Urban Gospel in Ghana...so far - @JaySmoke

posted by RepJesus Entertainment on Mon, 11 Jan, 2016. Comments: • Views: 2865

Over the years, we have seen a lot of improvement in urban gospel but last year was by far the year with the biggest growth. We saw a lot of new potential artists emerge and also witness some good publicity for the genre. I believe that there’s a lot more to be done and together as a team, we can.
There are a couple of things I look forward to seeing this year, 2016, but before I get into all that, let me do a retrospect into the year 2015. Like I said, quite a lot happened last year so I will break it down. NB. Kindly note that this is my thoughts at the moment of writing this article, I might have skipped some artists in the process, kindly point that out in the comment area below and we will amend the list.
  1. I am always keen on finding new quality talents to promote and push and last year, we saw a couple of them come up. Some might have been around awhile but last year was the year in which they really stood out for me. Reinny Ray was one of such emcees. Now Ray has a delivery that surpasses many in the genre at the moment and I believe with time and perseverance, he can definitely go far. His single No F9was a massive success both on repjesus.com and across the internet. I can’t wait to hear more from him. Nuel Triumph is another emcee who has massive potential. I had the opportunity to listen to a couple of his upcoming projects and boy, does this guy packsome heat or what. His single Desperationdidn’t really show all that he has to offer and I simply can’t wait to see him explode. Another crazy talent that surfaced for me last year was Edna and Atakora. Now these two are like a match made in heaven. Onstage and offstage, they don’t play. I have had the privilege of hearing firsthand what they went through and are going through and it makes me appreciate their music more each time I listen to them. They are on a mission and I know it’s only a matter of time before the whole world hear what they have to say. Last year they released a series of hits like I’m in love, Pull up like a G,Me Nyame Soand featured on my smashing single SOTK3. This is just the beginning for them and trust me, they have a lot more in store for us. Now another emcee who definitely caught my eye was Morphat. At one point, I thought we had a dancehall movement going on in urban gospel but then it suddenly faded away and just when you thought all was lost, Morphat came along and he definitely knows what he is about. His single Am blessedft Regardless was an instant success and proved that there’s still hope for dancehall. I know deep down that the future is bright for him and if you doubt me, check out his most recent tune, Nuh Fear. A few other cats also sprang up last year. Cats like Bodiless, BeeZZ, LKay, Double Army, Kevin PY, Nii Soul etc and I wish them all the best this year.

  2. It’s without a doubt that last year we saw some urban gospel cats putting in extra work to raise their ministry to the next level. The first artist that really did it for me last year was Perez Musik. Barely 2 years in the game, Perez has done stuff that artists way older than him in the industry are yet to do and not only did he do stuff, he is still doing stuff and I am really excited for him. Last year Perez Musik released his debut album Tenacity which I have to say is arguably one of the best, if not the best urban gospel afro pop album of the year. On the album you have tracks like Majieo Yi (Mala), For your love, Good over Evil, Shake it, We no dey fearand many others. He has collaborated with most of the urban gospel giants like ERock, Regardless, Kingzkid and has also shot about 4 music videos which are currently circulating online and off. If there was an urban gospel awards show, am certain Perez would be amongst the top winners. Another artist who, undoubtedly, did extremely well last year is Kingzkid. For the first time in the history of urban gospel, we had a representation in the Vodafone Unsung Category of the VGMA and even though he didn’t win (obviously), he still created a buzz that took urban gospel into homes that would not have heard of us. Another thing that really stood out for me was the fact that, even though Kingzkid was the one nominated for the Unsung Category, he did songs which gave other artists like Esaias and Regardless a chance to be seen and heard. Which was too generous if you ask me. Last year also saw the release of his sophomore album, Metamorphosis, which can be downloaded for free on our website. Seriously if you see this guy being blessed, don’t get upset. He also released two videos of his album for Dada Beeand Halleluyah. Kingzkid is definitely growing and this year looks like a very promising year for him. He has already dropped his first single for the year Thy Kingdom Comewhich features another talent all the way in Nigeria, Kelar Trills. A group which is fast becoming the most popular urban gospel group in Ghana can’t be omitted from this list. It’s none other than Preachers. From winning awards, to releasing quality music videos, and dropping hot bangers, Preachers definitely deserve to be on this list. One thing we know about Preachers is their uncompromising stance when it comes to high quality music videos. And thats what we saw with the launch of their latest music video, Crazy. They ended the year with a new tune titled One by Oneand it’s already gaining massive airplay across the nation. Another artist that really did well last year is Jonn Winner. This brother, out of nowhere, just swept everybody off their feet with not not but two heavy weight music videos i.e. I can’t imagineand Call him. It’s one thing to release several music videos in a year and it’s another to shoot them in different countries. I can’t imagine was shot in beautiful South Africa, whilst Call him was shot on location in Dubai andfeatured American Gospel giant, Isaac Simpson. Call Himwas nominated as best Gospel Music Video alongside Preachers' Crazy, Kingzkid's Hallelujah and Minister Rapture's Baba God at the 4Syte Music Video Awards. Kingzkid went on to win the award after some minor controversy. There were a few other artists that put in work last year i.e. Minister Rapture, Esaias, Lil Zig, Regardless amongst others.

  3. Last year also brought about a couple of urban gospel events which helped propel the genre. Undoubtedly the biggest event of last year was GiveItUp2015. Organized by Praise TV, it was a street concert which was held at Osu and had several urban gospel emcees rocking the stage. As side attraction, the event brought on Lord Kenya and for the first time in a very long time, we saw Lord Kenya take us back in time with his erratic performance on stage. It was a memorable night and it’s one event am looking forward to every year. Another event that showcased urban gospel was HealTheStreetwhich was similar to GiveItUp but on a much smaller scale. Iwould like to give a big shoutout to the organizers of Urban Gospel Street Cypher. Even though it didn't receive as much support and awareness, I believe it has a bright future and the organizers should keep pushing forward.

  4. I also witness a bunch of mega social media hype last year. Bloggers from all over the country coming out to support the movement and I believe this contributed in someway to the growth of the industry. And I would say a big shoutout to VBuqs, Gospel GH, Gospel Bluetooth etc for all the works they put into pushing urban gospel.
These were some of the activities, I could recall, that made last year the best year for urban gospel as far as I am concerned. I believe there are some other things which I may not have covered and I encourage you to post them below if you do remember a memorable activity that influenced urban gospel.

Anticipation for 2016

Just as 2015 was a super year for urban gospel, I am believing the same, if not a better 2016 for urban gospel. So many things on my mind. Below are afew of the things I would love to see happen this year. God willing, we will come back next year to this list to see how well we did.
  • More collaborations between contemporary gospel artists and urban gospel artists. e.g. Preachers + Cindy Thompson or Regardless + OJ. Stuff like that. It certainly would blow the industry up.
  • Urban gospel music/videos nominated and winning awards at traditionalentertainment award shows in the country like GMA and 4Syte MVA.
  • Good creative urban gospel music videos.
  • Urban gospel DJ’s coming out and doing collaborations with other DJs and artists.
  • Aside Edna, I don’t know of any female emcee capable of packing heat to rival any male emcee. So I definitely would like to see more urban gospel female hiphop artists.
  • One thing I notice about urban gospel emcees is the age of the emcees. We don’t have enough "independent" artists in the genre. And when I say independent, I mean mature artists. Most of these cats are high school/uni students and it gives you an idea of the strength of the industry, if all your emcees are students, there's very little you can do with such a group.
  • Emcees spitting in local dialects. Be it Pidgin, Twi, Ga, Fante, Hausa etc. Maybe even in French. I personally think English rap is overrated. Youshouldn’t feel pressured to rap in Englishif you aren'tfluent in it, flip it up and do pidgin.
  • afro pop tunes.
  • I would reluctantly say, lets have our very own award show, but am not quite sure if the industry is grown enough for such an event. I could be wrong though.
All in all, I believe this year will be a great one for urban gospel and I am looking forward to being a part of it. I hope you will join us with your prayers and support.

God Bless your Hustle in 2016wink

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