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CITY PRESS PICKS: Get your praise on with these new gospel albums

29 April 2018 6:00 AM
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CITY PRESS PICKS: Get your praise on with these new gospel albums

Johannesburg - Gospel has long been one of the most successful music genres in the country.

For decades, gospel artists have stayed at the top of the charts with new releases and renditions of traditional hymns.

From African rhythms to the organ, any sound or word associated with the expression of spirituality and faith is brought to the fore through gospel music.

Many people feel a strong attachment to the genre for how it makes people feel and view the world around them.

They’re a 10 time South African Music Awards-winning a cappella gospel group that has blended both traditional South African Methodists hymns and fresh original gospel tracks on their latest album, Soloko Intliziyo Yam, which was nominated in the Best African Indigenous Gospel Album category this year. The legendary 16-member group has released more than 30 albums to date and is celebrated for their harmonious vocals.

Recorded at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg in 2017, the album Joyous Celebration 22: All For You promises to move fans of the gospel powerhouse into praise and worship from the first track through to the very last. In keeping with the title All For You, the first single and album opener, Umoya Kulendawo, transports listeners to the nostalgic roots of early Joyous Celebration recordings. This is followed by a second single, Modimo Ke Lerato, received equally well by fans. The album has reached gold status and the group released the song Wenzile as a third single this year.

Famous for being a member of Afro-pop group Malaika, Bongani Nchang has taken a different musical journey for his first solo album, digging deep into his spirituality. The album, Wonders of Mercy, is his most personal project yet. The first single to come off it was was Worship Medley, an infectious track loaded with a deeper life-changing meaning. “I sang a song – a medley, actually – at church and someone came to me to tell me he had contemplated killing himself until the moment he heard me sing. The song had no title at the time so I called it Worship Medley.”

Fiso, a new kid on the gospel block, was born and raised in Newcastle, KwaZulu-Natal, and discovered his singing voice at the age of nine. Fiso then started singing in his church choir to help mould his voice and sound until he was able to move to Johannesburg to pursue his music career. He was then discovered by music producer and actor Percy Ingle. The catchy single that broke Fiso into the music industry, Mandingene, caught DJ Maphorisa’s attention, who then worked on a remix. Fiso’s album will be released at the end of June this year.


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