Faith, fashion & success with singer songwriter Otis Kemp.
Producer, singer, and songwriter Otis Kemp drops in on Da Fixx to talk about faith, fashion, music, and how not to let anything hold you back from success.
Some of his musical inspirations include John P. Kee, Stevie Wonder, Guy, Jodeci, Andre Crouch, and Commission, “Marvin Winans pen game is sick. I pay attention to lyrics and content and substance and melodies.” Growing up in Miami, he has a genuine love for southern hip hop. Some of his favorites are 8 Ball and MJG, Scarface, Goodie Mob, and Organized Noize to name a few.
The fashion-forward Kemp who is 6’2” and 295 lbs. is interested in having his own brand one day because he understands the difficulty in finding high-end brands that cater to men of larger stature. “Miami is fashionable…Clothes was big for me. Always looking crispy. It makes you feel good. And you respect it.”
When asked to drop some encouragement for the people, Kemp says quickly, “Stop playing with yourself. Tighten up. We don’t do the pacifying on this side. No, we ain’t doing none of that. Tighten up. If you believe in yourself and you know God is real; you need to submit to him and get serious about Him because he will open up doors for you.”
Kemp who owns three private schools, believes in keeping it one hundred, “I’m the one who got kicked out of every school in Miami…I’m like Paul…God takes the worse and makes them something for his use.”
Kemp doesn’t believe in pulling punches not even with himself, “That’s how I had to look at my life. I had to have a tough talk with me. I had to say wait a minute, timeout. You telling me you giving me an option to be blessed or cursed. You telling me I have an option to live a life of freedom in you (God) and not be on drugs and be bound. And I’m choosing to be bound. You’re telling me you’ll give me life eternal everlasting in you. And I’m choosing hell. How stupid can I be? I ain’t gotta choice to work, if you don’t work you don’t eat. But I have a choice to choose Christ.”
He goes on to say, “Whatever dream you have inside of you, the only way it can be properly birth out of you is through the love of Christ. You’ve got to submit to God.”
It’s an all-new fire 10 review with Dj Focus and Dice Gamble and they are giving props to another group of artists. This episode includes songs from Akron Ohio native Swoope (featuring Aha Gazelle and Miquel), Jor’Dan Armstrong, NF, Kanye West’s Sunday Service Collective, Reach Records first lady Wande, Stellar Award winner Pastor Mike Jr., Canon, Aaron Cole featuring Koryn Hawthorne, Evvi McKinney, and Mali Music.
DICE GAMBLE: can you explain to people the importance of showing up in excellence? You know what I’m saying? Because like you said, when you, when you took yourself seriously, you really did that and it shows. Can you like maybe elaborate on the response that you started to receive? You know that when you made that change?
OTIS KEMP: Yeah. Um, well, In regard. Okay, so let me, lemme, lemme ask you a question in regards to when you say taking myself serious as far as pursuing God, is that what you mean? Or in Yeah, yeah.
DICE GAMBLE: Pursuing God and all the things that you are doing now. Like when you finally were like, nah, this is it. Like I’m going this way.
And then obviously, you know, the Lord started to change a lot around you. Yeah.
OTIS KEMP: Cause you have to be intentional. I had no driver’s license. I haven’t had license in 10 years riding dirty. Super dirty. Found my lap , you know, we thuggin’. So I’m like, man, I’m tripping. Like mm-hmm . I started looking at it for real and I’m like, why am I, I’m gonna tell you the last straw it was, I was dating this girl and a woman, not a girl,
and she was, um, very well off and she was just spoiling me and I’m like, She’s like, you don’t nothing to stay here and be here with me.
And I thought about that thing. I said something not right. A thief only come, comes after something that’s valuable. A thief doesn’t. So what if, look, if the enemy presented me with all this good stuff, she was fine. And no wave bad ugh. I’m talking about. Tight. Right? Hallelujah. bad. I’m Bahamian so we don’t, you know, we like them certain ways.
Yeah. So I’m like, but then I started thinking, and women come from, like, for me, I don’t kiss people with other dudes. For me that’s easy. Like, you know what I’m saying? It’s different. And I’m like, I started thinking, and that’s a trap. I need to, I need to really get right with God. Cause I got a gift. And I’m wasting my life.
I’m talking to myself. I’m wasting my life. Let me see what God really got for me. Mm. Know his word too. See, I know his word, but I was not applying it nowhere in my life. Mm. Started going to six o’clock prayer every morning. Walking. Mm. Prayer in the dark in Pompano. on the ugly corner street, came down street from Kodak Black.
Getting up every morning, being intentional on a six o’clock prayer. I, I got serious in church, like helping with marketing. Cause that’s, I have a background in marketing and strategizing, helping people brand their companies and stuff. And so I started helping the church seriously about that and just got focused on kingdom business.
And by me being under at the church and under my dad and mom, dad, doors begin to open up for different endeavors. You see what I’m saying? Dude, out at the church getting like $500 every two weeks. Mm. That’s crazy. I’m used to getting 2, 3, 4 bands a week, you feel me? Mm-hmm. and I, I dropped everything cause I knew I’d be all right.
I just trusted God got my own apartment. I was living, I left, lived in my dad. I’m at my dad house right now. We outside playing dominoes. Cause every Tuesday, Friday, what I do, you know, I just keep it in hood. I’m, I’m, I’m, I’m at the house where you saw me sitting on the roof. Yeah. In the video. Yes, sir. Yeah. That’s where I’m at.
You know, I’m saying I’m in the middle of Carol City right now, so I slept on my dad floor because I needed an accountability. I need to be upon somebody that’ll hold me accountable. You gotta, you gotta have a cover in somebody that you’ll submit to. Right? So that’s what I did. And, um, I, and got my apartment.
I, I credit was bad credit jacked all up and guess what?. I trusted God. The dude told me when I went to the apartment complex, we got 90 people on the list, 92 people. I’m like, listen, but I ain’t them though this. I’m talking to him. I’m not them, man. My church right down the street, like my church is down the street, so this perfect for me to be right here.
I can walk church. And man, I went in there, chopped it up with him. How about dude calling me like next three days. Hey, we got two of them for you. Two. Hmm. Dang. I ain’t had a bread to move in. Y I had, I had half of the money. God told me the people to go to. I went to ’em. Hey, I need this. They gave it to me like this when no questions asked.
Wow. When God direction, that person’s already ready. Jesus said, Hey, go around the corner, bust a left. Mm-hmm. , look to the right. It’s a donkey over there telling them master’s in need of this. See what I’m saying? Same thing. He told me who to go to and I did and got the apartment. Man, I’m just telling y’all like everything just went to locking and loading when I got serious about him.
Intentional. Then somebody start. I don’t wanna go too much into my story. I’m sorry. I don’t know if you got more questions. My bad. We good? You good?
DJ Focus: You’re good. Listen, you tuned into the Fix Your Source of Faith Infused Hip Hop, R and B and poetry, right here on Sirius XM Channel 1 54, kicking it with DJ Focus and Dice Gamble.
Also with the the super talented Otis Kemp. We gotta go to break, but we be right back. Keep it locked. You tuned into the fix. And the fix is in. You’re tuned back into the fix your source of Faith infused hip hop, r b and poetry, right here on Sirius xm, channel 1 54 Holy Culture Radio. And listen, DJ Focus and Dice Gamble, talking with the super talented Otis Kemp.
Listen, Otis, man, you, you’ve been dropping gems, man. But we, we gotta talk about this music before we let you get outta here, man. So first off, talk about. You know, some of your musical inspirations growing up, and then how you got into music and your particular sound too as well, because your sound is different, bro.
So, you know, take us back down memory lane. You know, who, who was you listening to coming up and how did that inspire your music? And then talk about your music. Let’s go.
Otis Kemp: My number one favorite was John P. Kee. Wow. That’s my favorite. Um, I had never heard anybody like John, just vocal acrobats. And he never missed notes, you know, just perfection.
Him and Isaac and Low and the whole, you know, v i p choir. I’m a commission fan. I’m a, the Winans, Marvin Winans pen game is sick. You know what I’m saying? I, I paid attention to lyrics and content and substance and melodies. I’m a Stevie Wonder fan guy. Um, you know what I’m saying? Jodeci mixed it up with some Michael Frank’s Jazz and some Andre Crouch and, and gimme some Betty Carter, you know what I’m saying?
And on the hip hop scene, you know, I’m from the South, so Eight Ball mjg, um, you know, Scarface Trick, trick Daddy, you know what I’m saying? Those are, those are my favorites. People like that. Of course, fat Boy, you know, he, Ross definitely, you know, paid, paid a big part in my life, you know what I’m saying?
Cause you know, that’s my brother. Mm-hmm.
DICE GAMBLE: That’s wild. I love everybody. You just mentioned . I’ve been to, I’ve been to half of those concerts, and I enjoy myself. Mm-hmm. .
OTIS KEMP: Yeah. When 8 Ball and MJG concert, that I never been a fan of nobody. Well, I’m like, that’s though you go. You know what I’m saying? When it came to Eight Ball M J G, I’m like, you know, you need to put a check with a check with a check. Get your things free. Hit the block 55 times. .
DJ Focus: Yes sir. Yes sir. Just like candy. Yes sir. . Yes sir. Yeah. Yeah. I’m a huge Ball and G fan too as well UGK as well. So you listen, listen, you taking me back to my Cuddy Mac and my C days. I’m trying to, I’m trying to stay saved now, man. Don’t, don’t do me like that. I’m trying to stay saved.
Otis Kemp: So what, like even when came out with album, oh my. The production that Swaves House had. Shout out the organized noise to, you know, I’m a goodie mob fan.
OTIS KEMP: the whole goody mob, you know what I’m saying? What, what’s, um, uh, what is it? Um, a heap, the fried chicken, macaroni and cheese and collard green. Too big for my jeans. Smoke steam from under the lid that’s on the pot and never had a lot, but thank for the little that I got.
Why not? These fast foods got me feeling sick. Them boys think they slick, but trying to make that thing affordable, I think the lord that my voice was recordable. So, so feel mm-hmm. that thing. Get them. Yeah. So I, I, I love Uncle Luke, you know, the whole, you know, uh, Miami Music based, I’m from Miami, so I love it.
You know what I’m saying?
DICE GAMBLE: Man. I ain’t gonna tell you about the Luke concert. I went to an Indianapolis, changed my life. Changed my whole, changed my whole life. .
OTIS KEMP: So you in, you in Indy?
DICE GAMBLE: No. No. I mean, I was going to school in Indianapolis and uh, I just, I was clueless, man. But, uh, Florida showed up. That’s all I gotta say.
That’s all I gotta, that’s all I gotta say.
OTIS KEMP: Right there. Right. .
DICE GAMBLE: Oh man. So talk to me about the fashion now, because I don’t know, have you always been into fashion, but you’ve been sporting some fire outfits here lately. So is that, is that, is that in the future, are you gonna drop a brand on us?
Like do you already had a brand ready to go? I mean,
OTIS KEMP: what’s crazy is, well, you know how we grew up. If you couldn’t dress, you can’t ride with us. Like, no,
no. That’s real. That’s a real thing. No, seriously, that’s a real thing.
Yeah. Like, you, like you can’t hang with us. Cause I’m, I’m a, you know, Miami fashionable too.
Like I’m from Carol City. We been like that. Like we’ve been wearing polos and valleys and leather shorts and, you know what I’m saying? Like, so I don’t know if that’s always been me, like wardrobe. Cause I always felt like, I ain’t had a hazel eyes. I ain’t got the curly hair, so I’m gonna hit the weights, make sure this, this melanin crispy, and, and I’m gonna be clean, you feel me?
And make sure my teeth white right. A bump, you know what I’m saying? Now, if I could fight. So that’s how we grew up. Like, you know those, you gotta have a couple of things going on about you, you know what I’m saying? Mm-hmm. . And so wa oh clothes was big for me. You know, always looking crispy cuz it make you feel good and, and you respected and you smell good.
And so, you know, not to play with me. That’s how we was like, you know. You know, if I’m, if I’m taking care of me like this, don’t you try me with something crazy? You know what I’m saying? And so, um, I do want a clothing line, you know, and I’m, I’m a big dude. I’m 6 6 2 95, so, you know, I, I represent for the big guys, you know what I’m saying?
I can’t go in the store and just shop like little dudes. You know, the fashion high, the high end fashion be kind of hard, but. You know, shout out. Shout out. I ain’t gonna say Gucci, I’m just saying like they look out, it’s ok. Certain things. I can’t wear certain clothes cause designers cause they don’t fit.
But I get a lot of stuff made, you feel me? Mm-hmm. So I started doing that and just started putting the pieces together, but, and you ready for this? You ain’t ready for this. Guess what? What I’m color Blind,
DICE GAMBLE: not you. Mm-hmm. Because you rock, you rock them colors. And that’s why I’m like, nah. And they look, they look, they look great on you, by the way.
OTIS KEMP: Yes. I don’t know how I do it. Like I have to ask people like, what this color is, this blue or purple? Like, yeah dude, it’s crazy. I ain’t never tell nobody that y’all got the first,
DICE GAMBLE: we got the exclusive. But you know, there are a lot of people that are colorblind, but I’m just saying like, man, you, you are killing the game with that.
So no, no, no. Okay, well give us a little tip of encouragement cuz you know, we got some listeners on here. They just heard what you said. So I mean, Somebody’s dealing with that challenge and they, and they are, you know, they feel in the type of way, like what’s some encouragement that you could give them?
OTIS KEMP: Stop playing with yourself. Tighten up. See, we don’t do the, we don’t do the pacifying on this side. No, we ain’t doing none of that. Tighten up. If you believe in yourself and you know that God is real, you need to submit to him and get serious about him, and he will open doors for you. I never thought about opening my own schools.
Never opening private schools. I own three private schools, apple C’s, performing Arts Academy. I’m the one that got kicked outta every school in Miami. You understand? God? I’m like, Moses, you know what I’m saying? Like, I’m, I’m, I’m like, you know what I’m saying, Paul? You know, like, God, take the, the worst and make ’em something for his use.
So whoever’s out there dealing with what you’re dealing with, you don’t have to stay there. You’re choosing to stay there. And that’s how I had to look at my life. I had to talk a tough talk with me. I had to say, wait a minute, timeout telling me I have an option right? To, to live a life of freedom in you and not being drugs and be bound, and I’m choosing to be bound.
I’m I, I’m choosing. You’re telling me to give, you’ll gimme life eternal everlasting in you. And I’m choosing hell. How stupid can I be when there’s a choice? I ain’t got a choice to work man. Don’t work. He don’t eat. But I have a choice to choose Christ. He don’t want to change the how he made me. He want to change my heart so he can show me how to live properly.
See, that’s what people need to understand. It’s not how you dress, it’s how you living.
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