Africa inspires international choir

Music review by Shelley Wasserman

STAY AMAZED — Oslo Gospel Choir (featuring Loyiso Bala and Courtney Jonas)

The Oslo Gospel Choir is an internationally renowned choir that originates from Norway.  They began in 1988 and since then have performed over 1 000 live shows and sold more than 1.5 million albums globally.  Between 1990 and 2000 this choir became the highest selling artists in Norway.

This album, which can be seen from the cover, is inspired by Africa and so they have incorporated some local talent.  Loyiso Bala and Courtney Jonas were flown to Norway to record with the choir.  There are some songs us locals will really appreciate as they have our unique African sound. Bala sings the lead in ‘Such An Awesome God’ and ‘Bambelela’.   He joins Jonas in ‘Hosannah’ and then she leads on the title track ‘Stay Amazed’.

Most of the songs were written by the manager Tore W. Aas, but also include remakes of songs such Paul Baloche’s ‘Above All’ and Chris Tomlin’s ‘I’m Singing’.

The CD doesn’t sound like there is a huge choir that is singing the songs, but rather a lead vocal and voices harmonizing around that.  This will widen the listenership, I am sure.

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