Derek Minor
Gig Seeker Pro

Derek Minor

Nashville, Tennessee, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2007 | INDIE

Nashville, Tennessee, United States | INDIE
Established on Jan, 2007
Band Hip Hop Christian


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Independent emcee/producer lives up to his name."

Pro At a time when everybody wants to be a rapper, and anybody with a computer considers themselves an emcee, the online universe is flooded with delusional wannabes trying to front. The telltale signs are obvious -- weak flow, haphazard lyrics, unoriginal concepts, and amateurish sound quality. With so much digital debris out there, finding a new artist who has his act together is increasingly rare, but when it does happen, you want to share them with the world.

Enter Pro.

Born in Michigan and raised in Tennessee, Pro got bit by the hip-hop bug at a young age, despite a religious mother who was unenthusiastic about rap music in the house. He started rhyming and making beats early, getting an 8-track and keyboard as a young teenager and then refining his craft over the years, parlaying his studio skills into a scholarship to college, where he studied the ins and outs of the recording industry. He has since started his own label, and provided music for both television and film.

Listening to Pro's music, one word comes to mind -- diverse. Both his lyrics and production style vary from track to track, but no matter how he flips it, he always sounds sharp. He can come with the synthed out crunk/hyphy joints ("I'm Fly," "Move"), the soul-drenched autobiographical steez (my current favorite song "Classic Flow"), and the deep, political anthems ("Voice of the World"). His rhymes are on point, his hooks stick in your head for days, and most of all, he just sounds like a pro.

- Brolin

"Derek Minor 'Empire' Tops iTunes Hip-Hop/Rap Albums Chart"

Reflection Music Group label head and artist Derek Minor released his fifth studio album Empire today, January 27, 2015.

The album which Derek has stated is his best album yet, currently stands at the #1 spot on iTunes' Top Hip-Hop/Rap Albums chart and #8 on All Categories..

Congrats to Derek Minor and RMG! - Rapzilla

"SXSW Interview: Derek Minor"

Derek Minor has been having a great year: extensive U.S. touring, his latest release, Empire, debuted at 54 on the Billboard Top 200 charts, ranking even higher on the iTunes Hip Hop and Christian/Gospel charts, and now he returns to SXSW with his label, Reflection Music Group, to keep the momentum going!

We interviewed Derek about his career – past, present and future – last year, and we’re psyched to chat with him after the release of Empire as he prepares to join TuneCore, Swisher Sweets, Mirrored Media, CraveOnline and DropKloud for our TuneCore Live Austin party this Friday, March 20th during SXSW!
A lot has happened since the last time we chatted! How does it feel to have had Empire charting on Billboard, and what kind of role did TuneCore play for you in the past year?

Derek Minor: If feels really good to be able to chart on Billboard! Billboard is one of those staples for every artist as a barometer as to what’s happening in your music career and how to feel about what you’re doing, so I’m super honored to be able to be recognized by Billboard. The thing I love about Tune Core is it gives the artist the ability to take their career in their own hands. We’ve been using Tune Core for a long, long time – since we first started putting stuff out digitally. They’ve always been user friendly, they’ve always been indie artist friendly, and that’s beautiful because oftentimes people try to take advantage of indie artists, or they over-tax, but I think Tune Core just wants us to put out amazing music, and they want to be a part of it. And that’s awesome! I love that about it.
Tell us a little bit about your past SXSW experience. Are there any key takeaways you’re keeping in mind this year?

One of my highlights of my SXSW experience was when I got to see Nas. It was awesome hearing him walk through his career and talk about how Steve Stoute played a major role in that. I also got to see Kendrick Lamar before Good Kid M.a.a.d. City came out – he was a very humble person. What I love about SXSW is you really get a chance to meet artists and they’re very down to earth.

The TuneCore showcase. That’s something I’m looking forward to and the thing I love about this time is that I get the chance to actually meet the people in person that have had such an instrumental role in my career building Reflection Music Group. TuneCore has been for us from day one.
What do you feel are some the challenges facing unsigned artists at a massive event like SXSW?

Well, there are so many signed and unsigned artists. I think oftentimes artists come in with the perspective of ‘I-wanna-take-over-the-world!’ and there’s so many things to do. But I think for an artist that comes in with a very specific plan there are tons of opportunities. Even if you just go to the classes and don’t network you learn so much. So going in with a plan is the biggest challenge, because SXSW is so huge now.
What are some moves you think indie MC’s & producers can make to truly capitalize on their trip to SXSW?

I think you should go to as many showcases and classes as you can because I’ve met a ton of producers and other artists, and you never know – there’s so many networking opportunities! There are many vendors and all of that, so if you’re into DJing or producing there are vendors that do that stuff and make the equipment and walk you through some of the tools and add to your knowledge.
Will you be touring before and/or after your time in Austin?

Yes, the Now Until Forever Tour with Propaganda and KJ52 starts right after SXSW. It’s just exciting to go to SXSW in the first place, so it’s awesome to have that energy and hopefully carry it into the tour, so I’m super excited for that.
As a music fan, are there any acts or events you’re looking forward to (if you actually get some downtime to enjoy them!)?

For me – I really want to go and discover new bands. I remember when I found out about The Neighbourhood at SXSW. I’d never heard of them, and for me its being able to say, “Hey, I’ve never heard of this band before. Lets go check them out”. That’s what I most look forward to – seeing people I’ve never heard of.
As the co-founder of a label, would you say that you approach a music business hotbed like SXSW differently than your average artist may?

Definitely. I’m always looking for new talent and I’m always looking for producers and DJs to help enhance what my artists are doing, as well as my own music. My business partner Doc Watson, he meets with the people who are in suits every day – so that’s the thing I love. We get the opportunity to meet everyone while we’re there. I definitely think I approach it a little differently.
Will you be on the outlook for new artists to sign at the various shows you perform and attend?

Yeah, always!
Aside from performing and networking, what do you personally enjoy about/looking forward to most about SXSW?

My whole record label and all of my artists are going to be there, so I’m really looking forward to connecting with them. We kind of look at it as a retreat. We get to enrich our brains and see some cool bands, and we’re also going to have a little RMG barbecue while we’re out there, so it’s going to be pretty sweet. - Tunecore

"Lecrae's Former Label-Mate Derek Minor Signs to Popular Secular Music Company eOne"

Former Reach Records artist and Lecrae affiliate Derek Minor has signed a new distribution deal with Entertainment One, a label that many secular superstar rappers such as Tupac Shakur, Cam'ron, and the Wu Tang Clan were signed to in the past.

Minor left Reach Records earlier this year and has chosen to go the secular route when finding a new home to distribute his music.

"I am very excited about my new relationship with Entertainment One," said Minor. "I feel confident that the team at eOne will provide me with the resources, experience and support that will allow me to reach my full potential as an artist."

eOne also expressed its excitement to add the singer-songwriter to its roster.

"This is the first distribution agreement we have embarked on with an artist such as Derek Minor," said Mike Olsen, president of eOne Music Nashville. "We are excited about this release and look forward to expanding the platform of our label services division within the urban and Christian hip hop marketplace."

The distribution deal appears to be a collaboration with Minor's own independent label Reflective Music Group and eOne. Minor will release his upcoming album "Empire" through the new agreement. This will be his first release since leaving Reach Records. Production for the project will be handled by Reach Records affiliate Dirty Rice who has crafted sounds for Lecrae and Trip Lee in the past.

His most recent project "Minorville" reached the top of Bilboard's Gospel Music Charts and earned Stellar and Dove Award nominations for the CD and single, "Dear Mr. Christian."

Derek Minor burst on the rap scene in 2008 under the moniker Pro. In 2012 he changed his name to Derek Minor after releasing his third album "Dying to Live.

Read more at - CP Entertainment


The Pro Show (2006)

Transformers the Mixtape (2006)

Black Out (2008)

Redemption (2009)

Dying to Live (2011)

RMG Welcome to the Family (2011)

Minorville (2013)

Empire (2015)



Originally from Michigan, Derek Minor moved to Tennessee when he was six. His father was a jazz guitarist and his mother sang in the church choir, but neither musical genre appealed to him. When he found a DJ Quik cassette at his cousin’s house, though, Derek Minor’s life was transformed. He knew he wanted to rap.

From there, Derek Minor became enamored with the work of Bone Thugs-n-Harmony and 2Pac, as well as Tennessee rappers Pistol, Quanie Cash, Three 6 Mafia, Playa Fly and Gangsta Blac, among others. But after signing a contract with an independent label and releasing material there, Derek Minor lost his grandfather, grandmother and godmother in quick succession. He then surrendered his life to God and left a life where money and women were his focus.

Derek Minor called himself Pro, short for Prodigal, and formed the Reflection Music Group with his friend Doc Watson. After releasing his The Black Out album in 2008, he met Lecrae and BJ, both of whom challenged him to become a more complete Christian artist. His subsequent material, including the albums Redemption (2010) and Dying To Live (2011), found Pro figuring out what type of artist he wanted to be.

An Achilles injury in 2012 gave Pro time to reflect on his music, his life and his brand. Realizing that Pro was too common a moniker, the man born Derek Johnson decided to change his stage name to Derek Minor, since “Minor” is similar to “Junior,” which Derek is. “It’s liberating because I feel like I’m starting over, like I have a brand new career,” says Derek Minor, whose material is now released in conjunction with Reach Records, also home to Lecrae. “That’s really fun because I can really shape who I’m going to be from here on out. It’s a name I feel like I can grow with forever and do music, as opposed to Pro, which felt a little juvenile to me.