Is Celestine Donkor Right, Should Gospel songs feature Secular Artistes?
With the recent uproar on the involvement of secular artistes in gospel tracks, Soireenews takes an in depth review into the roles secular artistes play in the gospel
The gospel is anything in any form that furthers the message of Jesus Christ.
Gospel music is a song that uses rhythm and lyrics soaked in the message of Jesus Christ to entertain audiences and draw more people to Christ.
A gospel artiste is therefore defined as a person that is primarily known for singing gospel songs.
The question now is, should artistes who are not known for singing gospel songs be featured in gospel tracks by artistes known for singing gospel tracks.
To answer this, we must first answer this simple question; can secular artistes, on their own sing gospel music?
The answer to this question is yes.
Secular artistes have been individually releasing gospel tracks on the Ghanaian music scene for ages.
When Shatta Wale released his "God is Alive" in 2019 after he clashed on stage with his colleague dancehall artiste, Stonebwoy on the 2019's Vodafone Ghana Music Awards, it was meant with widespread appreciation.
The dancehall artiste, after escaping death from gunshot and also being arrested while although eventually bailed out from prison, admitted that he would have been killed and destroyed in not for the "hand of God" in his life.
"whatever may come my way, I will never forget the good Lord and what He has done for me. I will still praise Him." He noted.
Speaking of Stonebwoy, it has been confirmed by Ghanaian radio and TV personality, Abeiku Aggrey Santana that the dancehall's first-ever track was a "gospel" track, as evidenced by the fact that Stonebwoy's father was a pastor.
” Stonebwoy used to come and stay at my office for long hours and wait for me to listen to his tracks. He didn’t care how long he had to wait, he was very patient and I must admit that has contributed to his success..his very first track I produced was a gospel track and that was because of his background…his father was a pastor”, Abeiku Santana revealed.
Sarkodie also released a gospel track, called Adonai, with Castro before the disappearance of the latter superstar.
Since it has been established that the three major superstars in Ghana can release gospel tracks to thrill fans, as long as they are sharing the message of Christ, how can it be wrong if the said Gospel artistes are featured by Gospel artistes?
It might be noted that these artistes might have done or sung inappropriate things in the past, or that their images are associated "things of the world", but everyone at some point has done bad things so they should never be judged by that.
Over time, gospel artistes and secular artistes have collaborated to drop beautiful tracks: Daddy Lumba and Great Ampong combined to drop the hit single "Hossana" in 2015. Nacee featured Guru on his "Boys Boys" jam.
Ghanaian US Based Gospel singer Janerita released "God of Miracles" featuring Kofi Kinaata in 2020.
Herty Borngreat featured Sarkodie on her "Take Them to Church" album in 2013. Opanka featured Gifty Osei, a gospel artiste on a song entitled Aburo Nkosua, not to mention Yaw Sarpong who featured Sarkodie in his 'Ahobrase3' classic before expressing his adoration for the rapper.
“Sarkodie is one of the musicians I admire so much and the two of us are in talks for collaboration soon,” Yaw Sarpong revealed.
If all these have been established, then it makes no sense that industry players are condemning Celestine Donkor for her new track 'Thank You’ (Yedawase) in which she featured Maa Cynthia, Efya and Akwaboah.
Celestine Donkor, in her defense, maintained that she does gospel tracks to draw souls for Christ and that there is no better way to do it than to employ Secular artistes.
"WELL, I WANT TO USE THIS OPPORTUNITY TO TELL THE WORLD THAT MY GOSPEL MUSIC IS NOT FOR “SELF ACCLAIMED RIGHTEOUS PEOPLE,” IT IS FOR ALL WHO NEED THE MESSAGE OF THE GOSPEL TO BLESS THEIR LIVES."
"For those who think they are in the position to judge others, I guess one of these days, God has to get up from his throne so you can go and sit on it and judge since you know how to judge better.. right.?"
"??SO WHO QUALIFIES TO SING GOSPEL SONGS UNTO GOD or ABOUT GOD?"
"??SO WHAT IS THE MESSAGE OF THE GOSPEL MEANT FOR??"
"No wonder in our churches today we have only “recycled Christians” (Souls from one denomination of church to another)” and the real New souls are not being reached because WE LACK STARATAGY on how to reach these souls that Christ needs at the right sources where they are…" she argued.
With all these laid down, the question now stands at this.
Do you think she is right? Or not.