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Gospel singer Geoffrey Woo

 



Woo to woo M’sians with gospel music

ON THE international scene, gospel music, as a genre, has become popular even in the secular setting. It doesn’t take long for one to realise that Boney M’s “By the Rivers of Babylon” was a popular gospel song that attracted fans from all walks of life.  

Gospel artistes like Jordanaires, Green, and Burke have been known to perform in both secular and religious settings. According to the Wiki-pedia, other gospel singers, such as Rosetta Thar-pe, Golden Gate Quartet and Ward, have even performed gospel music in secular settings, in-cluding the nightclubs.  

“The fact is, people still love gospel music, and it has its fans all over the place,” said local gospel singer for 23 years, Geoffrey Woo, who has five gospel albums to his credit.  

“We see a growth trend in the gospel music genre in Malaysia and Singapore. It is wholesome entertainment and there is nothing wrong if people in the nightclubs want to listen to gospel mu-sic for a change. Jesus himself went to dine with the outcasts of society in his time, when the rest of his peers thought it was unholy to eat with the sinners.” 

Woo, a Chemical Engineering graduate from RMIT, Melbourne, Australia, said he had spent most of his two decades of singing career in Sin-gapore.  

“It is time that I make a comeback to Malaysia. I am a Malaysian and I know my Malaysian friends want to listen to some wholesome gospel music.” 

Will he make it big in Malaysia now that he is planning to sing his own gospel songs throughout the country?  

Most people in their mid-40s can still recall the name Geoffrey Woo from his first two albums, “Sojourn” (1982) and “Into Light” (1985).  

Posing mainly in his smart casual attire, especially for his album covers, Woo defines his compositions as “contemporary pop”. 

“All my songs are originals and they are both unique and meaningful, interlaced with a profound message that is about life,” he said. 

Most people still think that he is a jazz singer, especially since most of the songs he sang in his early days were jazzy.  

“The reason is because the producers themselves wanted the songs to be jazzy,” he said.  

“I am more of a contemporary pop singer. That’s the way I am going to produce my forthcoming albums.” 

In the pipeline is “Geogeny”, his sixth album, which is currently under production at a friend’s studio in Singapore.  

“Geogeny is a composite of his name Geoffrey and “geny”, the root word for Genesis. It simply means the new sounds of Geoffrey’s songs.” 

Old songs which he released before such as “All Things Are Possible”, “Children of the Light” and “Ayisha” will be redone to give them a fresh new boost. “The rest of the songs in the new album will be songs that have never been recorded be-fore, written over a span of 25 years.” 

The self-taught guitarist said he has always lived by faith. International music website, SoundClick.com describes this as “the special as-pect of his ministry, to be evidence of God’s abi-lity to provide supernaturally.”  

“I have survived all these years as a gospel sin-ger. It’s all through God’s provision,” he said, clai-ming that he has never depended on one stable source of income.  

“I am planning and trusting God that once my next album is completed in the middle of next year, I will be invited to travel to other parts of the world, including Australia, Hong Kong, Indo-nesia, Japan and the United States, besides touring Malaysia and Singapore. I am looking forward to break new grounds, especially as an Asian in the Western market.” 

A member of the Malaysian Christian Songwri-ters Network, Woo also appears on www.soundclicks.com, an international portal of musicians from all genres.  

The third album, “Deeper Than I Can Imagine” (1987), which was a group effort with the Onesi-mus Principle, and was released by Warner Elec-tra Atlantic Records (WEA) in Singapore, sold over 10,000 copies and the title track became one of the Top Ten on the “Burger King Top 10 Chart” in Singapore. Woo contributed three songs on that album. 

“Reprise”, being his fifth album, is a collection of some of the more popular songs in the early days. 

“It was done to help a church to raise funds for its own building,” he said.  

“In the process, I released three singles, inclu-ding “Just One Life Pt.2” which was played by the radio channels in Singapore. It was released in remembrance of Mother Teresa when she passed away. The second single, “More Than Life”, was also aired on radio, being a release for Valentine’s Day.” 

The third single “Just When I Thought It Was Over” was picked up by Singapore Airlines for its inflight music entertainment.  

 




  



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