“He who follows Christ for his bag is a Judas; they who follow for loaves and fishes are children of the devil; but they who attend him out of love to Himself are His own beloved ones.”—C.H. Spurgeon (via b3arfruit)
People have asked me what I know about this topic. And that’s what I’ll bring you tonight.
Christian hip hop started around the late 80’s/early 90’s as a response to all of the negative/worldly hip hop and rap that was everywhere. It started off as an underground thing where artists performed and rarely made tracks because it wasn’t as popular and the sources were scarce.
Later on, people gathered their sources and put that great music in tracks, getting the vibe of what I thought was the height of hip hop with Christ in it. The first big group to emerge was The Cross Movement with four guys that now each have their own record. They not only made it among themselves but included other unheard artists such as Earthquake (he sounded like B.I.G.).
A lot of artists came and went. There were those who stuck strictly to Scripture and evangelism through lyrics. There were those who rapped Christian lyrics but would talk more on topics than solely on Christ. Then, there were those who thought they were making Christian rap songs but could rather be labeled as “positive” music, having found not even a word of Christ in their entire album. Sometimes they’d put in a Christian word or two and claim it as being Christian.
Over time, this began to be more clear as to who’s actually rapping soundly according to Scripture and those who have their own agenda. But of those who are out there, these are the people and record labels that have continued to be faithful to Scripture and their edifying the individual as well as the church:
Some of these are in bands that have instruments (i.e. Shachah, Level 3:16)
THESE ARE ALL TRUSTED NAMES!!
Cross Movement Records (CMR):
- The Cross Movement - The Ambassador - The Tonic (aka John Wells) - T.R.U. L.I.F.E. - Everyday Process - Flame - J.R. (more like the Christian John Legend) - R-Swift (used to be in Lampmode Records) - Phanatik - Da T.R.U.T.H. - K-Drama - Young Joshua - Level 3:16 (new and upcoming band) - Shachah
- 116 Clique (they’re pretty much the new “The Cross Movement”) - Lecrae - Trip Lee - Sho Baraka - Tedashii
- J’Son - Stephen the Levite - Shai Linne - Redeemed Thought - R-Swift - Evangel - Hazakim (Messianic Jews; really really good stuff. they got their hip hop down) - DJ Essence
(Unknown label but still trustable):
- Brothatone - C-Lite (this guy’s dope) - DJ Official - PRo - Katalyst - S.O. (He only has one album out: The Five Solas Mixtape) - Toussaint - Voice (He’s old skool too. Really good though. Still active)
There’s plenty of other people out there but they’re not as good as the ones you see on this list. Some people like KJ-52, Kirk Franklin, GRITS, Canton Jones, Gospel Gangstaz, Pigeon John, John Reuben, Souljahz, T-Bone, tobyMAC (not really a rapper). These guys are whatevers. No disrespect to their producing. I just don’t think it’s clear sometimes of what they want and the seriousness of their lyrics.
But anyways, ITS OUT THERE, FOLKS!!
GET IT AND SUPPORT A CHRIST-CENTERED, GOSPEL-CENTERED, CHURCH-CENTERED, GOD-GLORIFYING MUSIC INDUSTRY!!!
I bump these tracks all the time in my car. No doubt.