The Intersection & Collision of Rhythm, Religion & Manic Depression | Jason Failing

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The closing piece in this TEDxTalk is about unity in the midst of diversity through the medium of music and the spoken word. After all, without true diversity there is no real unity. Otherwise there’s nothing to be united, right? I wrote this piece out of my own frustration with mainstream music these days. It’s about the hope of reaching a dying world with what needs to be heard and said versus that which only caters to the over inflated ego of the greater populace. It’s about the devastation and bankruptcy in pop literature and lyric. It’s about the triumph of truth over absurdity. Born in Nigeria, West Africa, to Church of England missionaries, Jason Failing is a man of literary talent, exemplified by his witty and often thought-provoking poems, spoken word, and raps. While he was born overseas, he lived most of his life in Wilmington, NC, where he first explored the literary and theatrical community. In 2001, he married and shortly after that became a father.

In 2006 he wrote a narrative to a ballet performed by a prominent Wilmington-based dance company. Jason was no stranger to the Port City’s open mic scene, was a featured poet at a downtown venue, and performed at a local R&B radio station’s Poetry Jam event. In 2009, Jason won a poetry slam event hosted by faculty judges from UNC Wilmington. In 1995 at the young age of 16, he was first diagnosed with mental illness and spent many years as a revolving door patient at institutions to get treatment. In 2006, Jason found that through concerted efforts at self-improvement and a new medication regime, stability, and healing with his illness that has seen him through to this present day. In part due to his struggle with mental illness, he divorced, and in 2017 he remarried. He and his wife enjoy the outdoors hiking, kayaking, and camping. As of 2021, Jason and his wife bought their first home in Wilkes County, NC. Jason is passionate about his faith in God, family and challenging community stereotypes of mental illness by sharing his ongoing testimony of redemption. Jason is currently pursuing publishing a compilation of his written work. He is the proud father to one son, Sullivan, and happily married to his wife, Amy.

Categories: 2021 Talks