Musician SaulPaul grew up in Houston. His life wasn’t always easy.
“I grew up in foster care,” he says. “Raised by my grandmother because my mom died when I was three. And because my dad abandoned me before I was ever born.”
Despite the challenges, he was accepted to the University of Texas at Austin. But he flunked out and found himself charged with four felonies.
“And as I sat in prison I realized, like, I had all these epiphanies — like, ‘oooh that’s what Principal Johnson meant, that’s what Ms. Anderson meant,'” SaulPaul says. “And, now, no shame to them because they had the best heart and they gave their best effort but they didn’t connect with me.”
He went back to UT after serving time. This time, he says, graduating with honors.
SaulPaul decided his mission in life was going to be sharing his story. And he has. With music, in TED Talks, at conferences — but he says he really found his niche in speaking with kids.
“And I realized I connect with kids,” SaulPaul says. “Like I talk and they understand. And I just feel I have this inherent responsibility to give back and it’s like so they can live their best life.”
Now, he’s exploring his story more than he ever has before in a new memoir: “Be The Change: A Story of Transformation.” (Check his website for more details on when/where it will be available).
SaulPaul says his goal is to inspire others to be the change in their own worlds.
“The fact is that we all live on the same planet,” he says. “Like that’s a fact. Indisputable. But the truth is, we each live in our own world. So the goal is to be the change in the world that you live in.”