Monday, June 18, 2012

What Manner Of Gospel Artistes?

In the days of yore, gospel musicians were seen as holy and represented the symbol of the Lord. In fact, they were held in high esteem to the point that their way of life and dressing were always a reference point when a good example is the topic. Today, that is no more, as gospel musicians of this new dispensation are not ready to follow their predecessors’ way. Modern day gospel singers have decided to embrace the “latest” in town. In this special write-up, LEADERSHIP SUNDAY’s Senior Correspondent, Ajibade Alabi, looks at the issue critically and asks what manner of gospel artistes are we having now?

Midnight Crew
In the years past, gospel music was such an entrenched genre of the Nigerian music industry that secular artistes like King Sunny Ade and Commander Ebenezer Obey joined the fray. They sang lavishly, thanking God for His mercies and effusively praising Him for His goodness and kindness.

But they never referred to themselves as gospel artistes, as they were not, and they were never classified as such. However, Commander Obey, who has now gone fully into gospel music and is even now an evangelist, can now be fully referred to as a gospel artiste.

All along though, there have been artistes who sang strictly gospel lyrics. Many were not popular, receiving minimal airplay, the bulk of which was on Christian service days, Sundays, and in adherence with the Word of God. They performed in churches, revivals and other appropriate venues.

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