YP aka Young Paul describes himself as “a servant of the Lord, a father, and an artist who is inspired by God’s word.”

The New Jersey native started writing his raps in high school but didn’t start recording until around age twenty. “I always felt like hip-hop was a small door that a whole bunch of people were trying to get into.” At age twenty-one, YP said “The Lord simply told me, ‘This is what I want you to do. I called you to do this and gave you this gift.” He stopped making music for various reasons at one point in his twenties but has since gotten back to it, now in his early thirties.

Last month he released a mixtape called Give Me A Minute Vol. 1 which compiled a series of freestyles he released in a series called Saturday BaRtoons. He and his friend, fellow artist Merk Montes, had been sharing encouraging videos on Instagram on Mondays and Wednesdays for several weeks. “I said, ‘Yo, we should do a segment and add Saturday BaRtoons.” As a kid, YP enjoyed watching cartoons on Saturday mornings.

“I was like, ‘Yo, let’s give people something to wake up to on Saturday and give them some fresh bars.'” 

YP received lots of positive feedback on these freestyles and decided to record them. Most of the tracks on Give Me A Minute Vol. 1 are shortly over one minute long. “I did this for anybody who has that lyrical appetite and wants that ear candy when it comes to hip-hop.” Every track features YP rapping over industry beats, which is why the project is a free mixtape.

Give Me a Minute Vol. 1 album cover

The beat from “Wild Styles,” the fourth track on the mixtape, is from Wu-Tang Clan’s 1997 song “Triumph.” YP got the idea for the song title after thinking, “What’s a dope title that’ll go fly with this record?” He described his musical style as wild in the sense that it varies between aggressive, mellow, and everything in between.

“When people hear me, I want them to say, ‘Yo, this dude is raw. This person is wild. That hit a spot.'” 

Give Me A Minute Vol. 1 continues with “UFO,” a song in which YP addresses his unusual theory about unidentified flying objects. He recently watched a documentary on Netflix called Bob Lazar: Area 51 & Flying Saucers about a man who worked at Area 51, supposedly with UFOs. “I’m into all that stuff… I know not all are legit, but some are real.” YP said his opinions are subject to change as he continues to learn, but he currently believes that UFOs come from supernatural, demonic beings.

The beat of “Kill Yeezys” is a play on the vibe of a boom-bap Big L song. Big L was an up-and-coming rapper from Harlem in New York City in the 1990s but was tragically murdered in 1999. “He was a legend, and he was a great lyricist, an icon.” 

“Who Bumps It” originated from G Herbo and Southside’s 2018 song “Who Run It.” Last year, the artists released a social media challenge for who can rap the best verse over this beat. When YP heard about the challenge, he decided to participate.

“I gave it a shot, and it came out pretty dope, so I put it on the mixtape. It’s basically my way of saying, ‘Yo, we’re gonna bump this right here.'”

The beat from “Real Quick” comes from Drake’s 2013 song, “0 to 100 / The Catch Up.” One of Drake’s lines was, “We go 0 to 100 n****, real quick.” In his own lyrics, YP wants to get the listeners’ attention “real quick” to talk about his faith. 

Give Me A Minute Vol. 1’s following track, “Lil Taste” flows with the theme of the mixtape due to it being about something small and short, like the length of each song. It was the second verse he shared in the series, and the beat comes from Tyga’s 2018 song “Taste.” “It’s just a play on words from the original title… I felt like little taste fit well with the title of the project.” 

“No More Gimmicks” is a track that YP believes can appeal to all hip-hop fans, whatever they believe. The beat is from a Tekashi 6ix9ine song; the artist liked to provoke arguments and insult others, primarily online, but ended up getting involved in gangs in attempts to gain fame as an artist. He made a lot of enemies and ended up going to prison as a result of being behind attempted hits, among dozens of other crimes. “Ultimately he was doing that so that he could get money and stand out from other artists. He did all that clout-chasing.” 

Since being arrested last year and facing a nearly fifty-year sentence, he has testified to law enforcement about the crimes of dozens of gang members, creating even more enemies. “Look what happened to this kid just because he wanted to get the money,” said YP.

“Bullets Fly Freestyle” provides a metaphor about “targeting” people with the Gospel. “It’s gonna cause you to think. It’s gonna cause you to want to digest what I’m saying to you right now, especially if you’re a kid from the hood.” YP wanted to encourage believers to be proactive in sharing their faith in urban communities.

“Let’s do more than just pray. Let’s go out there and preach love to the goons with the semi tucked.”

In neighborhoods like the one in which YP grew up, he has seen that evangelism is lacking. 

YP aka Young Paul

YP discusses the reality of hell in his song, “MillaJerz.” The beat was taken from Meek Mill’s song, “Milladelphia,” and YP spun the title because he is from New Jersey. “It was raw… I’m talking about hell. I’m talking to people and letting them know, but I’m not condemning people. I’m letting them know that hell wasn’t created for us. It was really created for the devil and his demons.” He wants listeners to understand that hell is the punishment for sin, but that they can be saved through Christ. “Hell is real. If we die without a savior, if we die without a mediator, when are standing before God, the righteous God, He’s gonna say, ‘Depart from me. I never knew you.'” 

Give Me A Minute Vol. 1 concludes with “You Pray,” encouraging listeners to “not value yourselves based on the amount of money you have.” YP wants listeners to see their inherent value as a person made in the image and likeness of God, pursued by Jesus.

“Your worth is in Christ, knowing that your soul is saved. The bible says, rejoice in nothing but that your name is written in the book of life.” 

The song is also a prayer for the world to place love over hate. “Hate is a driving force that is driven by the devil. You can feel that.”

Outside of music, YP enjoys spending time with friends and his children, playing basketball, and watching movies. 

Follow YP aka Young Paul on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Listen to Give Me a Minute Vol. 1 here.