Gospel artist VaShawn Mitchell is firm in his belief that we should always become something. It’s what keeps him inspired to continue to create great music. It’s also why his latest music project is so powerful.
“While there are some things that we all go through … experiences, mistakes, failures, successes it’s all a part of the story that makes us who we are in order to walk out our destiny,” he shares.
Unstoppable is more than just the title of Mitchell’s latest album. It’s a movement that he’s spearheading. The 13-track project features protégés Anthony Brown and Tasha Cobbs, and highlights a new collaboration with fellow Columbia College attendee Jonathan McReynolds and recurring collaboration with Daniel Weatherspoon. It’s an upbeat musical diary that challenges listeners to embrace their individual walk.
A spiritual seeker, Mitchell was reading one of the world’s most beloved prayers when seven words spoke to his soul, spawning the production of his seventh album.
“Unstoppable is based on the concept. I wanted to create a body of music that from beginning to end would empower, inspire and encourage listeners to walk into your dream, walk into your vision, and allow this music to comfort when you feel you’re taking a detour and you know you have an assignment. You know you want to be an actor, a singer, or whatever you desire to do — but it hasn’t happened yet.
“I was studying the Lord’s Prayer and the verse that stuck out was ‘on Earth as it is in heaven.’ To me, it means, heaven is the idea of who we are and who are meant to become but it just hasn’t manifested on Earth yet,” he shares.
Mitchell has been on this spiritual walk for the past 18 years, which has held many pitfalls and triumphs. Chicago-bred, he says his earliest influencers in the industry were the father of gospel music and one of its queens.
“I was around great gospel music [growing up], starting with Albertina Walker and The Caravans and Thomas Dorsey. I knew it was what I was supposed to do. I didn’t know the artistry. I knew the ministry side. I have been a fan of artists from the around the world. Eventually, I developed my style, my delivery and who I am,” he says.
Mitchell served as the minister of music at Sweet Holy Spirit Church in his Chicago hometown, for nearly a decade, before he embraced his calling to perform for the masses.
“I grew up singing in the church choir and then I became the assistant minister of music. My first real position was when I was the minister of music where I taught and directed the choir. I wrote my first song, which was on Tyscot Records, that [led to] people starting to know my name a little bit around the world. I was writing for the church choir at the time but the song was big on radio and selling in stores,” he says.