By Michael Ashcraft –
Guvna B, the mild-mannered British Christian rapper, got smacked to the ground and his face bloodied by some white street thugs for no reason other than the fact that he was black, he contends. He reported the incident to police, but they could find no witnesses and no video footage.
In some cities, it could be enough to ignite civil unrest, but Guvna B sang a song “Bridgeland Road” in conjunction with Wakanda star Michaela Coel.
“What I experienced was tough to deal with and my mind was loaded with nuanced thoughts around race, identity and the structures which contribute to shaping society,” said Guvna B, whose real name is Isaac Borquaye, the son of Ghanian parents.
“Michaela reminded me that art isn’t just for others to consume, but it’s also a processing tool for ourselves. She encouraged me to write about what happened and the result is not only this song, but an album that provided me with the closure I desperately needed.”
The Guvna got saved in a poor neighborhood of London. His parents instilled Christianity in their home, but the neighborhood pulled him toward the unsavory world of gang violence, fights and stabbings. Like many kids who don’t fully comprehend the faith of their parents, Isaac tried to walk both worlds.
When reports of his trouble making in school and running with the wrong crowd out of school got to the church’s youth leader, the pastor knew what to say: “If you want to be a good gangster, you have to go all-in. But if you want to be a good Christian, you have to go all-in. If you decide to be a gangster, you might get stabbed.”
The Guvna, who admits to glaring self-doubt, discovered he was afraid and didn’t want to go all-in with the streets. So instead, he went all-in-for God.
“I made up my mind. I’m too scared to be a gangster,” he admits on Premier on Demand. “I’m just gonna be a Christian.”
Not long after, he was playing soccer (the Brits call it football) on the schoolyard in the rain when a friend got hit by lightning. School administrators could not resuscitate him, and he was rushed to the hospital in an ambulance, where he was put on life support.
“He couldn’t breathe by himself,” the Guvna remembers. “I had recently become a Christian and was full of faith and optimism. I said a prayer that God would help him pull through. My friends were really struggling because they didn’t have faith back then. It was a big shock when he pulled through. The doctors couldn’t explain.”
Since then, the Guvna has cemented his faith and launched some of Britain’s best Christian rap. “Cast Your Cares” is a swelling anthem that can help anyone going through hard times.
He has released 10 albums and won two MOBO Awards for Best Christian Act. He has collaborated with Wretch 32, Samm Henshaw, Matt Redman, Michelle Williams and Andy Mineo. His distinctive British accent makes his music all the more listenable.
Guvna B lives in Greenwich Village with his wife and son. He has written two books, Unpopular Culture and Toxic Masculinity and How I Face the Man Within the Man. He has appeared in shows for the BBC on Gospel rap and soccer. He participates in his church and spreads the gospel to the youth.
So it’s saddening that he had to go through the disgraceful attack of hate. Two guys were standing right in front of his car. Guvna B politely said, “Excuse me, please,” but they acted like they couldn’t hear. So the Guvna slipped past them, accidentally brushing them slightly.
That’s when the two pounced on him. “Do you want trouble?” they threatened and busted his face and knocked him to the ground, by his account.
Mindful of the Biblical mandates to avoid violence, he instead reported the incident to the police, who turned up nothing. No witnesses, no CCTV. He finds that strange.
Guvna had a license plate, which the police tracked to a place of work. The boss refused to give their names. The police asked the Guvna if he had a criminal record. Humiliated even when he was the victim, he didn’t answer.
“I guess I’m not their idea of victim,” he raps on “Bridgeland Road.” “Call that gentrification. Imagine that: closing the case and cuts on my face. It’s mad. Because if they wanted to, they could do it again.”
If you want to know more about a personal relationship with God, go here
Read about fellow British Christian rapper S.O.
About the writer of this article: Pastor Mike Ashcraft is also a financial professional in California.