By Sam Robinson
It’s not everyday that a hip-hop track gets quoted by John Piper.
But that’s exactly what happened when John Piper quoted Christian rapper Derek Minor’s single Gimmie, one of the first tastes of his forthcoming album Minorville. Derek is the rapper formerly known as Pro, and is part of groups R.M.G. and 116 Clique.
It’s a bold song that really confronts greed and materialism in our world today (if you haven’t heard it, watch the video in Piper’s tweet above). It asks ‘Why settle for that [wealth] when you could have it all?’, and shows the danger of treating God like a genie.
I got to chat to Derek about the album Minorville, and asked him the story behind Gimmie.
Sam: The single Gimmie, it’s about greed, isn’t it?
Derek: Pretty much, greed.
Sam: There’s some bold statements in here, what can you tell us about this song?
Derek: So all I did [with] Gimmie, is I wanted to paint a picture of what just our cultures today look like. We’re never satisfied. I want to make it the equivalent of I have a two-year-old at home. And, my son, I could sit him up in his high chair, feed him until he’s almost about to pop and explode. He’ll be full, y’know, I’ll feed him, he won’t want anymore. But soon as I grab a plate of some food, and it could be the same as the thing that he has, what he does is he starts reaching out and saying ‘Gimmie more! Gimmie more!’
And I think that’s what we do in the world today. I guess it begs the question of ‘how much is enough?’ ‘How much money is enough?’ ‘How much company cars are enough?’ ‘How big of a house?’ ‘How much yard is enough?’ Like that’s the whole idea of Gimmie, is that, there should come a point in time where, y’know… And there’s nothing wrong with being rich… But I think there should come a point in time where we think ‘Man, what am I gonna do with these riches, what am I gonna do with them? Am I gonna just store it up in this house and die, and then my kids take it and spend the money and blow it on their girlfriend or boyfriend?’, or, ‘Am I gonna do something that matters with it?’
Sam: And the song was quoted by John Piper in a tweet. Was that a bit surreal?
Derek: Yeah it was crazy! I didn’t necessarily write it (laughs)… I didn’t necessarily write it thinking of the typical, like, church world. So, ah, it was cool that he tweeted it. It was really good, I just kinda, really was being myself and, watching the Lord put it on his heart to tweet it, it was really dope. It really was nice.
I talked to Derek extensively all about his life, the rest of the album and more, and the entire interview can be read here. I’ve heard the album and highly recommend it – it holds a lot of Biblical truth.
Minorville is released worldwide on September 10 and can be pre-ordered on iTunes.