|Alex Boye: "The Song of the Heart"|
|Genesis Group member and artist Alex Boye' has received the 2005 Male Artists Listener Award by the LDS Booksellers Association for his album Testimony and the "2006 Spirit of Heritage Award" for his notable work with youth, an honor given in previous years to Senator Orrin Hatch, NBA star Thurl Bailey, and Elizabeth Smart. Alex has also been nominated for three Pearl awards by the Faith-Centered Music Association.
But his music was not always gospel-oriented: he started out as a member of a popular boy band in England. While most know who Alex is, few are familiar with his driving spirit and the road he took to get where he is today.
Alex was born and raised in London, England. He joined The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS) when he was sixteen. He later served a full-time mission in the England Bristol Mission. Alex sang regularly on his mission, and as a result of the encouragement of his mission president, he pursued a career in music when he got home.
In 1995, Alex formed and became the lead singer in the European Boy band Awesome, and he later signed a recording contract with Universal Records in 1996. Awesome released three singles off their first album, "Rumors," which made Top-10 charts all across Europe. The band had hits in more than fifteen countries, selling over half a million CDs and performed alongside such groups as N'Sync, The Backstreet Boys, Missy Elliott, Bryan Adams, Mary. J.Blige, MC Lyte, The Smashing Pumpkins, and George Michael, to name a few.
“It really was a great experience,” Alex said. “It got to the point where I had all the things I ever thought would make me happy. I had fun and money—but then it really went pear-shaped.” Despite the fame, glory, and fortune, Alex felt emptiness in his life that none of these worldly accolades could sufficiently fill. "I was climbing the ladder of success," he explains, "but when I got to the top, I found myself leaning on the wrong side of the wall."
People’s priorities began to change, and the lifestyle didn’t fit him. When Alex left the band in 1999 to pursue a solo career, he lost everything. The record company took the apartment, the clothes, the phone, and the money.
Despite the loss, Alex persevered with the driving energy inherent in his soul, and in 2000 he released his first solo album, "No Limits," which included pop and R&B for the new age. The album, full of uplifting lyrics straight from the heart, reached No. 12 in the European charts, but again he found himself in the same dilemma.
“On my mission, the spirit was there when I sang,” Alex said. “In the band it wasn’t ever like that, and even though I was now on my own, it still didn’t feel like I was where the Lord wanted me to be. One day I was reading the scriptures and it said to forsake this world and seek for something better and how the song of the righteous is a prayer unto Him. I realized I wanted to do music that was more uplifting—that could do something for someone.”
Alex moved to Utah to begin a new career in faith-centered music. In 2001, he released his first gospel album, The Love Goes On, and gained a rapidly increasing fan base. In 2003 he released his second contemporary Christian album, Testimony, which features a moving compilation of soulful ballads aimed at touching the soul and lifting the heart. With his latest project, Build the World, Alex has found his niche. The album, released in 2005, is an R&B collection of life changing lyrics with a gospel neo-soul flare.
“I see the youth and I see their music. They desperately need an alternative,” Alex said. “This album is just that. It’s faith-centered music for the dance world. I hope the youth will see that there is good music out there and that you can have fun and dance while still living a clean life.”
Alex continues to have wonderful experiences in the arts. In theatre, he has performed in Smokey Joe's cafe at BYU, Big River at the Hale Centre Theatre, and played Frederick Douglass in Frank Wildhorn's The Civil War. He also played Abinadab in the successful Lightstone Films production of David and Goliath, which has won a Dove Award and which is shown regularly on TBN, going out to millions of Christians worldwide.
In music, Alex has had music featured in several LDS movie Soundtracks, including Charly, The Dance, Baptists at the Barbecue, Suits on the Loose, and Church Ball. Alex is currently working on producing a movie with director Danor Gerald, an African-American member of the Church and a film graduate of Brigham Young University. Alex and Danor want to do something very unique, so they are working on the first Black urban LDS movie, which will feature “modern dancing, cool music, fast-moving entertainment, and a moving story with a strong message about the value of the Church through the eyes of Black members of the Church.”
He is also currently helping singers and musicians improve their stage performance through a series of tried-and-tested techniques.
Alex has found much joy and purpose utilizing his personal experiences in the entertainment industry to educate and warn the youth about the dangers and perils of today's media and entertainment through his powerful and engaging firesides. He spends his time as a motivational speaker, giving firesides and devotionals across the United States about the importance of positive music in our lives and the tool music can be in spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ. He also emphasizes how dangerous media can affect our thoughts, personalities, character, and spirituality.
Alex loves to laugh, and says some of the highlights in his life have been giving a Book of Mormon to Britain's Prince Charles, recently joining the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, and marrying his wonderful wife in the Salt Lake Temple.
Alex's heart and soul voice and engaging personality can move any listener, but it's his deeply rooted belief in who he really sings for that makes him more than just another entertainer. His inspiration comes from the Lord and his only purpose is to have the Spirit there when he sings.
One of Alex’s most cherished moments was on February 24, 2008, during the broadcast of "Music and The Spoken Word," which featured Alex singing a solo of the Negro Spiritual, "I Want Jesus To Walk With Me." President Thomas S. Monson attended the broadcast with his wife to watch this historical performance. The broadcast was about Rosa Parks and her contribution to the Civil Rights movement. A download of Alex Boye' February 24 solo performance can be found here (use the username fudge and the password ripple).
At the end of the broadcast, President Monson went up on stage and spoke to the choir for about 10 minutes. He told them how they had touched his life and thanked them all for their hard work. He mentioned that his mother's biggest disappointment in life was that he didn't keep up playing the piano. Then he walked over to the piano and played the one song that he could remember