Let’s be honest, 2020 has been a terrible year. But the music has still been stellar. In fact, it’s helped us through some tough times. As first announced on Premier Gospel’s UK Gospel Show, here are our biggest songs of the year.
10. Sarah Téibo – Spirit Come
When this song first arrived in our inbox, we were surprised. It was a different direction for Sarah Téibo. But after interviewing her, we found out, it was a return to her praise and worship roots. This song really has a worshipful heart and communicates what we need from God, especially right now.
9. A Star – Rago
His debut album was a long time in the making but when it finally arrived in 2020, it had some bangers. Exhibit A: Rago. As we said in our album preview in March, the beat is hard and the bars are harder. It delivers on every level and it’s very hard to not skank to this one.
8. Reblah ft Mark Asari – Run
Us: We need a summer anthem.
Reblah: Hold my suncream.
This song was exactly what we needed for the summer. Vibes for days, afroswing heat and lots of fun. Great to hear Mark Asari on the hook (who also made a great solo track this year in Welcome Home). It’s our favourite Reblah track to date and it’s one of the biggest tunes of our summer. And yes, of course, it featured on our Gospel Summer Spotify playlist.
7. Guvna B – Battle
Sample a classic song and you risk messing things up and having people turn against you. But if you do it well, you push that nostalgia button that has everyone on side. That’s what happened with Battle. As the title suggests, Guvna B samples the 2000 song of the same name by Wookie. And with the recent UK garage resurgence, it’s nice to hear this vocal again. But it also speaks to the battle many of us faced in 2020 while giving us hope that they won’t last.
6. Sharyn ft Davecreates – Sanyuka
Sharyn’s getting a track record for producing songs that we love. She was featured on our list last year and when we saw the brilliant artwork for this track by Angeloh, we were already excited. And then we heard the song itself. Fantastic. In Sanyuka, Sharyn makes an afro-house song that bangs.
5. CalledOut Music – Warm Embrace
We say: CalledOut Music may well be one of the hardest working people in gospel music in the UK. He released so much music this year, including the album Portraits. But nothing stood out to us more than Warm Embrace. It’s so encouraging and it’s one we find ourselves singing long after the song finishes.
He says: It’s at our lowest points that the Lord graciously reaches out and wraps us in His arms so that we can feel the peace we need in that season. Warm embrace, every time I sing this song, I feel like I’m getting a massive hug from the Father.
4. Faith Child ft KB and Ty Brasel – New Era
We say: This is such a huge banger. Alex E did an amazing job on the beat. There’s so much hype but then Faith Child and friends jump on and bring some real substance. This took us by surprise, having Faith Child working with two US heavyweight but the mix of styles, accents and approaches is the perfect blend in our books. This is what our gaming Spotify playlist Gameface is all about. Go like if you haven’t already.
He says: My song New Era is a call for change. Whether that be societal change or internal change, I believe there is always room for improvement. And that can only be done by putting God in the driving seat. It’s time for a new season, a new way of thinking, a new era.
3. Becca Folkes – Baba
We say: This song is so simple, yet so heartfelt. It embodies the spirit of constant worship and we love the way that it communicates a personal attitude of gratitude. Big shout out to Becca for singing both in English and Yuroba on this track, the latter of which isn’t the usual wheelhouse for the Caribbean-rooted artist.
She says: Baba is a song for those who just want to give God everything through our lives, through our worship, through our song, through our deeds. Baba is a song for those who are like the woman with the alabaster box who want to serve Him forever, worship Him forever, be with Him forever.
2. Shekinah ft Guvna B – On Top Of The World
We say: We featured Shekinah as a One to Watch artist for 2019 and they’ve achieved much since then including, most recently, being nominated for a MOBO Award. Musically, On Top Of The World is their biggest triumph in our opinion. These ladies are obviously talented singers and when you hear the rich production, complete with horns section, it sounds very polished.
They say: On Top Of The World is an anthem that we want every Christian and every child of God to shout from the rooftops that we are children of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. That is enough for us to scream that we are on top of the world. Yes, our situation might not look like we want it to but the fact that we have a Father that loves us, that shows us grace and mercy is enough.
- Sharyn – Broken Hearts
We say: It’s as simple as this. There is no song that came out in 2020 that has been played as much on the Sound Doctrine stereo as Broken Hearts. We already knew from last year’s list that Sharyn is eclectic but when the 2-step UK garage beat dropped at the start we were intrigued. This song works in so many settings and it’s a shame there weren’t many dancefloors available in 2020 because it would have worked well there too.
She says: Broken Hearts was written at a time when I was mourning the death of a friend, and a woman who was like a grandmother to me growing up. In that season, I turned to the Psalms, in particular Psalms 34 where it talks about the Lord being close to the broken hearted and rescuing those who are crushed in spirit. I wrote this song as a way to process my heartbreak and my pain and I felt like it was important to release such a single where we’ve had a year when many people have lost loved ones, or maybe lost a job, or gone through a breakup. This is a song for anyone who is feeling low but also to uplift them to ask themselves the question where do broken hearts go. And for me, that’s God.
To listen back to the special edition of the UK Gospel Show on Premier Gospel, which features the top 10, click here.