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Cameroonian Musical Artists Encouraged To Go Gospel 

By Walter Wilson Nana & Sarah Luma*

Cameroonian youths have been enjoined to get into the band wagon of gospel music. That is the gist of a press conference granted in Buea recently by officials of Making The Gospel Band Project, DRIMP Foundation, a Yaounde based organisation aimed at promoting Gospel Music.
DRIMP Coordinator, Roland Papa, told journalists that his foundation is out to lift the voices of young Cameroonians who are interested in Gospel music. "Gospel music will subsequently take the pride of place in Cameroon.

Officials of DRIMP foundation at press conference

An artist must not be vulgar to sell his or her music. Some of the big names like Whitney Houston, Dru Hill, Robert Kelly, Bebe Elizabeth Manga, Denis Achalle and more started from the church before sliding into the secular world," he explained. According to Papa, the project has three phases. These include an auditioning for a pre-selection of candidates from four regions of Cameroon; the Northwest, Southwest, Littoral and Centre.

"This phase has already been concluded with five candidates selected from the aforementioned regions. The second phase will consists in bringing the pre-selected candidates to a central point, where they will be lodged, put under a controlled accommodation, under the watchful eyes of supervisors and cameras for a second level of competition.

This phase will entail a specialised television broadcast, where the public will have the opportunity to vote for their favourite contestant via the number 8086. "After five live television broadcasts, five winners will be retained from the twenty contestants," he said. The third and last phase will be the studio practice and production of an album done by the prospective five winners, whose official release has been programmed for December 15, 2010.

"That is not all, these five winners will be given the chance to do a tour of Cameroon as well as an international tour, meeting with other international artists like Midnight Crew, who is expected to grace the final as well as the sponsorship of four hundred thousand audio and video CDs," the DRIMP Coordinator stated. Papa Roland saidtheir project is in partnership with Cambridge Education and EMI to support the candidates in the areas of leadership, communication skills, personal management and what gospel music is all about. 

A collaborator of the project, Denis Achalle, who epitomises the growth of Cameroonian gospel music, said with the support from DRIMP Foundation, they are going to put Cameroonian gospel music to a new level. "We are out to revolutionalise the Gospel genre in Cameroon.

This is a project whose sustainability cannot be doubted. We have put in place the logistics for it to stay on. There are many people propping us in the background. We will not release their names now. This is a project we are inviting all Cameroonians to be part of," he said.

*(UniYao II Law Student On Internship)

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