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Drummer JFly Talks Secular Music, Today’s Youth, Upcoming Music Festival and New Album


Artist to Know: Jorel  “JFly” Flyn

Label: Soultone

Instrument: Drums

Who he’s worked with in the studio: Jennifer Hudson, Bobby Womack, Ann Nesby

Hometown: Waycross, Ga.

How did you get started playing the drums?

Music was a gift that God gave me. I was blessed with it coming from a family of seven boys and one girl and growing up in church, my mom would make me play there. I really didn’t develop a passion for it until I got older, then my mission changed. I started to see it as more of a business and a career and I’ve been able to play drums with so many different people where it’s gone from a hobby to a career. Now my mission is to teach every person and kid I know how to turn music from being a hobby and dream into a career.

What is your method of reaching out to the youth in the community?

I have a foundation called “How Big Is Your Dream“, and I’m teaching kids how to use music as a career path. Music requires a lot of studying, rehearsal, and discipline, especially if you’re going to be good at it. I’m just taking the experiences I’ve been through and taking them back to the high schools so they can see how they can become a valued musician and take life seriously by applying themselves to their dreams. The message, how big is your dream, is universal for kids and adults. Some people have stopped dreaming because they’ve gotten tired of the struggle, but the struggle is only building character.


What made you decide to go with secular music?

I saw music as being universal instead of being either Christian or not. God made music and music doesn’t have a particular “I’m holy or not” vibe until you put words to it, which changes the tone of it. But a person who doesn’t speak your language can still understand your song. It took the limits off me being just a gospel drummer because I’ve played for “Sunday Best,” and Vanessa Bell Armstrong and I’ve also played “Soul Train Awards,” and for Rick Ross.

Top five people you’ve enjoyed performing with most?

Anita Baker, Ron Isley, Jill Scott, Public Enemy and Bobby Brown. I can’t leave out Peabo Bryson.

What’s up next?

My first solo record is coming out, it’s called “JFly The Hypnotic” and I have a lot of musician’s who have worked on it, it’s going to be hot. My festival, JFly Music Festival 2011, is also coming up September 24.