Andrew Bello is an exciting, multi-award winning Afrobeats artist, an ambassador of Contemporary Afro Gospel music in the UK, and one of the hardest working industry-fellows we know. So we took an opportunity to get to know a little more about the man behind the music.
For those who are new to your music how would you sum it up in 5 words?
If I had to summarise my music in five words they would be: Afro-fusion, exciting, original, multifaceted, and authentic.
Ooh, good answer! How long have you been in the music game?
I have been in the music game for 8 years.
Can you tell us a bit about how your musical journey began?
Like many, my musical journey started in the church, more specifically, from when I was part of the choir. Someone, who later became my mentor, spotted something special in me both music and entertainment wise. This really encouraged and inspired me to pursue music seriously. From then it’s just been a journey with God learning more about my gift along the way.
You sometimes go by the name “Mr International”, why’s that?
To me this name is almost prophetic, a representation of the fact I will take the Gospel around the world. I was given the name as a logo and it’s stuck since. It reminds me of the promises God has for my life.
As a UK based Afro-Gospel artist you could say you operate in a niche genre that’s within a niche genre, does that make it difficult for you to build an audience or is it an opportunity?
Interestingly, I don’t really consider my genre a niche per se. The reason I say this is that I have been invited to sing at events that are outside the ‘Gospel’ sphere. However, I can see how it appears as a niche. I think the potential problems revolve around a lack of publicity. In the UK we need more PR and more people, like yourself, who are willing to push UK Gospel to the masses.
We keep hearing young people say they are not aware of a lot of Christian artists and the great music they are producing, why do you think that is?
I think that is due to a lack of promoters, lack of organisation in terms of integrating good advertising and publicity into event planning, and lastly a lack of consistency. Truly it once again comes back to the issue of publicity.
For those being introduced to UK Afro-Gospel who are the key artists to get to know?
Definitely Michael Ee. He is very new to the industry but I see him going very far. He is someone to look out for. Michael Ee just released his first EP and one of his songs that I love so much is ‘I Command My Body’. I believe people should check his songs out on all platforms and they will understand what I am saying. His social media handles include @min_michael (Instagram), @mickky4j (Twitter), Michael Ee. & DV (Facebook). In fact we will be collaborating in the near future.
You’ve collaborated with some awesome Afro-Gospel artists like Mike Abdul from Midnight Crew; would you ever work with someone from a completely different genre though, like rock?
Of course, I would really love to experiment. In fact, I am really interested in working with reggae artists and producers. However, the reason I am yet to collaborate with artists/producers of different genres is because I am trying to build my brand at the moment before I branch off.
We know you perform a lot in the South, when is the nationwide tour coming?
I will definitely keep you updated!
In the meantime you’ll be performing at the next Praise Party in May, what can people expect to see from you?
Yes, you can expect excitement, lots of dancing (as usual!), a mix of different songs, and a performance that draws people to lift up the King of Kings.
What do you think is a positive thing about events like the Praise Party?
Praise Party is a great event. It allows Christians to be free to enjoy life and shows that we can have fun! Importantly, this event is a clean event so it allows people to dance and enjoy the evening in a free environment.
You’ve been busy putting out new music recently, what’s next for you?
More music. More videos. I am planning to release two EP’s which are based on the concept of storytelling. I aim to work with many songwriters and producers for these projects. One of the EPs will be produced mostly by a female, who I won’t mention the name of yet. Keep your eyes peeled for some great music.
Finally, Mr Bello, what is it that makes you a ‘Juicy Gent’?
Well, I am just a fun, crazy person who is also gentle, calm and very supportive.[spacer style=”1″]
The next Praise Party takes place on Friday 6th May from 10pm – 3am.
This month’s event features live PA’s from Faith Child, Andrew Bello, and Dwayne Tryumf. There’ll be a guest DJ set by Gospel House deejay DJ G. And resident deejays, DJ Kelechi, DJ Tito, DJ Tomiwa, will be playing the best in Christian RnB, Hip Hop, Reggae, Afrobeats, and more. It sounds like the party is going to be popping off!
Book your tickets for the event here: Get Your Praise On!
Over to you
Whats your favourite Afro-Gospel song out at the moment? Tell us in the comments below.[spacer style=”1″]