Jahaziel renounced Christianity, called out @Jahazielmusic @Lavoisier_GTHU @TheGodhopMC

“COME GET THIS WORK!!!”

UK Rapper Jahaziel renounced Christianity recently and released a track called “Amen Ra” and was immediately given a response by New York Rapper Lavoisier and Buffalo rapper Zaydok on their periscope broadcasts.

Jahaziel Drops Verse Dissing Christianity, Lavoi$ier Invites Him To Debate [read the article on “GrowTheHeckUp.com“]

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Buffalo Rapper Zaydok responded on his periscope broadcasts with a call to debate the controversial theories of religion.

“@Jahazielmusic You are always welcome in the Dojo.”

Zaydok the God Hop MC is a member of the music group REBEL AGAINST THE WORLD [download FREE mixtape]

Website NewH2O reported on Jahaziel’s response to these recent replies. [read the article here]

Statement made by Jahaziel on his facebook page, Dec  22, 2015:

I need not explain myself to anyone but I feel the need to make a quick statement. A short while ago I turned away from 20 years as a professing Christian. I had a good job with a church organization, a house provided by the church, a large social circle of likeminded people, a career in gospel music, a worldwide fan base, a respected reputation & status within Christian and non Christian circles… Etc
Having left Christianity I may have lost many/all of these things, but what I have is worth more than all of them combined. I have my integrity. When I first joined Christianity I was told ‘you must believe this book is God’s infallible word’… Before I’d even read the book!! How can one decide for themselves whether a book is accurate and true BEFORE they have even read & investigated the book thoroughly?! Anyway… Contrary to many opinions I have met some great people in church and learned some great principles from Christianity/the bible. These principles however are not exclusive to any religion. I have experienced christianity in literally 100’s of contexts so my perspective on Christianity is quite an informed one. I have met many sincere Christians, both church goers and church leaders, and although I have not seen every one of the 40,000 Christian denominations currently in existence I think I have seen enough to personally make a general conclusion regarding Christianity in the broadest sense. Now after 20 years of being vocal about the positives of Christian faith I would like to take some time to be equally vocal about the negatives I have found. i.e Christianity and its controlling dictatorship, its historic blood trail, its plagiarized bible stories characters and concepts, the many human errors of the bible and its contradictions, the brutal nature of its God, it’s involvement in the slave trade, the crusades, the inquisition, the witch hunts, it’s second class view of women, it’s masculinization of God, it’s emasculation of men, its financial corruption… You get the drift. So YES I will go on, and I will not be silent as some have asked – my integrity will not allow me to be so passive against mass corruption. In all love. J

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GnD Records [Dubstep] Compilation Album #TICD2015 Available Now! @gnd_records_dub

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G&D Records is back with the new edition of TICD 2015. Since the first Dubstep compilation album in 2012. TICD has come a long way with the creativity and quality of the music. Every year it gets better. If you are up for Heavy Bass lines and Growls, this album is worth the time. 3 years under the belt now for one of the most critiqued and loved Dubstep compilation albums out there and if you haven’t checked it out yet. Now is the time!

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CHH at #KB2015 @Lecrae @Flame314 @KB_HGA @SocialxClub @Vrosemusic

Kingdom Bound 2015 featuring more Christian Hip Hop artists!!

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Want to see Lecrae at Kingdom Bound 2015?? Use the code LECRAE to save $$ on Saturday tickets! Check out  http://www.kingdombound.org/festival/tickets/

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This year Kingdom Bound unleashes the brand new Park Stage! Featuring a bigger line up of Christian Hip Hop artists including: Flame, Social Club, KB, Spec, V.Rose, 5ive, Slave, Gauge, Fonz Carter, Ai Am Anomaly, ChoSon, Daarinah, and MORE!

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It’s Kingdom Bounds 29th annual Summer Festival featuring Casting Crowns, Newsboys, for King & Country, Lecrae, Paul Baloche and over 70 other musicians and speakers! Here’s the offical promo video:

For complete information, including a full schedule and to order tickets visit www.kingdombound.org

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New Album: Lisa McClendon – 5AM @LisaMcClendon

Lisa McClendon has been one of the best kept secrets in Gospel Music. The Soulful Stellar and Dove award nominee releases her 6th project called “5AM” including a collaboration with Sean C Johnson.

While changing the world of gospel music she has been named the mother of “Inspirational Neo-Soul.” She also recently released a book called The Proverbial Girl.

http://www.lisamcclendonmusic.com/

Christian Hip Hop gets cold shoulder from Gospel Charts / Stellar Awards

THE CHH STRUGGLE IS REAL

Michael Peace launched a solo career as a Hip Hop artist in the 1980s from Queens, NY. He was the first solo Gospel Rapper to get a real record deal with distribution and promotion. He faced all the challenges you can imagine, from the Hip Hop community not fully recognizing his projects as one of theirs, to pastors flat out rebuking him for producing such trashy worldly music. The battle for the Gospel Rapper to get respect from both the church and the industry was longer than the war in Afghanistan.

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Another wave of artists arose in the 1990s, like Cross Movement, Gospel Gangsters, T-Bone, and Pettidee, but commercial success was still out of reach. In the past 10 years, a new era has begun for those that have been labeled Christian Hip Hop artists. Philadelphia rapper Da TRUTH addresses the hot topic of CHH’s Identity Crisis on Rapzilla and discusses why Gospel gives CHH the cold shoulder on Wade O Radio. At one point, Da TRUTH was embraced by the Gospel Music scene, touring with Kirk Franklin, and even releasing a DVD in 2007 called Da’ T.R.U.T.H. & Friends LIVE!, which included some Contemporary Gospel Artists.

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Further diversifying the fan-base, Reach Records artists performed at the 2011 GMWA Convention in Tampa. In 2012, Da TRUTH also got to rap on stage at the Stellar Awards together with singer Canton Jones and rapper Lecrae.

This month, the Stellars will have the General Public as the voting body for the second and final ballot which will result in four entries in each category and will determine the winners (The first round if voting is determined by SAGMA members). Year after year, out of all 28 categories, CHH artists are nominated in only one – Rap/Hip Hop Gospel CD of the Year, which in 2014 included: BIZZLE, THE GOOD FIGHT, GOD OVER MONEY RECORDS; DEREK MINOR, MINORVILLE, REACH RECORDS; LECRAE, GRAVITY, REACH RECORDS; THI’SL, FREE FROM THE TRAP, FULL RIDE MUSIC GROUP, LLC.

Lecrae won that category [ Stellar Awards ], but the odd thing is, just one year earlier, Gravity won Best Gospel Album at the 2013 Grammy Awards and Best Rap/Hip Hop Album at the 2013 Dove Awards, yet was not considered a top contender in any other Stellar Award category.

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Stellar Nominees for Internet radio stations “C1 Radio” and “HOT3:16”, that include a variety of Christian Hip Hop songs on their playlists, where not included in the final balloting but were upstaged by Traditional and Contemporary Gospel stations [ Stellar Awards Radio Ballot ].  Hosted in January during MLK weekend, The Stellar Gospel Music Awards Show is a production of  Central City Productions, founded by Executive Producer Don Jackson & produced by Barbara Wilson. (Chicago-based Central City Productions is a distributor of original programming to television & cable networks).

Contrary to the sacred side of the music industry, CHH artists like Andy Mineo were featured in mainstream Hip Hop media outlets like BET’s 106 & Park, BET’s Cyphers, and SiriusXM’s Sway in the Morning.

CHRISTIAN RAP IS NOT GOSPEL?

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2 weeks ago, Billboard also announced that as of Dec 6, 2014 Christian Hip Hop artists were no longer going to be flagged for the Gospel Charts. Since the release of Lecrae‘s Anomaly album dropped in September 2014, it has topped the Gospel chart almost the entire time leading up to December 5, 2014. At #4 was Tripp Lee’s album Rise which also peaked at #1. [ Billboard Gospel Chart ]

IS THIS SOMETHING NEW TO THE INDUSTRY?

In the early 2000s, Radio & Records charted Christian Hip Hop or Gospel Rap music under Christian Rock or Christian Rhythmic formats depending on how the Christian radio stations reported their playlists. Artists like Grits, Cross Movement, and KJ-52 consistently topped those charts.

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In 2002, KJ-52 brought attention to the genre in the main stream when he released the track and video “Dear Slim” addressing rapper Emenem in his lyrics, and getting video rotations on VH-1 and MTV. It was the first of it’s kind to get over 100,000 copies sold by a solo Christian rapper.

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Another success story that year was the rap duo GRITS with their song “Ohh Ahh” which appeared on the MTV show My Super Sweet 16. It is also used as the theme song of The Buried Life and on the soundtracks to The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift and Big Momma’s House 2. In 2014, Gotee Records announced that the song was RIAA Digital Gold Certified, having surpassed 500,000 downloads.

On July 6, 2006, Billboard’s parent company VNU announced they will acquire R&R Magazine, adding them to their collection of music industry companies (Billboard Information Group, Nielsen BDS, and Nielsen SoundScan) [ Billboard Acquires R&R ]. Since the acquisition, the Christian Rhythmic format was dropped as a sub-genre all together, forcing stations to report the music under other categories. The only natural place for Gospel Rap (as some call it) was to be reported to the Gospel Charts. But something strange begins to happen. Reach Records begins to make big moves in marketing and in September 2008, Lecrae enters the Gospel Charts and peaks at #1 with his album Rebel, #2 on Christian and #60 on Billboard 200. In 2010 Gravity repeats the pattern bringing more than just top sales, but as mentioned above,  several top awards. Meanwhile, KJ-52 continues to represent CHH in the Christian Hit Music and Christian Rock markets, racking in nominations and awards at the GMAs.

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Fast forward to 2014, Lecrae leads as the Top Gospel Artist with eight top 10 entries on Hot Gospel Songs (including three # 1s), # 1 Gospel Artist, the top Hot Gospel Songs Artist, # 1 Gospel Albums Artist, # 1 Gospel Digital Songs Artist, and leads the Gospel Albums list for 2014, overshadowing the rest of the Top 5: Hezekiah Walker, [Tamala] Mann, [Jamie] Grace and [Tasha] Cobbs [ Billboard Year in Music ]. Did I mention he topped the Billboard 200? [ Lecrae #1 on Billboard 200 ] Billboard’s final statement on charting was this: “2014 is the final year that most Christian rap/hip-hop songs and albums, like Lecrae’s releases, will be broadly eligible for Billboard’s Gospel charts.” [ Billboard Year in Music ]

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In an interview with The Christian Post, Bishop T D Jakes states that “Gospel Hip Hop has made significant contributions to the next generation,” and referred to a time when Mahalia Jackson, known as “The Queen of Gospel,” was viewed as controversial for rocking the boat in her day. Why the disconnect all of the sudden? Why does Gospel music want to draw a line between the old and the new? Is there jealousy in the camp? Are they losing THAT much money? Is separation the solution?

Comments welcomed.