Article By Nori Adams:: EEW Magazine News & Entertainment
There are millions of children growing up in the church, but the church is not growing up in them. They are lost in the pews. Tasha Page-Lockhart, season six winner of BET’s Sunday Best, was once one of them.
But the new artist signed to Kirk Franklin’s Fo Yo Soul Entertainment label refuses to hide her dark history of sexual molestation, drug abuse and promiscuity, even if it does make others uncomfortable.
“I grew up in a time where the church taught us how to be fake,” said the “Different” singer in an interview with UK blog site, That Grape Juice. “It was like, ‘don’t let anyone see you cry’ or ‘don’t let them see you sweat.’ But, I thought church was like a hospital.”
It was most certainly her place of refuge during her hard partying and drugging years.
Back then, with Page-Lockhart’s life in a tangled mess, she always found her way to the house of the Lord—something that came naturally for her since she was brought up to know God.
“No matter what I was doing or where I was in the country, when I was a part of the gospel group with my mom, turning up (an urban euphemism for getting drunk and high) before turning up was even poppin’, I always made sure that I was at somebody’s church on Sunday morning singing,” she told Heed Magazine.
“I always made sure I kept my foundation and roots in the church, even though I was living crazy; I still found my way to church. That was my center.”
Page-Lockhart is the daughter of gospel singer Lisa Page Brooks of the famed gospel group Witness and Michael Brooks, producer and founder of both groups Witness and Commissioned.
With the help of God, she has cleaned up her act.
"I know it was the power of God," Page-Lockhart told the Detroit Free Press of ending her drug addiction. "He literally changed my mind so I didn't want it anymore. I wanted so badly to be different. And I knew if I continued doing what I was doing I would die."
Despite her triumphant testimony, some within the faith community are not completely comfortable with Page-Lockhart’s tell-all style of transparency.
“Well, the people who feel I may be saying too much are probably suffering with the same things. So, I’m sure it’s stirring some things up in them,” she told That Grape Juice. “I’m not really concerned about people who don’t want to hear it.”
And there is, no question, a lot to hear.
Page-Lockhart has shared the tragedy of being sexually violated by family and and trusted friends of the family the time she was 7, all the way until she turned 14.
While her parents were leading a church and enjoying success in their respective musical careers, a firestorm of anger and bitterness was brewing within their lost daughter.
By 17, she had gotten pregnant and dropped out of school.
“A lot of people who are not telling their stories are probably still in a place of struggle and haven’t overcome yet,” Page Lockhart suggested. “Some people are afraid and are more concerned with image and selling records, so they’re afraid to talk about their past of ‘sleeping around’ or ‘smoking weed’.”
Now married and busy with her budding gospel career, Page Lockhart said “God is raising up people like myself”—people unashamed of being truthful and authentic, no matter how ugly that truth turns out to be.
Listen to her Kirk Franklin written and produced single, "Different" below: