Nigerian gospel music has come along way from the Panam Percy Paul epoch, and the evangelism of the gospel through native tongue music, like Igbo. And like any other genre, Nigerian gospel music has evolved with influences from pop and rock and jazz, evolving into different soundscapes. Nigerian gospel artistes have been mascots of Nigerian music, making collaborations with many international artistes and the strides they continue to make is worthy of mention. Here are the top gospel artistes for August:
10. Folabi Nuel
Folabi is a singer/songwriter, worship leader and musician whose debut single God of Heaven peaked at number 1 on the top 5 gospel charts for several weeks, and his EP Good God has been the favourite of many. Nuel is a worshipper with a difference, mixing soul, rock and jazz to create a unique sound of truth that brings one to a consciousness of who God is and his amazing love.
9. Kike Mudiaga
While she sings, Kike Mudiaga’s hope is that it calls people back to the place of quietness and deep communion with Jesus. For her, Kingdom Matters is all that really matters. One of her singles Church on Fire features Nathaniel Bassey. She has shared the stage with heavyweights like Donnie McClurkin, Bassey, Sammie Okposo, Micah Stampley, Israel Houghton and Don Moen to mention but a few.
8. Ada Ehi
Since joining the Christ Embassy Choir, Ada Ehi has been actively involved in the Music Ministry of Christ Embassy and has performed at Christ Embassy events in several programs around the world including Europe, America and several African countries. Her debut album Undenied was released in November 2009 while her second album Lifted & So Fly, a two-disc album, was released in November 2013. She released her third studio album titled Future Now, IN 2017 and claimed no.1 spot on iTunes Nigeria same day.
7. Prospa Chimana
Prospa Chimana is a fast-rising gospel singer whose prominence surged after the release of his buzzy single Ekwueme in 2018, which earned him the City People Gospel Artiste of the Year award. Chimana is also the convener of the Festival of Grace concert, where a plethora of other gospel singers have performed.
6. Onos Ariyo
Onos’ 2017 album Songs From a Place of Prayer really established her as a gospel artiste to reckon with. In 2012 she won the Best Female Vocalist at the Nigerian Gospel Music Awards and her Breathe concert, which is currently on a worldwide scale, has moved from Canada to Kenya and Ghana.
5. TY Bello
Having a solid background as a singer in the since-defunct gospel band KUSH, TY Bello has found a niche in intimate worship sessions that are spontaneous as they are accessible on her Instagram. All these materials she has sensibly curated into an album, The Spirit of Truth, a collaboration with Tope Alabi and released months ago.
4. Tope Alabi
Tope Alabi has been a gospel music darling for her heartfelt, melodious songs in Yoruba, and her industrious years of churning albums. She has made appearances on TY Bello’s Instagram worship videos and also in concerts, and her consistency in an industry that’s often sidelined is why one of the reasons she’s so idolised.
Sinach’s outrageous popularity sprung from her performing worship songs in Christ Embassy, raw and vulnerable, and then launched her into a dizzying trajectory of the modern gospel superstar. She had recorded multiple hit songs, gone on international tours with artistes doing covers on her songs.
2. Tim Godfrey
Regarded as Nigeria’s Kirk Franklin and Tye Tribbett, Tim Godfrey is an award-winning gospel artiste with a still-expanding discography. His Fearless concert has been a mainstay in the Nigerian gospel circuit, and his live performances have a been a toast.
1. Mercy Chinwo
Mercy Chinwo’s streaming numbers, YouTube views, recognition within the church sphere and the immense talkability it has generated puts her in the frontline of a new, intoxicating churn of gospel singers. Excess Love, a recent collaboration with award-winning gospel artiste JJ Hairston marries the idiosyncrasies of both artistes on bombastic drums and percussions, and the video is still gaining momentum of streaming platforms.
When Bernard Dayo isn’t writing about pop culture, he’s watching horror movies, anime and trying to pretend his addiction to Netflix isn’t a serious condition.