“I’M VERY PROUD OF THE COURAGE AND BRAVERY THAT I HAD TO MUSTER TO GO IN AND CREATE MUSIC THAT IS COMPLETELY DIFFERENT THAN ANYTHING I’VE EVER DONE, BUT STILL AUTHENTICALLY WHO I AM, ESPECIALLY IN THIS NEW SEASON,” TEDASHII SAYS WITH OPTIMISM AS HE DESCRIBES HIS LATEST EP THIS TIME AROUND.
WATCH “I’M GOOD” FROM TEDASHII:
Along the way, Tedashii relied on his faith but found strength and healing again when he returned to writing and recording. What followed was his fifth studio album Below Paradise, an album so painful and personal yet filled with hope. So when Tedashii speaks with a sanguine tone about life and creativity, he indeed understands that life does unfold in seasons.
“I can’t pretend like I’m better and fine. I’m not. I’m getting better and things are going to be fine,” Tedashii says. “But, I make music for where I am now.” Indeed his new EP, This Time Around, can be summed up in one word: Growth.
A part of the journey to Tedashii’s growth as an artist was collaborating with music producer GAWVI, one of the most prolific music producers of now who’s worked with everyone from Pharrell and Rodney Jerkins to Trip Lee and Lecrae. Tedashii worked with several producers on this EP, but he found a special connection with GAWVI.
While not an album about loss, one way last year’s tragedy has definitely impacted the music is that it has given Tedashii’s message more urgency. All throughout Below Paradise, he’s speaking reality into life, asking “Where are we in our lives with God?” The takeaway is that we all need to be looking at ways we can speak truth to ourselves and others. Life is short, and there’s no time like right now to get real.
From his mix of Samoan and African-American heritage to his love of theater, football, and cooking, Tedashii was never easy to pigeonhole. As a result, he often felt like a misfit. In his family, there are several preferred career paths, and musician certainly isn’t one of them. Roughly 90 percent of his relatives are either in the military, education or are professional athletes. But young Tedashii was always telling a story or a joke, trying to find ways to express himself. His mom pushed him toward arts and sports. Then a high school English teacher and a college friend stepped in and altered his future course by helping him find his voice and then his Savior. Tedashii never looked back.
When not making music, Tedashii is a busy family man. He also has strong ties to his home in Denton, Texas, where he’s part of The Village Church, sometimes using his rich, deep voice to provide background vocals during worship.
We’re all the sum of our experiences. They shape our lives and, for creative types, our art. The events of the last year have changed Tedashii and his music in ways he’s only beginning to discover. They’ve also changed the way he views his faith and what’s next.
“Paradise for me is a must now, not just a hope,” he says. Heaven has become more real, and there’s a new urgency to get there. It’s an important message he feels compelled to share. This newfound purpose doesn’t make the pain worth it or lessen the ache of loss, but it’s a calling he’s embracing. As he moves forward in his life and with this new album, he’s more determined than ever to prove himself faithful while he’s still here, Below Paradise.
Connect To Tedashii: http://www.tedashii.com