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A Story of “Substance” Introducing Orlando “Substance” Rodriguez: Crossing Cultural Barriers in Christian Music

One might recognize or define “substance” as a mass that occupies space; that which is solid and practical in character; a subject matter of thought or an actual matter of a thing. But, for Orlando “Substance” Rodriguez, taking on the moniker stands for going beyond what the eyes can see – beneath the surface and dealing with what is real. “Regardless of what others see on the outside, we should have the Substance of Jesus Christ on the inside,” he explains. “In essence, it’s all about living life from the inside out versus living life from the outside in.”

Known for his sincere passion for the Lord and his ability to reflect this passion for Jesus Christ, Substance has in a short time developed a committed following that crosses genres from Urban Gospel to Contemporary Worship.

The singer/songwriter has developed his skills over the years penning an extensive catalog of music and launching his own production studio. Although gifted with piano/keyboard skills, he doesn’t essentially consider himself a pure musician. But anyone who has experienced the worshipper creatively flow, understands the anointed combination of his singing and musicianship which evokes the sweet presence of God.

“When you hear Substance perform you will agree that God has blessed him with amazing talent and abilities. And what carries even greater value is the fact that God has refined his character according to the image of Jesus Christ. I am convinced that by God’s grace, many of His lost children from across the nation and around the world will come to saving faith in Jesus Christ through the music and ministry of Substance.” –Pastor John W. Smith, Grand Rapids, MI

As a child, Substance didn’t realize his musical gift, which is often the case with young people. “Everyone in my family can sing, write, and play instruments, so growing up I thought music was just something that everyone could do,” explains Substance. “It wasn’t until I got to high school that I realized that I might have something.” Substance was asked to sing a senior solo (“Friends” by Michael W. Smith), and with that song, he realized the power of music and the emotional impact that it can yield.

Substance continued developing his innate talents and found his music crossing cultural barriers. His fusion of sound was cultivated early as he was raised in the west suburbs of Grand Rapids, Michigan in a Puerto Rican household. His diverse upbringing had not only refined an instinctive flavor for a variety of music, but a comfort and passion for multi-cultural interaction. “People who love Jesus Christ are going to be attracted to each other because of the love we have for God and each other,” Substance expounds. “The more we focus on God and our common goals of building His Kingdom, the easier it is to interact and bridge cultural divides. I absolutely love the people of God and enjoy doing the work as a servant to the church and the community.”

His music artistry and production ministry is offered and executed in excellence with Jesus as the nucleus. “I think excellence in many ways is a state of mind more so than a particular style or approach,” he elaborates. “At the same time, I take my time with my projects and I am not afraid to commit the appropriate resources to get the quality that I am looking for. I have grown organically, so my audience has helped me dictate what is relevant and what they want to hear.”

Substance’s fan base is patiently awaiting his new project Turn The World Off. Substance has tapped the skills of producer Chuck Alkazian (Percy Bady, Desmond Pringle, Christina Aguilera) at Pearl Sound Studios in Canton, MI to capture his high energy performances, diverse styling and prolific songwriting talents.

“The strength of this project is that it’s being built on soul and melodic fusion,” Alkazian shares. “Substance also has vocal ability that exceeds the majority and a songwriting gift that can move people without saying more than the obvious.” Substance has also collaborated with some of the industries’ most prolific and sought after songwriters – Eddie Tucker, Steve Siler, Dwight Liles and Tony Wood.

Orlando “Substance” Rodriguez is musically inclined, lyrically complete, and approachable. He daily seeks more of Jesus so he can impact more people with Jesus through his music. He is a true administer of music that a listener can both feel and listen to with the anticipation of receiving an experience that will activate an atmosphere of expectancy and worship.

“It’s an honor to be a Christian music artist. I see the styles of music blending more via artist collaborations across the formats and styles of Christian music. This votes very well for an artist like me who thrives in collaborative situations. The Christian music industry, in my humble opinion, is a great place to be if you love producing product that is potentially life changing.” –Substance

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President/CEO of The Corelink Solution and Holy Culture

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