This article will introduce you to some of the most influential and popular Christian rappers of all time.
Christian rap music emerged in the 80s, the so-called ‘golden age’ of hip-hop. Today, in its fifth decade, the world of Christian hip-hop is alive and well, with a growing number of artists joining its ranks.
The list will look at a number of artists who identify as Christian rappers, including both artists whose music is explicitly gospel-focused, and also including those whose message may not be immediately obvious in their lyrics. The list includes a mixture of new Christian rap artists as well some of the OGs of the scene.
Let’s jump in and discover some of the best Christian rappers who every hip-hop fan should know.
20. Sho Baraka
Sho Baraka is the alias of Christian rapper Amisho Baraka Lewis. Sho was a founding member of 116 Clique, and was signed to Reach Records before leaving to start his own label.
As well as being a prominent figure in Christian rap, he is a respected artist in the conscious rap scene. A stalwart of the scene, he released six albums between 2007 and 2018. He has featured on songs with many others on this list including Lecrae, Trip Lee, and Tedashii.
His third album Talented 10th (2013) is arguably his most successful album, reaching the top spot on Billboard’s Gospel albums chart, and reaching position twelve on the Billboard Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart.
Some of his popular tracks include ‘Here, 2016’ and ‘Shut Us Down.’
His label, High Society, includes Christian rappers Swoope, JR, and Suzy Rock.
Gabriel Alberto Azucena, formerly known as G-Styles, and now known as GAWVI was a rising star in the world of Christian rap. Signed to Reach Records, the rapper and producer released six albums between 2013 and 2021.
GAWVI’s most successful album commercially was We Belong (2017), which reached number seven on Billboard’s Top Christian Albums chart and number seven on their Top Dance/Electronic Albums chart.
The artist’s most popular tracks include ‘Fight For Me,’ ‘Not Too Far,’ and ‘Slingshot.’
Recent times have seen GAWVI’s reputation in ruins. After multiple allegations that he had sent inappropriate images to women, Reach Records terminated their relationship with the artist.
18. Trip Lee
Trip Lee is a Christian rapper and pastor who has steadily risen to become one of the biggest names in Christian hip-hop.
Trip’s early rap songs took quite a different tone to the gospel-focused message his music now has. He has cited rappers Ambassador and Da’ T.R.U.T.H. as key inspirations whose music guided him towards Christian hip-hop.
He has released six albums since 2006, with Between Two Worlds (2010), The Good Life (2012), and Rise (2014) all charting in the top ten of Billboard’s Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart, and topping the Gospel chart. The latter peaked at sixteen on the Billboard 200.
Trip Lee’s top tracks include ‘Sweet Victory,’ ‘Lazarus,’ and ‘Manolo,’ all of which come from his acclaimed Rise album.
Wande is possibly the most successful female Christian rapper on the scene today.
The alias of Mutiat Yewande Isola, Wande worked in the music industry in music journalism and A&R before launching her own solo music career. She is the first woman signed to Christian hip-hop label, Reach.
2020 saw Wande release her debut EP The Decision, and later in the year, her debut album, Exit.
Wande’s top tracks include ‘HAPPY,’ ‘Big God,’ and ‘Blessed Up.’
Manafest is the alias of Canadian Christian rapper Christopher Scott Greenwood. In recent years, much of Greenwood’s music has been rap-rock, blending elements of hard rock with hip-hop. He performs his live shows with live rock musicians and instruments.
Manafest is a veteran of the scene, with a career that is now in its third decade. He released his debut album, My Own Thing, in 2003. He released his eleventh album, I Run with Wolves in 2022.
With over 800,000 monthly listeners on Spotify, he is amongst the most-streamed Christian rappers on this list. Some of his most popular tracks include ‘No Plan B’ and ‘Impossible.’
15. Social Club Misfits
Social Club Misfits, also known as Social Club, is a Christian rap duo hailing from Miami, Florida. It comprises rappers Marty Mar and FERN. They have been active in the Christian rap scene for over a decade, having dropped their debut album Misfits in 2012.
However, it was their third album, Misfits 2 (2014) which saw the pair rise to success. The album reached number three on Billboard’s Top Gospel Albums chart, number ten on Billboard’s Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart, and fifty-nine on the Billboard 200 chart.
Social Club Misfits’ most popular songs include ‘War Cry,’ ‘Everytime,’ and ‘Testify.’
Mexican-American rapper WHATUPRG is one of the most groundbreaking artists on this list, blending elements of trap and reggaeton into his distinctive style. He grew up in Georgia, his parents having immigrated from Mexico before he was born.
The alias of Raul Garcia, WHATUPRG is a member of 116 Clique, along with many others on this list. He is widely acclaimed in the Christian hip-hop community for his progressive and innovative sound.
He has released three studio albums – Pleasant Hill (2018), RAUL (2019), and NEW HOLLYWOOD (2022).
His most popular tracks include ‘Drip Lee,’ ‘Courtside,’ and ‘Glory.’
Christopher Michael Hulvey – usually known simply as Hulvey – is a Christian rapper, songwriter, and producer. Compared to most artists on this list, he is a relative newcomer to the scene, releasing his debut album in 2021.
Hulvey may not be a veteran of the scene, but his impact was immediate, with his debut album Christopher reaching eight on Billboard’s Top Christian Albums chart, and nineteen on Billboard’s Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart.
Born and raised in Georgia, Hulvey moved the Atlanta, the epicentre of today’s rap scene. Aside from his solo releases, he has featured on tracks from 116 Clique and Lecrae.
Hulvey’s most popular songs include ‘Can’t Tell It All,’ ‘Reasons,’ and ‘Beautiful.’
12. Guvna B
British rapper Isaac Borquaye – better known as Guvna B – is the number one name in Christian rap in the UK. Hailing from London, he is also a respected broadcaster and author, and has written about his Christian faith.
Guvna B is a prolific recording artists, and has recorded nine studio albums since 2008. He has been awarded the prestigious MOBO Award for Best Gospel Artist on four separate occasions during his career.
About his music he says, ‘my upbringing inspired me to want to make a positive impact through music. The negative things I saw around me inspired me to do better and inspire people to be the best they can be instead of becoming stereotypical products of a negative environment.’
His most popular tracks include ‘Everyday,’ and ‘Nothing But The Blood’ featuring Deitrick Haddon.
FLAME is the alias of Christian rapper Marcus Tyrone Gray. A Systematic Theology graduate, Gray pays close attention to theological issues. In recent times he came out as a Lutheran, after many years as a Reformed Baptist.
A prolific recording artist, FLAME has released twelve albums since 2004. His fifth album Captured (2010) and his sixth album The 6th (2012) saw the height of his commercial success. Both albums topped the Billboard Gospel Albums chart, and both charted on Billboard’s Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums, and the Billboard 200.
The 6th was FLAME’s overall highest charting record, reaching eight on Billboard’s Hip-hop album chart, and sixty on the Billboard 200.
His most popular tracks include ‘Start Over’ featuring NF, and ‘Joyful Noise.’
Hailing from Texas, Christian rapper Tedashii is a veteran of the scene. A member of 116 Clique, he has released seven solo albums since 2006.
Tedashii’s most successful records are his 2011 album Blacklight, which charted at sixty-three on the Billboard 200, reaching number two on the Gospel Albums chart, and number one on the Top Christian Albums chart.
His 2014 follow-up, Below Paradise was another big success, reaching number seventeen on the Billboard 200, reaching number two on the Top Christian Albums chart, and topping the Gospel Albums chart. The beautiful album delves into Tedashii’s spiritual struggles as he dealt with the death of his one year old son in a car accident.
About the record, Tedashii said, ‘I pray this will be an album that all can feel, even if you can’t relate, and be moved to true emotions about the reality of life in a harsh world with a loving God, below paradise.’
Tedashii’s most popular tracks include ‘Dum Dum,’ ‘Gotta Live,’ and ‘Get Out My Way.’
9. Derek Minor
Derek Minor is a Christian rapper, producer, and music business exec, who has been making waves in both the Christian scene and in the world of secular music.
Minor’s albums have charted on the Billboard 200 twice, with his fantastic 2016 album Reflection peaking at number five on Billboard’s Top Rap Albums chart. His motivational and uplifting music has been used by sports teams including the Los Angeles Rams, the Los Angeles Chargers, and the Philadelphia Eagles.
Aside from his solo releases, he has also collaborated with Lecrae as a producer.
His most popular tracks include ‘Ready Set Go,’ ‘Party People’ featuring Social Club, and ‘Change the World’ featuring Hollyn.
8. 1K Phew
Hailing from Atlanta, 1K Phew’s music takes strong cues from the trap craze that has swept from that city across the world. He is a member of the Christian hip-hop group 116 Clique, along with Lecrae and others on this list.
About his music and his name, he says, ‘I’m not worried about being politically correct. I just want to give people the real. That’s where the 1K comes from, always keeping it 1,000, no matter what.’
It’s certainly true that 1K is offering a different message to many of the city’s trap artists – as he puts it, a ‘message of faith and hope.’
His most popular songs include ‘WILDIN’ and ‘Drip Lee.’ Check out his 2021 album No Church In A While.
7. Andy Mineo
Christian rapper, producer, and music executive Andy Mineo is one of the biggest names in Christian rap today.
From a young age, has Andy Mineo worked as a producer. He reached early success as the producer for the rap group Fat Camp, which he left to rededicate his life to Christ. He went on to produce for a number of other artists including Sheena Lee, Tedashii, and Lecrae.
Mineo dropped his debut album Heroes for Sale in 2013, topping the Billboard Top Christian Albums and Top Gospel Albums charts, reaching number four on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart, and number eleven on the Billboard 200.
His 2015 follow-up, Uncomfortable again reached number one on the Top Christian Albums chart, peaking at number three on Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums, and number ten on the Billboard 200. He dropped his third album Never Land II in 2021.
His most popular songs include ‘The Saints,’ ‘Coming in Hot’ featuring Lecrae, and ‘You Can’t Stop Me.’
Kevin Elijah Burgess – bette known as KB – is one of the most exciting names in the Christian rap music scene today. Drawing on the sonic inspiration of trap music, his music is hard-hitting, with a powerful message.
KB released his first album Weight & Glory in 2012, topping Billboard’s Top Christian Albums chart, and reaching thirty-four on the Billboard 200. His 2015 follow up, Tomorrow We Live again topped the Top Christian Albums chart, reaching eighteen on the Billboard 200.
KB dropped his fourth album His Glory Alone in the midst of Covid in 2020, and considers it the pinnacle of his work. About the album he said, ‘My dream was to bring otherworldly God-centered lyricism to trap. I finally made it happen with His Glory Alone. The things I love most – prayer, celebrating God, and music – come together to hopefully encourage, empower, and heal.’
KB’s most popular tracks include ‘No Chains,’ ‘Hold Me Back,’ and ‘Church Clap.’
TobyMac is one of the founding fathers of Christian rap. Since dropping his debut album back in 2001, he rose to become one of the most-respected and most famous Christian rappers on the scene.
TobyMac (real name Toby McKeehan) first rose to fame as a member of the Christian rap-rock group DC Talk. He went onto an extremely successful solo career. He has numerous Gold-certified records, and with over 10 million record sales to his name, TobyMac is one of the most commercially successful Christian rappers of all time.
His success extends well beyond Christian charts into mainstream Billboard charts, proving his appeal to both Christian and secular audiences. His 2012 album Eye on You, topped the Billboard 200 album charts. He has also received seven Grammy awards.
Hisi most popular tracks include ‘I just need U,’ ‘Speak Life,’ and ‘Love Broke Thru.’ A Christian rapper who everyone should know about.
4. BJ The Chicago Kid
BJ The Chicago Kid is a Christian singer and songwriter who has collaborated with some of the biggest names in the secular hip-hop scene, including Schoolboy Q, Kendrick Lamar, Freddie Gibbs, Anderson .Paak, and Kanye West.
BJ began his career as a backing singer for artists including the likes of Mary J. Blige and Stevie Wonder. He went on to a hugely successful career as a solo artist.
The son of choir directors, his music leans towards R&B and neo-soul sounds, and is subtly infused with his personal faith. BJ is vocal in sharing the role that God has played in his life, and aside from his vocal skills, is known across the industry for his faith.
His most popular tracks include ‘Church’ featuring Chance The Rapper, ‘His Pain,’ and ‘Turnin’ Me Up.’
3. Chance The Rapper
Chance The Rapper is a Christian rapper who is perhaps better known in the secular world than he is in the Christian scene. His widespread appeal means that he is one of the most-famous and most commercially successful rappers on this list.
Chance’s journey with faith is by no means straightforward, and he has referenced both his faith and his struggles with faith in his music over the years. However, Chance reaffirmed his faith after the birth of his daughter, who was born with an atrial flutter.
Chance has identified himself as a Christian rapper, but he has been careful to avoid being pigeonholed. In an interview he stated, ‘I don’t make Christian rap, but I am a Christian rapper. When I was going out and trying to fully give glory to God, in my setting, I feared that people would be dismissive of it, like, ‘This is Christian rap, I’m not trying to hear it.’’
His definitive record is his 2016 mixtape, Coloring Book. The critically-acclaimed record peaked at number eight on the Billboard 200, and won three Grammy awards, including Best Rap Album.
Chance has collaborated with some of the biggest artists in the world of pop and rap, including Justin Bieber, Lil Wayne, and Kanye West.
His most streamed song is Justin Beiber’s ‘Holy’ on which Chance features. Other hits include ‘No Problem’ featuring Lil Wayne and 2 Chainz, and ‘Juke Jam’ featuring Justin Bieber and Towkio.
Lecrae is one of the biggest names in Christian rap. A rapper, songwriter, producer, music industry exec, and entrepreneur, his influence is extensive.
Lecrae found faith while he was at college, and was allegedly inspired in his music career by seeing Philadelphia rap group The Cross Movement as a teenager. He first rose to fame as the leader of Christian hip-hop collective 116 Clique. Fellow members include Tedashii, Trip Lee, Andy Mineo, 1K Phew, WHATUPRG, Wande, Hulvey, and Limoblaze.
His 2012 album Gravity has been acclaimed as one of the most important and influential hip-hop albums of all time. It peaked at number three on the Billboard 200 album charts, and won the Grammy award for Best Gospel Album.
The second of Gravity was arguably topped by his 2012 album Anomaly, which topped the Billboard 200 chart. Almost all of his albums have topped Billboard’s Top Christian Albums.
Lecrae has done a great deal of charitable work, and has also written two books that talk about his journey and his faith.
His most popular songs include ‘This is My Time,’ the Andy Mineo track ‘Coming In Hot’ which he features on, and ‘I’ll Find You’ featuring Tori Kelly. Lecrae is an essential Christian rapper who everyone should know!
NF is the alias of Nathan John Feuerstein – one of the most famous Christian rappers in the world today. He is a Christian rapper, singer, songwriter, and producer.
NF skyrocketed to success with the release of his 2017 album Perception. The album topped with the Billboard 200, and was Platinum certified. The lead single off that record, ‘Let You Down’ reached number twelve on the Billboard Hot 100, and reached the top ten in countries around the world.
His 2019 album, The Search, achieved similar success, topping the Billboard 200 album chart, and going Platinum.
Although the content of Feuerstein’s music is often influenced by his faith, he has been careful to avoid being pigeonholed as a Christian rapper, claiming that the themes he addresses are relevant to everyone.
‘Let You Down’ is NF’s most popular track, with well over one billion streams on Spotify. Other popular tracks from the artist include ‘Lie,’ ‘If You Want Love,’ and ‘The Search.’
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This Post Has One Comment
I would suggest adding Caleb Gordon he has recently grown quite a lot. Great list though.