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Essence’s Top 15 Artists to Watch for in 2014

The only way the ever-evolving music industry continues to grow is if new artists are given the chance to thrive and shine while the more established artists usher them into the limelight to share the platform. Gospel music is no different. From Erica Campbell to Anaysha Figueroa, here are 15 Gospel artists we’re keeping our eyes (and ears) on in 2014.
 
Anthony Brown & Group Therapy
Current Cd: “Anthony Brown & Group Therapy”
As a new artist, you’re off to a pretty good start in your career when Billboard crowns your song “Testimony” as the top Gospel single of 2013. It looks like Anthony Brown & Group Therapy is here to stay!
 
Andy Mineo
Current Cd: “Heroes for Sale”
He’s being called by many as one of the greatest young talents in the Christian Hip-Hop community. His latest album “Heroes For Sale” topped the Billboard Gospel charts for several weeks and made more than a few take notice!
 
Darnell Davis & The Remnant
Current Cd: “Refocused”
After three independent releases, Darnell Davis & The Remnant signed their first major label deal last year with RCA Inspiration. The high-energy choir promises to give everything–traditional Sunday morning, praise & worship and contemporary.
 
Tasha Cobbs
Current Cd:  “Grace”
Every year, at least one song takes off like lightening and “Break Every Chain” was that hit for Tasha Cobbs. This song has catapulted her as Gospel’s newest starlet snagging her a Grammy nomination, a #1 single and a critically acclaimed cd.
 
The Walls Group
Current Cd: “Perfect People”
This sibling quartet is a breath of fresh air, which is why it’s a no brainer that everyone is going to take notice when you are touted as Kirk Franklin’s protégés and the first group signed to his label, For Yo Soul Entertainment.
 
Bryan Pound
Current Cd: “Reality”
He’s one of the few “blue eyed” soul singers in Gospel, but this relatively unknown is one to keep an eye on. With a sound all his own, Bryan has the potential to write his own ticket with the right backing.
 
Jekalyn Carr
Current Cd: “Greater Is Coming”
Not even 16 years old yet, Jekalyn Carr leaves audiences speechless with her poise, vocal maturity of a veteran and the anointing of someone way beyond her years.
 
Chris Jackson
Current Cd: “No Pressure” mixtape
Having penned songs for superstars like Toni Braxton, The Isley Brothers, and Letoya Luckett, Jackson still calls Gospel home. His free mixtape makes Urban Gospel music viable and even more so, keeps it relevant!
 
Chanel
Current Single: “Believe”
After the announcement that Trin-i-tee 5:7 was leaving Mathew Knowles and Music World Gospel, Chanel wasted no time in preparing the release of her first solo CD. And the response has been nothing but positive since dropping the first single.
 
Anita Wilson
Current Cd: “Worship Soul”
Managing to snag a Grammy Nomination her first time out, Wilson has been amassing new fans everyday with her signature sound and approachable charm. With the release of her forthcoming CD “Vintage Worship” her ride is just getting started.
 
Erica Campbell
Current Single: “Help”
Known to the world as one half of super successful sister duo, Mary Mary, Erica Campbell is flying solo this time around. Many question can she do it on her own? We think so!
 
Anaysha Figueroa
Current Single: “Holy One”
She’s been fortunate to call Kirk Franklin her boss man for many, many, years. Now, Figueroa is stepping out front and the anticipation is building feverishly for her first solo release.
 
God’s Chosen
Current Cd: “1 & 6”
Despite girl groups almost becoming extinct in Gospel music, this St. Louis trio reminds us that all is not lost! In one word, they are simply AMAZING!
 
Jonathan McReynolds
Current Cd: “Life Music”
Jonathan McReynolds has to be one of the most talented and gifted new artists to appear in Gospel in a long time! An exceptional songwriter and thoughtful musician, the sky is the limit for this twenty something!
 
Tasha Lockhart
Current Single: “You Bring Out the Best in Me”
She was awarded the coveted title, 2013 Sunday Best winner! And a well-deserved win it was. Now fans are awaiting her first major label release.
 
By: Gerald Jones www.essence.com


23 Responses to Home

  1. Rev. Raphulo Molatelo David is a Gospel lover who stays several hours on Gospel reading. I also enjoy gospel music especial music relating to God’s message of salvation. Gospel is the best in the world. It is more than silver and gold with value.

  2. I enjoy Here in our Praise by Fred Hammond. It is awesome listening to the song. I really love Gospel music.

    Thank you for this opportunity and God bless.

  3. Valerie Spruill says:

    “He’s that kind of friend” By Walter Hawkins feat: Tramain Hawkins. This song reminds us of how much god love’s us so much! He’s our protection, our guidance, God is my everything!

  4. Mary Emerson says:

    Any song by James Cleveland speaks worlds of meaning to me.

  5. Tony Bynum says:

    I am more of a traditionalist. I like quartet songs and some choir songs. One of my favorite song is Take me to the king and Clean this house. I like songs for the content first and then the music.

  6. Debra says:

    From the very first time I heard this song, I was drawn by the power of the Holy Spirit. She speaks the truth about being tired and weary and all you want is to
    be taken to the King where you find refuge and strength. This will give strength to all who hear this song. God blessed Sister’s Mann’s pain and now we have been blessed. In His Great Name – Debra

  7. O. Willis says:

    “It is well with my soul,” continues to keep me sane.

  8. One of my “all time favorites” is
    “Give Me a Clean Heart” by Margaret Pleasant Douroux. When I get up to preach, it is one that I often perform with my wife who sings it. The chorus –”Give me a clean heart, so I may serve thee. Lord, fix my heart so that I may be used by thee. For I’m not worthy of all these blessings. Give me a clean heart and I’ll follow thee”–is my prayer. But the verse (s) help me to meditate on my motives: “I’m not asking for the riches of the land. I’m not asking for great men to know my name. But please give me a clean heart that I may follow thee. Give me a clean heart and I’ll follow thee.”

  9. Sabrina Chalmers says:

    One of my favorite songs would have to be “Take Me Back”. Not just speaking for others; but speaking for myself as well; we sometimes get caught up in all types of music, mostly it is not the words, but the beat and instruments. We forget about focusing on what the message of the song is. God gives us all talents and gifts. Some gospel singers are called by God and some just go because of fame and what they perceive as fortune. We have to be careful or what we sing and what we hear. My favorite hymn would be “Draw Me Nearer”.

  10. g. lee says:

    “I Have Found a Friend in Jesus” is a song that beautifully expresses the joy I feel about Jesus’s having found and saved me for eternal life. It not only deals with the hope of eternal life, but, also, the Friend who is with me through the day to day struggles.

  11. Sis. Evangelist S Boatman says:

    ” Jesus, Jesus, Jesus
    Author Rev. Timothy Wright

    The return of the “Old School” Blood,Blood stained banner,and Cross songs always set me in the present spritual realm. There is power,healing, comfort, and joy all wrap in singing this anointed “calling” song.

  12. Dorothy Moore says:

    There are a number of songs that I draw from but, “Still Here by the Williams Brothers” is one of my favorites. It reminds me that no matter what I’ve been through or what I may be going through right now God is the same yesterday today and forever; he will never forsake you or let you walk alone as long as you keep holding on to his unchanging hand. This song nurtures and feeds my spirit at sll times. In 2008 I lost my father on February 5th and on February 7th my oldest dsughter 48 hours apart to cancer. Within a month I lost my youngest sister. And now I know why I am still here.

  13. Monica S. Reed says:

    My Soul’s Been Anchored gets me through any day and reminds me how I am anchored in the Lord and the Lord is my Anchor.

  14. “Turning Around For Me” Artist Vashawn Mitchell
    It just took all bite and fight out of me! I began to realize that God IS TRULY in charge..and I have Faith that He is not only turning it around for me…He has already turned my life around! I have that to be Grateful for ..even if He doesn’t do anything else! I will praise and serve Him until I die!!

  15. One of my favorite “get me through the day song”, Smile- by Kirk Franklin.

  16. Pat G. says:

    Favorite gospel music:
    My God is Awesome by Pastor Charles Jenkins & Fellowship Chicago

  17. Sheryl Askins says:

    Be Blessed by Bishop Paul S. Morton is one of those songs for me. My oldest son in incarcerated, serving a 10 year sentence for a 1st offense. He was very young when he went into the correctional system. The line in the song that says, “I see you in the future, and you look better, I see you walking in favor and prosperity too. Let me encourage you, let me speak life to you.” ministers to me and him in this situation. It helps me to have faith in the future that God has prepared for my son if he will choose to walk in God’s way. It gets through the rough days.

  18. Charlene Hodge says:

    One of my favorites is “My Help Cometh from the Lord” When I was diagnosed with Breast cancer. A friend from work gave this CD with music from their Church the Choir sings. It was so uplifting that I listened to it over and over and it got me through those rough days. And still now when I sing it just fills me up with so much and lets me know how grateful and blessed I am. I read Psalms 121 all the time and tell people who are going through something to read Psalms 121.

  19. rhonda townsend says:

    returning back , I also wanted to comment on the songs that are posted. those song are profound, they go straight to the heart of God, worship song are the songs that will get through your trails and tribulations. those song will help you appreciate who God is. I love those songs, but I feel like i am missing something. maybe its the people who are different today. they don’t seem to love God the way the old saints did. As a child I saw great, great sacrifice made by them. Today i see selfishness.

  20. rhonda townsend says:

    Ilove the old songs more than the songs of today. Don’t get me wrong because Iam old school and old school people have a different anointing. Wereally feel the presence of God, not saying his presence is not here today; its just a big difference in the songs today; for example we sing “Take Me Back Where I first Believed” or “YES, YES, YES” In other words these song move you, many people were filled with God’s precious Holy Ghost. I just don’t see that today. In the songs today, what i see is that the flesh wants to feel good, but in the songs of old the HEART wants to feel good-the Heart wants to feel Gods anointed. now thats my opinion. I know there are some that won’t agree, but there are otheres who will agree wholeheartly. My song for today and evermore is “There Is No Way I Can Live Without Him”

  21. Camisha Thomas says:

    The song that gives me strength and drives me toward my purpose is “The Corinthian Song,” penned by V. Michael McKay and performed by Micah Stampley and Kathy Brown. When you listen to the song, you will see why… Be blessed!

  22. adrian says:

    Song that changed my life: “Worth It All” by Ruby Mann Pool, Chesapeake,Va

    • Ruby Mann Pool says:

      Adrian, I am so glad to know that my song ministered to you. As Christians, we know that the things we endure in this life will be worth it all when we see Jesus! Be blessed and keep the faith.

      Ruby Mann Pool

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