Note: The content below is an iJAVoices kind of article. iJAVoices is a collection of engaging views and analysis from outside and in-house contributors, on the issues affecting society and faith today. iJAVoices do not necessarily reflect the views of iJesusAfrica and the opinions expressed are solely those of the author(s).
Article by Kelly Ladouce
To begin with, gospel music is a genre of music, and the creation, performance, and definition of gospel music vary according to culture and social context. Gospel music is composed and performed for many purposes, including aesthetic pleasure, religious or ceremonial purposes, and as an entertainment for the market place.
Gospel music usually has dominant vocals (often with strong use of harmony) with Christian lyrics, and can be traced to the early 17th century with roots in the black oral tradition. Though gospel music is a necessity to Christians, there are some hindrances to this genre of music, as well as possible solutions to enhance Gospel music production, promotion & consumption In Cameroon.
- The gospel music industry needs to do much work through promotion and sensitization to change the mindsets of Cameroon music lovers.
- Cameroonians do not believe in what they have and thus, they don’t promote their gospel artists; which discourages and kills their talent in this brand of music.
- There are no responses to gospel music demos. Many gospel artists have experienced demo disappointment and this is a hindrance to gospel music promo.
- More to that, there are low turnouts during gospel music shows. Few things are disheartening as playing to an empty room on the night of the gig. There may be reasons to account for the low turnouts.
- Some reviews of gospel music are not published; being told that your music was supposed to appear in prints or online has been dropped is frustrating. This often occurs and isn’t personal. Although a writer may say that a review will appear, they do not have the final say as it may be dropped by an editor.
- Canceled shows; when starting out, bands are often working with promoters who may be inexperienced and just put on shows for fun. When dealing with promoters we don’t put on shows professionally, there is always a chance that they will have to cancel your gig and may not let you (Gospel artist) know until the last minute.
- Low funds; simply getting to the point where you can support yourself through your music requires a lot of work and patience.
- Internet copyright and royalty issues; the internet provides many opportunities for music promotion, and fair licensing regulations and royalties should be in place. Music rights holders should hammer out a realistic plan for licensing and compensation with websites that host and promote music.
Some possible solutions to enhance Cameroonian gospel music promotion
- Gospel music lovers, promoters, and editors should try as much as possible to support our Cameroonian gospel artists in every way they can.
- Gospel artists should keep building their profile, planning shows in order to create awareness.
- As a promoter, keep your promo package updated and labels informed about your current activities.
- Stay on top of your social media presence, posting early and often to social sites and your own blog.
- Let us develop a spirit of supporting our gospel artist. This goes to gospel music lovers, let’s give out 100% support to our gospel artist, please.
- Music right holders should hammer out a realistic plan for licensing and compensation with websites that host and promote Cameroonian gospel music.
JUNIOR PRAISE a gospel artist said “Having to make people believe in my vision especially those around me hasn’t been easy. For my two (2) years as a gospel artist, I haven’t been able to have any sponsor for any of my projects. There is a lack of collaboration between the few gospel artists in this nation. There is a serious issue when it concerns the church advancing and promoting its artist only. Most people who invite us to programs do not value gospel music.
Some people need to start understanding that there is a very big place for gospel music in Cameroon; I mean the media, the government, etc. Investors need to start looking at our domain. Our churches should start looking at the initiatives of a few others like Christ embassy etc. and see how to help this very important arm of the church. The general public should start having the mindset that we gospel artists are as valuable as and even more valuable than the secular artists. There is a need for a national association of gospel artists where they come together, share their ideas, difficulties, and help each other to grow”.
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Note: The above was an iJAVoices kind of article. iJAVoices is a collection of engaging views and analysis from outside and in-house contributors, on the issues affecting society and faith today.
iJAVoices do not necessarily reflect the views of iJesusAfrica and the opinions expressed are solely those of the author(s).