Edwinology’s Lab: The rise and rise of pride in the gospel music industry

If you wanna locate the most cholera-endemic community, check ch****. If you wanna locate the most pride-endemic industry, check the gospel industry.

Somehow from nowhere, some gospel artistes have found an eerie affection for the title ‘minister’. So they are not singers any more. They are ministers.

Minister this, minister that – for singing???? really????

Yes. I know what minister means. And yes – it means a servant. But no. no. no. That is not the impression you are conveying.

Generally, ‘Minister’ is a term not of service but of status. It is not a term of endearment; it is of resentment.

Ministers in Ghana are particularly the abbreviation for many unmentionable words.

What if instrumentalists also take a cue and start branding themselves ‘ministering harmonisers’? or ministering…I don’t know.. Gospel MPs?

Somebody explained to me, it’s all about branding. And branding is important in showbiz.

Oh? so singing gospel songs is showbiz now? I see. If that’s the case, you guys are exchanging real crowns for fake two-karat Arabian gold.

 Really. You are.
There is no need to mention names. It only arms the opposition.

See – gospel music must have its own template as you may have read in the article ‘Dear VGMA Board, Please go to church ‘small’ . You guys don’t have to be like the hiplife industry to have an identity. You need to find your own.

Thankfully, you don’t have to invent one if the focus of your lyrics in your songs is anything to go by. Your identity is Jesus Christ. Your template is humility.

Humility and moderation in your dressing, in your posters, in your interviews, even in your gestures and postures on billboards. I saw one of your own do on interview on etv, I think. Wearing shades, staring at the floor while answering questions, hardly looking at the presenter, swinging the body in the revolving chair like some boxer trying to dodge a Floyd Mayweather punch.

Guys, it is getting too much. Check it. Check it.
Put a rein on it, if you want your groom- Jesus- to put a ring on it.

Especially the so-called contemporary gospel artistes.

Am all for contemporariness – better instrumentation, better music videos, better dance moves. But you can sense that a borrowed worldliness could be creeping into your contemporariness. Remember, worldliness is contemporary too. So contemporary gospel faces the temptation of simply being nothing more than ‘worldly gospel’, [if there is nothing like that, well now there is[

From where we, your ‘fans’ sit, we see gospel music, a powerful ministry, a dangerously powerful ministry – capable of destroying the work of our collective enemy – and also destroying the individual you in the process.

Your music is a missile against darkness and at the same time a suicide jacket strapped firmly around your waist.

For details, ask Lucifer.
That heaven drop-out was the best in the business, he is now the worst in the war. If he had exercised just a little more humility.

if he had tempered the gestures on his posters or stopped adding adjectives to his original title- Lucifer, we all probably wouldn’t need to be here.

We would have probably been part of the animal kingdom, gifted with only one monotonous song – ‘moooooo’ for cow or ‘miaowwww’ for cat.

Yours is a borrowed ministry, designed to shame the one who first had it. Keep it that way.

I understand the temptation.
A huge crowd responding so strongly to your music. Our ladies screaming adoration so carelessly you wonder what request they will deny you.

People love your work so obviously they love you. But, you really need to get out of the way of their love – they love the focus of the music – Jesus. He’s the main attraction.

Unless you are not singing about him.
You are all just donkeys. I hope you don’t take offence. If it makes you feel better – I am a donkey too.

But – Guys we need to be the donkey Jesus rode on as recorded in four different books of the New Testament.

That donkey got an unusual attention that day. But you and I know it wasn’t about him, was it?

These are trying times. I know. The hiplife people are getting all the money and attention and deals. Funding your career, impacting your generation and making some money out of it can be a delicate balance.

Sorry, I can offer little solutions. But you can start by ditching the ‘minster’ tag. Or get somebody to pinch you when you are getting high. And stop calling it showbiz. Daughters of Glorious Jesus will blush when they hear you say this.

Or you could disinfect your mind of the heady congratulations by putting yourself under a fast a day after your performance.

But ultimately in this ministry – you have to keep the words of John the Baptist in mind.

“I must decrease, so he may increase”.
Story by Ghana|Myjoyonline.com|Edwin.appiah|[email protected]

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