This is a hard-fought Victory. It is important to Tye Tribbett & Greater Anointing that you first understand that. And that in order to have a Victory you must go through a fight. A conflict. "This is basically about spiritual warfare," Tye says of the follow-up to their 2004 Sony Urban Music debut, Life. "And the way we fight is not against flesh and blood, but principalities. We fight with our praise. This is an all-out attack against the enemy with praise and worship."
To get to this Victory, it took strength. How else would you describe the courage to start off this live CD making such demands? "Come out of depression," he orders over the soaring horn section and bare-boned, go-go beat of the title track. "Come out of low self-esteem, come out of poverty!" Wow! With what else, other than strength, could one confront the enemy himself? "You may have thought you won that last round," G.A. begins on "I Want It All Back." "But it's not over...you've got some things I think you owe me. I've come back to get back everything that you stole. I want it all back!"
"I'm stepping to the enemy," Tye says with delight. "Some church folk are scared to fight these things. But I feel like we come in the spirit of David - This young boy who knew how to praise and worship. The Bible says David ran to meet the Philistine! He ran to Goliath! We're saying, 'Devil, we're not scared of you!' It's a very, very, bold, BOLD song. And I love that!" At the same time however, this Victory took surrendering to God.
When talking about "Sinking," Victory's, instant classic and centerpiece, Tye can't hide his excitement. "This is an old school song. When I think of the goodness of Jesus and all he has done for me, that's how it starts. It reminds me of when G.A. first started and people were kind of looking at us like we were buck wild. Like, 'Don't have this group around your church!' This is a song, 'When I think of the goodness of Jesus,' that I can perform at those churches. Early on I thought I was setting them up though. But God was setting me up, because it means so much to me now."
"I know you're dressed up tonight and you look good," Tribbett says to his live audience. "But anybody remember when they were sinking? Lot of preachers are preaching but 'Sinking.'...Prophesying - 'Sinking.' Playing the organ -'Sinking.' Playing the drums -'Sinking.'" Then comes the line, "I'm the son of a pastor, so you know, I thought as long as I went to church I was cool...but the Bible says, 'Take heed unless you [thud!].'"
You know the sound of surrender, don't you? Surely it's something like "G.A. Hymn," where Aaron and Angie of G.A. take the lead and sweetly remind us of how good it feels to really know God. And of course you know why you should surrender? Well, as Tye Tribbett & G.A. put it, you have "No Other Choice." "This is a song that I wrote after my uncle and a young man in the choir passed," shares Tye. "Men who were like my father and like my son passed within a month's time. And it was like 'Whoa.' Like, 'What are you doing here God?' And these were two good guys. They weren't wilding out, cursing and drinking. They were like pillars in my life. So I was seriously thinking like, 'Should I give up and just go crazy or trust?' Trust that he knows what he's doing. You may not understand it sometimes, especially when children die, and things happen to innocent babies, but you have to trust him. We have 'No Other Choice.'"
Finally, it took the good sense of Tye Tribbett & G.A to realize that in all of these things, you celebrate. Not that these wild-limbed wonders have ever had any trouble with that. It's what first attracted the Camden, N.J ensemble to Country music superstar Faith Hill, who took Tye Tribbett & G.A. on the road with her back in 2000. It's what still attracts major R&B and Hip-Hop forces like Usher, Mary J. Blige, Missy, Will Smith, Ciara, Common, Jill Scott and Omarion, with whom Tye Tribbett & G.A. have shared their mutual respect. It's what you've seen in Tye Tribbett & G.A.'s many performances on the BET Awards, the NAACP Image Awards and the Stellar Awards. It's what you hear in "Seated at the Right Hand of God." It's what compels you out of your when you hear "Still Have Joy," an uproarious, in the aisle, shaking, shouting, clapping, and can't-sit-down-even-though-everyone's-staring-and-the-song-was-over-five-minutes-ago, celebration.
"I just believe that this album is a praise and worship album," Tye concludes. "It is Kingdom music. I don't categorize it as Gospel, Christian, or Gospel Hip-Hop. It is not directed toward one race of people or one genre. It's universal. We represent the Kingdom."
"The last album was dealing with life and situations. Songs like "There's An Answer For You," this album, it's like maaaaaaan " let's worship! And it's important now because this culture is so crazy. They've got hip-hop on their minds. Sex on their minds. So much on their minds. And we're trying to put praise in the mouths of this generation. Because we've been through it also: So much pain, so many questions, and now " Hallelujah, our triumph." All to bring us closer to God.