Memorial Day 2014 I will never forget. I wanted to do my first feature on an artist truly inspired and transformed by gospel. I reached out to other gospel artists on different levels such as national recording artists and independent artists. Most decline, while others never replied and I was thinking will I ever interview someone with such insight on gospel and who can truly give a testimony. I didn’t have any intentions on asking anymore gospel artists and of course I have an overflow of artists of secular music to blog about, but then I came across Euclid Gray on Facebook. I remember him from my absolute favorite song “Let Me Praise Him“. I had a moment of doubt settling in all because of a few rejections, but I remembered Matthew 17:20 “And Jesus said unto them, because of your disbelief: for I verily say unto you, if you have the faith the size of a mustard seed, you shall say unto this mountain, remove hence to yonder place, and it shall be remove, and nothing shall be impossible unto you”. With that quote from the bible, I stepped out on faith and contacted Mr. Euclid Gray. In a matter of minutes I received a reply that he would be delighted to do the interview. With unspeakable joy and thanksgiving I called this remarkable man of God and he gave me his testimony of his transformation.
Euclid Gray honed his musical journey at a young age, he was a drummer and singer on the youth choir at True Believer Baptist Church in Chicago, IL. Euclid first group was The Inspirational Singers of Melody. He was the youngest of 12 in the group, and recalled at the age of 11 traveling with the group and sleeping in cars. Musically he was already talented and had people such as Ms. Brown who was an exuberant and passionate choir director that gave him lead parts. Euclid also spoke candidly about Guy Sharp who was the keyboardist/pianist who introduced him to recording sessions. From that point on he knew that God gave him a gift with a melodic purpose.
In the early 1990s, Euclid was part of national recording R&B group Public Announcement. Even though the group was successful in the secular realm, he was torn between his faith in God and the temptations of secular fame. “The group was very successful. We reached the top 10 on the Billboard R&B Chart and we sold over a million copies of our CD “All Work..No Play“. Although I was successful in the group, I felt unsuccessful in God’s Kingdom. Even though I was saved my actions did not reflect the life-style of Christ. Instant fame caused me to fall into temptations that I wasn’t strong enough to handle. Because of the lack of fellowship with the body of Christ, I engaged in sin. It caused me to have anxiety attacks that sent me to the emergency room while I was on tour. I experienced irregular heart beats from the pressure of my sins. I was told by the nurse that I could die. At that moment, I repented to God and prayed that he would save my life. I felt as if God said to me, “why should I save your life, if you are not using it for me. From that moment.. I decided to use the life he spared for His Glory only” said Gray. Euclid departed from the group to pursue his ministry through songs.
After Euclid Gray’s departure from Public Announcement, he worked on his first solo gospel album titled Euclid Gray: The Ghetto Gospel Man. This album has a R&B and soulful feel that can be enjoyed by everyone. “This is the kind of music that can be played at family reunions and it reaches out to people in the ghetto” said Gray. During the tenure of his first album, Euclid Gray was nominated for a Stellar Award (which is a prestigious award in gospel) for Best Artist in the production Rise which also starred Salt from the group Salt-N-Pepa and Chris Martin from the duo Kid N Play. In North Carolina Gray went to a sound check early for a church function, Stage Playwright/Director/Actor Tyler Perry was holding auditions for his upcoming play Meet The Browns at the time. Tyler Perry saw Gray in the production Rise and gave him the opportunity to audition. Euclid bellowed out melodically and soulfully I Need You Now by Smokie Norful. Tyler Perry loved it so that he hired Euclid right away for the part of Reverend Henry Oliver. Euclid described his experience working with Tyler Perry and the cast of Meet The Browns as interesting. Everyone else were seasoned actors and they have been on numerous plays, but they helped him get into the groove of acting on stage. Euclid said that watching Tamela and David Mann he can see the love that they have in their marriage. David Mann always do things to make his wife laugh and the audience. Gray’s character Rev. Henry Oliver was Tamela Mann’s character Cora’s love interest. Being timid of planting a kiss on Cora (Tamela Mann), she told him make it look real for the show. Gray said that he was blown away by the whole production.
Euclid Gray made numerous appearances in different stage plays after Meet The Browns. Gray came out with few more albums Father Guide Me, Infinity, and Unleash. Father Guide Me spoke on embarking on a new faith and a new journey. Infinity emphasizes on miracles God performs, has songs that speaks of prayers for God to order his steps, and how God always blessing us. Unleashed conveys energy and praise. This album is a warfare type project that also spoke volumes of him transforming from the old man into a sold out warrior for Christ. Unleashed was created to “break the shell to whip the devil butt so that we will be victorious” said Gray. Euclid eventually produced his own stage play backed up by Native Productions in VA titled Transformation of Who I Am. This particular play is personal to Euclid because it portray how God called him out of the secular world into the gospel world. I asked Euclid if he would work with other gospel artists who would they be. He replied “Ce Ce Winans because she is a sweet modest woman and a legend in her own rite. Kirk Franklin he would love to tour with because of their matched energetic presence”.
Before we started the interview Euclid did something that I am forever grateful for, and that is beginning the interview with a fervent prayer. I can tell by his presence that is he is anchored in Christ. His prayer for the session was a humbling moment and that prayer is forever etched in my heart.
Euclid has a message for everyone who reads this article:
“God strategically placed you here to read this blog. I want people to know my testimony, the journey of my transformation to be a vessel for Christ. In whatever you do make sure you represent God in all of his glory. Use your God given gift for him. Everything you put out, you will reap what is sown. I pray God’s blessing and favor over your life. May this music inspire you to live a “Christ-Like Life”. And may God’s transforming power manifest in your life by accepting Jesus Christ in your life as your Lord and Savior TODAY! Soon as you read this blog repent and give yourself to God!”
Euclid Gray want to recognize Otis Bethea who produced the hand clapping, foot stomping, finger snapping song Let Me Praise Him.
To invite the ministry of Euclid Gray to your event. Contact him at Bookeuclid@hotmail.com