Gospel music remains one of the most popular genres in Nigeria. Beyond the four corners of the church, the songs have elevated to become foreign exports and taken its artists to big stages such as Afrobeats Festival, The Experience, Afropunk London, Coast 2 Coast Music Festival, etc.
In the last decade, Nigerian gospel music has experienced new generation musicians who’ve helped bring younger people and unbelievers into the fold. If you’re looking for the gospel musicians making waves with their music, here’s a list.
He’s a fast-rising Nigerian singer-songwriter from Lagos. Well-known for his blend of R&B, pop and soul music— a sound some of his fans have described “gospel but doesn’t feel like gospel.” With one album to his name, Anendlessocean is slowly building a solid fanbase. He’s considered one of the best talents of his generation. His second album, Decagon comes out August 18.
If you’re not familiar with his brand, you’d call this cap, but Limoblaze is one of the biggest exports the Nigerian music scene has seen in recent times. The Nigerian gospel rapper started his music career independently in 2014. Since then he has gone on to develop consistency, versatility and music-making skills that set him apart from peers. His six music projects testify to this. He’s now signed to Reach Records, owned by famous American gospel artist, Lecrae. Limoblaze is set to join the list of Nigerian superstars who’ve sold out and performed at the O2 Academy this September.
She’s known for songwriting skills and live music approach. In 2008, Ty Bello’s Greenland, her debut album, won multiple awards like Sound City Award and Nigeria Music Award. Her sophomore album, The Future, was released in 2011— with features from Banky W, Tara Fela-Durotoye, the late Sound Sultan, etc. Since then, four other full-length projects have followed, including her latest album, Heaven Has Come; a 20-track album, which was released in May, is already making statements as some of the best music to come out of 2023.
Apostle Emmanuel Iren is the founder and general pastor of Celebration Church International, popularly known as CCI, with its headquarters in Lagos. When he’s not preaching, he’s singing or writing songs, and leading his Outburst Music Group. Although many listeners acknowledge Apostolos as his first album, he actually released a debut titled Kerygma in December 2017.
“Otobi lomo na” as he fondly praises himself on songs, is that guy. His 2017 EP, Son of God is an example of how the talent makes some of the best gospel music in the country— he infuses African percussion and contemporary swag into his songs. In 2021, he released his debut album titled Breakfast (Afrogospel Vol 1). Throughout 2022, he dropped a series of singles. 2023, he is back with another one called Take It featuring Marizu and Tbabz.
Born in Kaduna, Nigeria, now based in England, CalledOutMusic is a singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. He started his career In 2016, and between then and now, he has released two successful albums, won a Best Gospel Act at UK Entertainment Award (2020), MOBO awards (2020), and toured internationally. CalledOutMusic is famously known for his deep lyricism.
Former member of award-winning music group The Gratitude, Greatman Takit is one of Nigeria’s best young gospel artists. He’s a rapper and singer who has struck a fine balance with his raps and Afrobeats elements. In 2016, he released WildFire (The EP) and put out another EP titled Energy (Afropop Gospel Vol. 1) in 2021. His 2023 singles, Melody and Asiwaju are more proof of his conscious efforts to dominate our playlists. Greatman Takit is an incredible musician, unconfined to a musical box— on any type of sound, he showcases great artistry without losing sight of his goal to uplift and spread gospel messages.
Jlyricz is a Lagos-based singer-songwriter, author and poet, born and raised in Benin-City. He hasn’t looked back since his debut in 2017. His discography is full of singles and projects like The Redeemed (2017), Thankful, Love Play (2018), Love & Gospel: The Collection. This year, he has released another album titled Spirit & Rhythm II and a new single, Lifting Me High. Besides his impressive consistency, Jlyricz’s soulful vocals and puts him on lists of Nigerian gospel artists that should be on your radar.