In February 2016, Maurice A. West II decided that it was time to share his dream with the world. For four years he created music and saved compositions on his hard drive and only shared his pieces with his church family. As he progressed and found his sound, his brand, he was encouraged to take the chance and share with others. During this journey, his goal is to remember where he came from since ALL of his musical talents have been nurtured at his home church - West Side Church Of God in Christ, which is located on the corner of Hinkley and Chestnut in Rockford, IL.
Maurice is an award-winning, self-taught, multi-instrumentalist, composer, and producer of inspiring instrumental music. He began his musical talents when he started to play the drums at church at the age of 5. His father is a skilled saxophonist who plays the alto and tenor saxophone. Maurice, wanting to be like his father, picked up an alto saxophone in 5th grade and began to play as if he played before. From there, he played in the school band, jazz band and various functions.
In March 2008, after playing the drums in various high profile functions and for bands while in college, Maurice laid the sticks down, and sat on the church Hammond Organ and did his best to play for the church. Eight years later, he is the lead musician for his church and region and plays the piano for the local University and other venues/events.
Music from the Heart, Composed by the Soul. His music is birthed from raw emotion and feelings. Feel the composition with your heart and embrace the emotion that each song brings. In May 2016, he published his first album entitled JOY in honor of West Side COGIC's late Assistant Pastor's wife, Lady Joy Lambert, who was tragically killed in car accident in February 2016. Her legacy helped to create TheWESTMelodies.
Beyond the Music.
State Representative Maurice West completed his undergraduate degree at Illinois College (Jacksonville, IL) and received a Master's degree from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology. He is now serving as State Representative of the 67th District in the State of Illinois.
Maurice is heavily involved in his community. He is an ordained minister and an active member of his church. He encourages those that are homeless on a monthly basis at a local homeless shelter. He's the founder of the Share the Warmth - Rockford, which provides warm articles of clothing for the homeless each year. He served as a community member for the Education Committee for the Rockford Public School Board and the Rockford Park District Foundation. He also served on the boards for the Community Action Agency, Rockford Area Arts Council and Rockford Association for Minority Management. In 2014, the Register Star recognized Rep. West as one of the 14 to Watch in 2014 for his community activism. He also ran for political office in 2013 (city council) and 2015 (community college trustee).
Maurice recently worked at Rockford University as the Director of Career Development since 2013. He is married to his beautiful bride, Leslie.
I am a firm believer that it's the anointing that destroys yokes. I'm reminded of the story in the bible concerning David - how his musicianship calmed Saul down, because of David's anointing. It's something that I do not take lightly when I play. Before touching a key at ANY event, whether it's at church or a secular event, I pray for "an anointing that only You can give Lord". And I'm thankful, because people, beyond my parents and loved ones, have told me that they were brought to tears, or they felt a peace, while listening to my music. They would then say that they play it on repeat. I give the credit to God because He's the one who gave me this gift - and I do not want to lose it.
My motto is Music from the Heart, Composed by the Soul; which means every song that I compose is not forced - but given to me from the Lord. When it comes to my genre, I desire to remain true to, what I call, Gospel New Age. When asked what I would do if I had all the money in the world - I would say that I desire to be a film composer. That is yet my dream, to hear my music in movies or TV episodes - and allow people to enjoy the show or film because of the anointing that is in the music. However, until that happens, I will allow music to flow through me - and share it with the world through the albums that I publish.
IF I CAN REACH FOR MY DREAM - THEN YOU CAN TOO!