The Ranny Williams Entertainment Centre came alive with praise last Sunday night as the top ten Jamaica Gospel Song Competition finalists offered up their all on stage for a chance to win the prestigious competition. But it was songstress Diamara Neil-Walker with her goose-bump inducing single “God Is” who took home the coveted title as well as the sectional prize for Best Lyrics. In addition to going home with the top trophy, the sultry-voiced Walker also takes home a $400 000 cash award and cell phone courtesy of Digicel and a recording contract courtesy of Caribbean Gospel Buzz among other prizes.
Second place and the Best Performance sectional prize went to Minister Treasure with “Praise Him”, while Unique Harmony came third with “Jubilee”. Other Sectional Prize winners were Brother Jeff – “Heavenly Race”, who took home the Spirit of Praise Award and the Shepherd Brothers – “Jesus Remember Me” who were the People’s Choice Awardee.
Other finalists were Lashawn Wilson with “Something More In Store”, Yanique Ducasse with “Give Me Strength”, Petrena Ariana Whyte – “Praise Him In The Morning”, Rebecca Bissoon – “With You Lord”, and Fred Robertson with “Freedom Call”. The top ten songs were recorded, mixed and mastered by Almond Productions Limited are original entries and have been receiving good rotation by the media.
Organized by the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC), an agency of the Ministry of Youth and Culture, the Jamaica Gospel Song Competition has become an iconic presentation of indigenous gospel music in Jamaica since its inception in 1987. The competition has a long tradition of producing and unearthing Gospel greats, and maintained its standard in showcasing some major talent and promising artistes for the Gospel industry.
The guest performer for the show was Gospel powerhouse, Judith Gayle, while popular gospel artistes Micehlle T. and Nickette Morgan-Williams and the 2014 Gospel Song winner, Keneisha Smith also performed.
The Competition was sponsored by, CHASE Fund, The Tourism Enhancement Fund, Almond Productions, the Jamaica Civil Aviation Authority, DIGICEL, Grace Kennedy Money Services, Love 101 FM, CVM TV TBC Radio, NCU FM, Fyah 105 FM, IRIE FM, Mello FM, JACAP, the Kingston & St. Andrew Corporation, Excelsior, Jamaica Music Society, Kool 97 FM, Roots FM, Clear Sound Production Services, Caribbean Gospel Buzz and the Public Broadcasting Corporation of Jamaica.