The Break Presents: Sir The Baptist
One artist who has seen his popularity grow at an increasing rate as of late is Sir The Baptist. Born Sir William James Stokes, in the Bronzeville area of South Side Chicago, the budding MC has a unique sound that blends soul, hip hop, R&B, jazz, doo-wop, pop and gospel. With so many genres encompassing his sound, he calls it “church pub rap.”
Sir has and an impressive summer '16. He released tracks like “(Creflo) Almighty Dollar" featuring Twista and ChuchPeople, and “Raise Hell" featuring ChuchPeople, which helped his stock rise. As a result, it wasn't too long before someone signed him up. Now with Atlantic Records behind him, Sir is gearing up to release his full-length debut project, PK: Preacher's Kid.
Over Labor Day weekend, Sir The Baptist experienced a moment that will likely live with him for years to come. After ripping up the Tidal stage on Day 2 at the Budweiser Made in America 2016, Jay Z approached Sir. The conversation ended with Sir finding out that Hov is a fan of his music.
“While I was performing ‘Heaven’ at Made in America, I saw a golf cart pull up during the set,” he said to XXL about meeting Jay Z. “I didn’t pay too much attention to it. By the time the set was done, the entire crowd was singing ‘Heaven.’ I walked off behind the stage to head back to the dressing room and Jay Z walked right up to me and said, 'Sir, I love your story and I’m following you. Congratulations on a great set.'"
"I told him that I have been following him since I was a kid and was a fan my entire life. And thank you for getting me through my roughest times. As a preacher’s kid, I wasn’t supposed to be into secular music. But Jay Z spoke to my soul. I was blessed in my lifetime to preach to my idol and get the greatest offering in return – encouragement. Meeting Jay Z was the reassurance I needed to know that I can do, got this. As a preacher’s kid, I’ve seen and heard a lot. All I want to do is share the word, the truth, and lift others up through my music and that is exactly what I am plan to do with PK.”
Now moving full steam ahead, Sir The Baptist is ready to make the leap to the next level.
Name: Sir The Baptist
Age: “John The Baptist would be like 2,080, so, I’ll go with 2,082.”
Hometown: Bronzeville, Chicago
I grew up listening to: “Everything church and Jay Z, 2Pac, Notorious B.I.G. ‘cause my dad died when I was 11 so I had a chance to listen to gospel but sneak in listening to The Black Album."
"I always wanted to produce but all my family didn’t think it was realistic to be an artist. I was making music at like 7. I would sing in the children’s choir and sing in the big choir, I got to perform with my brothers and stuff like that. That got me equipped to perform. And when I was a little kid I was a preacher. I’m still an ordain minister but I call myself a sort of urban minister because I’m going to curse, I’m going to smoke weed and talk about God."
"I was doing something for McDonald’s, I put a jukebox on McDonald’s website nationally because I was coding and doing digital marketing for this company. I put so many artists on [the jukebox] and they were getting 5 million, 6 million downloads. I’m like, Nigga, I’m about to quit and do this for myself. So I ended up doing this for myself, going homeless and drove Lyft until I make some money to follow people around. I wouldn’t spend money on a house I would just drive Lyft to follow the industry then it just took off."
Most people don’t know: “I cry all the time. In the back after [meeting] Jay Z I was just crying. I go through so much. Right now I’m signed, I’m doing well and I got a lot of money to put into my career. Right now I’m the homeless hippie preacher, like right now."
My style’s been compared to: “People compare me until they see me perform and then they go like, 'He’s nothing like who I compare him to.' They try to compare me to a lot of people but it’s hard because I immediately sound like a preacher. To me, 2Pac was a prophet so it only makes sense."
My standout records or moments to date have been: “My standout moment is the moment I spend with people. I don’t like the stage and I don’t disrespect people enough to walk on them, or stand on them or crowd surf. I want to hug you, I want to touch you, I want to know how you’re doing. All these songs matter to me so its hard to be just one."
My goal in hip-hop is: “I want to bring spirituality back to hip-hop. I want to give us our soul back. I want to connect us back to our grandmas and happiness. A lot of people, a call it rap agenda, they sort of propaganda our culture, everything that comes out is this; everything that comes out is that. Even the people that do come out that’s organic they don’t have no direct mission. I’m so driven by mission. I don’t write anything that I don’t think we need for our spirit or our soul."
I’m gonna be the next: “I want to be the next hip-hop traveler, to the NFL, NBA to being the first bishop at the White House. I want to do what Rev Run did just one step further."
Standout: "Raise Hell"
"What We Got"
"(Creflo) Almighty Dollar"
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