Utah County resident, Jamesthemormon, is making history with his new album, “I’m Not a Rapper.”
As of Thursday afternoon, the album hit No. 1 on the Top Hip-Hop/Rap Album chart and No. 7 overall album on iTunes.
And how is Jamesthemormon, whose given name is James Curran, not a rapper when his album is climbing the chart? He explained why to Utah Valley Magazine in January.
“It’s just like my dad’s hobby is gardening, but no one calls him a gardener,” he said. “My dad works 12 hour days as a stockbroker, he has a leadership calling in the LDS Church, he has a family and he happens to like gardening on the weekends. Rapping is like that for me.”
While Jamesthemormon has written that he excited about the success of the album, he is more concerned about the message he is trying to share with clean rap.
“On my mission, I had a lot of experiences where I became frustrated when members of the church were either unwilling or too afraid to share the gospel with their friends and neighbors,” Jamesthemormon wrote on his blog. “I even ran into members who were too scared to let anyone outside of church know they were Mormon. When I returned home from my mission I made a commitment to myself and the Lord that there would never be an opportunity for someone to question what I believed or stood for, so two days after I got back from my mission I changed all my social media handles to @jamesthemormon.”
Jamesthemormon will donate fifty percent of the album’s proceeds to the LDS missionary fund.
Last year Jamesthemormon wrote a song, “Dreamin,” a rap he wrote after Tanner Mangum’s miracle winning passes during the BYU football season.
For this album, he collaborated with new BYU head football coach Kalani Sitake on the music video for “Motivation.” Sitake said in one promotional video that the album was so good that he bought it twice.
The six-song album is $4.99 on iTunes and all of the songs are streamed on Spotify.
Updated at 1:20 p.m. on April 28th to included information on ranking on iTunes.