For Vincent Carr, music is a powerful instrument to spread the word of God. As the founder of CYHM Ministries, the Cartersville resident is developing the musical talents of various artists while sharing the Gospel.
“CYHM (Can You Hear Me) Ministries began in 2004 with the intent of doing a bunch of shows and putting out a lot of good music,” Carr said. “Over the years, CYHM has evolved into so much more than just music.
“CYHM has a focus on reaching the world with the Gospel by any means necessary. This focus includes us going on tours, outreach missions and speaking engagements. Every artist with CYHM has the ability to reach people with or without music and on or off the stage. So, I guess you can say that our purpose is to bring the Great Commission (Matthew 28:19-20) to life.”
Name: Vincent (Vince) Carr
Occupation (title): Founder of CYHM (Can You Hear Me) Ministries; Website/social media information: www.idiemusic.com, www.facebook.com/idiemusic, www.facebook.com/cyhmministries and www.warehousemusichall.com.
City of residence: Cartersville
Family: Rena, wife; Akiera, 10, Aysia, 8, Alanna, 5, and Vincent Carr Jr. (coming Jan. 20)
Please share your musical background.
A: I have been in the music ministry/industry for more than 16 years, and I must admit that it has been a roller coaster. I have had the opportunity to share the stage with some national acts and visit many places that I probably wouldn't have had a chance to otherwise. I began doing music with a rap/rock/worship band, Equipped, back in 1998. However, as time went on, we all went our separate ways and began solo careers. That is when iDie (pronounced i-die), the solo Christian rapper, was “born.”
When I decided to go solo, I wanted my sound to be big and not just one dimensional. I guess God had the same plan, because he brought me an out-of-the-box producer, Julio Flores, and we began to work on my solo project, “Farewell to Self.” Since that album, I have [had] the opportunity to work on other projects with Julio, and have been able to add other producers and sounds to the mix.
How would I describe myself as an artist?
A: First and foremost, I hope that people would consider me a humble artist, with a servant’s heart. I would consider myself to be an artist that is passionate about reaching people and encouraging them that there is a God that loves them more than life. I guess you can say that I am an artist that likes to use the music as an icebreaker to be able to lead people to the real reason that I do music, Jesus.
Is sharing the message of Jesus Christ a significant part of CYHM Ministries?
A: Sharing the Gospel of Christ is the main part of CYHM Ministries. The music is simply a shadow of the Gospel. We use the music to draw people in, but that is just the beginning. Before shows, we (the artist) spend time shaking hands and laughing with numerous people that have come to the show that evening, and after the show we spend a lot of time talking to and praying with people that come to our merchandise tables. If the music was to stop tomorrow, the Gospel would still be preached by CYHM Ministries.
How many artists are represented by your label and how do their musical genres vary?
A: We currently represent six artist/speakers. CYHM Ministries is composed of hip hop (iDie, Altered Life, Jai Plus 1 and Joe Lu), pop (Brianna Shelko) and a speaker (Phillip Edge).
What do you enjoy most about helping other musicians develop their talents and receive more exposure?
A: I love to see the growth. I love to hear the compliments that they receive and witness the lives that are changed through their talents and passion for sharing the Gospel. I also love to see our artists perform on stage and gain a fanbase. I guess you can say, I love every aspect of being blessed enough to see God use me, to help him use them.
What is your greatest professional and/or personal achievement?
A: My greatest achievement is being a husband and a father. I believe that my family is my first ministry, and being successful at it takes a lot of prayer, time and trial/error. I thank God that he has blessed me with four little mini-me’s and an amazing/supportive wife.
How would you describe yourself in three words?
A: Determined, outgoing and Type B
What is something people would be surprised to know about you?
A: I love, love, love country music. I rarely listen to anything but country music, and I actually have my kids listening to it. I even listen to country while preparing to do concerts. I don’t know why, but I love me some country.
What is the best advice you have ever received?
A: A member of the CYHM family (Jai Plus 1) and I were talking, and I was stressed out at an event. I looked at him and asked, “Why do I even continue to do this?” He replied, “Because it is bigger than us.” I can’t tell you how many times I have reminded myself of this facet time and time again.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
A: During my down time, I like to hang out with my people over at The Gate Coffee Shop on Tennessee Street. I always feel like I am in an episode of “Cheers” when I go there. I walk in and Chuckie (the chef) has a witty comment to throw my way, DeWayne (the owner) comes and we come up with plans to “take over the world” with the Gospel and the rest of the staff are just real chill. Between the Christian music playing overhead and the stress free atmosphere, it is a great place to get away from a stressful day.
I also love spending time with my kids. Between the laughing at silly jokes, Nerf gun wars and just hanging out, my girls make my life complete.
However, I don’t have a lot of free time, because I also have a music “venue” that I own, The Warehouse Music Hall. I say “venue,” because we are in the process of moving from Rome to Cartersville and will have a show once a month at The Gate Coffee Shop beginning Feb. 16.