By Christian Harvey
In a past post I said that I believe that Hip Hop is the Modern Day Psalms. Over the next twelve weeks I will be making a Modern Day Psalms Mixtape. Every Monday I will add a new song to the mixtape with an explanation of why I find it powerful. This is track 3. Check out Track 1 here. Check out Track 2 here.
You probably have never heard of them, but the Blue Scholars are incredible. They are Hip Hop artists who are politically aware, and artistically strong. They are from the North West, specifically Seattle, and proud of it. In this they reflect one of the best parts of Hip Hop, it’s rootedness. Hip Hop rejoices in place. You don’t need to listen to much of their music to know that Kanye, Common and Lupe Fiasco are from Chicago, that Jay-Z is from New York, The Roots (and Will Smith if you remember the Fresh Prince theme song) are from Philadelphia. Canadian rappers show their pride in place too, Kardinal Offishall proudly talks about the T-Dot. k-Os even raps about growing up in Whitby (which very few people would admit). Each area has their own style, and feel. In a world where rootedness and place seem to be less and less important, hip hop goes against the mold.
This particular song is especially beautiful as Geologic (Blue Scholars MC) takes us along on a Seattle city bus. He observes his community: the struggles, the diversity, the beauty, and proclaims that despite, and because of these things he is committed to it. We the church need to learn this. We often have forgotten how to observe our community, how to commit to it and to be fully within it. If we are the body of Christ, continuing the work that he began, then we need to do as Christ did and be incarnate within our communities. We need to spend time seeing our community, learning from it, being in it and ultimately loving it, because it is this community we are called to serve.