LOCAL CHRISTIAN RAPPERS: ‘YO, WE GOT A MAJOR ARMY’
BY SARAH STANLEY-AYRE –WEDNESDAY, JULY 8, 2015
Sarah Stanley-Ayre of Twin Cities very own City Pages included Dezal. Da. Messenger in 2 articles on City Pages This Week. Read snippets from each article below.
…Dezal da Messenger found God in the throes of a 2004 drug overdose. “My body started shutting down,” recounts the rapper born Devron Mitchell. “I had an out-of-body experience, and I could see myself laying on the ground.” He felt a positive presence, one he identified immediately as Jesus — “which is interesting,” he notes, “because at that time I was not a Christian.” He remembers also feeling a dark presence. As a child he was told by his mother and grandmother to say, “Satan, I rebuke you in the name of Jesus,” and the devil would leave. As he repeated that mantra, he felt himself moving back into his body. After that near-death experience, Dezal stopped performing on the local club circuit. “I wasn’t focused on making party music anymore,” he says. “I was focused on making music to help people change.” Read More.
On making the first move toward becoming a Christian hip-hop artist:
“I realized that change is the beginning of a new world and existence, period. I just started trying to put positive messages within songs, but still keep them relevant. I wanted to uplift and encourage people.”
On the fragility of life and the importance of creating your own belief system:
“I had a guy listen to my song “Everyone Can Change,” and he said, ‘Man, I’ve been listening to this song every day. For some reason when I hear that song it makes me really want to change my life.’ And rest his soul in peace, because probably two weeks later he died. He ended up getting killed out in St. Paul; he got shot. I remember the last conversation that we had. I said, ‘Listen. The thing that’s pulling you towards change is God… Read More.