THE PROPHET was born in Chicago but moved to Louisiana during his early childhood. His mother sang in church, and eventually he would sing in church and play piano in church as well. He attended Baton Rouge Magnet High School (a prestigious academics and performing arts institution) where he participated in Chorus, and played saxophone in Symphonic Band, Orchestra, Jazz Band, and Jazz Improvisation Clinic. He graduated with honors in Performing Art, and was offered scholarships from several universities in the region (inclusive of the Michael Jackson Scholarship through the UNCF). He chose to attend Xavier University of Louisiana located in New Orleans, LA to major in Music Education, and he also spent a year at the University of New Orleans to study Vocal Jazz Performance. Although he gleaned much knowledge from the musical academia offered by these institutes of higher learning, THE PROPHET would promptly inform you that he learned just as much (if not more) about music from the city of New Orleans itself.
THE PROPHET’s outlook regarding vocal music was forever changed when a colleague of his mother’s sent him a copy of Take 6’s debut album (Doo Be Doo Wop Bop!). The lush jazz-influenced harmonies of the male vocal sextet sparked his curiosity and led him to research other masters of the genre. He discovered various vocal jazz artists and groups such as Sarah Vaughn, Ella Fitzgerald, Al Jarreau, Michael Buble’, The Manhattan Transfer, New York Voices, Singers Unlimited, The Four Freshman, Bobby McFerrin, and many others . During his quest for knowledge regarding this newfound vocal style, he befriended Dr. Luther G. Williams, a Jazz historian and enthusiast (also known as “The Panther” because of his ability to play stride piano skillfully reminiscent of Oscar Peterson). THE PROPHET refers to Dr Williams as his musical mentor, and he owes much of his understanding of vocal jazz harmony to “Panther”.
Unlike many musical “purists” that believe mixing musical art forms is considered inappropriate, THE PROPHET opted to tastefully integrate vocal jazz harmony into various forms of popular music styles of the 70’s, 80’s, 90’s, and today. He’s created a unique sound that maintains relevance in today’s music industry yet he never loses his artistic individuality.
THE PROPHET resided in New Orleans for nearly two decades up until late August, 2005. Like many other displaced musicians from that region, THE PROPHET fled the flood waters of hurricane Katrina and re-settled in the metropolitan Atlanta area. It has taken several years for him to rebuild his life and achieve a sense of normalcy since the natural disaster. The single entitled “This Christmas Is For You” is his debut arrangement and a personal proclamation to the universe that it’s his time now. He performed all the music and vocals for this song, and promises many more impressive arrangements to follow.
THE PROPHET is a musical innovator and historian, blurring the lines between neo-modern and classic late-twentieth century American musical genres. He blends various styles of R&B, Soul, Pop, Vocal Jazz, Rock, Hip-Hop, Smooth Jazz, etc., creating an eclectic sound that transcends generations and raises today’s already heightened standards for musicality in the world’s marketplace.
This Christmas Is For You: THE PROPHET - keyboard programming, lyrics, vocal arrangement, background vocals, lead vocal, monologue; Recorded by Tujuan White at COLAB Studios, Atlanta, GA; Mixed by 'City Boi Riq' at Riq Music Ent., Atlanta, GA; Mastered by Justin Weis at Trakworx, San Francisco, CA. Cover Art by Ladii at Riq Music Ent., Atlanta GA. Written and produced by THE PROPHET for CRUSADER ONE PUBLISHING/BMI, copyright 2008, all rights reserved.