You Can Love Rap, Jesus, and the Color Pink

The first female artist on Lecrae’s label, Wande talks to CT about being a woman in Christian hip-hop and how the genre can be an entry point for learning gospel truths.

Five years ago, when Yewande Dees became the first female artist with Reach Records, it was a milestone for the Christian hip-hop label and for all of Christian hip-hop. The 28-year-old Nigerian-born rapper, who currently performs as Wande, is one of only a handful of women on the scene.

Wande began as a reporter covering Christian hip-hop online, then took a job in artist development for Reach, the independent label cofounded by Lecrae and Ben Washer.

In 2019, she signed a deal with the label, and since then, her lyricism, charisma, and energy have helped her carve a new path that she hopes other women will be able to follow. Reach recently signed writer and artist Jackie Hill Perry, in another move toward gender parity in a decidedly male-dominated segment of the music industry.

Now based in Atlanta, Wande is bringing her lyrical creativity and flow to collaborations with artists such as Maverick City Music (“Firm Foundation (He’s Gonna Make a Way)”), Lecrae (“Blessed Up”), and TobyMac (“Found”). She has built a loyal following online, connecting with fans through comical send-ups of biblical characters and “get ready with me” videos.

She sees her job as a calling and her music as an opportunity to lead people to worship. Tracks like “Found” showcase her ability to shift between melodic lines and rapped lyrics. Her latest single, “Send That,” featuring Lecrae, is an anthemic declaration of confidence in prayer and the power of the Holy Spirit. It’s unapologetically victorious. “If God is for me, who can come against me? / Send them prayers up and watch him move,” she raps, leading into the first chorus.

Wande spoke with CT about …

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