Some years ago, I chose to write about issues in the Gospel Music industry. My write-ups used to be very hard hitting to the extent that I got a bad name for myself. Naturally, I am a peaceful and lovely person but this aspect of writing and stating it as it is got me, enemies.
While some loved my objectivity, others felt I was being insensitive to their icons. It affected my relations with people so I had to re-strategize when my wife Grace and brothers like Zuta and Denzel spoke to me. I stopped writing about the industry.
Chief amongst the things I used to write about was that if Gospel Artistes do not watch their Ministries and rather concentrate on the peripherals like branding, fame, money and awards they risked losing the mark and confusing their followers.
Simple message but I guess I did not apply much sensitivity at the time so people rather than listening to the message focused on the messenger, something we do in Africa. Knowing that I was carving a bad name for myself I took the advice from family and some friends and a scripture in Philippians 2:3 that says we should not be selfish but think of others more highly than ourselves to re-strategize.
Over the years the very things I spoke about keeps coming up in monumental proportions. So I was not really surprised when I heard that no Gospel Song made it to the MUSIGHA’s top 20 songs. This is because most of the mainstream Gospel Artistes are losing focus. Today it is Fame and Money that drives many and not what the Ministry is about.
When I say these things I make enemies. I have lost close friends, some have even unfriended me on Facebook because I chose to tell them the truth. It sometimes gets lonely but should we stop talking about these things?
Christians must know that Christianity goes beyond fame and money. It is far more than that. The Bible says “Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His Righteousness and all other things will be added on to you” (Matthew 6:33). This Scripture applies to Gospel Song Ministers as well.
Is it not sad that a Gospel Artiste can fake an accident just for publicity purposes? Is it not sad? I mean is it not sad that a Gospel Artiste can pay to displace another’s work from receiving airplay? I mean what is going on? Some artistes spend so much time on how they look rather than the time they spend to pray. Who are we deceiving?
I do not see myself as perfect but like Paul, I am only trying to do the best I can to please my Maker. Gospel Artistes, when you do it right the people see it. They know those who are focused and those who are doing it for the fame. When you hide to drink before mounting the stage to perform they see it. When you play around with the ladies they see it. They talk about it.
Today we have Gospel Artistes who have combined their gospel status with secularism and they are running the dual roles without any trouble. Are you not confusing your followers?
There needs to be a turnaround. God has given us gifts to help gather the lost not to disperse and scatter. We should know that there will be a day of accountability. Someone has said that we will account to God for the GAP between where we are now and where we should have been.
I think we should go back to basics. Ask yourself this question, why are you a Christian Artiste? Is it for fame or to push God’s kingdom agenda? Why are people still chasing Gospel Artistes of yesteryears? The Daughters of Glorious Jesus, Mary Ghansah etc. They were people with a lifestyle that was in sync with their music.
If we do not change and refocus, we will not only miss out on the top 20 chart but the top 100, 1000, 1,000,000 as well. Our songs will only make ourselves happy and would not make any impact. I would like to emphasize that it is not just about making any top list but to make the necessary impact.
Our words and our music must sync with our lifestyles. I pray that we get these basics. God is still available to help us when we call on Him. It is not too late.
By: Probationary Overseer Emmanuel Boate