He’s an award-winning speaker, emcee, writer, and musician, moonlighting as half of the hip-hop duo The Iccsters (pronounced ‘icksters’) and director of worship at Irvington Covenant Church.
October 29th, 2012
from the News section of Motif Worship: We’re grateful that Jelani was sent, along with the rest of the MWLN Core Team, to Columbia, Maryland for the first Multicultural Worship Training at Bridgeway Community Church. If you haven’t heard, the MWLN is the Multicultural Worship Leaders Network, a collective of worship musicians dedicated to honoring the diversity of the worldwide body [...]
June 29th, 2012
Racial incidents involving the N-word are still common. But here’s a three-part strategy for preventing them from happening. * * * At first, I was simply annoyed by the latest dust-up involving Gwyneth Paltrow quoting Kanye West and Jay-Z‘s tune, “Niggas In Paris.” But after awhile, my heart sank [...]
May 18th, 2012
The sitcom Community has become a cult-classic, but creator Dan Harmon’s ouster should be a warning not to pursue control at the cost of relationship. Few sitcoms have reinvented the genre like NBC’s Community. Featuring sharp writing and an ensemble of talented actors, Community is widely considered to be the most innovative, daring comedy on [...]
May 14th, 2012
[interview originally written for UrbanFaith.com] In a nation where pro sports are the most socially acceptable form of religion, what happens when a pastor’s other job is shepherding NBA fans over the internet? David Deckard, like many pastors, is bivocational. He works another job, squeezing it in alongside his role as pastor, husband [...]
March 15th, 2012
[Editorial note: This post was written originally for UrbanFaith.com, which has a much bigger audience than this blog. But for the sake of immediacy, I decided to post this here first.] “You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.” – Mandy Patinkin as Inigo Montoya [...]
November 29th, 2011
What the latest superhero video game shows us is that vigilante justice never really amounts to good news. After playing through it, I can confirm firsthand that the latest Batman video game is an amazing experience. Batman: Arkham City is a technically facile, immersive, fantastic voyage into the world of Batman lore, and it gives gamers and [...]
October 20th, 2011
I get asked about this from time to time, so here it is. I love The Boondocks, and I always have. From the moment of its inception as a widely distributed comic strip, I knew that dude Aaron McGruder would become one of my favorite Aarons ever (right after my 7th grade homie Aaron [...]
July 19th, 2011
(editor’s note: this post was originally written about a year ago, and I”m just now getting around to posting it.) Artist: Ashmont Hill Album: Ashmont Hill Song: “Blessed Be Your Name” Despite being a worship leader (and thus, professional Christian) whose job includes assessing and incorporating popular praise-and-worship choruses into our weekly church music [...]
June 27th, 2011
George Duke “Face the Music” “My Piano.” As I sit outside on my friend Vanessa’s summer patio, I’m imagining being one of those people who do the big mega-home tours, not for fantasy wish-fulfillment, but because they’re actually looking for a home. Obviously, I have no idea what that’s like. If I did, [...]
June 25th, 2011
There are so many things that I love about this song.
And let me be clear. This song is probably not going to be considered by anyone as “great art.” It is not rife with moral ambiguity, or a profound sense of personal identity, and it doesn’t make any statements about any of the defining issues of our day, unless a general lack of love qualifies.
(Actually, now that I’m thinking about it… yes. Yes, it does.)