Kenyan artistes who ditched gospel music for secular music

By , K24 Digital
On Tue, 19 Jul, 2022 10:06 | 3 mins read
Artises who quit gospel for secular.
Collage of Ringtone, Willy Paul and Bahati. PHOTO/(Ringtone, WillyPaul, BahatiKenya)Instagram

The Kenyan gospel industry is one that has been defined as one full of controversies, from artistes throwing shade at each other to publicized scandals.

Despite the differences, the industry which features a potent mix of African beats, classical rhythms, and old-school beats among other beats has also been defined as one that paid handsomely for every good work done, however, some artistes have still quit the industry despite its perception of the dream job.

K24 digital looks at some of the artistes who exited the industry for secular.

Willy Paul

Wilson Abubakar Radido alias Willy Paul ventured into the music industry as a gospel artist in 2012.

He became famous for his hit song 'Sitolia' which features Gloria Muliro.

Through the years, Willy switched to secular music after realizing that he was not destined for the genre.

At the time, Willy explained that he was leaving the gospel industry because he was fed up with his fellow artists ganging up against him because of his work.

Singer Willy Paul.
Singer Willy Paul. PHOTO/(WillyPaul)Instagram

"God and I have not split, I'm still his son. But the thing is, the same God that blesses Sauti Sol, Wizkid, Davido, Burna Boy and even Chris Brown is the same God that blesses gospel artistes. So even before I made up my mind to go this route, I was facing a lot of challenges in the gospel industry,

"I don't want want to mention names but the people in the gospel industry did so much to me. There's that feeling where you haven't done anything to anyone but they want to see you fail," Willy said at the time.

Willy further opined that the artistes protested against his music being played on radio stations.

"These guys were so against me that they protested against my music being played on several radio stations like two or three. There was a time I depended solely on music for survival, to cater to my mom's bill and mine. But these people were so heartless they didn't care," he added.


Launching his music career at a very tender age, Bahati alias Kevin Kioko came to the limelight after several of his songs became a hit.

Years after venturing into the gospel industry Bahati switched to secular music where he now sings love songs.

Singer Bahati. PHOTO/(Bahati Kenya)Instagram

At the time he stated that he quit the industry because he was fought by other artists in the industry.

"I was fought a lot in the gospel industry so when I do a gospel song. I do it for God, not for the people. I just separated myself from the gospel industry for a while but I'm in Christ and the Lord is my personal saviour," Bahati previously stated.

He added: "Hate is not bad. But what is the need of receiving hate from artists that I am helping from scratch? When I started to support them no one cared, but once they get famous, they create false stories to make them trend, You know this ministry of me helping them out, then they turn on me and soil my name, is there a need for me to do it?" he posed at the time.

Following his exit from the industry Bahati also closed down his gospel music record label, Eastlands Most Beloved (EMB).

He has made several collaborations with renowned artists.

Ringtone Apoko

Alex Apoko alias Ringtone who is famously known for his Pamela hit song, switched to secular music early this month 2022.

On his switch, Ringtone acknowledged that he was venturing into the secular industry as a love song artist.

Former gospel artiste Ringtone
Ringtone. PHOTO/@ringtoneapoko/Instagram

He further stated that he was quitting the industry because of women who threw themselves at him instead of focusing on his efforts to spread the word of God.

"The journey has ended as I have now decided to venture into love songs, therefore I am asking for your support, for the artistes singing love songs, I am asking that you don't see me as a co petition, let's work together so that we are able to take music where it needs to be, bye-bye gospel," he said.