After his ballyhooed album bombed, MC Jin — the first Asian American solo rapper to sign for a major label — dropped out of the public eye.
He learned about the resurrection, found God, and later resurrected his career.
Jin Au-Yeung was raised by immigrant parents from Hong Kong. They ran an unsuccessful string of Chinese restaurants in Miami. When he was teenager, Jin answered the phone in the restaurant while Mom and Pop were wrapping wontons.
His parents instilled in him success through hard work and college, but Jin dreamed of doing rap. After their last restaurant closed, they moved to New York where Jin began engaging in rap battles and hawking mixtapes on the streets.
Jin was particularly good at rap battles, which require more quick wit than a smooth-talking attorney because you have to insult your opponent cleverly, in rhyme, with rhythm, instantly. He was so adept at rap battles that he got spotted by an agent and soon landed a spot on BET’s Freestyle Friday, where he won seven successive battles and entered their Hall of Fame.
His meteoric rise in rap led to signing with the eminent Ruff Ryders hip-hop label when he was only 19. He was heralded as the next best thing, evidence of America’s diversity and the diversification of hip-hop.
Despite recording with Kanye West and others, his first album, The Rest is History, fell flat.
Jin left Ruff Ryders and was reduced to selling indie music over MySpace through PayPal.
“As quick as I went up is as quick as I went down,” Jin surmised on the Christian Post.
After floundering for two years, Jin was given a second shot at fame and success in his parents’ native land. Universal Music Hong Kong, seeing a surge of popularity for hip-hop on the island nation, offered Jin a contract with proper promotion.
Jin didn’t have anything else going on, so accepting was a “no brainer.”
Originally he thought he would be in Hong Kong for four months, but those four months turned into four years. He recorded ABC (American Born Chinese) in 2007 and 回香靖 (Homecoming) in 2011 rapping in Cantonese. He landed roles on TV, movies and commercials. He became a sensation.
“I was the Justin Bieber of Hong Kong,” he later reported.
While he finally found worldly success, he also found spiritual success. In 2008, he rekindled his relationship with Jesus (he first accepted Jesus with his Aunt Kathy as an 8 year old). He joined The Vine Church, a bilingual congregation. Read more about MC Jin, first Asian rapper, becomes Christian rapper.