Many of you will have heard of Humble Beast. It is an American (mainly) hiphop label, notable for two main things. All their releases are free and they are Christians. They also tend to be very good (to get you going, I’d start with Beautiful Eulogy’s Satellite Kite and Propaganda’s Crimson Cord).
They also just put on an arts conference, the Canvas Conference, in partnership with Western seminary, a theological college based in Portland, Oregon. That last sentence should give you a flavour of how the Humble Beast heart beats- they’re all about marrying creativity and theology and I stumbled across a video of the founder of the label, Thomas Terry, explaining this vision in a clear and concise fashion (the first 5 minutes should do it).
Now, I’ll put my cards on the table here. I love most things about Humble Beast, but I do find it a bit infuriating that their output seems directed firmly towards a Christian audience in a way that means that people who aren’t Christians are unlikely to clock it at all. I have been blessed by these guys. Loads of other Christians I know have been blessed by these guys. Seriously though it’s not the Christians of the western world who are short of soul food, how about sharing the wealth a bit 😉
Anyway, that gripe aside, I love the vision Thomas Terry lays out in this video. For artists of any discipline who have never got on with theology, or for theologians who don’t understand art, or just for anyone who wants to hear a clear Christian framework for the arts laid out, this is well worth a watch.