and preach the gospel of Jesus Christ and to save souls. The holiness thing is a bit far out for all of us since we all have sinned and fallen short of God's glory. Don't think for a second that you haven't sinned at all this week. YPJ's decision to live for holiness - I respect that. That's his decision, but to force it down everyone's throat is another story. Everyone just doesn't believe in the same stuff.

@ Armando: Thanks for being real. We both know we weren't born yesterday.

blessedbc said...

What I am about to say is truly opinionated and not drawn from any Biblical references. (I think this disclaimer should be stated before every personal thought typed or uttered) Sin has no degree. Stealing gum and 1st degree murder are both not in line with the commandments. Under the rule of law in this country(USA), government has set specific ordinances that if not adhered to, weighted consequences would be applied as time spent in jail. Stealing gum might get you a slap on the wrist, where 1st degree murder might get you 25 to life. Moreover,homosexuality gets no jail time, however, many Christians, who revere God and his law, want their names to be written in the Book of life and not cast into the lake of fire. I think Jesus will make that determination and be the final judge. I am not a proponent of homosexuality, but let God do God's work at the appointed time. YPJ has good intentions, but the participants of the dialogue have to be willing and voluntary. Calling out specific names may prove to be a detriment to his cause, or not. Finally, please approach situations with love.

Phia said...

Woa.... why the hate on Brutha YPJ?? Rick Dear, the majority of what you said is so on point, but question, would we say Christ took "unnecessay jabs" at the Pharisees & other religious folk when he called them white-washed sepulchres and a den of vipers?? NO. So why think he is wrong for his approach, which is a sincere cry for US to get together, like Elton said. Armando & company, the things you say YPJ says, so what? It is very true that all gospel music is NOT the same... so many current producers are more interested in beats over lyrical substance. That is NOT how stongholds come down BooBoops. You can't tell me deliverance and the move of the Holy SPirit is happeneing today like it did in the 80s and 90s. A spirit of compromise has crept in and taken over the church AND its music "ministry", just like some might say a spirit of unneesary jealousy is lurking behind some attacks on YPJ here on this forum. Hmmmm...

Ajahni, I mean "BlessedBC", you're right... let's approach this in love.. but do know that YPJ's approach IS that of love... Christ's LOVE and PASSION for righteousness is what caused Him to turn over tables in the temple when all the foolishness was going on with the corrupt moneychangers.

If people he named want to carry Christ's name in the limelight, YPJ and the Church most definintely has the right to call names b/c they are all VERY influential. Can you imagine CeCe and Donnie stepping up and stepping out, saying Yawl new artists done lost ya minds??? CeCe and Donnie have earned their respect in the Body without compromising integrity, which canNOT be said for ALOT of current artists on the scene.

@ PrayzHymn... Baybih, Lawddd have mussey... did you just say holiness is far out??? God wouldn't expect it from us if it werent feasible. We all sin, but we don't all LIVE a LIFE of sin... and alotta gospel artists are flat out living dangerously... Instead of bashing someone who is your brother (YPJ), what pray tell do you all suggest we do about the straight up nastiness going on in gospel music today?? At least YPJ isn't just talking about it... he's being about it.

All in Love,
Phia P.


@ Phia: How do you know a man's intentions? Are you him? Are you married to him? Are you God? If so, please let me know.

Last time I checked, the last ones who paraded around holiness in the industry (esp. in the church) were the ones lying on the floor - about to be stoned because of their sins. My point: we all sin. So please accept this as a truth and not some fairy tale.

I just want gospel aritsts to do their job. They are being paid to make music. Not to preach. Sure, they can live a life that's pleasing to God. I would perfer that. But their job (read their contracts) is to make good music, not to enforce their religious doctrine and beliefs into my cranium.

Nathaniel said...

I can understand where you're coming from Bro. PRAYZE, but at the same time, I really don't think YPJ is a gloryhound or anything like that. And as far as making music is concerned, YPJ & Flesh Versus Christ's last album "Popular Jesus" was one of the hottest gospel albums to come out last year... period. Give it a download and judge for yourself. Can Y be a little much to take at times? Certainly, but I don't really see the what's wrong with that. Galatians 1:10

smoothb said...

I agree totally Phia. And were as I'm not married to YPJ, I am his first cousin and with him almost on a daily basis. I've seen God use this man of GOD tremendously over the years, whether it be casting out cancer, prophesying everything from 9/11 to Michael Jackson's death and everything in between. Praying God's healing on people that we're said never to walk to seeing them walk a short time later. Giving 1000's of dollars to not only to our ministry but to others so that they might meet certain needs. Giving endlessly of his time to counsel, mentor and uplift other people. Teaching so called "street kids" how to worship and seek God, drawing 100's of young adults to Friday night prayer services to the point that they were upset if they couldn't come pray.

When youth from our community get shot or killed, who do parents call at 3 in the morning for prayer or word of encouragement or to come to the hospital? YPJ! Who's one of the first people if not the first at prayer 6am m-f? YPJ! Who turned downed a few different recording contracts because GOD said not so? YPJ!

So if you actually knew him, you'd know that his passion is to PREACH the gospel of Christ being that he is a PASTOR first and "artist" second. I've seen this before and I'd suggest you take your mouth off of him because it normally doesn't work out too well for people who dog out this man with no just reason. Thanks and God bless :)

smoothb said...
This comment has been removed by the author.

@ smoothb: At the rate it's going, it doesn't look like any sanctified gospel singers are going to be attending that planned conference of YPJ's. They all coming out with these "moral indiscretion" statements. LOL.

I think YPJ will be the only "holy" monk there.

And never threaten me. I don't like church voodoo.

smoothb said...

@ prayze..

1) That is not a threat, it's biblical. Read 1 Chronicles 16:22 and 2 Kings 2:23-24. I said that i've seen those scriptures come to life time and time again so just giving u a heads up cuz u seem like a cool guy.

2) If u think the conference is about uniting all the "sanctified holy monks" to the put their "moral indiscretions" on blast you've missed the point and should re-watch the videos.

About him being the only one there, he met with Israel this past weekend and meets with Fred in the weeks to come. They along with some other up and coming artists are in support and planning on being there. You should come too so you can have a more accurate view about YPJ for your next blog.

smoothb said...

My bad for the long posts but i just read another one of ur statements that caught my attention.

you said "Last time I checked, the last ones who paraded around holiness in the industry (esp. in the church) were the ones lying on the floor - about to be stoned because of their sins"

Just because you haven't seen anybody that "parades holiness" and be real about it doesn't mean its not possible. We do all sin, you are correct.

However, when you lead a lifestyle of sin and sing to me about not leading a lifestyle of sin, what message does that promote? Y or how would anybody from the world take you serious as an "Gospel" artist?

To me, all that message does is perpetuate the view that many people in the world already have of the church which is that the church is fake, hypocritical, etc.

Which in turn leads the world to believe our God is fake since we are supposed to be his representatives on earth. If u r cool with the world thinking that about God and the church more power to you, however I appreciate that there are people willing to take a stand and be real about it.

In love,

Armando said...

You know man, I was just thinking about that the other day... I haven't heard anything about this "Meeting of the holy minds" anymore... Everyone is (like you said) coming out with these statements of moral indiscretion. If I remember correctly, some of the people he called out about meeting with are in the mess he is was trying to call out.
My real point for this post is that I'm with you on the church voodoo stuff. Why is it people go there when they disagree with something. "Your tongue is gonna turn black and fall out if you keep talking about this" kinda stuff. Just because people can pray for someone and heal cancer does NOT mean they are "RIGHT."
Let's keep it real, I don't really care about what these people do to the point that we should get a police task force, or call a senate session to figure out what to do about these people. WHAT I DO care about is when I spend 10 bucks on a download, and you have CRAP coming out of my speakers! Let's have a meeting about that! About how a lot of our artists sell out who they are to sell albums, let's have a meeting on the lack of choirs on major labels and in the mainstream. Let's meet on choirs repacking their cd as a group to sell more cd's. So what if Tonex is gay, some of the people liked his music, and bought his albums and told me that he was just "out the box" and that I was religious because I thought some of the stuff he was doing was too much. NOW that he said he's gay, the church folks got issues! Tonex for the most part has been strange since he's been out. He's the same man that was praying over you and preaching to you.. My point in this rant: "CHURCH" people are nutty as a sack of trail mix!