A Richmond church helped to inspire an Oakland rapper’s transition to a Christian-centered brand of hip hop — and the artist is now being credited with helping religious centers spread the Bible’s teachings to urban youth.
This month, The Christian Chronicle published an interesting profile on Anthony Nelson aka the rapper A. Doulos. The ex-street hustler says God’s intervention led him to abandoning street life as well as his former stage name Ant Diddley Dog, which had enjoyed a strong underground following as part of the ’90s group Bad-N-Fluenz.
The change in name and lyrics, however, has not quelled the rapper’s ability to succeed — The Mercury News called his new album, The Proclamation, one of 2016’s best.
Harrowing experiences of life on the street, along with losing a close friend to a car accident, helped steer Nelson away from crime and toward religion, according to the Chronicle. Despite being unemployed with no high school diploma, Nelson began working for an industrial temp agency that led to a job at the Chevron Richmond Refinery, where he met a coworker who inspired him to join a Bible class at the Civic Center Church of Christ in Richmond.
Nelson studied the Bible extensively before returning to hip hop.
“Soon, he was rapping again,” the Chronicle reports. “But instead of objectifying women, he rhymed about their value. Instead of robbing fast-food chains, he talked about filling the void in his life.”
We encourage our reader to read the full report here.