A lyrical powerhouse gleaming above the haystack of mediocrity best describes Mississippi Hip-Hop artist Christopher “Topher” Townsend. With the slanted multisyllabic rhyme scheme of early Eminem fused with the clean flow of renegade Christian rapper Lecrae, hip hop heads deem Topher a hybrid artist. Blending the gritty sound from the boombap era with the unconventional style of today’s trip-hop gives way to Topher’s competitive edge and ability to cultivate the essence of authenticity- a key ingredient missing from mainstream rap.
Realizing his passion for music at the tender age of five, Topher tiptoed his way into the music scene with a guitar in one hand and a toy in the other. It took all but three years for Topher to realize that following in his father’s footsteps of blues singing and guitar slinging wasn’t a hereditary gift passed from generation to generation. Taking his very first step against the grain, a young Topher tossed the guitar picks and picked up a pen. In discovering the natural ability to write his own lyrics, Topher soon captured the stylistic elements rooted in every true emcee. From style, structure, speed and accuracy to originality, fluid flow and seamless delivery!
What started as a childhood pastime blossomed into a fully developed skill. From unpaid gigs at high school house parties to sharing college stages with Jared Pellerin, Topher set out to prove he deserved to sit amongst the greats in the rap game. But with time comes change. For Topher, life turned on its head and veered down a tumultuous road of heartbreak and hardships, while Jared Pellerin went on to become the New Orleans Rapper and Indie sensation known as Pell. Battling self-doubt and a lack of direction, Topher enlisted in the Air Force with the intent to find a more fulfilling purpose. Although estranged, his relationship with music never met its full end. Assembling stanzas in his head and freestyling has always been an innate ability and although Topher shied away from his gift, he found inspiration in the oddest measures. Rapping in Hebrew for an audience of 5 thousand people was one them.
Upon discharge, the hobbyist pursued his passion and became a successful rapper. Topher co-founded the indie record label Be Inspired Group with R&B vocalist, Mario Devon in Memphis, Tennessee – where he released his first full length project entitled Everybody Hates Chris on April 25th 2017 - denoting the 6th anniversary from the military and equally symbolizing the moment he chose his dreams over conformity. Determined not to be boxed into the gospel rap genre, the successful entrepreneur transitioned from a strictly faith based artist to a progressive rapper - one in pursuit to bridge the gap between Christian rappers and traditional artists. With uplifting anecdotes and the aggressive surge of thought provoking messages, Topher’s creative range commands attention, which is a telling indicator of true lyrical ability. His walk-in life is a proof that regardless of the hand you are dealt - it’s how you play the game that makes you successful.
“Your gift will make room for you…” - Proverbs 18:16