The Official Stellar Award Nominations are in! We announced to you a few weeks ago who all were in the runnings for Category #24: Rap/Hip Hop Gospel CD of the Year, and out of 23 nominees SAGMA has selected 4 onto the final ballot. They are Dooney da Priest (Pull Your Pants Up!), Papa San (Heigher Heights), Da’ T.R.U.T.H. (The Big Picture) and Lecrae (Rebel).

A few things to ponder…

Last year there were 5 finalists – Da’ T.R.U.T.H. (who won), FLAME, Frontlynaz, Sho Baraka and Trip Lee. Why there aren’t 5 this year? We have no idea. As well, and no disrespect to Papa San… But why is he in the Rap/Hip Hop Category??? Sorry, but we don’t consider him Rap or Hip Hop at all. SAGMA needs to possibly create a Reggae category. They finally had it right last year by having all Hip Hop artists, so we wonder what happened this year??? It’s like… when you don’t know where to place an artist, you just slap them into the “Rap/Hip Hop” section.

Who are some that were in this category in the past?

* 21:03 (Twenty One O Three, 2008)… They are a boy band… this is r&b/pop music… they won that year too…

* Tonex (Out the Box, 2005; O2, 2003 )…. not a Hip Hop album at all….

* Natalie Wilson (Good Life, 2005)… this is clearly not a Hip Hop album…

* Percy Bady & Papa San (Hold Up the Light, 2005)…. This is reggae people (also in this category in 2004, 2000)

* Hezekiah Walker & LFCC (Family Affair, 2001)… ???????????…. Self-explanatory…

* Lexi (And That’s The Way It Is, 2001)… again, self-explanatory…

* Kirk Franklin (Kingdom Come Soundtrack, 2002)… this soundtrack was not a Hip Hop soundtrack y’all!

* Kirk Franklin presents 1NC (1NC, 2002)… sigh… we all know what this was… no disrespect Kirk! :-)

* Charles Wolfork & Covenant (Tru2God, 2002)… the name alone lets you know…

* Brent Jones & The TP Mobb (Beautiful, 2003)… this ain’t Hip Hop y’all….

How did any of the above (we didn’t even name them all) get in the Rap/Hip Hop category??? Because someone spit 16 bars on one song? C’mon SAGMA!!!!!!!!!!! We love and appreciate you, but y’all really lettin’ us down. “Us” being the Christian Hip Hop community. And if Papa San wins (again, no disrespect) I don’t think we will be pleased. The Award loses its merit if the artists nominated don’t meet the qualifications of the select genre. That’s like putting a jazz CD in the country music category. Clearly not the same thing!

What about all of the other finalists who were in runnings? There were some great independent artists who were nominated – those who had put in some work…. Where are they? And we’re sure people voted, because we sent many your way to vote.

Okay, okay… Off the soap box… And no, we are not angry. If no-one ever says anything though, nothing will ever be done about it. Again, you had it right last year for the first time ever, but… sigh…

It’s a good thing that most (if not all) of the artists in our genre do not do what they do for awards and accolades anyway. No disrespect to SAGMA.

Nevertheless, without further ado… here are the four finalists in the Rap/Hip Hop category.

To learn more visit or

Dooney Da Priest – Pull Your Pants Up!

Papa San – Heigher Heights

Da’ T.R.U.T.H. – The Big Picture

Lecrae – Rebel


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