Minister Redeemed
Love Did It
Independent (release date: June 3, 2023)

By Robert M. Marovich

Minister Redeemed (Elder Thaddeus K. Bruce), best known for his single “That’s Not My Name Anymore,” released an album last June called Love Did It. It’s a concise and personal celebration of the love of Jesus that, through his sacrificial death and resurrection, brings new life.

Bruce’s stage name is appropriate. A crack cocaine addiction derailed his potentially-lucrative career in pro basketball and spiraled his life downward for some two decades. After rehabilitation and a spiritual restoration, Bruce decided to sing God’s praises as Christian hip hop artist Minister Redeemed.

A warbling organ opens “My Jesus Loves Me” and introduces the listener to Minister Redeemed’s baritone voice, a robust, grainy instrument that evokes Darius Rucker. The song of gratitude conjures Calvary and John 3:16, and incorporates lyrics from Sunday School classics “Jesus Loves Me” and “This Little Light of Mine.” The jazzy “Everlasting Love” refashions the more general message of Jeremiah 31:3 into a personal testimony.

On the incisive and socially-aware “Enough is Enough,” Minister Redeemed pleads for a cessation of all violence, and also calls for an end to hypocrisy, greed, police brutality, corruption, racism, and hunger. He can’t understand those who avert their eyes and do nothing because, he warns at the end, the next victims “could be you and me.”

If songs like “Enough is Enough,” “Messenger,” and “Inside Out” are more interesting than others, the title track is unquestionably the album’s finest moment. A spritely fiddle and acoustic guitar fuel the song, which intertwines the album’s theme of Jesus’ sacrifice with the reawakened acknowledgement of African American accomplishments in folk and country music.

The production is crisp, allowing the rhymes to pop out, and the arrangements are sufficiently varied to keep the listener’s attention.

Three of Five Stars

Picks: “Love Did It,” “Enough is Enough”

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Written by : Bob Marovich

Bob Marovich is a gospel music historian, author, and radio host. Founder of Journal of Gospel Music blog (formally The Black Gospel Blog) and producer of the Gospel Memories Radio Show.