Culture Infiltration, By Vintage Retroman

Is Christian Hip-Hop Infiltrating The Culture?

Toxicity is a word we’ve come to know very well as we look at the world. We look around and see violence everywhere, inflation, recession, Covid-19, etc. Yet, could it be that Christian artists are making more of an impact than you think? As the world is becoming more hopeless, the opportunity for Christian music, and in particular Christian Hip-Hop music continues to grow. As a Christian artist myself, I hate the state of the world, but I love what I am seeing in terms of impact. Let me explain in more detail.

Quick History in Christian hip-hop

When I was growing up, Christian rap music had a horrible reputation for being low-budget, bad quality, and unrelatable. I would have to say that I agree with that sentiment 100%. Like many of you, I grew up in the golden age of hip-hop and loved it. Music artists like Nas, Tupac, Jay-Z, Notorious BIG, and Outkast were just a few of my favorites.

Sure their music was profane, but many of their songs had messages that I could relate to and the quality of their production was so good. They told stories that I connected with and seemed to be real and transparent in their approach. Talent-wise, their flow, delivery, and lyricism were amazing. In contrast, when I heard a few of the classic Christian rappers, I mean no disrespect but the quality back in the late 1980s, 1990s, and even the 2000s was subpar in my opinion. Poor flow, poor delivery, basic lyricism, and some of the worst hip-hop production I had ever heard.

Back then I said to myself, just because you say Jesus in a song doesn’t mean I’m going to listen to that. I didn’t understand that many of the classic Christian rappers had very little to no support. They were doing things that hadn’t been done before. They didn’t have the endorsement of the music industry, because back then all rap was looked at as either gangster music, party music, or socially conscience music. There was no genre for Christian Hip-Hop. Those early artists were pioneers and trailblazers in their own right that deserve respect for being counter-cultural.

my turning point in Christian rap

The turning point for me regarding Christian hip-hop came around 2006-2007 when I heard Christian rapper Lecrae for the first time. When his song “Jesus Muzik” was released from his 2nd album “After The Music Stops”, I said to myself, that was different! The production at the time was impressive and sounded similar to the sound of other secular artists, but the message about God and delivery was so much better. The intro to the song started with a “chopped and screwed” voice yelling “ridin’ with my top down, listening to this Jesus Music!” I said to myself that I can listen to this!

Still, that was one song. A few more years went by and I enjoyed a few other Christian rap artists but no album really stood out. Then came Lecrae’s “Church Clothes” album, produced by Don Cannon! Don Cannon was one of my favorite secular producers growing up. When I heard “Church Clothes” for the first time around 2012, that changed my perspective forever of what Christian rap music is supposed to be like. Everything was the best quality musically, and Lecrae worked with several secular artists but stayed consistent in the gospel message. I had never seen that done before, and Christian rap was put on a national stage unlike ever before.

New Christian Artists rising to the challenge

I am happy to report that Christian hip-hop artists are looked at differently today. The genre as a whole has gained a tremendous amount of both respect and criticism. There are still people that say it sounds like the devil’s music because of the beats. Then there are other people that say they are confused because the message is positive but it sounds hard. Then others say that some songs relate to their struggles, but the artists themselves don’t say Jesus enough. You can’t please everyone all of the time. It is something I have learned myself as a Christian artist. As long as your heart is for God and you’re doing it for Him, that’s what really matters.

Still, when I listen to newer Christian rap artists today like J. Monty, Nobigdyl, Battz, 1K Phew, and many others, I hear a quality in their music that far surpasses some of the most popular secular rappers today. I couldn’t be happier. Their music inspires me. I listen at the gym, in my car, with my kids, and everywhere else. To all of my fellow newer artists fighting to make a way in the music industry, I salute you. For those that don’t know, I just released my first album as well, entitled “The Genesis” on all major streaming platforms. Listen on Spotify here: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/5PmyNTyCHtYcqXd19lxj14?si=27975491b56c4a3f&nd=1

Christian Hip-Hop has infiltrated secular culture

The Covid-19 pandemic has shifted our world in many ways. Anxiety, depression, and suicides have increased dramatically to levels I’m not sure we’ve ever seen. There has never been a time in human history that people need hope more than today. With unlimited access to information via smartphones and the internet, it has made it possible to reach the entire world easier for good or bad.

I was sitting at work listening to my Christian hip-hop playlist when a new song by secular artists DJ Khaled, Kanye West, and Eminem came on entitled “Use This Gospel”. I listened intently as Eminem started his verse. To hear him rap about God and Jesus as he did really made me think about the fact that we don’t know how God can use us all. Eminem is one of the most talented secular rappers I have ever heard. He was recently inducted into the prestigious Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. I am grateful to see God’s word penetrate the hearts of our popular secular artists. Much respect to Eminem for his amazing career.

Other music artist crossover examples

Recently, there have been a host of other popular secular artists that crossed over and made songs referencing God and Jesus. Snoop Dogg recently made a Christian hip-hop album, collaborating with other Christian rappers. Of course Kanye West, regardless of how you may feel about him on a number of issues, has made albums and songs about his faith in Jesus. Chance the Rapper and Kendrick Lamar have made several tracks in the past referencing Christianity and faith. Secular rapper Nas throughout history as an artist has made several songs referencing God and Jesus Christ.

Nas Illmatic

I have heard people make statements such as “Those artists are being fake” or “They are only doing it for money”. The truth is, we don’t know the hearts of people, only God does. I encourage you to not judge the hearts of secular artists, or anyone else for that matter. If you are a Christian that believes in the bible, remember what the Apostle Paul said in Philippians Chapter 1 starting at verse 15.

The Bible states, “It is true that some preach Christ out of envy and rivalry, but others out of goodwill. The latter do so out of love, knowing that I am put here for the defense of the gospel. The former preach Christ out of selfish ambition, not sincerely, supposing that they can stir up trouble for me while I am in chains. But what does it matter? The important thing is that in every way, whether from false motives or true, Christ is preached. And because of this, I rejoice!”

Right on Paul, Right On!

New Blog: The Reason Why? The Story Behind My New Christian Rap Album “The Genesis EP”, My Debut Project Released in November 2022

Vintage Retroman’s New Christian Rap Album Blazes A Novel Trail On “The Genesis”

In January 2022, I made a commitment to release my first full-length album this year but I wasn’t sure what the album content would be about. The reason why is that I typically try to focus specifically on gospel principles in my music as a Christian Artist. I have always made it a goal to never water down the message of the gospel of Jesus Christ in my music.

Christian Hip-Hop music has changed so much over the years, and many new Christian rap songs focus on relating to the issues that you deal with every day. The gospel message does not change, but the methods that matter to you just might. It is because of these reasons that I chose the subject matter I did for “The Genesis EP”. This breakdown gives the reason why behind each track on my new Christian album.

6 Tracks Set The Tone on My New Christian Rap Album, “The Genesis”

There are 6 tracks on the album that touches on several subjects to uplift God and encourage you as my listener. 5 are actual songs, with an outro at the end. The songs in order are listed below, along with a description of the meaning behind each song.

Click To Listen To The Full Album- https://open.spotify.com/playlist/5PmyNTyCHtYcqXd19lxj14?si=27975491b56c4a3f

Endurance– I made this Christian song for you because you are stronger than you believe as a Christian. This song is all about not giving up, trusting God, and enduring trials and difficulties in a confident way.

Go That Way– I made this song to encourage you when dealing with difficult people. When people hate on your efforts to do well in life, sometimes it is easy to get caught up in things that don’t matter.

Losin’ It- This song is all about anger management. We have all had moments when we feel like we’re losing our cool, but one of the Fruits of the Spirit in the Bible is self-control. This song is about keeping your cool in every situation.

Gettin’ It– I made this song to address the main issues affecting us in culture, from politics and violence to social media and racism. It is a song that promotes unity in the culture from a Christian perspective, while at the same time not ignoring real problems in the culture today.

Voodoo- Based on Ephesians 6 in the Bible, this song addresses spiritual warfare. There are many demonic forces at play in today’s media, and this track calls them out and how we can defeat evil through the blood of Jesus.

My New Christian Album Was Inspired With You In Mind

When you stop and look at culture today, you see so many problems in the world. We are more divided now than ever. People are hurting, inflation is real, and so many people are putting faith in politicians that do not have any power. It takes courage and endurance to be a Christian in this world. When I started the journey for my album back in January, I had you in mind.

I prayed about this album and asked God to help me to touch people and relate to their everyday struggles. I know how it feels to struggle to raise your kids right. My wife and I have 4 children and have the same struggle. I understand anxiety, as I also deal with a general anxiety disorder along with controlling high blood pressure.

I can relate to the falsehoods of our political system, and the various agenda’s that the powers that be put out there. I see the culture shifting to one of secular humanism and relativism. It breaks my heart to see children hurting, homes shattered, drug additions, and other issues. This is why I made this new Christian rap album because I had you in mind.

In conclusion, I hope that you enjoy the new Christian album

Truthfully, I put a lot of time, effort, and energy into making this album for you. I have never been motivated by how many records I sell, but by how many people I touch for God. This album ultimately was created to uplift and magnify God in a different way, while simultaneously encouraging others. The album is on all streaming platforms. Enjoy and please share it with everyone that you know. Thank you,

-Your Neighborhood Hope Dealer

Click Here To Listen To The Full Album: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/5PmyNTyCHtYcqXd19lxj14?si=27975491b56c4a3f

My First Album Was Released 11/11/22!

My first EP album, “The Genesis EP” is on Spotify and other major streaming platforms! Thank you for listening!

The Genesis EP

My Debut Album Coming 11/2022, “The Genesis”

Hi everyone! I’m pleased to announce that my debut album “The Genesis” is being released this week on all streaming platforms! I’m so excited! Pre-save your copy soon! Your Neighborhood Hope Dealer!

Debut Album
Coming November 2022

Introducing “Back N’ Tha Day!” Released 08/28

🚨🚨🚨New surprise release from Your Neighborhood Hope Dealer on YouTube! Check out this snippet of “Back N’ Tha Day!” Full song on YouTube. Be encouraged! 😎

#newrelease #artist #christian #christianhiphop #hiphop #rap #rapper #music #real #newartist #indie #indieartist #art #goodmusic #trap #drill #christ #tiktok #instagram #social #video #viral #viralvideo #dance

“Foreign Concept” Is Now Streaming On All Platforms!

My last new release for a while is out now🚨Check out “Foreign Concept”, produced by Hot Wobble! Now out on all streaming platforms! Let’s Go!

Listen Now!

🚨My New Single Release “Victory” Is Now Live On Spotify and All Streaming Platforms! 🥳

🚨🥳 My Newest Single “Victory” just released today on Spotify. Check it out when you have a chance! I’m excited about this one! Your Neighborhood Hope Dealer! 🚨

Released 06/18/22

New Release- “Set The Record Straight”

🚨Release Day!🚨 Now streaming on all platforms, check out my newest single, “Set The Record Straight”! You don’t want to miss this one y’all! #spotify #itunes #applemusic #youtube #releaseday

Click the link below to listen: 🔊