Friday, April 5, 2013

Emmy Kosgei - Ategisin (Kenyan Gospel)

Edited by Azizi Powell

This post showcase the song "Ategisin" by Kenyan Gospel singer Emmy Kosgei. That song's lyrics in English and a link to the lyrics which are sung in the Kalenjin language are also provided in this post, along with information about Emmy Kosgei.

The content of this post is presented for religious, cultural and aesthetic purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

"Daughter to highly acclaimed protestant cleric Bishop Jackson Kosgei and his wife Rose, a versatile businesswoman, Emmy [Kosgei] grew up in Mogotio in Koibatek District. “I would say it was a humble background. We were not well off, but we managed,” she says.

She has always been a performer joining everything from the youth choir to the drama club in high school. “I used to compose my own songs and sometimes people would cry. My dad would say it was because my words were so powerful.”

Then she moved to Nairobi to study food production at Utalii College it was her first time in a city.... She sung in church but never considered doing it professionally. Then she met Esther Wahome who heard her sing in church and became her mentor. “She advised me to try something different. Everyone was already singing in English and Kiswahili.” Emmy decided to sing in her native Kalenjin in order to stand out. “Vernacular language is different, very rich and not explored,” she says...

Emmy is not just a gospel artiste. She is also a patriot and philanthropist, and her music seems to spring from a place of healing... “The way to fight tribalism is by accepting it. Every community is unique and that is what makes us Kenyan. You have to appreciate those differences, not stifle them.

If I have come this far doing Kalenjin songs, imagine how far we would go if one person sung in Kikuyu, another in Luo, another in Kikamba, and everybody did their thing instead of putting fear into people by making them doubt who they are.” This interesting mix of the local and the global has landed her a distribution deal with EMI Records through its Kenyan arm AI, to take her music to the rest of the world."
Click for information about Kalenjin language and ethnic group.

A commenter on that video's comment thread whose link is given below used the term "Kale" to refer to Kalenjin people. This may be an accepted informal contemporary abbreviation of that referent.


joashstilltheman, Uploaded on Apr 26, 2010

From the album TAUNET NELEL
"Ategisin Jehovah"
(I salute You Jehovah)


(Emmy Kosgei)

I salute you, Jehovah! [repeat multiple times]

I salute you, for saving me.
I salute you, for forgiving me.
I salute you, for loving me.
Without you Lord, where would I be?
I will sing for You!
I will salute You!


You raise the poor from the dust.
...and the humble from clay.
You make them sit with kings.
You give strength to the weak.
I salute You!


You give children to the barren.
...and give them a reason to celebrate.
When God blesses no one curses.
He says yes no one says no!

*Two commenters on that video's viewer comment thread indicated that "ategisin" means "I respect you."
MercyRuto, 2012
"ategisin means i respect you"
Myz Dee, 2012
"it actually means i respect u."
Click for the Kalenjin lyrics to this song. Hat tip to Sashahon , a commenter on this video's viewer comment thread for sharing the information about that website.

Thanks to Emmy Kosgei for her musical legacy. My thanks also to the producer of this video and its publisher on YouTube.

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Visitor comments are welcome.

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