By Charity Ruzvidzo
Renowned gospel musician Pastor Michael Mahendere won the Best African Gospel Artiste Award of the year 2018 at the recently held Independent National Gospel Music Awards (Ingoma) in Johannesburg, South Africa.
The Ingoma Awards were founded in 2013 by young people who are actively involved in the gospel music industry.
In an interview with The Southern Times, the Makanaka Jesu hit-maker said the award is testimony that God is using his music to spread the gospel across the world.
“This award has brought so much joy into my life and even into my music career. It’s very humbling to be recognised not only in your country but beyond borders.
“I am grateful for winning the award, l never thought l would win because of other big artists who were in the same category. God is using us to spread the gospel and we have hope and courage to do more,” he said.
Mahendere urged media houses to support gospel musicians in the country.
“The environment for gospel artists in the country is good but more needs to be done to make it more conducive. There is need for media houses especially radio stations to recognise that the music we are producing is good and should not get airplay on Sundays only. It should get airplay every other day, we sing songs that build the nation and encourage people even in difficult moments that we are going through as a nation, he said.
Mahendere encouraged gospel musicians to move with the times and give the listeners mature music.
He said upcoming gospel artists must also work hard and avoid giving half-baked music in their quest to be famous.
“I am celebrating 25 five years in the music industry and it has not been an easy journey,” he said.
Mahendere’s category comprised of Puseletso Khanyane (Lesotho), Godwin Omighale (Nigeria), Linda Dlamini (Swaziland), Delpeace Badejo (Nigeria), Sihle Muthunjwa (Swaziland) and Great Stone (Nigeria).
The Ingoma serves as the face and voice for the upcoming and independent gospel or Christian music community and is dedicated to exposing, promoting and celebrating their talent through recognition and awarding them.