In a world full of trends, millennials often find it hard to be themselves. They get stuck in the middle of trying to stand out and be original, but wanting to be and feel accepted. Then there are the very small percentage that say ‘Eff it, I can care less what others think. I’m going to be unapologetically me.” This how we all should think, but it’s hard. It’s hard when music and television portray the same image.
However, there is a couple that is taking a stand with their music and inspiring others to ‘Be Who They Are.’ The group Words of Encouragement, consisting of husband and wife dynamic duo Tijideen and Komoca Rowley, are creating their platform to assist in giving people that boost of encouragement and advice that it is okay to not stick to society’s standards.
The Rowleys are based in Indianapolis, Indiana. Komoca Rowley was born in Flint, Michigan. She grew up singing in the church choir. She was first inspired to sing when she was eight years old. As a young singer individuals would share with her how hearing her minster in song was encouraging. As she grew older she would pray consistently asking God, “What is my purpose in life?” She knew she enjoyed singing and she also loved to write songs. When she was fifteen she lived in California. While living there she got a chance to do studio recording for the first time. She wrote, sang, and recorded her first album, however, at this time she wasn’t singing gospel. She was really into R&B singers such as Brandy and Monica, and she wanted to be just like them but God had something else in store. In her twenties she started to audition for stage plays. Not only did she have the opportunity to use her singing skills but she discovered she enjoyed acting. Komoca went back to college to study acting at Butler University. While she was involved in a stage play called Eyes for Bathsheba she met her husband Tijideen Rowley.
Tijideen Rowley was born in Indianapolis, Indiana. He always had a love for music. He grew up in a family who loved music. Artists like Marvin Gaye, Con Fun Shun, and Earth Wind & Fire played at family get-togethers. As a young man he had a passion to be influential to his community and entire generation. First hand, he seen the poverty and misery that people around him suffered. He wanted to be a part of the solution, so he started writing raps. He learned a lot from artist such as Tupac and Nas in terms of putting words together. He started recording his own music while studying theater at Indiana University. The music he recorded was positive but it was not Gospel. Nevertheless, he always tried to honor God in some way with his music. He released a few innovative albums with the rap group 529 that got notable attention, but God was always calling him to do more. God was always calling him to make unique Gospel music. In 2012 he met his wife in Eyes for Bathsheba. They both shared a passion for music and had power chemistry. Things just fell into place. They formed the group Words of Encouragement after writing their first song together, Be Who You Are.
They strive to spread the good news of Jesus Christ to the world through music and action. They also have a son Tajudeen Rowley, who they want to inspire to get all that God has for him in Christ.
I recently interviewed this inspiring couple where they chatted on their transition from secular music to Christian music, their goals for the future, and their piece of advice to others on how to be themselves in this crazy world.
Listen and watch Words of Encouragement’s “Be Who You Are” video: