Rapper, public speaker, podcast host, and founding member of the 116 Movement, Tedashii, is releasing a new EP, This Time Around 2, on October 14th. The album features Jon Keith, Big Breeze, Zach Paradis, and Reach Records label mates: Lecrae, Trip Lee, and 1K Phew.
“This Time Around 2 is the outcome of deep self-reflection, a new beginning, and a call to listeners to witness the transformation that is available on the other side if you’re willing to do the work and surrender yourself to God,” shares Tedashii.
Tedashii’s special sauce lies in his distinctive style and ability to transfer pain and struggle into poignant music. Nicknamed TDot, the Texas-born and raised emcee has captivated fans with his energetic sound and booming voice for nearly two decades. His latest project, This Time Around 2, picks up where the original released in 2016 left off and this time around he brings even more wisdom into his music from hard-earned lessons learned. “I talk about what I have lived and not what I’ve learned from reading. As a result, I have a renewed sense of awareness and am constantly working on loving myself and pushing forward through insecurities.”
In advance of This Time Around 2, Tedashii has released several singles and music videos including: “Mirror Talk,” “OBJ,” and “Respect My Team” featuring label mates, Lecrae and Trip Lee and the latest “Holy Ground” directed by Dustbrandfilms. “Wherever I go, God is with me! As a matter of fact, as someone who is made in the image of God, and one who believes that God is the Creator of everything, where I step because he is with me is Holy Ground so I treat life and the world as such. I walk in and show up as my true self knowing I’m on Holy Ground,” shares Tedashii.
“Mirror Talk is a very confessional song. It’s honest, vulnerable, transformative, and reflects some very personal struggles that I’ve navigated through,” shares Tedashii. “In the first verse of “Mirror Talk,” I talk about my struggles with mental health, self-esteem, identity,and even the fear of not fitting in. The second verse talks about my experience as a Black Man in the world at large and the conclusions I’ve come to trying to navigate through white Christian spaces.”
“Respect My Team,” marks the first time that he, Lecrae, and Trip Lee have recorded together since “Nothing I Can’t Do,” released on his 2014 album, Below Paradise. The heartfelt lyrics on the “Respect My Team” speak to the brotherhood between Tedashii, Lecrae, and Trip Lee that launched the 116 Movement and the Romans 1:16 verse which is at the core of Reach Records’ mantra and mission. “I’m always super excited to record new music with Trip Lee and Lecrae. We’ve been friends and label mates for nearly two decades; they’re some of my favorite artists. So, to create new music together is super exciting!” The Texas natives also include a chopped & screwed version of the song on the EP.
In the comedic action music video for “Respect My Team,” which casts Tedashii, Lecrae, and Trip Lee, as Blaxploitation era detectives taking down villains, the three icons go deep undercover and into character. “Some of my favorite films growing up were Kung-Fu flicks,” shares Tedashii. “When I was a kid, I watched Kung-Fu theater every Saturday! I watched everything from Bruce Lee to The Heroic Trio and was a superfan of Jim Kelly, and Chuck Norris. I was such a huge fan of karate flicks that I started taking martial arts as a kid, so many of the moves you see me doing in the video come from my childhood. I still watch Kung Fu flicks to this day!”
In between recording the new music, TDot launched a new podcast called The Dash which is in its second season. “The goal of The Dash is to hold a mirror up to myself and invite guests on to have a real conversation about the reflections we see in our mirrors and how we’re living out our dash. We’re all created with unique gifts connected to our life purpose. Our conversations will explore the journey we’re on, the things we’ve learned, and even what we’re changing to become reflections of God,” shares Tedashii.
He’s also formed a nonprofit foundation, The Chase Foundation, in honor of his one-year-old son, Chase, who passed away in 2012. “After the sudden death of my son, Chase, I was dealing with panic attacks every week and had bouts of anxiety and depression. I started self-medicating, drinking, and isolating myself for safety and ended up in a self-degrading cycle. I was clinically depressed, and after years of self-analysis, therapy, prayer, and time alone with God, I am finally ready to show my scars, despite their ugliness,” he explains. “The loss and pain will always be there, but I’m feeling healthy again. Through The Chase Foundation, I hope to walk with young people the same way I walked with Chase had he still been with us. The Chase Foundation will also help connect parents who have lost a child with resources to assist them as they grieve.”
With new music on the horizon, producing and hosting season two of The Dash podcast, and even forming a nonprofit, Tedashii, is taking this time around to share his renewed relationship with God through his music. “My renewed vision for this music is to show people the risk of trusting God with the things we go through. But, it’s worth it, and if you can hope, you can eventually heal.