African Stories

African Stories - Onesimus Muzik

A new era has begun

June 8, 2017

Contributor: Onesimus Muzik

I love discovering new music and this is how I found myself at the SABC on a random Sunday afternoon tagging along for a live acoustic performance by songwriter singer and philanthropist Onesimus muzik. He was performing at the popular Tsonga radio station Mlfm’s and the studio was on fire.

Onesimus is Malawi-born gospel singer who has made quite a name for himself since his expatriation in 2012. Born Armstrong Kalua, in April 29, 1989 in Blantyre. He rose to fame in his home country, winning numerous accolades and working with numerous artists.  He made appearances on many line-ups at acclaimed music festivals in Malawi sharing the stage with some of the continent's industry giants: Oliver Mtukudzi, Freshlyground, Salif Keita, Professor, AKA, Naeto C. His work between 2012 and 2013 got some well-deserved recognition with two nominations at the inaugural Malawi Music Awards for: ‘Best Song’ and ‘Most Popular Ringtone’.

I was sitting at this unplugged session after listening to his upcoming second album due for released nationally in September. This album I speak of ladies and gentlemen is a total game changer. The South African Gospel industry is not ready, it is total fire.  Like most South Africans in my age group I tend to steer clear of South African gospel music, for me there are a couple of reasons for this but the biggest reason is lack of originality, I sometimes feel like Ousie Rebecca set the standard and everyone else followed without question. Onesimus was not only courageous enough to question the status quo he stepped out on faith and has created a sound that makes gospel music accessible and relevant.  

Testimony the lead single from the new album (currently available on itunes) is the perfect praise song, it is the sort of song I’m sure worship leader’s dream of, and it has a wickedly catchy lyric and is very well produced. My favorite however is BOSSO, this song tipped to have a babes wodumo feature is LIFE. With its heavy afrocentric core it is bound to cause a little controversy with the gospel crowed because I don’t think they have heard gospel in this way. Onesmius has created an album you can praise to, and vibe to – it is the kind of album that becomes a sound track to life. Uplifting, fun, young boasting a huge sprinkle of African flair, this is THE gospel album for the young and upwardly mobile.

Download his music go out to see him when he visits your town because ladies and gentleman a new era in South African gospel music has begun and Onesimus is its architect.