How did Becca Groninga, a senior mechanical engineering major, land a record deal with Enoch Flow Records, a Christian hip-hop label?
Groninga’s interest in spoken word—a form of word-based performance art—and rap started when she was in high school in Green Isle, Minnesota, where she was inspired to write her own lyrics. During her freshman and sophomore years at Dordt, Groninga kept writing.
Then, in her junior year, Groninga participated in Talent Extravaganza, an event at which Dordt students show their talents to the rest of campus. She performed “Alone,” a song she’d written about loneliness and how the church needs to come alongside people who are hurting.
“People really enjoyed that song,” she says. “Once I realized God had given me an opportunity and a ministry in music, I decided to do more.”
Groninga has performed at worship arts gatherings and NC/DC, Dordt’s annual music competition with Northwestern College. Jonathan De Groot, who directs chapel worship, asked Groninga to perform spoken word at chapel.
“Spoken word is not a common medium for many on Dordt’s campus, and it breaks students’ expectations,” says De Groot. “I think the novelty of this lyrical presentation, along with Becca’s excellent execution, demands a different kind of attention than our community is used to giving. Our frame of reference for spoken word as an art form is being created with a high standard by Becca.”
Then, a worship arts leader encouraged her to use the worship arts recording studio.
“I pretty much got my first song recorded for free, thanks to Dordt,” says Groninga.
By senior year, Groninga was posting her music regularly on Instagram under the stage name “Rezin.” Attempting to participate in a lyrics competition, Groninga unwittingly contacted a record producer, who messaged her and asked her to create a song. That connection led to a record deal.
Enoch Flow Records is just starting out, and Groninga will work as a mechanical engineer as she pursues her passion for rap and spoken word. Still, a record deal is an impressive feat.
De Groot is grateful that Groninga used her lyrical gifts while at Dordt. He is a self-admitted novice when it comes to spoken word, but he says that Groninga’s performances affected him deeply.
“Something about her honesty, simplicity, and the beauty in how she puts words together is moving,” says De Groot. “I find her lyrics to reflect an almost Psalm-like depth of tension and wrestling through the ‘real stuff of life’ that seems so rare in our insta-culture.”