Gordon Koang releases new album
South Sudan’s visually impaired musician Gordon Koang has released his 11th album titled Unity.
Speaking to NME about the 8-track offering, Koang said: “Unity is essential in this world. One hand cannot clap, but two hands can bring the sound. I call it ‘Unity’ because if the Nuer, Aussie, Indian, Asian… all the communities in the world worked together; we can grow.”
The songs in the album are based on his personal experience. For instance, ‘Kone Ke Ran’ comforts the distressed while ‘Asylum Seekers’ offers hope to asylum in a new country.
Other songs in the album include ‘South Sudan’, ‘Tiel e Nei Nywal Ke Ran, ‘Mal Mi Goa’ and ‘Stand Up’, among others. He said that the purpose of his music was to “make people happy and to unite for peace.
The future of the music industry is uncertain due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Koang said that music is “much needed at this time.” He also announced plans to hold online concerts from his home with the home that the songs will comfort people and spark positive discussions.
Living in Australia since 2014, Koang who has come to be known as the South Sudanese King of Music sings in English, Arabic and his mother tongue, Nuer and also plays the thom, a traditional Nuer stringed instrument.
He was granted an Australian residency in 2019 and has since performed at major music festival in Australia notably Meredith Music Festival, Strawberry Fields and Brunswick Music Festival.
“Many people never understood why I came from overseas as a blind man,” he said. Therefore with the release of Unity, he hopes to show “the people in Australia that I am a musician, and that music is a friend to everyone.”
Koang hails from the Upper Nile region of South Sudan and is always accompanied by his cousin Paul Biel. Together the perform a blend of traditional Neur rhythms.
Buy the Unity album here