03/12/2013 12:15 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Talking to Tracy Randall


Courtesy of Original Man Entertainment Group and Tracy Randall

I can say with the knowledge that I have been blessed with the honor of talking to Tracy Randall.

Who is Tracy Randall?

First and foremost, he's a loving and devoted husband, father and man of God.

Tracy is known for being a manger in the music industry and has managed some of the best the industry has to offer. He is also a Grammy-nominated songwriter, producer, record label owner and artist.

Through his music, Tracy graces our ears with the words of faith that each and every single person in this world should live by. Why? Tracy, a victim of terminal cancer, has only his faith to hold on to. Living and loving each day, not taking it for granted while extending the best parts of who he is his and his heart to others even through his own struggles.

Just this past fall, he released his Christian album Troubled Times. Music is his expression of love for God.

Tracy and I address just a couple of the things that our community, the African-American community should work towards overcoming.

Here we are, finally. Thanks for taking the time.

Thank you for the opportunity.

The story of your life is a very inspirational one. There should be no reason why any of us as African-American men can say that we are incapable of achieving anything. You're not only doing something, but at any one moment, you can be doing a number of different things. It's amazing; you're a true renaissance man.

That is cool. However, at the end of the day I just love what I do. Whenever can I assist anyone in any capacity, I will do it. That's how my mother was, God rest her soul. There would be times when I came home and there would be people staying in the house with us. She wouldn't know them from Adam, but she would probably have met them at the grocery store and they were homeless. It didn't really bother me too much because I come from a family of 10. So, there were always a lot of people around. A lot of those traits carried on in me throughout my life. She used to always say, if you can't do anything for someone but you can feed them, then feed them. If you can give them somewhere to stay, then give them somewhere to stay. That alone spoke volumes of her. My mother was a functioning alcoholic and later on she did drugs, but she worked three jobs and took care of all of us.

Even through her struggles, she managed to overcome and be an amazing woman and mother.

My mother was an amazing woman. She just gave and gave and gave. That trait carried through in her children. Every Monday, my brothers and sisters and I go get on the phone and discuss things. Things like what our children need, what their children need and things like that. It's kind of funny how you don't realize the way in which someone impacts your life until later on when you start seeing yourself doing the same things. I think for me education and just pure determination -- later on I realized that it was God that has kept me through all of these circumstances. I know I'm far from perfect; there are days where I want to cuss people out because I'm human. At the end of the day, it's your actions that will speak volumes. I don't look at myself as an individual that has made an impact because I'm successful in this area or that area. I continue to strive so that one day someone behind me can strive and benefit from what I've achieved, not just my children but also people outside of the family. That's why I work so hard.

In talking to you, I can very much tell that you are of the mind that if you could do it then anyone can, so why aren't they doing it? Beyond the obvious, what do you think is the primary thing that is holding us back as African-American men from going out there and doing things morally?

I don't know every African-American man and I don't know everyone's circumstance -- I'm speaking from myself. What kept me going was the fact that I was the only one out of 10 children to finish high school. I'm the only one out of 10 children for whom education was at the forefront. Because of where I was raised, I didn't even realize I was living in poverty as a young person. I realized it when I got to undergrad school. There are a lot of things that I've noticed later on in life. One of those things is that we are forced to be so hard all of the time. We act as if we're not supposed to embrace one another or love one another. There's this stigma that if you're too kind to your brother then there must be this underlying situation. I think the unity is lacking. Despite the having of "homeboys" and "brothers," it's only to a certain extent. Success is perceived as being so limited that if we help someone else out that'll cause us to lose our spot. I hate hearing when people say that they are the only black in their department and that they say it boastfully. That shouldn't be something to be proud of.

I see that a lot.

When we see a black man in power on television -- whether it's Tavis Smiley or Dr. Cornell West who are openly attacking President Obama; that speaks volumes to young men. When they can see people who impact us through media bashing the president of the United States, why should we love and respect one another? In addition to that, President Obama has the highest office in the world. There will be a white senator who hasn't been a senator in over 30 years, they'll still address him as a senator -- yet, they'll still call our president -- Obama. Not President Obama, not Mr. President, but Obama. So, there is a young man who has been taught that he can be anything he wants to be and achieve anything that he wants, even president of the United States. The president is a black man who gets no respect. What will encourage that young child to achieve?

A little food for thought from Tracy Randall, listen to his music, learn more about him and his philanthropic efforts by visiting his website here.