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Gospel Rapper Bobby Bishop - An Everyday Man

Bobby Bishop talks about being an Everyday Man in this exclusive interview

By

Bobby Bishop

Bobby Bishop

Chosen/EMG/Universal
July 8, 2009

Who Is The Everyday Man?

The everyday man is all of us ... men, women and children. He isn't gender specific and he's not limited to one socio-economic class, job title or neighborhood. He is the guy who fixes your car, bags your groceries, takes care of your health and represents you in the government. He is the athlete that you cheer for, the actor you watch on TV and the big screen, the singer you listen to and the author that you read ... He is you and he is me.

The everyday man tries to live his life right - loving God and treating people well. He tries to put others first even though the popular media insists that it's all about him and how he deserves everything he has ever wanted ... He is you and he is me.

The everyday man struggles with issues and temptations just like everyone else. He is not above it all. He looks in the mirror and realizes that he never will be - at least not in this life. He wins some; he loses some; he rises; he falls. The everyday man loves and hurts, bleeds and triumphs, laughs and cries ... He is you and he is me.

Who is Bobby Bishop?

Bobby Bishop is a husband, father, minister, son, brother, friend and a child of God. In other words, he is an everyday man just like the rest of us. He doesn't claim to have all of the answers but he does know the One who does. Over a six day period, Bobby shared his thoughts with me on some of the issues that each of us face ... as the everyday people that we are. In honor of his upcoming release, Everyday Man, each day we will run a different segment of the interview.

The Everyday Man Interviews

From Rocky Balboa

“But it ain't about how hard you hit. It's about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward. How much you can take and keep moving forward. That's how winning is done! Now if you know what you're worth then go out and get what you're worth.”

This is the quote that Bobby Bishop started our time off with. Rocky Balboa? Wait a minute! What happened to me talking to Bobby Bishop about Bobby Bishop?

Bobby explained, "Yes, that quote is a cliché, but it is a cliché that hits home. I suspect that I'm a fan of the Rocky character because he had an appreciation for hustle. He’s the epitome of the working man. He started out without a dime to his name, but chose to travel down the beaten, rocky path."

"And this fits in with this interview how?" I asked.

"Despite my reality that I wasn’t raised in a blue-collar environment, I always felt it in my blood," Bobby answered. "I have always respected men who worked their fingers raw, like my grandparents and father did. I made a conscious decision to be that working man by moving out of my mother’s home in an affluent Boston suburb and buying a home in a crime-ridden neighborhood. Watching Rocky dish out the wisdom that comes from having experienced the pain of adversity, I was inspired. I began analyzing my own ability to become vulnerable to an audience and thought, “If a sixty year old actor is willing to open himself up to ridicule just to provide one last volume in a series of inspirational movies, then maybe I should be trying just a little harder.”

Rapping for God

"Tell me about your career," I said.

"I’ve been making rap records for a lot of years, but I’ve never sold many (even with major record labels)," Bobby said. "I perform more concert events than the average artist, but they’re not often for more than a hundred people."

He elaborated, "Every time I try to add more gimmicks to my show, I scrap them because I can't resist the opportunity to get to know my audience. Instead of just entertaining, I usually end up asking the crowd how their day went. I learn the names of the people in the front row, thank them for being there and bribe them to stay with the promise of a free CD. By the end, I usually feel like I’ve made friends. On the up side, this opens doors for real conversation and often prayer. Adversely, I relinquish my “star quality” by hanging out with “fans” outside of an exclusive autograph tent. Instead of doing them a “favor” by performing for them, I’d rather they walk away feeling as though they've done me a solid by joining in. Maybe it’s the years of street ministry that have shaped my approach, but I’m too stubborn to change it. If I don’t put my heart on my sleeve, I feel like I've failed at my job."

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