Torey D’Shaun Talks New Project & Explains How Former Co-Worker Inspired Leap to Full-Time Artistry
2019 Rapzilla Freshmen Torey D’Shaun took some time to chat with Rapzilla about what’s going on in his life. Last week we hit you with the jam-packed part one, this week we wrap up the convo.
Do you have any new stuff on the way?
Yup. I got some stuff, man. Now I’m even getting excited just talking about it, but I got some stuff this year and then I got some stuff like next year. I’m not going to tell anybody when. It’s not going to be any time soon. Like as far as next month and stuff like that. My first album is going to be crazy. The stuff that God has given me for that joint is wild. I cannot wait. Whatever you all are about to hear this month, it’s a million times better than that. And whatever you all are about to hear this month, to me in my personal opinion, is 10,000 times better than Boopie.
All right. All right. Let’s go. I’m excited about it now.
It’s crazy, man. Just the connections and the feeling it gives me. I feel like it’s a lot more vulnerability, and that’s my thing. I’m always trying to be vulnerable and expose my life so that it helps other people. So I tried to take it up another notch on this next thing coming out.
Speaking of being vulnerable, where are some places that you’re drawing inspiration from right now? Is there anything that’s going on that you’re pulling from that well a little bit to write and kind of get it out?
Recently I’ve just been going through a lot of ups and downs. So I’ve been talking with a lot of my family at my church. Just because I’ve been focused on music a lot and so I kind of had to take a chill pill and realize that… Any form of ministry, especially Christian hip-hop, if you don’t take a break from it or if you don’t reset your mind to know that God is all you need, it can kill your relationship with God.
So I’ve been just spending a lot of time with family lately and I actually got really convicted about some stuff. Just kind of saw all the people I’m reaching around the nation. People DM’ing me saying certain stuff. “Man, your music is really doing this.” And then I’m looking at my household, my family, and I’m like, “Man. I haven’t hung out with my blood brother in like two weeks.” So it’s just little things like that. Like pulling inspiration. So yeah, man. And I know it’s other people who go through that, whether you’re an artist or not. Just resetting your mind on priorities and just knowing.
So you’re a full-time artist as in this is like your day job.
Full time. It’ll be a year in August. This dude at my old job, this old dude… I don’t even think he’s a Christian. He was just like, “Don’t you believe in God? You believe in that faith mess, right?” I’m like, “Yeah.” And he was like, “Man.” He came up to me because he used to do music back in his day. He was like, “Man, these people here don’t get you. These people here don’t get you. They don’t understand why you can’t focus.”
He was like, “You got a bigger mission from God. You got to…What you only like 22?” He was like, “You go hard after music for like three or four or five years… Because like let’s say you don’t succeed, what you like 26? The hospital, all of that, all hospitals, school, computers. All of that is still going to be here if you fall off. So you might as well just use your youth to glorify the God you say you believe in.” He was like, “That’s my take.” And then he went right back to talking about stuff he shouldn’t be talking about.
Wow. Talk about hearing a revelation from unexpected places.
It was almost like God told him to say that to me because I had a show that day and when I got off the stage… It was in St. Louis. It was a little festival at a church outside with like 2000 people. I got off stage and I prayed when I got off the stage like, “God if this is what you want me to do, then let me know because I’m not taking no jumps.” I got two feature calls like, “Yo. We want you to work on this, work on this.” Like, “All right. Bet. God, all right.” That’s really not enough, to be honest.
Because that’s not the objective, to just leave your nine to five for no reason. Like Paul was a nine to five worker, so I didn’t want to just stop. I didn’t want to just stop working. And then after I got off the stage, that’s when I got the call to go on tour last year. My first tour in August. He told me how much I was going to be getting paid and how many shows. It was for like two months. I prayed, and I felt at peace with it. Like God was like, “Dude, how much I got to show you? Go get out my face.”
So I did it and God been blessing me ever since. It was really cool to see how He came through and how He keeps providing for me so I can keep pouring myself out for other people.
That’s so inspiring to like… Man, I imagine it took a leap of faith for you to just be like, “All right. Here I go.” Right?
Man, it was a triple beam jump.
Right. But I think it’s paying off, man. You’re making waves. You’re making really good music. It feels like you know what you’re supposed to do and you’re like, “Hey. Here I am.” You’re putting in all the hard work, and it’s paying off.
I just thank God for it. And another thing as an artist that you can do is just get to a point where… You’re going to get to a point where you’re looking at other artists and where they are and that sinful side can start kicking up in you. I know a lot of people don’t want to say it, but you get those thoughts like, “Man, if I’m not as good as them, I’m better than them. Like, why am I not there?” You can almost start thinking that if you’re not careful. You can start thinking that.
And that’s where that reshaping your mind has to come in and you’re like, “Man, we’re all on the same team. Those are my brothers and sisters in Christ.” In the kingdom, a lot of the times it’s not about how much talent you have. God places certain people in certain places for a reason, and you got to learn to be content with what God has given and not covet what God hasn’t given you. So once God is your number one priority and making disciples is your number one priority, all of that levels stuff just kind of starts fading.
Just little jewels for all the artists out there that feel like if they not where Lecrae is or if they not making it to that point that they’re not “successful.” Because successful is subjective. We see success as the American dream where you’re at the top. You’ve got a lot of money. You’re making disciples after you just pulled up in a Rolls-Royce. Kind of sucks because that’s not necessarily… Can be, but that’s not necessarily success.
I heard it put one way. “God is never impressed with us and our art, but He is pleased with us when we give our art to him.”
Do you have anything else you want to share or anything else you want to add?
Nah. I’m speechless, man. Thank you for interviewing me.
Yeah, man. This is a blast. My pleasure.