Rapper Tonex (pronounced toe-NAY), a pastor at Truth Apostolic Community Church, has generated controversy because he curses in his song "The Naked Truth": "I got out alive, nigga...I did it, I made it, [I'm] the genius, the faggot, the weirdo, the hobo, the homo, the magnet."
Other lyrics include "I got my cock back" and "I'm sexy, I'm bold, I'm hot," as well as an angry shout-out to "that preacher that touched me when I was fucking six." The words "bullshit" and "bitch" are on the track, too.
Tonex's label Zomba Gospel Group has dropped him, citing the pastor's recent "awkward behavior" and "Tonex's decision to move in an artistic direction outside the scope of gospel music." YouTube video essays that address the controversy include condemnations by Pastor Clarence Smith and former Tonex fans.
In an interview on Christian website Path MegaZine, Tonex explains, "It wasn't a Christian song, and it wasn't a cry for help. It was a cry that 'I made it.' I will become a living sacrifice by being that honest and that transparent."
"The Naked Truth" isn't Tonex's first brush with controversy. In 2005, he announced he was divorcing his wife of five years. Soon after, he was sued by Zomba/Verity Records for one million dollars after he announced that the label was "mistreating" him with "unfair business practices" that reduced his income. "Verity has left me financially broke and without anything," Tonex stated in his reply to the lawsuit, which is still ongoing.
Tonex's 2004 CD Out the Box debuted at number one on Billboard's gospel album chart. He has won six Stellar Awards, including "Artist of the Year" in 2004, and was nominated for a 2005 Grammy for "Best Soul Gospel Album."