Uprok Records was a record label created in 1999 under the parent company Tooth & Nail Records, with a focus on distributing Christian hip-hop artists. The name Uprok Records refers to the breakdancing term (also spelled Uprock). The first three artists on the label were Ill Harmonics, Sup the Chemist and MG! The Visionary. Shortly after its inception Josh Niemyjski, who created and maintains SphereOfHipHop.com, took over as President and Artist & Repertoire manager. According to Niemyjski, "It was started because I feel like BEC and Tooth and Nail saw a niche that wasn't being filled." Through its parent companies BEC/Tooth & Nail and EMI Christian, it was able to sell in Christian and secular stores. However, a grassroots marketing was used to sell many of the albums online directly through the label, at SphereOfHipHop.com, at other hip-hop websites and local records stores, as well as at the artists live shows.
Currently the record label is not defunct but Josh Niemyjski has left to form ILLECT Recordings and parent label BEC/Tooth & Nail has very few hip-hop artists currently signed and being distributed under the Uprok label. Many of the former artists have signed to competing Christian hip-hop label Gotee Records, co-founded by TobyMac and also distributed by EMI, while others have started their own label or joined smaller labels and collectives.
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