Rap, Art and God

Rap, Art and God

This might be your first introduction to me – greetings, my name is Propaganda. I wrote my first rap in ’93, simply put: fire-baptized battle rapper who was heavily
influenced by folk music and found creative freedom in poetry. I don’t know
that much, just the Gospel and good hip-hop. I’m a pretty simple dude. All I have is my all, and I promise to give you
that. I grew up around a whole lot of gang life, infidelity, just drugs, alcohol. I grew up around a lot of that, and it just turned me off. It just totally turned me off. Art – that was my saving grace. It kept me
away from so many other things, and God used that to introduce me
to himself. I’m working on my next record. It’s called “Excellent” and it came out of a
Robert Henry quote, a Renaissance painter. It says the presence
of good art will unconsciously refine a community, and poor art will do it incalculable
harm. And it like, hit me so much so like, I got
it tattooed, like it’s on my arm. It’s broken up like, I
broke it up so there’s breaks in between ’cause it’s long. Those are the two that we’ll record today. The crux of the album basically is pointing
at our duty to present ourselves as excellent as
possible, to to keep that standard high, to do its best
for all of us. But then the other half of the record, the
other side of the coin is that I don’t measure up. I’m not reaching that bar. I’m not doing that, and that sings of our need for a savior. One song I’ve kinda been thinking on is called “Forgive me for Asking.” It’s a
pretty heavy spoken word piece.I have personally asked a lot of questions about whether I
believe what I’m preaching, whether I believe what I proclaim to
believe. I’ve asked those a lot, you know. “Like the little you know
about our universe, you ready to draw conclusions about its
origins – maybe we don’t know as much as we think we do. Science still can’t explain yawning. Forgive me for asking.” There are things
that I feel like are still question marks even in my life now that I’m
like, you know, you know what, I don’t know. I know that God
is real. I know that he died for my sins. I know that there is an answer; I just know
I don’t have it. I feel like that’s art’s role in society –
to ask questions. I believe in art for art’s sake. It’s function is the display of beauty. It’s beautiful because it screams of our
designer. What art does and what music does is it
reminds us that there is more in the universe than the material, that our existence is not just what you
can measure. It reminds us that there are things that
transcend the physical world. It reminds us that
there is something more than what we can touch and in that sense, I believe it, it sings of, of the beauty and the, the splendor of
God or at least an intelligent designer. “Yeah. Listen, I came out a town in gangs and a gang of grace ’cause for sure sin abounds and around these
parts, crowns is made of tin foil. And them boys play Halo with real guns, lay low. Right there, I blang slang – that twice born
rhetoric. Our Papi pound the ground and out came all humanity. But for those who would listen, I break you out your radio prison, redefine manhood, blackness, and time, shape and define culture. Let me fashion you some shades, introduce you to a trend that transcends
the will of men. Lord. The ultimate hope for people that hear my music is that they would meet a loving God who
provided a way to redeem their souls through his son. That would be the ultimate.

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