It is amazing to see how Christian Hip-Hop has changed since the 90’s. Twenty years ago, CHH was still a chosen few, pioneering the genre, and yet closing out the 90s with hope. 1998 had some dope projects that deserve respect from every rap fan.
Below are five projects from some of Christian Hip-Hop’s most influential albums that turn 20 this year. Let us know in the comments what your favorite album from 1998 is.
Grits – Factors of the Seven
This duo released this project three years after their debut Mental Releases. This was the album the helped put the southern duo on everyone’s radar. Signed to Gotee Records at the time, Factors of the Seven contained tracks “What Be Goin’ Down,” “Alcoholic Plagiarism,” and “Ain’t Sayin’ Nothing.” The group brought in LPG, Knowdaverbs, and Out of Eden among others to feature.
T-Bone – The History of a Hoodlum
T-Bone was the best of the golden era of Christian hip-hop. He helped push the genre forward by adopting sounds in the mainstream. Thematically, and quite aggressively, he attacked each song with heavy west coast vibes. Some of the most notable tracks “Thief in tha Night,” “Lyrical Assassin,” “Demon Executioner,” and “Little Jackie” featuring Crystal Lewis.
Brainwash Projects – The Rise and Fall of Brainwash Projects
While they are known mostly for their work with L.A. Symphony, Pigeon John and bTwice separated from the rest of the group to create this gem on their own. Unfortunately, this is the only LP the duo ever produced and definitely some of the best work to come out of LA Symphony. With quirky lyrics and style, their most prominent tracks are “Powermoves” and “A Cold day in Hell.”
E-Roc – The Return
E-Roc had plenty of success in the early 90s working with established mainstream artists as a dancer, but once he switched to rapping, he helped usher in some familiar faces. This GrapeTree release introduced Playdough (KRUM) and Blake Knight of Ill Harmonics. This project would help take E-Roc to MTV’s ‘The Cut’, where others such as T-Bone and MaxOne of Sackcloth Fashion would also perform.
Sackcloth Fashion – We’ve Only Just Begun
This early EP was the pre-cursor to Something For Everyone To Hate which came out in 1999. Although this EP had a limited run of being available online and at shows, it had a major impact on Christian hip-hop. S.F. helped launch a new era of CHH which eventually led to all of Syntax Records and then Syntax Creative.
Good throwbacks, aren’t they? 5 albums that turned 20 in 2018. Which artists and tracks were your favorites?
Special thanks to Timothy Trudeau for providing some info for some of these releases. This article was written by Justin Sarachik and Ed Boice.