The Rev. Jamal Bryant is known for giving guidance to people in need. He is the pastor and founder of the popular Baltimore house of worship, Empowerment Temple AME Church, and author of self-help/spiritual books. He has taken his vision of “empowering the world through the word” to mass audiences as the former host and producer of ABC’s “Grace and Glory,” Trinity Broadcasting Network’s “Praise the Lord” along with an appearance on BET‘s “Meet the Faith.” Now, Bryant offers support to brothers and R&B stars K-Ci and Jo-Jo Hailey as they battle alcoholism in the new TV One reality series, “K-Ci and Jo-Jo Come Clean.”
AFRO: Can you please talk about the new series “K-Ci and Jo-Jo Come Clean” and your role in partnering with the two brothers?
Jamal Bryant: It really gives an underdog-cheering opportunity for the African-American community. All of us have somebody in our family and within our realm of influence who have really been beaten up by addiction. These are two young men who have meteoric rise in R&B and soul music and then had a tremendous tumble because they couldn’t get a hold of their addiction. So my sister and I come together in the show for a full season, putting them on the road to recovery because they’re gifted, they’re just misguided. And what the viewer is going to see is that you can come back no matter how far you have fallen.
AFRO: Why did you decide to get involved with this project?
JB: I decided to get involved with “K-Ci and Jo-Jo Come Clean” because I see it everyday in the church that I pastor and the community that I live. So many young brilliant African-American people who are really devoured by their addiction whether it is drugs…alcohol or whatever desire they haven’t been able to control. I felt this would be a wonderful way to really present that package to the world. Just because you’re not living under a bridge or a homeless shelter doesn’t mean you’re not dealing with an addiction.
AFRO: What are some of the challenges do you expect?
JB: The first one would be denial. People who really don’t think it’s that much of a problem. The second is going through the process. A lot of times the church is culpable because people will go through something. We bring them to the altar and lay hands on them. We think that’s the end of it when there’s really a process to deliverance.
AFRO: What can audiences expect from this show?
JB: For every viewer that has any fraction of a heart or a conscience, it’s going to make them laugh…cry…rejoice. And at the end of the day it’s going to make them think. It’s going to be a full rollercoaster ride of emotions. But when you get off the ride…you will be sober about what it is you need to do with your life.
“K-Ci and JoJo Come Clean,” a nine-series documentary, debuted Oct. 19, 9 p.m. on TV One. For more information visit www.tvoneonline.com