Jokia is an acoustic singer/songwriter from California and resides in Texas by way of the army. Jokia is bringing a fresh new sound to Christian Contempary Music (CCM) through her pure worship. Her astounding voice and talent as an acoustic guitar player is inspired by artist Lauren Diagle, Israel Houghton and Kirk Franklin.
With Her exceptional songwriting, compelling voice, and amazing debut single ‘amen’ there is no limit to where her talent will go. Jokia was inspired by the song ‘amen’ when she realized she wanted nothing more to surrender to God, and do His will for her life. She had experienced rejection and thought the Lord forgot about her. Jokia began to write and compose music from her heart to God. With the undeniable buzz and radio play Jokia aims to inspire listeners in faith, hope, encouragement and complete obedience to the Lord. Her sincere message and worship charms any audience and takes every listener on a journey to connect with God on an intimate level.
We got the chance to talk with Jokia, Lets see what she had to say...
A couple years ago I joined a new church and they needed me to play the guitar for the service. I was playing the acoustic guitar and I was not being used vocally for singing so I got used to that and started saying well maybe that’s not the way God wants to use me. I realized I was not like all the other amazing singers, my style, my sound is just different in terms of being liberating worship. I got discouraged and got comfortable in that place of discouragement but there was a lady that I met. She told me that God wanted me to sing by then I thought my gift had died. I wasn’t going to record, I wasn’t going to sing, I just didn’t move when I heard that message. A message I had to hear 3 more times before I went to God and said, God I don’t know what to do. I don’t know how to start it or how to move about this. All he told me was… “just write”.
I sat down in my living room and I wrote a song being tired. I wasn’t fitting in the world and I wasn’t fitting in within the church setting. I wrote a song saying Amen, saying I’m tired of trying to fit in a mold and what I perceive a mold to be God I just want to be used by you. I wrote that song and I heard God say this is for the radio. I love K love so I said Ok and after writing the song I went to a conference by Marquis Boone and I didn’t realize they had a showcase and a contest. I showcased the Amen song I remember right before singing that day I was in my hotel room crying and feeling so frustrated, overwhelmed with frustration because I wasn’t using my gift. Overwhelmed and just broke out in tears and by the time I got around to the 2nd chorus people I’ve never met were singing the song and the end the judge panelist. The first judge said this song is a radio song, I am a RCA person for radio and this is a radio song. I wept right there because I remember what God said to me. I ended up winning the contest and that how I got to where I am at now, “Amen” is now a single. The video has been released also and I just thank God.
KingdomSoldNYC: That’s an awesome story. Another story about when we feel like we are at our lowest point of frustration God steps in and used it to push us into our purpose. As an artist preparing to fully embark on this musically journey what would success look like for you?
Jokia: For me that would be honestly being recognized at as a person that will draw others into a relationship with Christ. A person that people say when she sings I think about God. I went to a Israel Houghton concert and I love some Israel. I was close to the stage and in all Israel Houghton’s glory as great as he is as a musician I remember looking around and seeing peoples eye’s closed taken into worship. As great as he is he took me into worship so much that I wasn’t even caring about Israel Houghton anymore – I was drawn to a place of personal intimacy with God. I want to be like that when I sing, when you hear the music .. you think about God. So to answer your question it is an artist that brings people to intimate worship with God.
KingdomSoldNYC: That’s where it’s at! So you’re at a very exciting place right now in your musical journey is there anything you are hoping to do by the end of the year?
Jokia: I would like to have a bigger platform to introduce more people to God and not on a level of just being popular but I want a reach where what I’m doing really brings people to God. I don’t want to be known for vocal acrobats cause if we do a contest for that I will lose (laughs) so I really just want more people to be in relationship with God, Saved and Unsaved. I know so many people that are saved and walk in disobedience to God, I was one of them, I felt God forgot about me, I felt rejected by God and I was completely wrong. I just want to see people having sincere relationship with God not the hype, not the excitement and this is genuinely what I want, not the fame. I don’t care how crazy or weird, if you don’t fit in with the biggest of the gospel industry or the smallest, in your church, just be yourself and if someone looks at me and says she got her own little way but if she can I can too.
KingdomSoldNYC: That’s awesome. I’m listening to you and I am hearing somethings that resonate and also inspire me. Growing up in church you see it all but it is great to know that there are people out there that genuinely care about the move and the presence of God in worship. A lot of times people make it something it has no business being so to hear you speak so profoundly on the preciousness of worship is awesome. It’s awesome that there are people that care about getting into the presence of God by simply being themselves, not trying to be someone else, not trying to do what everyone else is doing but coming as they are before the king and using their gifts to usher people into worship. You have the right heart, you’ve got the right spirit, you know exactly what God wants you to do… that’s the foundation to going to that place that He has for you. When you align yourself correctly and trust God there’s really no limit to where he takes you. He’ll take you places you never even thought about. What a blessing, just keep on sis…my next question is what inspires you artistically… to play and write?
Jokia: Relationship… things that people can relate to. I’m inspired by truth… The Amen song I really wrote that out of an honest place, if you want me to sing fine, if you don’t fine…amen to whatever you want me to do and that is a hard truth. Singing, playing I’m not the best on either spectrum but I can still say God I love you. So truth and intimacy. Sometimes I just break out crying, it sneaks up on me and just have fun to when I do it. It’s interesting because I get more melody and then the words come after.
KingdomSoldNYC: I totally get it! Everybody’s process is different but I play the piano and write songs too and it’s the exact same thing for me. The music usually comes first then after I’ll get the words but the words come from just basking in God’s presence and the words just begin to flow out and come out of you.
Jokia: Yes, the music determines what the feel is. When I play this it gives me a worship sound, what is God saying through this or when I play this… and it’s really like connecting with heaven.
KingdomSoldNYC: Absolutely and we love to connect with the man upstairs.
Jokia: Yes, absolutely
KingdomSoldNYC: Anything encouraging you would like to say to our viewers?
Jokia: Just be realistic and real. When I say realistic just talk to God. Tell him what it is that you want, don’t make it about anything else, just tell him what you want, what your desires are and see if they line up with the will of the Lord. If they do and you focus on him, He will honor your dreams and passions in due season according to his will and his time. Especially right now, with all the chaos going on around the world there is an open heaven, it’s weird but he is pouring out and answering promises. I kind feel like we’ve been so concerned with a lot of things and it’s like he’s saying, here it is now focus on me. When it comes don’t expect it to come the way you expect it. You won’t know all the answers, but he is leading and guiding us, He is answering promises. This is the time to be who God has called you to be. I don’t care how weird, how unique or if after church you’re there standing by yourself or your socially awkward, it’s okay.
KingdomSoldNYC: Any shout outs
Jokia: Shout out to Jesus. My husband B. Williams and shout out to you guys. I’m grateful for the opportunity.
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