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Rufftone challenges notion of struggling gospel starts who converts to secular music

By Rajab Zawadi December 13th, 2023 2 min read

Renowned gospel singer Rufftone has thrown a spotlight on artists who transitioned from the gospel to secular music in pursuit of greener pastures, asserting that many are now grappling with difficulties in their newfound endeavors.

The celebrated artist, known for his unwavering commitment to gospel music, dismissed claims by those who abandoned the gospel industry, citing a lack of shows and challenging conditions created by industry gatekeepers.

Rufftone, however, sees through this narrative, maintaining that the majority of those who made the switch are struggling in their secular pursuits.

In a tone tinged with mockery, Rufftone challenged critics to point out any gospel artist who successfully transitioned to the secular world and is currently dominating the charts or raking in millions from corporate gigs and other notable shows.

He questioned the credibility of the narrative that gospel artists were compelled to switch genres due to financial constraints, arguing that it is based on falsehoods.

“It’s not true that the gospel industry has no money. If you check data statistics from Skiza tunes, the songs leading charts and generating much money from Skiza downloads are gospel songs. There are also enough shows and endorsements,” Rufftone emphasized.

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Rufftone criticised the trend of emulating secular music styles in gospel compositions expressing concern about the current crop of gospel musicians. He urged the new generation of gospel musicians to refrain from copying secular styles and stressed the importance of maintaining the distinctiveness of gospel music.

“I have said this in many forums: the new generation of gospel musicians should stop copying the secular music style. It doesn’t sit well that you are a gospel singer composing gospel songs but doing your research from the secular world. It doesn’t make sense when I listen to a song, and it is purely secular only that it’s peppered with a few words from the gospel. I rebuke that,” Rufftone argued.

Taking a strong stance against collaborations between gospel and secular artists, Rufftone emphasized the need for artists to uphold principles and stay within their respective lanes.

He questioned the motivation behind gospel artists collaborating with secular counterparts, suggesting that such collaborations indicate an admiration for secular styles.

“I have so many friends from the secular industry – Jua Cali, Nameless, Wyre – but they respect principles. If you are a gospel artist, why would you feel an urge or need to collaborate with a secular artist? It means you fancy their style, and that’s why you are doing what you are doing. We should all keep to our lanes,” Rufftone insisted.

Reflecting on his personal journey, Rufftone shared that before converting to a gospel singer, he spent five years as a secular artist.

Following his switch, he has never felt the urge to return to secular music, and he credits his success in the gospel industry to God’s grace.

“I started out as a secular artist at Ogopa DJs Records with the likes of Redsan, Bebe Cool, Jose Chameleon, Longombas, Kleptomaniax, not until 2002 when I got saved. Then there was no gospel industry; it was just church choirs, and my colleagues mocked me that I was ditching a genre that had a ready market to the unknown. Years down the line, I am still here, still doing well. Yes, there is a struggle in the gospel industry, but that’s part of the journey before you can reap,” Rufftone reflected.