DJ JaySmokeDJ/TV & Radio Personality
Born in Nigeria, Educated in South Africa and fulfilling his calling in Ghana, JaySmoke is a S.O.T.K (Son of the King) and ain't ashamed to show it. Growing up in a community deeply rooted in Hip-hop Music, it was only a matter of time before JaySmoke’s mind was brainwashed and he began chasing after the American Dream.
His love for the genre began when he was growing up in Nigeria. Folks weren't around, and he was living with his big brother, who was part of a college gang. This led to him being introduced to hiphop artists from the East and West Coasts of America. Artists such as DAS FX, Big Daddy Kane, LL Cool J, Will Smith, Kriss Kross, Dr Dre, Snoop Dogg, Dog Pound, Kurrupt, Warren G & Nate Dogg, Bone Thugs and Harmony, Ice Cube, Mister P, Ice T, 2Pac, WuTang Clan, Notorious BIG, played a major role in his taste of music and left perspective of life as a whole. This love continued to grow and became stronger when he left Nigeria, at the tender age of 11, to be with his mum in South Africa. At the time, South Africa was going through the last phase of Apartheid and as such there were still alot of racism and rebelliousness in the country. As such, JaySmoke found himself caught up in many immoral activities that led him to several problems both at home and away. He rebelled against authorities and was so uncontrollable that his mum was afraid for his life and had to send him to his granny back in Ghana.
...Looking back at those days now, it's no doubt that God had a plan and was truly with me. The whole idea of the "deportation" was so that I could learn some manners. I was supposed to stay with ma granny and hopefully learn some good stuff. I remember my mum saying 'I will send you back to Ghana where you will learn how to treat women right.' It was a valid point, because growing up listening to the junk that I did, I had no respect for women and also coming from an abusive home, it leaves you messed up. But I wasn't cool with the idea that I had to stay with my granny in the VILLAGE. So as soon as I hit Osei Tutu Secondary School, I was making plans on where to stay during vacation...
The deportation made JaySmoke hate his mum and he was at loggerheads with her for years. He refused to take any aid from her and stopped all forms of communication. During vacations, JaySmoke would either stay on campus or stay with friends; moving from place to place was part of his life, since the only place he could call home was the family house in the village and that was a no-no. Whilst on campus, he had very little visits from outside and lived a very secluded life. This made him a very independent person, learning to make a way for himself and relying on no one. But even though he was living a wayward lifestyle, he still knew in the recesses of his mind that God existed; Jesus was King and that he, JaySmoke, was on the wrong path.
JaySmoke hated the fact that he left South Africa, but it was whilst he was in Ghana that he came to realize that he really needed God. During a special entertainment night in his last term at school, he had an opportunity to dedicate his life to Christ and decided to live a Godly life. However, after taking that step, he still listened to bad music, went clubbing, fornicated and was still struggling with porn addiction. But this was the beginning of a struggle. A struggle that many newly born-again Christians face on their journey towards manifesting their new nature in Christ. The Bible tells us that, as Christians we ought to die to our flesh daily. Every day was a battle for JaySmoke. There were so many things in his life: music, friends, girls, social life, his negative outlook on life. He had to RENEW his MIND. It took time for him to realize how much damage his lifestyle was causing his SPIRIT MAN, and if he wanted to draw closer to God and have a meaningful relationship with Him, he had to put a stop to it all. This awareness, backed by a conscious effort to change, pushed him to seek after something different. So he got rid of all his hiphop cassettes, all the porn materials including videos, pictures, magazines, changed the type of friends he walked with and started attending church regularly. But just like any drug addict, once that void was created, he needed to fill his with something. He started listening to christian radio stations that played lots of gospel songs. And even though it wasn't like what he was used to (HipHop), but because he had made a decision, he forced himself to enjoy these gospel songs.
...Those were hard days. I remember after church service, I would dash straight to the church bookshop glancing through the shelves looking for something "hippish". The closest I got was Kirk Franklin...
One day, his big brother came to visit him at home and he introduced him to a christian rap group called Gospel Gangstaz. He instantly fell in love. Their music was clean, Christ-centric, uplifting, spirit filled, inspirational and life changing. He became a fanatic and just like an addict, he started searching for more Christian Hiphop music.
Soon work would force him to leave Kumasi and move to the capital and that's when, he believed, God started putting things in place. It was in Accra that he was able to search for more Christian Hiphop music. This search opened up a new world to JaySmoke; A world filled with people using their gifts to share the gospel through Hiphop, he was instantly sold out! This insane craze led JaySmoke to discover many more Hiphop artistes such as Cross Movement, BB Jay, Prime Minister, Antonious, DCP, Papa San, LG Wise, Lil Raskull etc. These were guys who were doing Hiphop music but unlike secular hiphop, they were spitting positive lyrics and saving lives.
...I felt like wow, I have to share these with many people just like me...
Soon after these discoveries, he started a distribution system; He would burn mp3s onto CDs and give them out at youth churches. This was the birth of JC (Jesus Christ) Cafe. But obviously this wasn't going to be enough, there had to be a much faster and better way to distribute the songs, he needed to get on radio. This need, led him to take a short journalism course at GIJ and then a radio presenting course at Rabodef. Soon JaySmoke was equipped with the tools needed to become a radio presenter. However, in his quest and passion to spread the gospel, he became very active in the entertainment industry in Ghana and this drew him away from the Lord very quickly. The Bible says when you cast out a demon, it comes back with a legion of demons. And thats what happened with JaySmoke, his love for Hiphop drew him to Hiplife, which was at it's early stage then. He was so passionate about hiplife that he created a website called www.iloveHiplife.com which got him to work with Reggie Rockstone and other hiplife game-changers like Pangi, Kwame Faakye, PY etc. He became a very prominent face at major nightclubs and social hangouts and was also known by a lot of people in the industry. He loved the nightlife and was usually found at nightclubs; he would spend all night moving from one club to the next, but was usually around the DJ booth, chatting with the DJs. It was the norm for him and his friends, BUT God being good, He never left him and every now and then, he was always reminded of His presence.
....I truly can't pinpoint when I became free from that life...but then again I see it like a drug addiction. It takes time to kick it out completely, you don't know exactly when you finally become free from it 'cause you end up falling every now and then, but what you can remember is the day you made that decision to go into rehab. And I believe the more you grow in the Lord, the easier it becomes for you to say no to your fleshly desires. This ability comes from years of allowing Jesus, through the Holy Spirit, to mold and shape me into the person He wants me to be....
Today, he is a passionate, young man, who wants to impart the same blessings on many people, both young and old; people who are yearning for a change in their lives and have grown weary of the negative misleading messages fed to them through the media. He believes that newly born again Christians need help staying born again.
...It's kinda like a baby lamb in the wild, for it to survive, it needs it's parents to protect it from the wolves in sheep clothes. I believe music is one of the ways we can help the youth stay strong in the Lord!...
Book DJ JaySmoke