The Ascending Artist: E-Fetti
Words by: Freddie Merriweather
E-Fetti is a 24-year-old Christian Hip-hop rapper and evangelist from North Carolina. E-Fetti has been recognized as one of the biggest and influential Christian artist in the state of North Carolina. Not only is he an inspirational artists, but he also owns a Christian clothing line titled "Christ Lyke". E-Fetti has a fan-base of over 25,000 on Facebook and more than 51,000 followers on Twitter.Though he may be a rising icon in Christian music, E-Fetti( just like everyone else) has experienced his share of trials and hardships.
The Street Life
E-Fetti was born Emil Nnani in Raleigh, North Carolina to Nigerian parents. E-Fetti is the third born of four. E-Fetti's father left and went back to Nigeria when E-Fetti was just one, hence leaving E-fetti fatherless. E-Fetti's mother went to prison when E-Fetti was around five, forcing him and his siblings to go into foster care. Once his mother was released from prison, she reattained custody of of her children. E-Fetti embraced his passion for music, and started rapping at the tender age of five. He recorded his music on cassette tapes which his mother mailed to his father in Africa.
At the age of ten, E-Fetti and his family joined the "Sanctuary of Liberation" church, and it was here that E-Fetti started developing a relationship with Jesus Christ, and started ministering to large crowds. He was performing at church at the age of twelve and by the age of fifteen, E-Fetti was confident that God had called him to minister.
Even though E-Fetti was in church, he still had the negative influences of his peers and the streets. Growing up in Raleigh, E-Fetti was exposed to guns, drugs, and gangs at a very young age, and his chances of escaping his violent and heinous environment were limited. Being involved with the notorious street gang, E-fetti was involved in a robbery which earned him a year in prison. Having been exposed to prison life, E-Fetti still hadn't changed. When E-Fetti was released from prison, he returned to the streets.
E-Fetti went back to living the fast and illegal life, and started selling drugs. E-Fetti idolized ganster rappers such as T.I. And Lil' Wayne. E-Fetti eventually caught another case, this time for drug trafficking, and was sent back to jail. Fortunately this time, E-Fetti was able to post bond, and he invested a lot of money in a good lawyer to defend his case. After this, E-Fetti decided that it was time to put an end to this "thug life".
"I was on top of the world. I didn't turn to God because I lost everything, I didn't lose anything, but I turned to God for one reason. Somebody told me I could change my situations through righteous praying, and I wanted to see if it was true." -E-Fetti.
E-Fetti published his first book at the age of twenty-one titled "Imagine: A World That Your Feeble Mind Couldn't Even Imagine". In his book, E-Fetti talks about his life growing up. He also talks about a situation that he faced and how he fasted for forty days straight, praying and seeking God. E-Fetti then started going to different churches ministering and sharing his testimony. E-Fetti compares himself to the Apostle Paul. Many people still don't believe that it was possible for the young notorious street gang leader to find God.
Over the short years of his career, E-Fetti has been presented with over twenty record deals. E-Fetti has opened up shows for some of the biggest names in Gospel music including, Da' Truth, JJ Hairston, Isaac Carree, Yolanda Adams, Damita Haddon, as well as others. In 2011, E-Fetti made his first national TV appearance on the "Bobby Jones Gospel Show". When his Twitter account became 'verified', it was clear that E-Fetti was becoming a rising icon in the Christian music industry. On Twitter, E-Fetti is being followed by some of the biggest names in Gospel including Da'Truth, Sho'Baraka, Deitrick Haddon, and many others. In 2010, 2011, and 2012, E-Fetti was nominated for Holy hip-hop artist of the year against artists such as Da'Truth and Lecrae.
E-Fetti is the perfect example of how God can take a nobody and turn them into a somebody.
E-Fetti, what made you want to be a christian rapper?
I was already a rapper, and when I got saved this made me want to become a gospel rapper.
When did you come to know the Lord?
I was in church ever since I was ten, but I didn't establish a relationship with God until 2009. I was watching a Youtube video of Paul Washer, and this is when I had a real encounter with God. God spoke to me when I was crying over the gospel. I was broken over the fact that God had done so much for me, and every time I sinned, I spat in God's face. This day changed everything.
What type of music do you like to listen to?
Though I am a christian rapper, I prefer gospel worship.
I know you told me that at one point in time you were homeless. When did you become homeless and at what age?
It happened when I was released from prison at seventeen. From seventeen to twenty-two I was homeless.
Where did you stay when you were homeless?
I stayed in the basement of this church.
E-Fetti, what inspires you?
The ability to change lives is what inspires and motivates me.
If given the opportunity, what names in Gospel music would you like to collaborate with?
I would like to collaborate with Kirk Franklin, Lecrae, and T.D. Jakes.
Who are some of your childhood role models?
Michael Jordan, Muhammed Ali, and Lil' Wayne influenced me as a child.
Do you have any kids?
Yes, I have a two-year-old daughter.
What do you do in your free time?
I maintain my clothing company, "Christ Lyke" , with my partner, Alicia Moore.
What would you tell any aspiring christian artist?
Give God all of his Glory, Stay humble, and you'll go far.
E-Fetti's latest video "Worldly"
Music video by E-fetti performing "Worldly" from his current album, "Untitled"(2013).
Aside from music, E-Fetti is also the owner and CEO of "Christ Lyke". “Christ Lyke” is an urban Christian clothing line established by E-Fetti in 2012 with the help of Christian runway model and partner, Alicia Moore. “Christ Lyke” has been labeled as one of the hottest Christian clothing lines in the world. "Christ Lyke" fuses urban street style with biblical and inspiration quotes to produce unique christian apparel . "Christ Lyke" products have been purchased by athletes and celebrities such as Raymond Felton of the New York Knicks, Joe Mays and Tony Hills of the Denver Broncos , Gospel singer Damita Haddon, Sho'Baraka, Cheneta Jones, and many others. "Christ Lyke" operates two locations, one in Triangle Town Center Mall in Raleigh, NC, and the other in Streets at Southpoint Mall in Durham, NC. There are also other clothing stores in North Carolina that carry "Christ Lyke" products.
To order "Christ Lyke" products like the ones featured in these photos, visit the website at www.christlyke.com.
"Christ Lyke" Clothing video
For more information, updates, and to stay connected with everything E-Fetti, visit his website and social media.
E-Fetti is also on Reverbnation.
E-Fetti's book is available on Amazon
Download E-Fetti's albums today!
About "The Ascending Artist"
"The Ascending Artist" is an article published regularly on Hubpages by Freddie Merriweather, which features new up-and-coming musicians and entertainers from across country. Follow Freddie Merriweather via The216Writer on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+ to receive information and updates on "The Ascending Artist", and more.