JS - You just finished a long trip doing a couple of concerts, how did it go?
Roy - They were really powerful. The Lord keeps showing up and moving at the events and using the new music from my latest album. At the FCA camp there were over 50 people who committed their lives to Christ even though the crowd didn't respond to the music at first - acting a little "stand-offish" and reserved. But the combination of the message in the music and the preacher afterward were used by God to move those lives.
JS - Roy, though you live in Orlando now, why don't we start with where you actually grew up. Where was that?
Roy - I was born and raised in Indianapolis.
JS - What was your home-life like?
Roy - It was, I would say, a middle class family that loved Jesus, taught the Scriptures. I was raised in a Christian family that would wake me up early in the morning at 6am for devotions. We had everything we needed and went to church all the time. I knew a lot about Christ but didn't know Him personally.
JS - How did you come to know Christ as your Savior then?
Roy - the gospel message never sunk in my heart til the summer right before I went off to college at a church family camp in Michigan. God really used a man named Kevin to lead me to Christ. (Kevin was from Detroit. He played football and was a little more rough around the edges - a man's man). There was an email from him after that where he challenged me to get alone and cry out to Jesus. I never felt that love like I felt right then from God. I did a 180 in the way I lived my life and I have been blessed to have people in my life that have helped keep me accountable and grow (including you John). (Link to his full testimony)
JS - Where did you go to college?
Roy - Lincoln Land Community college in Springfield, Illinois. I got an athletic scholarship to play basketball there.
JS - How did that experience impact you?
Roy - While i was there I got involved with a ministry called Christian Student Fellowship. I really had already done the college life (girls,drinking,drugs) while in high school so I was looking for something more satisfying. That's when I started experimenting with music,making beats and writing lyrics for raps and started to do concerts on campus and handing out copies of some of my music.
(At that point) I had offers to continue playing basketball after that at a D2 level but i saw y passion wasn't really in basketball as much as music anymore and I felt that was God's calling on my life. So I dedicated my time to pursuing that.
JS - Why did you get into music? What is your background before that?
Roy - If I can pin it to one thing, it's that God is faithful to use what is in us and that He wants to do through us first. I work hard and do what I am supposed to do, make the sacrifices and learn, but when I look back I just see God faithful and moving me along and coming through and doing what is best for me.
My parents were supportive of me putting two years into establishing the music ministry instead of finishing my last two years of college. And shortly after that I got married and moved out on my own.
JS - What kind of impact has the TEAM JAM family had on your ministry or your personal life?
Roy - A huge blessing. You gave me an opportunity when no one else was taking note. It was while I was in college or just after I moved back in with my parents. It was a building time. I was excited to come to Ohio and minister outside of where I was. You gave me a chance when no one else was. It was incredible to be part of the ministry from middle school to adults in sharing the gospel with other people.
Then personally you served me and discipled me above and beyond. You taught me some hard lessons and spoke tough truth out of love. it helped establish humility. You taught me to right "I DESERVE" on a big card and then CROSS IT OUT. That way, ever since then, I look at opportunities as a gift no matter how awesome it is and how much I enjoy it instead of making it about me. I serve an awesome God who restores the broken.
I am still thankful for TEAM JAM reaching out to me and staying in touch and doing this interview. The Divine Soldiers helped me see what goes on at a huge concert like ALIVE in Canal Fulton, Ohio and took notes about you assigned me to take (finding the answers to questions assigned in regards to how they ministered). I saw the LeBron James basketball camp in Akron and helped with your hockey camp and even finished with doing an outreach concert with the Divine Soldiers at the end of the week.
JS - What are your most memorable ministry experiences (ways that God used you in the life of another)?
Roy - There are TONS of them. But I think that there is one that comes to mind immediately. it was going back to my old high schools (both Cathedral HS and Heritage Christian HS in Indianapolis) where the teachers, leaders, and even some students knew the OLD me and got to see how Christ had changed me. That was an incredible experience and it underlined to me the change HE made but showed others that JESUS IS REAL and then in turn caused change in THEIR lives. "Just one more" is the heartbeat of our ministry so each time I see "just one more" transformed by the gospel is awesome. But to see so many respond to Christ in the place that meant so much to me was the biggest blessing.
JS - What are your most memorable music or concert experiences?
Roy - "Career wise" it was getting to open for LeCrae. Primarily because I really look up to him as an artist and man of character, his songs and message. His status in the Christian world is like opening for "Little Wayne" in secular music. Seeing the way he lives and works behind the scenes was a great experience because he is the real deal. I learned a lot from that and from him and it was incredible. i will remember that for a long time.
He exceeded my expectations. He was super humble, even communicating with me and keeping in touch afterwards.
JS - Tell me about your family?
Roy - My wife is Natalka and our son is Samuel (2015). They are everything to me. My wife has been with me through all the ups and downs, and is my backbone and my best friend. I don't know what I would do without that woman. I love being a dad. I'm new to it but its the most incredible experience after salvation and marriage. I'm learning about the sacrifices involved. Jesus said that we find true life when lose ours. So I see that even after sleepless nights. He brings such joy to my wife and I. I really want to raise him up and teach him and leave a legacy through him. Initially I thought of legacy as doing concerts and reaching people but now its even more important to being a dad and an example and to teach him the TRUTH and by God's grace pouring my life out to him and showing him the love of Christ day in and day out. If I don't succeed with that, then what does the other stuff matter.
JS - What advice do you have for the reader?
Roy- It depends on where they are at but the main thing is that the bigger picture for all of us is that we are here to glorify God, enjoy Him and share Him with others. So if life is all about you, then you are selling yourself short and you need to give your life to Jesus to have an intimate relationship with Him and fulfillment for yourself. We need to make our lives about loving others like Jesus said.
Even simpler: Love God and Love Others !
JS - Thanks Roy, That was perfect! We love seeing you still faithful in serving the Lord.
Roy - Great to hear from you John.
Latest Release - "DREAM ON" (with video)
Video - "TAKE ME BACK"
Video - "SHUT IT DOWN"
Video - "POP OFF"
Video - "BEAUTY FOR ASHES" (Deep Msg)
Full Album - "THE REVERT"
Free Download of "THE REVERT"
Listen - "Never Die"
More Music - Link
thechhplug.com interview - Nov 23,2015
Herald Review Article (about 737)
CAREER SUMMARY / HIGHLIGHTS
Lecrae, Jeremy Camp, and Andy Mineo.
Shared Platforms with:
Pillar, Britt Nicole, Social Club, KB, Tedashii, This’l, Benjah,
J'son, V. Rose, Canon, and Flame.
Operates and Serves as:
Founder/Director of "CFI Mnistries".
...reaching “just 1 more” w/God’s love thru media & live events.
Ministered and/or Partnered with National Ministries:
Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Student Venture, Wyld
Seen on Cable Stations:
JCTV, UPTV, and various other Christian television shows.
Formerly known as the artist "737"
- reaching #25 on iTunes' Hip-Hop/Rap charts
Roy was born and raised in Indianapolis, Indiana. As a high school student, he was primarily consumed with playing basketball and pursuing achievement through sport. After graduation God transformed his life in such a powerful way that he began a relentless pursuit of Christ instead. Despite the absence of a musical background, Roy Tosh found himself filled with a message that he needed to share - and Hip Hop music became his vehicle to do so. This ministry began under the name "J-Mack".
After observing that there was a similarly named performer whom indirectly brought negative attention to the "J-Mack" name, Roy changed his stage name to "737". Then in 2014, Andy Mineo and Benjah helped Roy go through a rebranding process which resulted in the change to his current "Roy Tosh" (a combination of his birth names). Music mentor and nationally known recording artist "Benjah" helped him develop a melodic side to his music ministry and stretching him beyond just a lyrical rapper.
Soon afterward Tosh released a free album (link is on this page) called “The Revert” that featured Benjah, Deraj, TJ Pompeo, & Black Knight. The album thus far has been downloaded over 8,000 times and has over 120,000 listens!
In June of 2015, Roy released his debut album “Death Before Love.” The album featured Reconcile, Canton Jones, J.Paul, Beckah Shae, Benjah, among others, with production from Jahmen Music, Cardec Drums, and Black Knight.
Roy now resides in Orlando, Florida with his wife and son where they also lead the outreach they founded, "CFI ministries".