Malachi’s Ministry has released an EP titled 'For the Most High ', and Louder Than The Music spoke to the man behind the songs, vocalist Joe Malachi.
For those who haven't heard of you before, can you tell us a bit about yourself and how you got involved in making music?
I began singing at age 7 in the church choir but did not take music seriously as an artist until after college. I started writing a lot of poetry so I could learn how to write good lyrics for original songs. I sensed that being creative provided me with a deeper connection to the Creator. In the process I became more self-actualized, realizing my own sense of spirituality and identity. Along the way I created and managed studios, developed artists, booked shows and produced after-school music programs. During the isolation of the pandemic, I was able to focus on my own music in service to the Most High God, and bring these songs to the world.
Tell us about your new EP 'For the Most High' and what the inspiration behind it was?
For the Most High is a collection of songs that are essentially prayers that I sing nearly every day. These songs inspire me to share these prayerful lyrics with the world as spiritual meditations in order to uplift and inspire hope in the listener. Each song has a unique meaning and significance. The last track, Psalm 57, is different in that it is more of a spoken word rendition of the scriptures put to music.
Which is your favorite track on the album and why?
Although Mercy has emerged as a fan favorite, Christ Alive personally is my favorite song on the record, since it was inspired by a spiritual transformation I had upon finding Christ again in my life, and understanding my identity as a Christian. Yet the message transcends my own personal experience and is about following your heart, focusing your mind and time on achieving your goals. I like the way the song moves, and I also came up on Rock’n’Roll before I explored other styles of music, so it keeps me connected to my musical roots. It’s a unique song with interesting elements that set it apart from other music out there today.
What message would you like people to take from your music?
The message of my music is positive, loving, inspirational, and is a reminder of our connection to God. The lyrics bring a message of praise while experiencing our own personal relationship with God.
How would you describe your style of music and what are your influences?
I would describe my music as spiritual gospel rock flavored with hints R’n’B, hip hop, pop and reggae along with some spoken word. My primary influence is my relationship with God; everything stems from that.
Artists who bring positive, spiritual meditations with their lyrics I also consider big influences on me. Bob Marley has been a major influence of mine, as well as other artists who speak of life experiences and their relationship with God. Vocalists who have walked the line between spiritual and secular lyrics have had an impact on me as an artist; singers like Marvin Gaye, Eddie Vedder, Chris Cornell, Amos Lee, Bono, Toots and the Maytals I count among my influences.
If you could work with any songwriter, who would it be and why?
Gabriele Guma, the songwriter and guitarist who produced my record, is really the ideal songwriter for me as a collaborator. Gab knows how to take my vision and interpret the music to always sound better. Songwriting is about chemistry, and although I have some heroes who would be fun to work with, it needs to feel natural and effortless to write a good song.
How would you define success in your career as an artist?
I define success as an artist by touching people's hearts and inspiring hope in their lives. It’s not so much about financial success, or how many plays and likes you get. Not to diminish those things but I believe that success is based on the positive impact I can have by freely sharing music with people who appreciate it to bring some light in the darkness, and the love of God into their lives.
What is your favorite album of all time?
Babylon by Bus by Bob Marley & the Wailers is my favorite album, since it’s like a greatest hits with the power of a live band. It’s probably the record that I’ve listened to the most in my life.
You're stuck on an island, it's hot, you only have enough battery life left to listen to one song on your phone. What track is it?
Shine a Light by the Rolling Stones from what I believe is their best album, Exile on Main St. “Let the good Lord, shine a light on you. Let every song you sing be your favorite tune.”
What does the next year hold for you?
Next year Malachi’s Ministry will release more music and play live shows. I’d like to perform in houses of worship, open for bigger acts, and play some festivals. I am open to whatever path that is set before me, as long as it's based in love.
Find out more at: malachisministry.com