Happy gospel bash

Patience Bambalele

Patience Bambalele

The launch of a gospel diva Lusanda Mcinga's latest album at the Mthatha Town Hall on Saturday was a resounding success.

Mcinga, who launched Ndingaphakathi, her 12th album, has become one of the best-selling gospel musicians in the country.

Only two months since its release her new album has already sold more than 50000 copies, earning her a platinum disc.

Music critics have come to regard her annual album launches as highlights on the Eastern Cape's music calendar.

The latest launch attracted thousands of music lovers and lasted 19 hours, with local groups joining the singer to celebrate.

She might not only be the queen of gospel but she is a heroine in her province.

At the outset Mcinga and her entourage took to the streets of Mthatha and brought the town to a standstill.

Then the singer and her group, the Lusanda Spiritual Group, took to the stage and sent music lovers into a frenzy.

She performed some of her well-known songs and also gave her loyal fans a taste of the new album. She was joined by gospel diva Debra Fraser .

Another concert took place as part of the launch, with musicians such as Khanyisa Sabuka, Blessed Men, the Umtata YMG Choir and many others performing.

The singer had 16 sheep slaughtered for music lovers who attended the show.

Born in Willowvalle, Eastern Cape, Mcinga is one of the most respected gospel artists in South Africa.

Since the release in 1995 of her debut album, Ungababek'ityala, she has never looked back.

Some of her albums have been described as "timeless" and have garnered many awards.