God and hip-hop


Manage episode 342651492 series 1301462
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Christianity and Hip Hop have a long and complex relationship. From Kanye’s Jesus Walks to the development of Christian Hip Hop, artists rapping about their faith has caused controversy in a genre that’s known for its violent oversexualised lyrics. But who’s rapping about God right now and is anyone claiming the title of Christian rapper? Swarzy Macaly, a BBC 1Xtra presenter, is a Christian who works within the mainstream music world, playing secular music. She loves it when she hears people share their faith in their music, like the pioneers of Christian Hip Hop like Lecrae and Guvna B did. But in recent years, artists beyond the Christian Hip Hop world have been releasing ‘gospel’ filled music like Kanye West and Stormzy, blurring the lines between religious and secular music. Swarzy wants to know if that’s having an impact on the music Christian artists make, and if they feel pressure to dilute explicit faith messages in their songs to reach a wider audience. Is the label ‘Christian rapper’ too restrictive for artists who want their music to go further than the church? To find out more, Swarzy meets Still Shadey and Jo Joey, young Christian rappers making popular drill music with a religious message; Deyah and Happi who’ve moved beyond the ‘Christian’ artist label, and Limoblaze the artist behind viral TikTok hit Jireh, to hear what it’s like producing music with a Christian message, and how receptive the music industry is to the growing trend of faith filled music. Produced by Miriam Williamson for the BBC World Service (Image Credit: Chinyere Anosike)

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