Saturday, December 6, 2008

Da Lagos Experience 2008 Gospel Concert

Lagos, Nigeria and the whole of Africa received a shaking December 05, 2008, when the Tafawa Balewa Square (TBS) was packed with Great Gospel Artiste for the Lagos Experience 2008.

All the invited artists graced the occasion though rain marred proceedings midway, it was still a very successful event. A record shattering event with an estimated 400,000 souls in attendance for a Gospel concert, there was nothing like it in the history of the world.

Event started a bit late because of the rain in the afternoon which prevented sound engineers to setup in time for the program. We got on with proceedings with the heralding of Muyiwa Olanrewaju, the UK Radio Show anchor and artist with the Riversongz. He ministered to the cheering audience with titles from his album. He then gave a new twist to some Nigerian popular gospel songs. Songs like I have a father who will never ever fail me were re-modeled to the delight of the congregation.

Briefly on stage after him were the Midnight Crew. This Nigerian quartet came on with there mix with the popular Nigerian Igwe song shaking the whole atmosphere. They sang songs that led the whole house to a praise and worship session and the church spirit was re-enacted immediately. Dekunle Fuji was on hand to fill the crowd with his own fuji-style of gospel.

One of the big wigs the audience was expecting came on after some prayers in between. Chevelle Franklyn, the Jamaican gospel artist was spiritual on this night. She first gave some solo works that thrilled the audience with its Jamaican ragga flavour. She did some Nigerian songs and re-mixed it the Jamaican way. The highlight of the session was singing Chris Tomlin's How Great is our God. The song which eventually became the theme song of the night was sang in a worship attitude. Sis. Chevelle gave a great show even at her first coming to Nigeria and the crowd were appreciative.

He was around in 2007 and the audience caught the fire, this year was a mind blowing performance by Tye Oluwaseyi Tribbet. The Nigerian-American was a delight of the audience with his mix of pop, worship and his dance steps that is a major part of his transformational gospel music. He then sang a Nigerian song too and wrapped it up with How Great is our God! There were a lot of approval of his song with the Nigerian audience full of young and informative people.

A big bang, a Gospel music giant and an household name in Nigeria Fred Hammond came on stage with a rapturous welcome. Coming all the way from Dallas, Texas, the artiste favoritely referred to as the 'D Worshipper' got his hands full with the Nigerian audience making several request of his titles. Rendering from Bread of Life, Glory to Glory, When the Spirit of the Lord and many of his hits, the whole place went agog. He started with the number You are my daily bread and added Lord of our Harvest. He went on a solo worship, He is here which was a Spirit-filled rendition. The crowd was moved to say the least and sure blessings were rained on the audience. At about 12midnight, he sang that special, Late in the midnight hour, and the whole place turned frenzied with christians all over the place waving at this anointed session. Very conscious of his time, he gave the track No weapon which is a household here too.

The audience had their hands full with this 2008 Grammy Award Winner Fred Hammond and I know they will look out to him coming back to Nigeria.

Pastor Paul Adeolu Adefarasin came on stage, spoke some powerful messages as he is known for, to the audience and gave some literal meanings of the venue and what it means from a phylosophical and spiritual perpestive to Nigeria, the most populous black nation in the world. He then called on what was the nationally special delivered in night. The rendering of the Nigerian National Anthem by the duo MaryMary. They sang and gave life to the lyrics of the song which like made the whole crowd who sang along reflect on the true meaning of the country's well packed National Anthem.

After this they took to stage and people went along with their popular style of music. MaryMary first gave the song, I just can't give up now, which the crowd chorused with such loudness it seems they were still on the National Anthem. With their well branded gospel music, they filled the air with spiritual led songs. They gave a classic from their latest album Get Up (Listen to it here)
though not yet familiar with the audience but still they got along quite well with the lyrics appearing on the mega screen. The crowd was raptuorous when they sang the popular Shackles and the Spirit filled the air as the artiste caught the fire of the anointing. Erika jumped into the audience, though guided by security personnel, the people were sent into some shaking with that rendition.

Somehow, that was the song that heralded, the heavy downpour that took the remaining morning. Immediately they left the stage, the downpour came heavily. The rain by the blogger's account swept through all the Lagos provinces. Meanwhile, the audience were defiant. They are here to listen, sing and worship their God. The household artiste Israel Houghton came on board and led the audience to a deep worship session even in the rain. Alpha and Omega, what the author regarded as the revival song in Nigeria, was rendered and by now the drenched crowd couldn't help it but sang aloud this wonderful country shaker track. He then sang How Great is Our God which heat the atmosphere despite the rain. The attitude of the crowd in the rain showed glaringly that they were ready to praise their God, come what may and rain wouldn't be enough to stop them.

Due to the still heavy downpour which was coming in its torrents, the engine ceased and the people resulted to doing a revival like atmosphere. All the artiste afterwards came on stage with the legendry Don Moen and the great Donnie Mcklurkin singing some few tracks.
Afterwards, Pastor Paul declared the meeting closed till next year because they will need to check on the sound systems.

It was a mixed filling though but the crowd were profoundly blessed all the same.

Lagos Experience 2008 will still receive a lot of reviews as it was viewed by CNN, TBN and a host of all other big broadcasting corporations and we hope next year will be glorious to say the least.

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