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4/20/2012 - Natalie Grant Garners Fifth Dove Award for "Female Vocalist of the Year"
Recent GRAMMY ® nominated female vocalist and dove award forerunner Natalie Grant was honored last night as she accepted her fifth Dove for “Female Vocalist of the Year” at the 43rd Annual GMA Dove Awards. The highly anticipated event was held at the Fox Theater in Atlanta, GA and will air on GMC TV on April 24 at 8PM and 10PM ET.
Grant also received a standing ovation when she gave a powerful performance of the Dove and GRAMMY® nominated song “Alive” featured on The Story, alongside her husband and award-winning producer Bernie Herms.
Hosted by comedian Chonda Pierce and actor David Mann from Tyler Perry’s sitcom Meet the Browns, music fans can tune into the nationally televised broadcast on GMC TV on April 24 from 8PM to 10PM ET.
2/17/2011 - Brandon Heath Continues "Male Vocalist Of The Year" Streak
Christian music’s reigning two-time Male Vocalist of the Year, Brandon Heath is once again tapped in the coveted category with his nomination announced today from Atlanta, Ga., for the 42nd Annual GMA Dove Awards. Heath won the title in 2009 and 2010.
The Nashville native continues to have the biggest song in the land, as his fourth career No. 1 single “Your Love” remains No. 1 for a sixth week on Billboard’s National Christian Audience chart.
The single is featured on Heath’s chart-topping third studio release, Leaving Eden. The highly-acclaimed album released Jan. 18, debuted at No. 1 on Billboard’s Top Current Contemporary Christian Chart and reached the No.1 position on iTunes Christian Albums chart.
Last month, Heath reached another career milestone as the digital sales of his previous 2009 Dove-winning Song of the Year hit “Give Me Your Eyes” surpassed 500,000 and officially certified as a RIAA Gold digital single. Heath is currently on tour with GRAMMY Award winning artist TobyMac as part of the Winter Wonder Slam Tour. On March 4, he kicks off headlining a month of shows with special guests Dave Barnes and Kristian Stanfill, and then joins MercyMe for an estimated 20 cities.
For tour dates, and to view Heath’s new Leaving Eden video sessions, please visit www.brandonheath.net.
The 42nd Annual GMA Dove Awards will be held at the Fox Theatre in Atlanta, Ga. on Wednesday, April 20th. The awards show will be televised on GMC at 8:00p.m. ET/delayed PT on Easter Sunday, April 24th. GMC is the fastest-growing network in television and can be seen in 47 million homes on various cable systems around the country, on DIRECTV on channel 338 and on Verizon FiOS on channel 224.
2/16/2011 - Kerrie Roberts Nominated for New Artist and Female Vocalist of the Year
Pop songstress Kerrie Roberts celebrates her first career nominations today for the 42nd Annual GMA Dove Awards, with honors in the two high-profile categories of New Artist of the Year and Female Vocalist of the Year. Nominees were announced today in Atlanta, Ga., at the historic Fox Theatre.
After receiving the news this morning, Roberts said, “I’m just so thankful for the opportunities and experiences I’ve had this year that have led up to today’s announcement.” She adds, “I couldn’t be more proud of my fellow nominees in both categories, and am truly honored to be associated with them.”
Roberts released her soulful-pop, self-titled debut album Aug. 24, 2010, on Reunion Records. The project’s lead single, “No Matter What,” performed as a multi-format Top 5 hit on Billboard’s Christian AC and CHR radio charts, receiving 115 million cumulative listener impressions to date. The album’s second single “Outcast” remains a Top 5 hit on the CHR radio chart this week, and the new single, “Take You Away,” is currently adding to Christian AC stations around the country.
The album’s track “Unstoppable” has also been featured on the FOX network in broadcast promos for the current 10th season of “American Idol.” With proven strong radio support, the emotive singer’s huge, soaring vocals and transparent songwriting poise her to be the next breakthrough voice in Christian music.
As stated last year, Mike Prendergast, Director of Programming for KLTY in Dallas, predicted Kerrie Roberts as “New Artist of the Year” saying, “She’s one of the best new acts I’ve heard in a while.”
Roberts wrapped a 10-city run with Building 429 this month as part of the Food For The Hungry Winter Blast 2011 tour, following a busy 2010, opening for Casting Crowns on several show dates, and appearing on the Very Merry Christmas Tour with Newsong and Newsboys.
The south Florida native’s first performance came at the age of five years old. Growing up a pastor’s daughter, she was the youngest member of the church choir and would stand on top of a milk crate to see over the choir’s partition. After learning to play piano, Roberts wrote her first songs in high school and began performing in churches and local venues.
For more information on Kerrie Roberts, with performance videos and more, please visit: www.kerrieroberts.com and www.twitter.com/Kerrie_Roberts.
2/9/2011 - Teen Pop Vocalist Katelynne Cox Releases Label Debut, One Girl, March 22
Sixteen-year-old pop artist Katelynne Cox will release her first national label project via Red Hammer Records on March 22. Titled One Girl, the record communicates a message of integrity and empowerment, inspiring listeners toward confidence and self-respect.
Produced by Grammy Award nominee Aaron Rice, with songwriting by Rice, Sam Mizell (Francesca Battistelli, Matthew West) “American Idol” alumnus Chris Sligh, Joy Williams of The Civil Wars, and Jamie Moore (tobyMac, Ayiesha Woods), One Girl comprises 12 tracks showcasing pop-rock melodies and hooky choruses. A victim of school bullying for many years, Cox’s songs address issues of peer pressure, self-esteem, and embracing one’s individuality.
“The lyrics on this album were very important to me,” she says. “That’s the main reason I chose One Girl as the CD title. That song talks about being one girl in a crowd, standing up and saying what you want to be said and not trying to blend in with everyone else. It talks about being proud of who you are and being unique.”
Other songs like “You and Me” are about being above the influence, while light-hearted tune “Smile” is an ode to friendship. Rice comments on the album’s significance, “Katelynne draws her inspiration from a unique set of circumstances. Having experienced so much at such an early age, she truly can relate to young people in a relevant way. There are so few voices in Christian music that speak to her generation. This record is one that needed to be made, and Katelynne was the perfect artist to do it.”
The project’s first single, “Me” will vie for adds at Christian Hit Radio beginning Feb. 25. Additionally, production is currently underway on a music video for “Me.” For more information on Katelynne Cox or One Girl, visit: www.katelynnecox.com or www.myspace.com/katelynnecox. Follow Katelynne on Twitter at twitter.com/katelynnecox
Portland, Ore. native Katelynne Cox is an accomplished singer, songwriter, model, dancer and actress. The sixteen-year-old has won more than 75 state and national modeling titles, including National Miss American Jr. Teen Victory 2009 and Miss Washington Pre-Teen in 2006. In 2010, she appeared on the cover of Supermodels Unlimited magazine.
Cox began her professional music career after being accepted to the first “American Idol” camp, which led to her recording the National Anthem for KUPL, a local radio station in Portland. Red Hammer Records president Darren Bowls heard Cox’s voice and signed her to his Portland-based label, which is distributed by Entertainment One Distribution. For more information, visit www.katelynnecox.com.
6/16/2010 - Sanctus Real Vocalist Matt Hammitt Offers Personal Confession with "Lead Me" From Pieces of a Real Heart
GRAMMY-nominated, Dove Award winning Sanctus Real released its fifth studio album, Pieces Of A Real Heart, on Sparrow Records in March amidst growing critical acclaim. As the first radio single from the album, “Forgiven,” went to the top of the charts becoming one of the most played Christian radio singles this year, the second single, “Lead Me,” was released last week to AC radio and becomes the most added new song ever for the band this week, launching into the top 20 of the overall Billboard Christian radio national audience chart. Already a Billboard Top 30 AC Monitored and Top 5 CHR hit, the song is a personal confession and prayer written by lead vocalist Matt Hammitt, and is proving to be a source of hope as he and his wife, Sarah, walk through a difficult pregnancy.
“My wife and I aren’t shy about sharing that we’ve had some pretty major struggles,” admits Matt after his wife implored him to be a better spiritual leader in the family. “I think the challenge for me in the song, and hopefully for other men as well, is every time I hear it, every time I sing it, I ask myself, ‘what kind of man am I?’ Not yesterday, not tomorrow, what kind of man am I today? Have I invested in my family emotionally, spiritually the way that God has called me to reach out to them and to lead them.”
To lead them with strong hands / To stand up when they can’t /
Don’t want to leave them hungry for love / Chasing things that I could give up /
I’ll show them I’m willing to fight / And give them the best of my life /
So we can call this a home / Lead me, ‘cause I can’t do this alone /
Father, lead me, ‘cause I can’t do this alone
Implementing this shift in daily priorities, Matt is now walking together with Sarah through one the most difficult points yet in their marriage. Parents to Emmy and Claire, the couple is struggling to bring to term their first baby boy, Bowen Matthew Hammitt. Bowen, which means "small victorious one," is 26-weeks-old and has been diagnosed with a serious heart defect called Hypoplastic Left Heart (HLHS).
“On April 12th of this year, Sarah and I walked into our nineteen week ultrasound excited to find out whether we were having a boy or a girl. Since we’ve already been blessed with two beautiful girls, we were excited to find out it was little boy! However, shortly after the ultrasound, our OB [obstetrician] entered the room and said she had some bad news.
“Knowing Bowen is sick has brought me face to face with the sobering reality that none of us are promised tomorrow and has pulled that nagging ache, the one to make every moment count, straight to the surface of my daily life,” confesses Matt on a blog he and Sarah created to give updates on Bowen at http://bowensheart.com/.
Again finding encouragement and strength in the song “Lead Me,” Matt and Sarah share the story of the song on video at www.sanctusreal.com. Hoping to help other couples struggling in their marriage, Sanctus Real also leads corporate prayers that can be found on the website.
As the song “Lead Me” continues to gather radio airplay, here is what media have been saying about the song and Pieces Of A Real Heart:
“‘Lead Me’ is a surefire hit…This song is a ‘must own’ for all husbands, fathers and young men looking for an honest portrayal of the prayer of a Christian man asking God to lead their lives.” – NewReleaseTuesday.com (“A+” album review.)
“We put every track to the test and can say that the superb production quality and heartfelt lyrics go a long way toward making this their best album yet.” – Napster.com
“This album is more mainstream in its pop/rock appeal… the album is nearly perfect.” – The Album Project
“With honest lyrical prose and heightened musical charm, Sanctus Real re-energizes their stay as one of Christian music’s favorite bands.” – CCM
“Pieces Of A Real Heart is an album that finds strength in brokenness, navigating the tension between humility and confidence, joy and pain…a solid album and a great addition to the latest chapter in Sanctus Real’s career.” – JesusFreakHideout.com
“On their fifth studio album, Sanctus Real reached a place very few rock bands ever ascend to…Hammitt knows what to say and how to say it, offering his own experiences and ponderings as counsel without coming across as trite or even the least bit holier-than-thou.” – All Music Guide
“Pieces Of A Real Heart offers pop-rock songs of worship even while addressing real-life issues and questions. Listeners will also appreciate Sanctus Real’s transparency and honesty.” – Charisma
“Sanctus Real continues to grow in their craft. This is their best album to date!” - CMSpin.com
“They’ve developed a more refined and mature pop/rock sound.” – ChristianityToday.com
“There are many amazing songs on this new project… it does not disappoint.” – StereoTruth.com
“The American rockers have gone from strength to strength down the years and in Matt Hammitt have one of the best vocalists on the current CCM scene.” – Christian Marketplace
“The Sanctus Real library is a must for every Christian’s music collection. This current album will not disappoint. Five stars for Pieces Of A Real Heart.” – Everyday Christian
“Pieces Of A Real Heart is by far the band’s best record to date…” – thebridgelive.net
“The songs on this album are…excellent, with insightful lyrics and memorable hooks…” – Cross Rhythms
“With Pieces Of A Real Heart, Sanctus Real remains a cut above similar popular Christian pop-rockers with superior lyrics, and clear, sharp production.” – The Phantom Tollbooth
“Singer Matt Hammitt’s voice is very distinct and crisp as he sings with heart and emotion…Sanctus Real still packs a powerful musical touch.” – TitleTrakk.com
“…Pieces Of A Real Heart, is really really good…I encourage you to go beyond the music and allow yourself to really hear the lyrics.” – The Gospel Blog
Popularly known for its captivating recordings and live performances, Toledo, OH-based Sanctus Real is all about living out their lives as “real” Christians, not only on the stage and as they interact with fans, but in the quieter moments of their lives as husbands, fathers and fellow believers. The band creates compelling, authentic music that lives up to the meaning of their name: to be Holy (Latin meaning of “Sanctus”).
With 14 No. 1 and Top 5 radio hits, Sanctus Real’s 2006 breakthrough album, The Face of Love, landed at No 2 on the Billboard Top Heetseekers chart while the band’s most recent release, We Need Each Other, garnered the band a GRAMMY nomination. Pieces Of A Real Heart is the result of the band maturing and growing as songwriters, musicians and individuals, while retaining its aggressive edge and incorporating a more diverse musical palette of instrumentation and themes.
4/23/2010 - Brandon Heath Nabs Second Male Vocalist Title
Awards were given out last night at the Grand Ole Opry House for the 41st Annual GMA Dove Awards with celebrated Nashville-based singer/songwriter Brandon Heath scoring two wins, including the prestigious Male Vocalist of the Year honor for the second year in a row. The televised show will air nationwide on gmc Sunday, April 25, from 8 p.m. - 10 p.m. EST.
Heath notes, “I think this year I’m most thankful to the GMA for their commitment to stand with us and for us as artists whose voices are being heard. I happily accept this award and am truly proud to be a member of such a musically diverse family.”
One of the highlights of the evening’s performances came when Brandon Heath collaborated with Jars of Clay on “Two Hands,” the band’s Song of the Year nominated tune. These two acts will be touring together this fall and sharing their passion for people in need.
Heath’s back-to-back Male Vocalist titles follow his 2008 breakthrough New Artist of the Year win. Last night he also secured a Dove for his participation on Glory Revealed II: The Word of God In Worship, winner in the Special Event Album of the Year category. Heath was also nominated for Short Form Video of the Year for “Wait And See,” the second chart-topping single from his sophomore album, What If We.
2009 was a huge year for Brandon, nominated for two GRAMMY awards, and his first American Music Award, in addition to walking away with three awards at last year’s Dove Award ceremony, including Song of the Year for his hit song “Give Me Your Eyes” the blockbuster lead single from What If We.
Having captured 14 weeks at No.1 on Billboard’s Hot Christian AC radio chart, plus 27 weeks at No. 1 on iTunes Christian Song Chart, with 450,000 total digital downloads, “Give Me Your Eyes” was also recently used by NASA as the wake-up call for the Endeavour shuttle crew on their first day in orbit.
9/22/2009 - Grammy Nominated Vocalist Kierra Sheard Releases "Kiki's Mix Tape"
GRAMMY® nominated vocalist Kierra Sheard will release KIKI’S MIX TAPE (EMI Gospel) on September 22, 2009. Included on the project are 2 brand new songs, the lush and slow-grooving “Teach Me” and the church-girl-gets-her-rock-girl-on high-octane praise anthem “Sing To The Lord”. An EP comprised of 8 tracks, KIKI’S MIX TAPE is a vivid portrait of a young artist fully coming into her own.
The material on KIKI’S MIX TAPE spans Sheard’s dynamic young career, virtually documenting her artistic development from her explosive introduction as a solo artist in her own right via her 2004 debut smash single, the Rodney “Darkchild” Jerkins-produced “You Don’t Know” to current radio hit “Love Like Crazy (Extended Mix)”, making several stops in between.
“I love how this project shows how I’ve grown as an artist from my first single until now,” says Sheard of the release. “I went on facebook and twitter to ask my fans what some of their favorites were that they wanted to see on the project that we could mix in with some remixes and new songs. I love the artwork, I love the concept and overall this project was just a lot of fun to put together.”
Sheard enjoyed letting her hair down and shifting into a bit of a different gear for the new song “Sing To The Lord”. “I really like to jump around and have a good time when I praise God. We tend to put limits on ourselves when it comes to expression and I wanted to get outside all that with this song,” she says. “I had so much fun with this song and can’t wait to do it live!”
Also included on KIKI’S MIX TAPE is a new remix of “Wave Your Banner (Monsta Mix)”, a special Tommy Sims-produced duet with vocalist Marcus Cole on the classic Donnie Hathaway-penned holiday favorite “This Christmas” and the futuristic-sounding urban aural assault of “I Want Back”, which was previously available only as an exclusive bonus track to fans who purchased Sheard’s last release, Bold! Right! Life! on iTunes.
The words “spare time” are foreign to Sheard, and in between studio sessions and live concerts she has more than enough to keep her busy. In addition to actively pursuing a degree in English at Wayne State University in her hometown of Detroit, she is working hard on the launch of her clothing line, MaMAJik™, in the spring of 2010. More information about MaMAJik™ can be found at www.mamajik.com.
Another effort close to Sheard’s heart is her youth ministry initiative BRL (Bold! Right! Life!), which just held its second-annual youth conference in August 2009 in Detroit. “My vision with BRL is to nurture and empower my generation both naturally and spiritually, and show them that it is entirely possible to be young, saved and still have a full, vibrant and fun life,” says Sheard of the BRL initiative. More information about BRL can be found at www.boldrightlife.com.
Sheard will also be making her big-screen debut alongside LeToya Luckett, Clifton Powell, Essence Atkins and others in the Warner Premier/Gener8xion Entertainment film “The Preacher’s Kid”, which hits theaters October 30, 2009. More information about The Preacher’s Kid can be found at www.preacherskidfilm.com.
Fans can connect with Kierra Sheard online at myspace (www.myspace.com/kierrakikisheard), facebook and twitter (http://twitter.com/kierrasheard). For more information, visit http://kierrasheard.emigospel.com.
4/24/2009 - Natalie Grant Takes Home Fourth Consecutive Dove Award for Female Vocalist of the Year
NASHVILLE, Tenn.— Curb recording artist Natalie Grant was named Female Vocalist of the Year for the fourth consecutive time at last night’s 40th Annual GMA Dove Awards. Grant now joins Sandi Patty as the only other artist to have received the prestigious honor four or more consecutive years.
In addition to her win, Grant performed “Make It Matter,” from her 2008 best-selling recording, Relentless, along with Group 1 Crew, during the live broadcast of the 40th Annual GMA Dove Awards on Gospel Music Channel.
The ceremony capped a GMA Music Week that saw other high-profile appearances for Grant, including a celebration honoring the RIAA Gold certification of her 2005 breakthrough, Awaken. In addition, Grant co-hosted the BMI Songwriter Showcase with singer /songwriter Matthew West, where she performed her Song of the Year-nominated hit single, “I Will Not Be Moved.”
Last year Grant was both the most-played female artist at Christian radio and the top-selling Adult Contemporary female solo artist in Christian music. One of the genre’s biggest names, Grant is among a select number of artists to have also achieved a formidable foothold at mainstream media and radio. In addition to her music, she is an outspoken advocate for victims of international human trafficking. The Home Foundation, which Grant created in 2005, has raised over a quarter of a million dollars to fight the trafficking of women and children for the purpose of sexual exploitation.
3/30/2009 - GMA's Reigning Female Vocalist Of The Year, Natalie Grant Brings The 'Make It Matter Tour' To Multiple Cities This Spring
GMA's reigning three-time Female Vocalist of the Year and Curb recording artist, Natalie Grant, will hit the road this week for her spring "Make It Matter Tour." Sponsored by The Revolve Tour, HearItFirst.com and Grant's Home Foundation, the tour will also feature American Idol finalist and Brash recording artist Chris Sligh, Word recording artist Meredith Andrews, and will introduce new recording artist Evan Milby.
Kicking-off March 19 in Columbus, Ohio, the "Make It Matter Tour" is slated to hit St. Louis; Baltimore; Indianapolis; Omaha, Nebraska; Elkhart, Indiana; and Asheville, North Carolina, among other cities before concluding April 26 in Martinsburg, West Virginia. One of the most noteworthy tours in Christian music this season, the March 22 stop in Waukesha, Wisconsin, is already sold-out.
Grant is one of the top nominees at the 40th Annual GMA Dove Awards, which will be held April 23 in Nashville. Once again nominated for Female Vocalist of the Year, her win in this category last year marked the first time in 13 years an artist has been named Female Vocalist three consecutive times. In addition, "I Will Not Be Moved" is nominated for Song of the Year and Pop/Contemporary Recorded Song of the Year. The hit single, written by Grant, is featured on her best-selling 2008 recording, Relentless, which also received a nod for Pop/Contemporary Album of the Year. The Grant-penned "Breathe On Me," featured on Worship With Natalie Grant & Friends, is nominated for Worship Song of the Year.
Grant was the most-played female artist at Christian radio last year. Her latest single, "Our Hope Endures," is currently #13 on R&R's Christian AC National Airplay chart and #3 on the publication's Soft AC/Inspo National Airplay chart, according to the March 20 issue.
As American Idol finalist Chris Sligh's debut, Running Back to You, became one of the best-selling Christian albums on iTunes®, and wowed critics from USA Today to CCMmagazine.com last year, it also had the highest debut on Christian SoundScan in its first week. He is among the nominees for New Artist of the Year at the 40th Annual GMA Dove Awards. Heralded by Billboard Magazine as one of 2008's "Faces to Watch," new female vocalist and worship leader Meredith Andrews released her debut project, The Invitation, for Word Records last year. She has served as worship leader at Chicago's 12,000-member Harvest Bible Church.
The "Make it Matter Tour" is sponsored by The Revolve Tour for teen girls. "4Real," the 2009 event from The Revolve Tour, combines amazing music, relevant real-life stories, drama, excitement, and fun for a one-of-a-kind inspirational weekend for girls. The Revolve Tour events are produced by Thomas Nelson Live Events and began in 2005 as a response to thousands of requests from women attending Women of Faith conferences who wanted a similar experience for their daughters.
"Make It Matter Tour" sponsor HearItFirst.com is the best in class, definitive online destination for the Christian music fan. Filled with rich content covering the entire Christian music industry, HIF boasts a membership of over 196,000 registered users, and hosts an array of features on the site, including Exclusive Content Rich Media – videos, photos and audio streams, Genre Sections, Artist Pages, News, New Releases, Store, Tour Information, Community and Blogs. HearItFirst.com is THE destination for Christian music enthusiasts to connect within a fan community to enjoy the newest and most exclusive content and information about their favorite artists.
A tireless advocate for victims of human trafficking, Grant was one of the first Christian artists to raise awareness of this worldwide atrocity. She created The Home Foundation in 2005 to support various anti-trafficking efforts around the world. The organization's current H.O.M.E.S. Project initiative, which operates in conjunction with various faith-based agencies, is working to provide resources and build shelters for human trafficking victims in the United States.
For further information on Natalie Grant and the "Make It Matter Tour," visit www.nataliegrant.com.
2/20/2009 - Francesca Battistelli Makes History with Five Nominations for 40th Annual GMA Dove Awards, Including Song of the Year, Female Vocalist of the Year, New Artist of the Year
(NASHVILLE, TN) February 20, 2009 –Today Word Entertainment, through its artists, projects and other contributors, garnered 56 GMA Dove Award nominations, with Fervent/Reprise Records’ new singer/songwriter Francesca Battistelli leading the way with five nominations, including “Song of the Year” (“I’m Letting Go”), “Female Vocalist of the Year,” and “New Artist of the Year,” the most for any new female artist in the history of the Gospel Music Awards.
“I am thrilled and honored to just be nominated!” says Battistelli. “It’s humbling to be among such great company, especially as a new artist, and being nominated for Song of the Year is a dream come true. I’m still soaking it all in!”
Word Records’ rock newcomers Remedy Drive were also honored in this year’s “New Artist” category, in addition to nods for “Rock/Contemporary Album” (Daylight Is Coming), and “Short Form Music Video” (“Daylight”). Fervent Records’ Dove-award winning hip hop trio Group 1 Crew were also honored in three categories this year, including “Rock/Contemporary Song” (“Keys To The Kingdom”), “Rap/Hip Hop Album” (Ordinary Dreamers), and “Short Form Music Video” (“Movin’”). Word Records’ powerhouse vocalist David Phelps received “Male Vocalist of the Year” and “Long Form Music Video” (“O Holy Night”) nominations, while Word Records’ new worship artist Meredith Andrews garnered two nominations for “Worship Song” (“You’re Not Alone”) and “Praise & Worship Album” (The Invitation). Canaan Records’ legendary Kim Hopper also received two GMA Dove Award nominations including “Bluegrass Recorded Song” (“What Will I Wear”) and “Southern Gospel Album” (I Just Wanted You To Know).
Word Label Group (a division of Word Entertainment comprised of Word Records, Fervent Records, Myrrh Records, Canaan Records and Word Music Publishing) garnered 38 nominations, including top categories “Song,” “Male Vocalist” (David Phelps), “Female Vocalist” (Francesca Battistelli) as well as “New Artist” (Francesca Battistelli and Remedy Drive).
Word Distribution, another division of Word Entertainment, collected an additional 17 nominations including two nominations for “Song of the Year” (Chris Sligh and Natalie Grant), “Female Vocalist of the Year” (Natalie Grant), and “New Artist of the Year” (Chris Sligh).
Word Music was represented with five nominations, including two for “Musical of the Year,” one for “Youth/Children’s Musical of the Year,” and two for “Choral Collection of the Year.”
Encompassing distributed labels, artists, affiliated producers, published writers and printed collections, Word Entertainment has representation in 31 of 43 total nomination categories.
A full list of Word Entertainment and Word Label Group finalists are below. The GMA Dove Awards event will be held April 23, 2009 at the Grand Ole Opry House in Nashville.
4/25/2008 - Natalie Grant Named GMA's Female Vocalist for Third Consecutive Year
NASHVILLE, Tenn.— Curb recording artist Natalie Grant has become the first artist in 13 years to win the GMA Dove Award for Female Vocalist of the Year three consecutive times. Grant received the honor at last night’s ceremony in Nashville, which was broadcast live on the Gospel Music Channel. Not since Twila Paris earned the Dove Award for Female Vocalist of the Year from 1993-1995 has this distinction been achieved.
The 39th Annual GMA Dove Awards broadcast also featured show-stopping performances from some of the top artists in Christian music and beyond, including the electrifying duet “Bring It All Together” by Grant and country superstar Wynonna.
Grant’s critically-acclaimed seventh recording, Relentless, released in February and was the highest debut and top album by a female artist on both Nielsen SoundScan’s Top Christian Albums and Christian Retail charts. With a formidable foothold at mainstream media and radio, Grant is a featured speaker and performer on the Women of Faith and Revolve Tours and is an outspoken advocate for victims of international human trafficking.
Her “Relentless Tour,” with special guest Jimmy Needham and introducing new artist Ashmont Hill, will be making stops in Pittsburgh; Chicago; Tupelo, Mississippi; Mobile, Alabama; and Knoxville, Tennessee, before concluding May 18 in Mt. Vernon, Illinois.
3/20/2008 - Compassionart Songwriters Record In Nashville, Joined By Guest Vocalists tobyMac, Leeland Mooring
COMPASSIONART SONGWRITERS RECORD IN NASHVILLE, JOINED BY GUEST VOCALISTS TOBYMAC, LEELAND MOORING
Record Labels Discuss Jointly Releasing Upcoming Album To Benefit The World’s Poorest Of The Poor
(Nashville, TN) March 19, 2008 – Compassionart songwriters, Paul Baloche, Steven Curtis Chapman, Andy Park, Martin Smith and Michael W. Smith continued to record songs last week that were written during a retreat in January. Meeting at Pentavarit Studio in Nashville, the studio hummed with activity as the songwriters were joined by guest vocalists tobyMac and Leeland Mooring (of the band Leeland), each putting down their signature vocals on tracks that were started at the famous Abbey Road Studios in London. Friends like Charlie Peacock and Eddie DeGarmo dropped by to spend time with the songwriters, as well as listen to the progression of the Compassionart songs. Guiding the tracks at the production helm for this recording session was Matt Bronleewe (Natalie Imbruglia, “Evan Almighty” [Soundtrack], dc Talk, “Heroes” star Hayden Panettiere) and Paul Moak (Mat Kearney, Shane & Shane, Derek Webb), and engineering was Andy Hunt (Jars of Clay, Good Charlotte, Buddy Guy).
Nashville’s top daily paper, The Tennessean, broke the news Wednesday about the recording session and a meeting that Compassionart founder and Delirious? frontman Martin Smith was to have with record labels about jointly releasing the upcoming Compassionart album. Martin was quoted as saying, “This is a challenge for the industry, as I am talking to the labels now about how to put this album out together.” Following the meeting that included EMI CMG President and CEO Bill Hearn, Provident Music Group President and CEO Terry Hemmings and Integrity Media Chief Marketing Officer Daniel McGuffey, Martin was encouraged, saying, “There was a real spirit of wanting to work together.” The resulting Compassionart studio album is being planned for a late fall release.
Compassionart, a charity based in Littlehampton, England and dedicated to seeing works of art generate income for the poorest of the poor, hosted a songwriter’s retreat in Scotland, UK. Working together toward a common goal involving no personal gain, the songwriters set out to write 10-12 songs and, by the end of the retreat, had completed 22 new songs. In addition to those recording this week, Compassionart songwriters include Stu Garrard (Delirious?), Israel Houghton, Tim Hughes, Graham Kendrick, Matt Redman, Chris Tomlin, and Darlene Zschech. Together the songwriters account for at least 42 million albums sold, 82 No. 1 songs, 10 GRAMMY Awards, 110 Dove Awards, two Stellar Awards, two American Music Awards, and 98 current CCLI Top 500 songs sung by millions in churches around the world.
The first Compassionart song that will be released is “So Great,” recorded by Michael W. Smith, Christy Nockels and Israel Houghton and to be featured on the WOW Hits 1 release in April.
In addition to the songwriters, the publishers, managers, copyright institutes and agents involved have all waived their rights and are donating their efforts on this project to Compassionart. The songs are to be given through Compassionart to the world not just to sing, but also to raise money for the relief of suffering around the planet. One half of the monies received over the songs’ lifetimes will go to the songwriters’ charity of choice, and the other 50% will go to a charitable project agreed upon by all the songwriters involved.
For more information on Compassionart, go to http://compassionart.co.uk/.
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