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Oseghale drops Idinma, set to unveil third album

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Oseghale

Mercy Oseghale is an award-winning gospel artist and pastor. She has two albums to her name. They are, Lord Help Me, which has hit tracks such as, Quaze and Warm Love. She spoke on Nigeria’s music industry, her latest single, Idinma, and plans for her third album. GREGORY AUSTIN NWAKUNOR writes.

Who is Mercy Oseghale and tell us about your journey as a gospel artiste start?
AS you know, I’m a gospel singer. I am also a Pastor. My husband’s name is Pastor Philip Oseghale. He is Senior Pastor of World Harvest Christian Mission int’l. I have been singing since I was 17 years old. And I have been doing this for more than two decades. I am working on my third album, which God willing, is expected to hit the market before the year runs out. But my new single titled, Idinma, was released on Friday, August 21, 2020.

Share your experience on growing up and how it affected your interest in gospel music…

Growing up, I was with Church of God Mission Int’l, led by Pastor Idahosa Church. I was a member of the church’s choir. First of all, the music thing started because I love music, I love to sing. I didn’t even know that God has endowed me with the grace to do more. As I said, I was in the choir, and it became a part of me. So, from when I was 17 years old, I was in the mass choir of the Church of God Mission, travelling with Papa Idahosa. That was how I started. But, you know, as you begin to develop yourself, what you have as a child is different from when you see the essence of which you sing. I discovered that each time, the song touches people; so, I saw it as an opportunity and the best way to go. I developed it and then started writing my own songs. That led to my first album.

So, what is your take on gospel music in Nigeria today?
Right now, everything looks low, maybe because of the COVID-19 pandemic. People are still trying to rediscover themselves; people are still trying to pick up. But in the midst of it, a lot of people are working in the studios; in the midst of it, as we are dropping ‘Idinma’, I am sure, a lot of gospel artistes are working, and God is going to use them. Right now, it looks like everything is low, not just in the gospel music scene, but in the entire entertainment industry, all over the world.

Do you think gospel music is getting the kind of attention it deserves?
No, it is not getting the kind of attention that it deserves. Gospel music is suppressed in Nigeria, for reasons I don’t know. The world does not love what is right. You can see that the world promotes that which is not good; the world does not promote what is good. There are a lot of things you see on television that you wonder why people promote such things. Yet, they do.

Tell us about your debut album… What inspired it?
It is a seven-track album that is titled, Lord Help Me, and produced by Flo and Sam Ibeh. One of the tracks in the album is Quaze, which had three nominations in Nigeria Music Video Awards 2007. It also had that popular Gift from Jesus, an African Christmas song. The album was inspired by the fact that I felt we need the help of God. That’s why we titled it, God Help Me. The essence is to say that, God we need you.

One of the tracks, Quaze, a South African song. It means, when He comes back, I shall be like him. It is about the need for us to prepare and be ready for the return of Jesus Christ. And that video actually made waves; we had three nominations in Nigeria Music Video Awards 2007. And it was played all over, and it took me to various places within and outside Nigeria. I was able to perform in places like Dubai.

Also, there are a lot of gospel artistes; it is not just to sing, and it is not just that I love singing. It is that I need to fulfill the purpose for which I was created. Everybody has a purpose. I discovered that my purpose is to be able to air the word of God via music.
So, what is the inspiration behind your second album?

The second album is titled, Warm Love, and was produced by Cobhams Asuquo and Rotimi Akinfenwa. It was released in 2010. The album has popular tracks such as Warm Love, Ekene, and I Shall Not Die. All my songs are in different platforms, such as Spotify, Audiomack, Apple Music, Boomplay Music, and others.

Why has it taken you so long to release another album? Is it deliberate?
Yes, it is deliberate. As of that time, 2011 and 2012, a lot of things were coming up in the gospel music scene. I had to withdraw, to say, okay, what is the essence? Is it to make money? Of course, he that labours are worthy of his wages. But beyond making money, I had to ask myself: What exactly is it about? And I needed to discover what I had to do in my lyrics and my music generally. So, I took time and reflected on it, and I decided that I don’t have to be churning out music for the sake of churning out music. It was a period of rediscovery for me. If you listen to this single, Idinma, you will notice, it is totally different, the lyrics, everything is different. Now I know that I am not just an artist, I am not just a singer, I am an instrument in the hands of God.


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