Interviews

MEN OF VALUE INTERVIEW : ALFONZO RACHEL By James Riordan

AlfonZo Rachel is a Christian conservative social/political humorist.  His work is distinguished by his grinning delivery and rapid-fire rant style in his video commentaries that have been featured on PJTV.com as ZoNation. Now he self publishes his commentaries as the Zo Loft. He is also an author, and the founder and drummer of 20 lb SLEDGE.   He defines his values as Biblical, “I’d like to think I’m trying to keep on point with what is reflected in the Bible, because the answer to peace, joy, prosperity in all things is through Christ. When we do things through a filter of Jesus Christ, that’s our absolute best chance to get it right. I recommend it be applied to everything from your marriage, to how you work, vote , do business, the way you treat people in general – everything.  Whatever it is that God gives you to do, do it through Christ.”

Rachel frequently has to walk the delicate line between criticism and advocating for change.  “We don’t want to promote cynicism. There’s enough cynicism out there. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not that God Himself doesn’t point out things that are wrong, but God is always constructive. There’s a lot of people who are out there who just want to raise heat, but they don’t want to shed light. They want to raise up dirt, but they don’t offer anything to clean it up with. That’s what we got to do. We got to make sure to say, ‘Okay, this is what’s wrong and here is the solution.’ Jesus didn’t call Himself the way, the truth and the light for nothing. He has the way to resolve things. That’s what we always want to present. We want to not just focus on a problem without making sure that there’s a viable solution to go along with it.”

alfonzo2Alfonzo Rachel has a large following on the Internet and his commentaries reach a great many people.  “I’m a commentator. I offer my observations. They can be the politics of what’s going on, whether it’s in government, whether it’s in society or even the politics between relationships. Things like that. Your significant other, your spouse or whatnot. I make observations on these things and base them on a Biblical view. There are people out there, and if I can kind of invoke Booker T. Washington in this, there are people out there who want to profit off of problems. There are people that don’t want the problems to go away. I put myself out there, and I make a little bit of a living making these observations but I hope that it is in the Lord’s will and that He sees into my heart that my objective, if I’m profiting, I’m only profiting off presenting solutions with my observations. I’m not getting out there to try and keep poisoning the well and when everyone’s drinking poison, I come through the back door saying, ‘Hey, I’ve got the elixir that will cure you.’ I don’t want to be that guy.  It’s about being salt and light, man. We’re about getting out there and trying to shine the light. Not shine the light in people’s eye to blind them, like the devil does. He dazzles them. He masquerades as the Angel of light, you know? He shines light in people’s eyes and blinds them. We want to be the ones out there shining the light on the Lord so people can see the way.”

When it comes to the current state of America, Rachel says it would be nice to discuss it without having to bring politics into it.  “But, it’s almost like you can’t because, the thing is, a lot of the desires that people have in the first place, they want them instituted. That’s the thing that people expect from one another.  It’s not that they just expect others to abide by these things based on social graces. They want these things instituted. They want people to be forced to abide a certain way. They don’t consider themselves behaving that way. They feel justified on making others forfeiting their rights. They push their beliefs and so called entitlements while accusing others of pushing their beliefs. It just becomes political.  People are expecting a politician to do something to make their desires happen.  Even as a conservative myself I hear people constantly say, “Government is not the answer. Government is the problem.” But conservatives are just as guilty as liberals because they’re always looking for a politician or the whole government to fix the problem.  They can’t fix theses problems.  If people would take the time to learn as much about Jesus as they do these political candidates, America would not be having these problems.”

AlfonzoRachelEveryone today talks about more freedom. Rachel elaborates on that idea:  “You’ve got to understand that there’s a balance here. Freedom doesn’t mean the freedom to be able to do whatever you want.  I can’t unfortunately recall who said this, but I like this saying, ‘It’s not a me kind of freedom, it’s a we kind of freedom.’ In order for us to enjoy freedom, number one, check out the Ten Commandments. Dig those, right? Jesus said, ‘I’m the fulfillment of a law.’   Jesus is the truth that sets us free. If you know Jesus, you know freedom. Jesus will point to those Ten Commandments and say, ‘If you abide by these things, you will know freedom,’ because freedom does not infringe upon somebody else. You can’t just assume that you can do whatever you want, because to do whatever you want just might compromise somebody else’s freedom. There’s a balance to it.  In order to enjoy this freedom, get to know Jesus. Understand what he is the fulfillment of. You’ve got to point to those ten commandments. He’s like, “If you love me, you will keep my commandments,” right? Because I want you to love yourself, and in order for your to love yourself properly, you’ve go to know Me. And to know Me is to Love Me.” A lot of people out there have got a weird idea of what love is. They may try to love themselves outside of the scope of what God Authored. They may assume that they can love other people outside of His ordinance, and think there’s supposed to be some reciprocity for it, and they’re going to be sorely disappointed. This often invites as much pain as it does pleasure. Get to know God. He is freedom, He is love, He is truth. When you can love God for what He says He is, then you can learn to love yourself, and then you can love your neighbor. Then you’ll experience what freedom is.”

Like many Christians Alfonzo Rachel believes that we may be in the end times, but he comes to this conclusion in a different way than most.   “Jesus says the end times will be like the days of Noah.  The reason why I believe that we’re in the end times is the covenant that God made with Noah. He said, ‘Look. I’m going to put this rainbow up here in the sky as a sign of our covenant.’ Well, I imagine there were rainbows before this.  There was enough moisture in the air for the  sunlight to go through, and that produces rainbows. It’s not like rainbows were some new thing, but God wanted to use the rainbow to show Noah, ‘Look, I’m going to make a covenant with you. I’m never going to flood the world again.’  It was a promise that God made with Noah.  And God said ‘When I look at that rainbow I will remember my covenant with you when I gather the clouds.’  God is always ready to flood the world because we’re always making Him angry by our disobedience.  Jesus took the wrath of God, and saved us by grace, but there’s still a reckoning for those who reject Him. Because rejecting God invites chaos. But when He is about to flood the world, the rainbow reminds Him not to do it.  Also, that rainbow is not just a sign of a covenant, it’s also a reminder to us of why the world was flooded over. The world was flooded over because it was so wicked, right? Now, what do we see all the time today. We see rainbow flags, right? We see rainbow flags all over the place promoting homosexuality.  Rejecting it as sin,  justifying it, and boasting in it. God loves all of His children. He loves all of His creations. He loves the world, the world and everything in it.  I’m not preaching hate, because the Lord loves all the homosexuals out there as well.  But the lifestyle is wrong.  It’s the same thing  if you’re a repeat offender of thievery, if you’re a slanderer, if you’re a swindler, if you’re an adulterer, if you’re those things, God has issues with your behavior, and the Word says, ‘You will not inherit My kingdom.’  You can’t just be doing these things in the face of God and expect to be rewarded with eternal life in paradise with Him. You can’t expect that.”

Rachel connects the widespread acceptance of homosexuality and the rainbow symbol as a sign of the end times.  “When that rainbow flag is out there, it’s a reminder of how wicked the world is because not only does that rainbow flag fly over homosexuality, it flies over indulgences in general. Those who want to do things that are apart from God, they also stand under that rainbow flag. If you’re pro-abortion, chances are you’re going to stand under that rainbow flag. If you’re all about coexistence and all that sort of stuff and think that there are other ways that you can inherit eternity, like being a Buddhist or being Taoist or being Hindu or being Muslim, and we can all coexist and they’re all the same God, they fall under that flag.  If you use drugs or entertain indulgences apart from Christ, chances are you stand under that rainbow flag.  People who want to do things apart from God, stand under that rainbow flag. They stand in solidarity with their indulgences, their selfish desires. They want these things instituted, right? When we’re looking at these things, we see a world that is in defiance with God. Just like Jesus said, “It will become like the days of Noah…and it’s becoming that way.”

For these kinds of insights on a wide variety of topics, some great music and intelligent enter-tainment, check out http://alfonzorachel.com .  You’ll soon see why we recognize Alfonzo Rachel as one of our Men of Value.

 

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The Author

James Riordan

James Riordan

Rare is it that any author will have one of his books described as the definitive work on a particular subject, but such a distinction has been bestowed by critics on no less than four books written by James Riordan. The New York Times Bestseller Break on Through, Riordan’s biography of Doors lead singer Jim Morrison, has not only been called “the most objective, thorough and professional Morrison biography” by the Times Book Review but also named as one of the Ten All Time Best Rock Biographies by Amazon.com. Riordan’s The Platinum Rainbow (written with Bob Monaco) was called “One of the best how-to books ever written” by the Los Angeles Daily News and “The ultimate career book on the music industry” by Recording, Engineer & Producer. Critics described Riordan’s The Bishop of Rwanda as “one of the most important books you’ll ever read.” and The Coming of the Walrus, Riordan’s novel about the 60s as “the definitive book on the era” and “a hilarious tale of a harrowing search for the greatest truth of all”. With the release of A Well Thought Out Scream and Madman in the Gate, Riordan pushed the boundaries again with poetry/song lyric books that contain hundreds of stunning, beautiful and poignant images from artists and photographers from all over the world. In the summer of 2013 a new edition of The Coming of the Walrus was released to rave reviews followed by The Kill Switch. The author of thirty-three books, James Riordan’s career began in the music industry where as a songwriter, manager, producer and concert promoter he worked with several well known artists. In 1976 he began writing a newspaper column, Rock-Pop, which he later syndicated. Riordan soon became one of America’s premier rock journalists with articles reaching millions of readers including those of Rolling Stone, Crawdaddy, Circus, Musician, and newspapers like The Chicago Daily News and The Kansas City Star. His reputation for relating on a one-to-one level soon led to interviews with George Harri-son, Bob Dylan, Fleetwood Mac, Frank Zappa, The Doobie Brothers, Kenny Rogers, Barbra Mandrell, Crosby, Stills & Nash and countless others. His first book, The Platinum Rainbow (written with Bob Monaco in 1980) became the largest selling book ever written about the music business. The guide to “succeeding in the music business without selling your soul” was praised by Variety ,The Chicago Tribune, The Los Angeles Times, The Las Vegas Sun, The Minneapolis Tribune, Billboard, Record World and many more. The Platinum Rainbow became an industry-wide phenomenon and interviews with James Riordan were aired on over 1200 radio stations and numerous television talk shows. Next Riordan collaborated with Pulitzer Prize winner Jason Miller on a mini-series for network television (The Irish) and a movie of the week for CBS (Bless Me Father). In June 1991, William Morrow & Co. published Break On Through to outstanding sales and reviews. Riordan worked as a consultant on Oliver Stone’s film of Morrison’s life, The Doors, which led to his writing Stone’s biography. Published by Hyperion /Disney in December 1995, Entertainment Weekly called STONE “an unflinching biography... enough spectacle to fill a month of daytime-TV talk shows.” The New York Post said reading the book was like “the sensory overload of watching all of Oliver Stone’s movies back to back.” Riordan was interviewed by Inside Edition, People Magazine, The Tom Snyder Show, and many others. From 1997-2000, Riordan created and co-starred in a local television program, Kankakee Valley Prime Time, which won six Crystal Communicators, three Tellys, and earned Riordan a Chicago/ Midwest Emmy Nomination for Writing the program. In the summer of 1999, James Riordan wrote, directed and starred in Maddance, an hour long dramatic project which won Crystal Communicators for Drama, Writing, Acting and Directing. On April 9, 2000, James’ 16 year old son, Jeremiah, was killed as a passenger in an accident that involved three drunk drivers. Shortly after this, James founded Make it Stick which works to warn teens of the dangers of substance abuse and publishes a magazine distributed to high school students. In 2001, he founded Jeremiah’s – A Place to be Yourself to give teens a place to hang out away from the dangers of drugs and alcohol. Force to close by its incredible growth rate, Jeremiah’s was recognized as one of the fastest growing and most successful teen centers in the United States. In 2004, Toastmasters International named Riordan Communicator of the Year for Central Illinois, the YMCA gave him their Service to Youth Award and the United Way named him the Outstanding Volunteer of Kankakee County. Returning to writing, Riordan went to Africa to write The Bishop of Rwanda, (with an intro by Purpose Driven Life author Rick Warren). In November of 2006, Harper Collins released a new edition of Break On Through followed by The Coming of the Walrus (Image Workshop) in December and The Bishop of Rwanda (Thomas Nelson, Inc.) to rave reviews (“Powerful …plumbs the depths of God’s forgiveness and finds no bottom – Publisher’s Weekly). In 2011, he won the Pledge For Life Harold Award for his work with area youth. In the summer of 2012, Lee and Shane Stanley (Gridiron Gang) optioned Maddance as a feature film followed by Apothecary Films optioning The Kill Switch in 2013 and Omni Films optioning Final Service to film in May. Riordan joined the staff of the Mancow Syndicated Television and Radio show in January of 2014 and is now seen and heard across America on a weekly basis. His biography is included in Who’s Who in Entertainment , Who’s Who in Poetry and Contemporary Authors of America. James Riordan – Works Books The Kill Switch, novel with Andrew Dahlmaine, Stonegate Ink, 2013 The Coming of the Walrus, Trade Paperback Editn, Image Workshop 2012 Springboard To Heaven ( Jojo Sayson Adventure), Image Workshop, 2012 The Elijah Collection, novel collection with Bill Myers, Zondervan, 2011 The Well Thought Out Scream (Poetry/Art), Image Workshop Press, 2009 Madman in the Gate (Poetry/Art), Image Workshop Press, 2009 The Deadly Loyalty Collection, Forbidden Doors, Zondervan, 2009 The Ancient Forces Collection, Forbidden Doors, Zondervan, 2009 The Enemy Strikes with Bill Myers (Elijah Project series. Zondervan, 2009 Deception with Bill Myers (Book 2 Elijah Project series. Zondervan, 2009 The Bishop of Rwanda (Finding Forgiveness) Thomas Nelson, March 2007 Paperback Edition May, 2012 The Coming of the Walrus (What Really Happened in the '60s) IW, 2006 Break on Through (The Life & Death of Jim Morrison), Morrow, 1991. (New York Times Bestseller, Published in 5 languages, Hardcover, 5 Paperback Editions, Harper Trade Paperback November, 2006) Stone (The Controversies, Excesses & Exploits of a Radical Filmmaker), Disney/Hyperion,1995. (Published in 3 languages, Hardcover, Paperback Edition). Making It in the New Music Business, Writers Digest Books, 1987, (Second Edition, Revised and Updated 1991, Two Hardcover Editions) The Platinum Rainbow (How to Succeed in the Music Business Without Selling Your Soul) 250,000 copies with Bob Monaco, Swordsman Press, 1980, Twenty-Three Editions, Revised 1988) 25 Year Anniversary Edition, 2005 Capture the Wind (Microphones) w.Tom Lubin, Literary Mouse Press,1989 Private Biography of Russ Kalvin, founder of Kalvin Corp., 1990 Private Biography of Steve Stefano, founder of Joico Hair Products, 1993. Mystery of the Invisible Knight (Book 2 in the BloodHounds Series) with Bill Myers, Bethany House,1997. Matters of the Heart (The Life & Times of Edgar Cullman), Culbro, 1997. The Curse (Book 7 Forbidden Doors) with Bill Myers, Tyndale, 1997. The Undead (Book 8 Forbidden Doors) with Bill Myers, Tyndale, 1996. The Scream (Book 9 Forbidden Doors) with Bill Myers, Tyndale, 1998 The Ancients (Book 10 Forbidden Doors) with Bill Myers, Tyndale, 1999. The Cards (Book 11 Forbidden Doors Series) with Bill Myers, Tyndale,2000 Films Final Service, co-written with Gary Moore and based on his book, Omni Productions, to be filmed in May, 2014. Maddance, Writer/Director/Lead Actor, Search Engine Films, Simmcomm, 1999. (Winner of 4 Crystal Communicators including Best Drama, Screenplay, Director, Male Actor – Austin, TX.1999) Performance (The Life of Ingrid Bergman), Screenplay, Lancit Productions 1998. Returned to Author when film division closed)Rewritten2009 Shadowdancers, Story & Screenplay, Story with Bill Myers, 1997 Dr. Babylon, Story 1996. Air Guitar, Story & Screenplay, 1994 The Platinum Rainbow, Story & Screenplay, 1993 Television/Video Kankakee Valley Prime Time, Writer, Director, Producer, 1997-2000. (Nominated for Midwest/Chicago Emmy for Writing, 1998, 3 Telly Awards, 4 Crystal Communicators 1998-2000). Angels Among Us (The Amtrak City of New Orleans Train Disaster, Co- Producer, (Telly Award, 2000). River Valley Sports Authority, Producer, 1999-2003. I Hate The World (Hypnoises Music Video), Writer/Director/Producer, Crystal Communicator for Best Music Video Concept, 1998). The United Way (Video) Crystal Communicator for Best Video for a Charitable Organization, 1998.

If it isn't money and it isn't fame and it isn't sex... then what... God?

— James Riordan, 2000

1 Comment

  1. Debra Wise
    September 9, 2016 at 12:36 pm — Reply

    Alonzo is the truth bomb. I love listening to him over the last yeat. He preaches the truth with some humor added in. He should have some kind of show, TV or radio. He’s great.

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