It was billed as Ghana's largest gospel concert, and indeed it was. It may not be as old as the annual concerts by Joyful Way Incorporated, but Airtel Adom Praiz has over the past six years come to take a very important space in not just the gospel genre space, but to a large extend in the annual Ghanaian entertainment calendar.
The 6th edition was headlined by American Bishop and praise and worship leader, Hezekiah Walker, and was held in what I heard someone say, 'the home of Adom Praiz', the Perez Dome at Dzorwulu. Enough background, but how did the show go?
For a concert that had been postponed from September, the organizers did a very good job in getting patrons to be excited again and to turn up in their numbers for this awesome experience. Yes we love our local brewed praise and worship tunes and the exciting ministers of the gospel we have been blessed with. But just like our taste in foreign goods, most people have come to associate a lot with imported gospel tunes. So it is not surprising that every year patrons look forward to the Airtel Adom Praiz concerts.
Hezekiah taught his way through
Whiles Hezekiah Walker may not be the most popular minister of the gospel in the US, the simple nature of his songs meant that a lot in the auditorium learnt them as he taught us and sang along. That's one of the exciting attributes of American gospel ministers - they make worship songs simple and easy to learn and so it is easy to sing along. Of course songs like "Faithful" and "Every Praise" which seemed very popular received some very rapturous reception and it was as infectious as it was warmly spirit-filled.
Ghana based artists rocked
My first time seeing KODA minister was last weekend. I had not seen Alabaster Box in a very long time, Joe Mettle I had seen not too long ago, Anita Afriyie and Selina Boateng I saw for the first time. Again, the thing with gospel tunes is that because it is about God and less about the artist (that’s what I think), the reaction of the audience or worshippers is often rated as per how they felt. Having said that though, I loved the interaction between the audience and the artist and how they took their craft serious whiles giving reference to God.
In the age of social media and the ever growing use of hashtags, it was easy to check how the hashtag #AirtelAdomPraiz. It trended for a clear 24 hours before the show and remained in the trends until the demolition of Real Madrid by Barcelona, the annihilation of Manchester City by Liverpool, the relieving defeat of Norwich by Chelsea - basically the resumption of the leagues in Europe from the international break meant most previous trends were knocked off the charts. The excitement of being able to share ones images and videos and in text on channels such as Twitter, Facebook, Snap Chat, Instagram and Whatsapp Groups has come to stay and indeed it makes users feel like broadcasters who control their broadcasts.
Good to go
This was generally a good concert. Not many concerts happen right in a chapel, and not many have the capacity to fill it. Difference between gospel concerts and secular ones among others lie in the fact that it is a worship environment where the focus is often more on God than the person leading the worship. Kudos to the team at Adom FM and Multimedia Broadcasting Corporation in general and their sponsors, Airtel. This concert seems to have to withstand many of the other brands Multimedia have built over the years. Even the Skuul's reunion seemed to have lost a lot of steam in the last few years but not Adom Praiz. The concert did not also eat too deep into the night and was well controlled by MCs that were themselves pastors.
By Kwame Gyan
Twitter - @KwameGyan
Facebook - /kwame.gyan
Email – firstname.lastname@example.org