We recently caught up with Jimmie McDowell, the executive producer of the Luvv 2 Dance and Luvv 2 Worship albums, via e-mail to discuss how his most recent compilation came together, how worship hop music is breaking down barriers, and whether or not we can expect a Luvv 2 Polka album in the near future.
Sketch: What sparked the idea for you to assemble this hip hop worship project?
Jimmie: My passion to engage youth and young adults in worship.
Sketch: How did you go about identifying the artists who would participate and deciding which ones would appear on the same song together?
Jimmie: I pretty much reached out to every artist I know to be part of this. You will find a lot of the artists that were on Luvv To Dance on this project and a lot of new ones as well. Of course, H-Town is strongly represented. All of the Much Luvv artists from my stint as VP of the label are on it, hence the “Luvv” title.
As far as matching artist collabs, for the most part, I went with the artist(s) that I could hear in my head on the track. And then there are the killer collabs that I had to do like “Change Me” with Cheno Lyfe, Gospel Gangstaz and D-Maub and “Every Step Of The Way” with K-Drama, Whuteva and Knine.
Sketch: You executive-produced a similar EDM-influenced hip hop album a few years ago. What lessons did you learn from that project that you could apply here?
Jimmie: Not to rush it. Although, I guess I didn’t fully learn since there was definitely some rushing going on in these last few weeks to meet deadlines. I’m determined to one day have a completed project in hand before setting any deadlines.
Sketch: Do you find that hip hop worship is more palatable to people still skeptical of the concept of Christian rap? Or would you say it’s as accepted as the more street/pop version of faith-based hip hop?
Jimmie: Yes, definitely more palatable. More and more, I am seeing the church worship band bring out a rapper during a worship song in “big church.” Who can resist hearing artists worship our God using the gifts given by Him?
Sketch: What can we expect next from this series? Luvv 2 Rock? Luvv 2 Square Dance? Luvv 2 Polka?
Jimmie: Well I can assure you that there will be no square dance or polka projects coming from me. I actually had started Luvv 2 Rock but then realized that I’m not qualified to represent that genre so I scratched it.
I’m most likely going to do some upbeat dance re-mixes of some of the slower worship joints. Luvv 2 Remix, Ha! I just thought of that!
I’m also kicking around the idea of re-making some old school hip hop records. Not sure if Luvv 2 Old Skool makes sense, but what does these days? LOL!