Atlanta, GA (April 13, 2020)
Six-time Dove award-winning artist GAWVI, is ruffling some feathers with his third full-length album, Heathen available now worldwide. The Christian hip-hop/EDM artist has been known to push boundaries in music as evidenced by his two RIAA Certified Gold Records for production (“Anomaly,” w/Lecrae: “You Can’t Stop Me,” w/Andy Mineo) and as a solo artist shown in his debut album We Belong and sophomore project Panorama. Heathen is no different as GAWVI aims to push shift the Christian culture in hopes to deconstruct unhealthy cultural norms.
The 17-track album also features multiple collaborations including Israel Houghton and Trip Lee on the hot track “Who You Gon’ Be.” Other guests include the talents of Aklesso, Wordsplayed, Daramola, Wxlf, Parris Chariz & Tommy Royale.
“Heathen is the album I feel most confident and true to myself especially with all the confusion going on in the world,” shares GAWVI. “With this record, I wanted to say ‘hey world, I’ve been labeled as a heathen, not because I am a sinner or a bad person, but because I went against the ‘Christian culture mold’.” He continues, “Heathen actually means Ethnos in Greek, which stands for ethnicity and it also means gentiles. When it is used in the Bible, it is described as a person who was not Jewish or someone with a different cultural background. So it got me thinking, how did this word get lost in translation? And I realized, this is what happens to us as humans. At the beginning, God designed us to be who we are meant to be, yet we let labels influence us and shape our identity. So I want to embrace the word ‘heathen’, and do something different with the Christian culture, and let people know that it is okay to live outside of the norm. When someone says to me ‘what you are doing is not normal’, my response is ‘thank you’.“
Focusing on his personal growth, GAWVI wants to connect with his listeners through authenticity and transparency. With Heathen, GAWVI was inspired by the letters to the Apostle Paul, and the collection of 17 songs nudge Christian listeners to examine how standards of acceptability may be limiting new voices from communicating God’s grace to a world in need of a home. On this new project, GAWVI positions himself as the voice of an outsider, the least of these … the Heathen.
The album was recorded in Ft. Lauderdale, FL and was produced by GAWVI himself. The Broward County native recently revealed a short documentary where he dove deeper into the album and his desire to create a more accepting Christian culture.