Karrissa Wade: Okay. We have with us, Miss Natasha Owens. Miss Natasha, tell us a little bit about yourself.
Natasha Owens: Well, I live in Texas, as you can tell by my accent, probably. I started professionally doing music about four years ago. My dad passed away. I was cleaning his guns and there was a bullet in the chamber and it went off and hit him in the heart. And so after the shock wore off, after-- and I may be getting ahead of myself. You may just stop me if you want me to save something for later. But--
Karrissa Wade: No, you absolutely go right ahead.
Natasha Owens: Okay. So after the shock wore off and I suppressed my grief for about a year. And on the year mark, I just had suppressed it for too long and I had all my broken pieces that I just hid and I smiled and I told everybody I was fine. And I really wasn't. I wasn't dealing with it. And I down spiraled very quickly into depression, mainly because of the things that I spoke. I was very angry at God and I questioned why which is a very dangerous question because 9 times out of 10 you will not get an answer to it. So when I didn't get an answer I down spiraled and was about six months into depression when my pastor called and asked me if I would be the music minister. They needed one. And I was over the praise team but pretty much gave him a glimpse of my life at that point. I'm in depression, I can't get out of bed every day. You want me to motivate people and tell them how great God is when I don't feel like he's great right now. And so he just kept calling and he called me on a day that I was pretty desperate. I was so tired of the way I was feeling and I didn't know how to get out of it. And I had already convinced myself that the world would be a better place without me. And he just called on the right day and he said, "I just want you to listen." And he said, "I just feel like this is what you need to do." And I said, "Well, I can't read my Bible. I can't pray." Is that the type of music minister that you want? And he said, "That's what I believe God wants right now and it's a process. You will get to the point where you can do all of those things." He said the magic question. He said, "Are you tired of feeling the way that you're feeling?" And I was. And so I--
Karrissa Wade: Okay. All right. Let me ask you a few things.
Natasha Owens: Sure.
Karrissa Wade: What do you think was the turning point for the broken pieces that you had gone on? Was it just like an epiphany or did it just feel right immediately or did it take time?
Natasha Owens: Well, at that point it felt right to take that position and I didn't even know what I was doing. I wasn't qualified for it but every week I would prepare and listen to the music. And it was the music that helped me get out of bed every day. It was a long-- from that point on, I don't think I ever got farther away from God but I didn't get closer to Him for a while. It took a while to dig out of that hole. I guess the turning point, the epiphany for me, was God had put on my heart one week just to study the different types of love. And I had felt so guilty for the way I had acted and I had come from religion, too, that really-- a religion that showed your faithfulness and your love for God by your works. And I was all messed up with that, too, Well, he had put on my heart just to study the different types of love. And so I did. And when I got to [agapic?] love, I had known about it. I had known that word but never studied it out and it was such a simple thought that it just really turned me around that there's nothing you can do to cause God to love you any less or any more than he already does. You can't buy his love with words, nor can you do something so horrible that disappoints him to where he doesn't love you anymore. And I think that was a turning point for me because I was able to get rid of all the guilt at that point of the I've acted.
Karrissa Wade: Right. I could ask something personal and you don't have to answer if you don't want to. I know with your father having the X-- you having [X'd?] out your father with the gun. What do you think about all the things that are going on with gun control? What advice could you give to all these children that are hurting?
Natasha Owens: Well, it's a heart. It's what's in the heart. If someone has it in their heart to kill, they're going to find whatever means possible. Whether it guns, automobile, bomb, whatever, in order to do that. It's not a gun issue. By taking guns away, it takes away the ability for people to be able to protect what's theirs and their family. Because the bad guys are always going to get guns if they want to get guns. So it really boils down to me being a heart issue knowing that my dad was the epidemy of gun safety and this accident still happened. It's a dangerous gun. Now, I think one thing that you could do is legislate a little bit more on some of these dangerous military guns that are on the streets that individuals don't need to have. He had a Glock, which is a military-ready gun and just a very dangerous. And most police departments have outlawed that gun. So I hope that answers your question. I mean it's a hard issue [crosstalk]--
Karrissa Wade: Absolutely, it does. It's a very tough topic to have in our generation right now and I think everybody's so afraid that guns are going to be completely pulled and I think that some of these other guns are just so dangerous, we don't have a choice by to control them in some means. I don't think in any way we need to definitely pull guns from everyone, though, at all. Now your music is inspiring and you've inspired so many people across the country, where can we find your music?
Natasha Owens: Natashaowensmusic.com will direct you out to Facebook and Twitter and all the links. You can find me on YouTube, Spotify, all the streaming sites as well. But just go to natashaowensmusic.com.
Karrissa Wade: Now who are some of the amazing people that to had to work with, that you had the ability to work with?
Natasha Owens: Matthew West Plum, Jason Crabb, Point of Grace, Seven Time Down, Cutless. Let's see, who else? Russia [Foles?].
Karrissa Wade: Is there anyone in particular that you would love to open for or work for?
Natasha Owens: You know, I have met a lot of people in this industry that I haven't shared a stage and, of course, I know that they're in the headlines, but I've said this for four years that I would love to work with Mercy Me. They have such servants hearts. Love, love, love them. I'd like to do more with Michael W Smith, Point of Grace, for sure, and of course, Plum. I had never met Plum. I shared the stage with her. And in this industry, you've got people who are just industry minded and people who are ministry minded and there's just a few that stand out, like I've mentioned, that are ministry minded.
Karrissa Wade: Where do you see yourself in the next few years as a performing artist?
Natasha Owens: Goodness. The past four years have blown me away beyond anything that I could have ever dreamed. We Will Rise, my sophomore album, just inspirational record of the year in the Inspo Radio Award, which was so unexpected. I would love, love to break through big time in radio in the next couple of years with a single and be up for a Dove Award or a Grammy. That's kind of where I want to be seen in the next few years.
Karrissa Wade: Well, Miss Natasha, you know our country's so divided and so torn right now and hurting, what advice would you give to people who hear your music for the first time that may be hurting?
Natasha Owens: Well, we get to the point where we want to numb our pain with drugs and alcohol and eventually suicide when we can't numb it. And people, they feel so alone. They don't think that anyone is out there, but God says it in the Bible. I think I read something, there's over 365 verses that says, "Do not be afraid and that I will never leave you." And you may not feel him or hear him, but he is there and I just hope that you feel and hear him through the music that God's given us to get out there.
Karrissa Wade: That is wonderful. There's so people who preach hate sometimes towards different groups and organizations. Do you think God would turn his back on those people as well or do you think he still loves them?
Natasha Owens: Oh, he still loves them. His mercy is for everyone whether they're good or bad. I think he works with each soul until they take their last breath trying to get them to turn to him. So I don't think he has a preference.
Karrissa Wade: Thank you. Miss Natasha, thank you so much for this interview and thank you for inspiring so many people. We look forward to hearing a lot more from you.
Natasha Owens: Thanks for having me. I appreciate it.
Karrissa Wade: I appreciate it. Take care. Bye-bye
About Karrissa Wade
Karrissa T. Wade is a wickedly funny, highly involved community activist for LGBTQI issues. She has been a regular contributor for print and digital media nationwide, and we are proud to have her here at the Celebrity Cafe.
A title holding pageant figure, she is known for her witty, over the top comedic performances and extensive charity work across the US. A consumate performer, she is an active television figure, (appearing as guest, anchor and lead roles) Karrissa has also been involved in the Cabaret community for the past 25 years, touring the country.
As a charity fundraiser, she has helped raised hundreds of thousands of dollars every year, and has been involved in HIV awareness and outreach since the early 90s.
"We have two hands: One for helping ourselves, and the other for helping others. Do your part."