Over the 20 years of doing music full time I've accumulated a lot of unique experiences, my hope and desire with this book is to have a conversation with you about some of my greatest triumphs, joys and failures. "Victory Lap" is a compilation of true stories from my childhood, music, songs, touring and more.
Imagine what would be running through your mind as you ran a "victory lap"... you would think back on all the ups and down that got you to the place of winning the race. Picture you and I sitting in a room telling story after story about every aspect of my experiences. Ever wanted to know the backstory on a song? Ever wanted to know my perspective on a issue? Ever wanted to hang out with me for an hour and have me share my knowledge and wisdom I've learned from a life of music and ministry? This book is for you.
Each song on the album is inspired by a chapter from the book in order to help you experience exactly what I was feeling when I was going through that moment. This being my second auto-biographical book I wanted to allow fans the opportunity to leave quotes, pick questions and to have their name in the credits.
This book/EP is funded by the fans, inspired by the fans and written for the fans!
Thank you so much for your support throughout the years, you make what I do possible.
Sample chapter: "Child Prodigy"
I have always loved being on stage, or at least as far back as I can remember I did. As a child, I lived to perform. If I didn't have a stage, I made a stage. If there was a stage, I always knew exactly what to do on it. There was never a moment where being up there scared me.
My first stage moment was when I jumped up on the dining room table at my grandma's house at age three or four. It was a massive table that could fit twenty people or more. I remember standing at the head because I knew that would command the most attention. I needed that chair to get all the adults to look up at me. Even then I had an instinct to perform, and no one ever had to teach me.
My hunger to be in front of crowds was fostered, watered, and given opportunities to grow, especially by my dad. He had built what I called “the stage” in our place in Ybor city. In hindsight, it wasn't really a stage. It was just a raised platform that we used as a loft space, as a living room of sorts. To me, it was a perfect stage because I knew that when my dad came home, I could jump up there and perform my next skit. I was taller than the adults up there. I could command the attention, and I could even draw on the walls if I wanted to.
At the same time, while I was living in Ybor City with my mom and dad, we didn't really have the money for the toys that I wanted. This forced me to improvise and use my imagination. I don't remember that fact ever getting me down. If we couldn’t afford the things I wanted, then I found a way to create them. I would bust out some cardboard, some tape, and next thing you know, I made the actual toy that I wanted from junk lying around the house. If I wanted a Star Wars AT-AT, I made it. If I wanted a Tie Fighter, I made it. I didn’t let anything stop me. I don’t remember anyone teaching me these things. I just always had this inherent determination. I was always fearless, and I always took things a bit further than everyone else.
I see this theme in my story throughout my childhood. My parents, who cultivated a creative environment from the beginning, recognized something in me early on.
At six years old, my dad enrolled me in improv classes. Within a week, I was leading the class. Later, I was in a children's theater, and I remember the teacher asked everyone to act out what it would be like to eat an ice cream cone. While the other kids were pretending to take bites I was fully licking the imaginary ice cream cone, and really going for it. I always taught performance tips to other kids around me. Also that same year, I played Tiny Tim in The Christmas Carol play, and performed in front of thousands of people every night. My dad played Bob Cratchit. I took it seriously. I memorized my lines. I remember looking out on the large crowds and never being scared. I was in Oliver Twist, and I remember I had to deliver my lines in a British accent, and never felt like this was a hard thing to do.
(more to come..)
Sample chapter ideas:
-I’m not a mexican mariachi singer
-I headlined the White privilege conference
-The story about rob
-I was almost kidnapped
-My health transformation
-The day I knew I was poor
-My biggest show ever
-My first tour show was for 5 people
-The night I almost got shot
-Racist SE university
-My first date disaster
-I ran away twice
-Coughing fits and hospital trips
-Cockroaches in the cereal
-My wu-tang beatdown
-Bullies & skinheads
-Race riots in immokalee
-I was almost prom king
-The biggest thing that never happened