BVR Interview: Methuzulah Gem

BVR: What was your life like before you went vegan and what prompted you to become vegan?

MG: Chaos. I was eating all wrong. Too much meat. Too much dairy. Plus, I was still doing white sugar and flour. I was 245 pounds and am now down to 165 pounds. My primary reason for my vegan lifestyle shift was making sure my youngest son named Nasir would be able to live free and have better opportunities than me, his mother, brother, and sister. I figured food was the foundation to make that come into fruition and slowly started the journey.

BVR: You say that you're a plant-based farm-to-table style chef? Could you describe that further for our audience?

MG: My primary style of cooking is Plant Based, Farm-to-Table. I prepare all dishes totally free of meat, dairy, eggs and any other animal products while focusing on harvesting the freshest organic fruits & vegetables from my garden and/or other local community Farmers, Gardeners, Agriculturalists and Markets to prepare my dishes.

BVR: You work for an organization called The J Dilla Foundation. Could you describe what that foundation is about and what your role is in it?

MG: The James Dewitt Yancey Foundation which is also known as The J Dilla Foundation is a non-profit organization created in the memory of the Hip-Hop's own legendary emcee & producer J Dilla. The primary mission of the foundation is to enhance and develop urban music programs in less fortunate communities and inner city situations. I am the Youth Program Director for Atlanta's chapter. I focus on planning and coordinating events such as workshops, panel discussions, speaker series, book bag drives, youth days etc ...

BVR: You're going to be going on the 10th Element of Hip Hop Health and Wellness Tour organized by Keith Tucker. Could you describe a little about that tour and what you're going to be doing in it?

MG: The 10th Element of Hip-Hop Tour is a tour which will travel to 15 cities nationwide promoting and focusing on Health, Wellness & Hip-Hop via concerts, panel discussions, demonstrations, workshops and pop-up green dinners. I am one of the performing artists and speakers on the tour


BVR: What advice would you give to black folks who want to go vegan (or are interested in it) but think it's a "white person's" thing? 

MG:  I would say ...

    1. "Do the Research".

    2. "Please do not Assume"

    3. "Sickness is Color Blind"

    4. "Disease does not Discriminate  

    5. "He who controls the Food, Controls the World".