The Pulse of Entertainment: Soweto Gospel Choir Releases New Album ‘Hope' on Shanachie
(September 30, 2022) - "This too will past," said Shimmy Jiyane,
director of the Soweto Gospel Choir, about the meaning of the title to their newest album release "Hope" on
Shanachie Entertainment. "It's to give people hope, with everything negative going on people need hope."
The Soweto Gospel Choir is a four-time Grammy Award winning choir known all over the world for their style of Gospel, Negro
Spirituals, Reggae, and American Pop music. The choir of 30 members was formed in Soweto, South Africa by David Mulovhedzi
and Beverly Bryer in 2002 with music produced by Andrew Kay, David Vigo, and Cliff Hocking.
"I've been in
the choir for 20 years and it's been 16 years as director," Shimmy said when I asked.
The Soweto Gospel Choir
has also garnered six Grammy nominations, a Golden Globe nomination, and an Academy Award nomination. They are also an Emmy
Award and two-time African Music Award winners. The Soweto Gospel Choir has collaborated with such artists as Stevie Wonder,
Beyonce' and John Legend. They have reached #1 on Billboard and can sing in 11 different languages.
came about when we came back from touring Australia when Covid hit. During Covid we couldn't travel," Jiyane said when
I asked about the history of the "Hope" album. "We were missing our people and the studio. We went through
trials and tribulations; we lost loved ones through Covid. It was a tough time."
The "Hope" (Shanachie
Entertainment) album is the Soweto Gospel Choir's sixth project. It includes cover songs such as "I'll Take You There"
(Staples Singers), "Heaven Help Us All" (Stevie Wonder), and "Sechaba" (musical Sarafina!"). Their
performances are many, but some major engagements include performing at the Live Earth Tour and being part of the "Down
to Earth" soundtrack for Pixar's WALL-E movie.
"It is spiritual," said Shimmy about the new album
when I mentioned it. "After 2 ½ years of not performing or seeing each other...you see life in a different way.
We ‘have' to seek God and at the end of the day there is ‘hope'." www.SowetoGospelChoir.com
COLUMN: Dr. Eunice Moseley has an estimated weekly readership of over one million with The
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