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JFH Music News

JfH OLD Music News

April, 2007


*Friday, April 27th, 2007*

Aaron Shust
Aaron Shust has capped the groundbreaking success of his debut project for Brash Music, Anything Worth Saying, by winning three Dove Awards including “Song of the Year,” “New Artist of the Year” and “Songwriter of the Year.” The awards coincide with the project’s second consecutive week as the #1 selling CD at Christian retail, with nearly 20,000 units sold in the last two weeks. Along with Chris Tomlin, Shust was one of the top Dove Award winners. In a press release from the Gospel Music Association, GMA president and CEO John Styll said, “Chris Tomlin and Aaron Shust deserve their moment to rejoice in the recognition their community has bestowed on them with their multiple Dove Awards and it is evident they will be impacting gospel and Christian music for some time to come.” During the Dove Awards telecast, Shust had the opportunity to perform the 2006 “Song of the Year,” “My Savior My God,” his smash-hit single which ended 2006 as the year’s most played song at Christian Radio on multiple formats with well over 5 million impressions. “I keep asking myself when I’m going to wake up,” said an elated Shust. “In my wildest dreams, I’d have never imagined that I’d be standing here tonight with three Dove Awards. I’m honored, humbled and thankful for the recognition, but also know that accolades and awards are temporary. What really matters are the listeners and fans that have been encouraged and strengthened by the truth in these songs.” Shust recently completed a 40-city tour with MercyMe and is preparing for a full schedule of summer festival performances to coincide with the release of his second CD, Whispered and Shouted, which hits stores on June 5. (from The WMG)
Red
Breakout rock band Red added another highlight to its young existence Wednesday night with its first-ever Dove Award for its No. 1 radio single, “Breathe Into Me,” in the category Rock Recorded Song at the 38th Annual GMA (Gospel Music Association) Dove Awards. The Dove Awards were handed out at the Grand Ole Opry House in Nashville. The awards show will be televised in national syndication in May. Anthony Armstrong, guitarist in Red, shares, “Our first Dove Award means more to us than people may assume. We grew up dreaming of this moment, and to experience it first-hand is beyond words right now. Thank you to everyone who is a part of ‘Red Nation’, you know who you are.” “Breathe Into Me” spent multiple weeks in the No. 1 position at Christian Rock radio, and is now climbing the mainstream Active Rock radio chart, currently at No. 21. Including its nomination, and subsequent win, in the Rock Recorded Song category, Red received three overall Dove Award nominations at the 38th Annual GMA Dove Awards. The band’s current album, End of Silence, received a nomination in the Rock Album category and its music video, “Breathe Into Me”, was nominated for Short Form Music Video. Red is continuing its intense touring schedule, beginning May 13, with multi-platinum bands, Three Days Grace, Breaking Benjamin and Puddle of Mudd. The tour will kick off Sunday, May 13 in Boston, Mass. and will run through Wednesday, June 27, 2007, wrapping in Bakersfield, Calif. Red will be playing over 15 major Christian festivals throughout the summer of 2007. Check www.myspace.com/dropofred for the latest dates. (from Provident Label Group)
Natalie Grant
Curb recording artist Natalie Grant took home the Dove Award for Female Vocalist of the Year at last night’s 38th Annual GMA Dove Awards in Nashville, marking the second consecutive year she has received the prestigious honor. She also served as co-host of Wednesday night’s ceremony, along with Brian Littrell and Donnie McClurkin. The 38th Annual Dove Awards were held at the Grand Ole Opry House and will begin airing in national television syndication in May. Grant is completing work on her seventh album and first studio recording in two years. The forthcoming project is being produced by Grant’s husband, Bernie Herms, and longtime collaborator Shaun Shankel, and is slated for release later this year. In addition, on Mother’s Day weekend, Gospel Music Channel will premier “Natalie Grant’s Special Delivery,” which chronicles her preparations for motherhood. Grant and Herms welcomed twin daughters, Grace Ana and Isabella Noelle, in February. (from Turning Point PR)
JoC
The 38th Annual GMA Dove Awards were handed out Wednesday night by the Gospel Music Association in a variety of genres, with acclaimed band Jars of Clay receiving two statues. One in the Rock/Contemporary Album category for its Good Monsters project, and the other in the Short Form Music Video of the Year category for the video to its hit song, “Work.” The band also was honored by being asked to present Songwriter and Producer of the Year awards. To date, the band has collected nine Dove Awards. The GMA Dove Awards were held at the Grand Ole Opry House in Nashville. The show will be televised in national syndication in May. In addition to making great music, Jars of Clay is concerned with the needs in Africa. Compelled to make a difference, members Dan Haseltine, Stephen Mason, Matt Odmark and Charlie Lowell founded the Blood:Water Mission in early 2002. The first effort of this non-profit was the “1000 Wells Project” with a goal of raising funds to build, rebuild and repair 1000 wells in urban and rural areas of sub-Saharan Africa. To date, 187 wells have been constructed bringing clean water to more than 140,000 people. Earlier this week, band members were honored for this work, by Michael W. Smith, on behalf of President George W. Bush, with a “President’s Volunteer Service Award.” Dan Haseltine, Jars’ lead vocalist, notes, “The needs of Africa are indeed immense, but not insurmountable. Through the Blood:Water Mission, and other organizations like it, we are making a difference. We’re very humbled by this honor, but want to shine the spotlight on the unsung heroes on the ground in Africa providing medical assistance and clean water to the thousands in need.” Multi-Platinum and three time GRAMMY Award winning band Jars of Clay launched its career with its hit, “Flood,” in 1995. Since then, it’s amassed more than six million in career sales (5 -Gold, 2 platinum and 1 double platinum certification), an American Music Award nod, 17 No.1 radio hits, and numerous film credits and BMI honors for songwriting and performing. (from Provident Label Group)
Chris Tomlin
sixstepsrecords/Sparrow Records lead-worshiper Chris Tomlin was named the 2007 Gospel Music Association (GMA) Artist and Male Vocalist of the Year for the second consecutive year Wednesday night during the 38th Annual GMA Dove Awards held at the Grand Ole Opry House in Nashville. Receiving nine nominations to lead the field of artist nominees for the second consecutive year, Tomlin became the evenings most honored recipient with six awards: Pop/Contemporary Album and Praise & Worship Album of the Year for his current acclaimed album See The Morning, Worship Song of the Year for “Holy is The Lord” from his RIAA Certified Gold album, Arriving, and Special Events Album of the Year for Passion: Everything Glorious. “It’s an incredible honor to receive these GMA Dove nominations and awards. What a humbling gift to be honored by friends and peers... thank you,” says Tomlin. “I pray I can remain focused on carrying the message of a huge and loving God and his unending fame to the ends of the earth. I want to join my voice to that end.” Tomlin, along with a gospel choir, also sang “Amazing Grace (My Chains Are Gone)” during the awards show, which is his adaptation of the famous hymn featured on See The Morning and penned in advance of the Amazing Grace feature film released in February by Samuel Goldwyn Films/Roadside Attractions/Bristol Bay Productions. Last night’s live rendition of the song will also begin airing in national television syndication in May as part of the GMA Dove Awards show. In a week filled with industry accolades, Tomlin also was named ASCAP’s Songwriter of the Year with “Made To Worship” and “How Great Is Our God” receiving Most Performed Songs of 2006 honors. “How Great Is Our God” has further been referenced by Time Magazine in an article that named Tomlin as perhaps “the most often sung artist anywhere.” Reinforcing that title, the song has now become Tomlin’s first No. 1 on the CCLI Top 25. The award winning song moved to No. 1 after becoming one of the fasting rising modern day hymns in CCLI chart history. In all, Tomlin has 17 Top 500 CCLI songs that are sung by millions around the world every week as people gather to worship. He has also penned five of the top 25 songs on the chart, with “Holy Is The Lord” and “Forever” landing in the top 10. CCLI serves over 150,000 churches in the US alone (www.ccli.com). As Tomlin’s songs are being sung in the church, they also continue to receive widespread radio airplay. In all, Tomlin currently claims 5 of the top 40 hits on the R&R AC Monitored Christian radio chart, including the current single from See The Morning, “How Can I Keep From Singing” (#4), and the former No. 1 songs, "Made To Worship" (#19), "How Great Is Our God" (#22), "Holy Is The Lord" (#23) and "Indescribable" (#31). The latter three songs from the RIAA Certified Gold album, Arriving, have remained on the illusive play list for an average of nearly two years! Taking his songs to the road, Tomlin’s winter/spring How Great Is Our God Tour, featuring Passion visionary leader and author, Louie Giglio, and sixstepsrecords/ Sparrow Records’ Matt Redman, logged 20 sold out events at venues such as the Dodge Theatre (Phoenix), Nokia Theatre (Dallas), Patriot Center (Fairfax, VA) and Continental Airlines Arena (East Rutherford, NJ) before wrapping up March 23. (from Hoganson Media)
DecembeRadio
Slanted Records recording artists DecembeRadio took home their first GMA Dove Award for Rock Album of the Year at Wednesday’s 38th Annual Dove Awards ceremony. The rock band, known for their slammin’ live stage shows and classic rock influences, was nominated in four categories following their debut self-titled release--Song of the Year (“Drifter”), New Artist of the Year, Rock Recorded Song of the Year (“Dangerous”) and Rock Album. “It’s amazing how God has blessed us this year,” stated group member Eric Miker. “We are grateful to everyone in the industry--radio, retail, promoters, media--and to our fans for their support and for honoring us with this award. We want to dedicate this to our friends and family in Blacksburg, Vir., and to the families and others who are experiencing losses back at home at Virginia Tech.” DecembeRadio, produced by Scotty Wilbanks, was also nominated for a GRAMMY for Best Rock or Rap Gospel Album of the Year. The band’s hit “Drifter,” which they performed on the awards program, climbed to #5 on BILLBOARD'S Hot Christian Song listing for five weeks and landed in the Top 10 for sixteen weeks. The single has become a mainstay at both AC and CHR radio garnering Top 20 and Top 5 spots respectively. DecembeRadio’s Dove-nominated rock single, “Dangerous,” also a Top 20 hit, is currently the theme song for “Hazard Pay,” a program highlighting those with dangerous vocations, aired on the Discovery Channel. The band gave an acoustic performance of “Drifter” at the annual Songwriters’ Showcase held on Sunday night during GMA Music Week and also played the hit for radio attendees at this year’s Echo Awards. “Drifter” was part of the band’s headlining set at the Yellow Tangerine Showcase, held during the week at B.B. King’s in downtown Nashville. That set also included a moment of pause and reflection as they introduced their new A/C and CHR single, “Least of These,” as well as a rollicking performance of their new rock single, “Table,” which received resounding applause and industry buzz after they performed it at Word Distribution’s Big Hits Luncheon for radio and retail attendees at the Renaissance Hotel. (from Spring Hill Music)
Casting Crowns
With the announcement of the 38th Annual Gospel Music Association Dove Awards last evening, multi-platinum artist Casting Crowns was once again named Group of the Year for the third consecutive year. Going into the night as one of the top nominees, Casting Crowns also took home the Dove for Pop/Contemporary Recorded Song for “Praise You in This Storm,” from its GRAMMY-winning Lifesong project. This track, one of the biggest songs in Christian radio this past year, won ASCAP’s prestigious Song of the Year honor earlier in the week. BMI also honored the group this week naming “Voice of Truth” as its Song of the Year winner with writer/lead vocalist Mark Hall being named BMI Songwriter of the Year for the second time since 2004. The band picked up multiple BMI Performance Awards for “Lifesong,” “Voice of Truth” and “Praise You in This Storm” naming them as three of the top-performing songs in Christian radio. The highly-anticipated third album release from Casting Crowns is set for Aug. 28 (Beach Street/Reunion Records), followed by its headlining of a major 80-city tour which launches this fall with special guest Leeland, and introducing John Waller. This live show is set to be one of the top-billed tours of the year, kicking off in San Antonio, Texas, and hitting most of the U.S., including key markets such as Atlanta, Birmingham, Houston, Portland, Seattle, Phoenix, Los Angeles and Sacramento. Over its three-year career, Casting Crowns has been honored with a GRAMMY Award, two American Music Award nods and now 12 Gospel Music Dove Awards. Casting Crowns has been the most played artist on all Christian radio formats combined, with six consecutive No.1 AC radio hits, and the group has sold more than 2.5 million albums to date. Lead singer and songwriter Mark Hall has been a student pastor for 16 years and currently serves on staff at Eagle’s Landing First Baptist Church in Atlanta. Casting Crowns claims the distinction of being the fastest CCM artist in its career to have its first two albums certified Platinum, and only the second in RIAA history ever to achieve it (the other being Jars of Clay). The band recently made a trip to North Korea, as the only U.S. band invited to play at the April Art Friendship Festival, Apr. 11-13. For more information, please visit www.CastingCrowns.com or www.reunionrecords.com. (from Provident Label Group)
Daniel Kirkley
Classic-pop artist, Daniel Kirkley, was invited to perform at the Crystal Cathedral in a special tribute to Virginia Tech, as a way of healing for the school and nation. Kirkley performed “Make It Beautiful” from his debut CD, Let Love Win, that releases May 22 on Centricity Records. Virginia Governor, Tim Kaine, made a special satellite appearance on the program and it’s scheduled to air on Hour Of Power this coming weekend, April 28 & 29. The program airs on Trinity Broadcasting and Lifetime TV networks. Please check your local television listings for the correct airtimes in your area. “Make It Beautiful” was selected as the musical performance for this service because of the lyrics that find hope in desperation, "Come and make it beautiful/let it all be useable/I still believe in miracles and that you can use everything/so Father please use even this/Make it beautiful." The song was written by Ronnie Freeman and Tony Wood and with Kirkley’s powerful vocals it becomes a uplifting comfort during these troubled times. A special second verse was written for this appearance and the song will be made available to radio, "Life is so uncertain in a blink of an eye/There are those we let go without goodbye/so much is hard to understand/what’s the purpose what’s the plan/but God you’re in control/I believe it heart and soul/so with confidence and with faith I pray." “It was such an honor to be invited on Dr. Robert Schuller’s Hour Of Power and to be part of such a beautiful tribute to the wonderful students and faculty of Virginia Tech,” explains Kirkley. “I hope ‘Make It Beautiful’ will provide spiritual healing to anyone affected by this tragic event.” Kirkley has become a TV favorite with his recent appearances on several regional morning shows in Tulsa, Kansas City, Knoxville, Birmingham, and his current video for the first single, “My New Dawn” airing on the Gospel Music Channel. Kirkley is already confirmed for upcoming TV performances on Daystar’s “Celebration,’ Cornerstone TV, and CTN’s “Nashville Bridges,” in support of the new CD, Let Love Win. The project was produced by Matt Bronleewe (founding member of Jars of Clay who produced Leeland, Michael W. Smith, Natalie Imbruglia) and Mark Hammond (Josh Groban, Nichole Nordeman). Kirkley co-write five of the songs on the project and features other notable songwriters, Nichole Nordeman and Cindy Morgan. For more information on Kirkley please visit, www.danielkirkley.com, www.myspace.com/danielkirkley, and www.centricityrecords.com. (from Bozeman Media)
John Reuben
John Reuben's "Good Evening" & "Focus" from his latest record Word Of Mouth, and Paul Wright's "Lately," from his new project Wright Or Wrong These Songs Are Pauls, have been licensed by Lucas Arts (ie - George Lucas's company) video game Thrillville 2, a theme park-building management game, releasing October 16th. (from Gotee Records; Jesusfreakhideout.com)
*Thursday, April 26th, 2007*

Dove Awards
The 38th Annual GMA Dove Awards took place last night at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, TN. Among the big winners of the night were Chris Tomlin who snagged Male Vocalist of the Year once again, as well as Artist Of The Year, among other accolades. Natalie Grant once again seized Female Vocalist of the Year; Ed Cash once again took home Producer of the Year, while teary-eyed newcomer Aaron Shust swiped New Artist of the Year, Songwriter of the Year, and Song of the Year for "My Savior, My God." Shust talked a bit about his forthcoming sophomore release Whispered And Shouted (consider this moment taken by us to recommend the record!). For a full list of winners, please visit www.doveawards.com. (from Dover Awards; Spinhouse PR)
Michael W. Smith
Michael W. Smith is getting into the Christmas spirit once again. Smitty, who was inducted into the Music City Walk Of Fame earlier this week in Nashville (click here to see exclusive photos on our flickr.com page of MWS and actor Jim Caviezel at the event!), will be entering Abbey Road studios in London this April to begin working on his third holday record with sights set on releasing the album this October. (from Michael W. Smith; Jesusfreakhideout.com)
Audio A
With Audio Adrenaline flying off to Hawaii today to begin celebrating their sixteen year career, the day of their final show grows ever closer. Last night at the 38th GMA Dove Awards, Jesusfreakhideout.com asked the band about an announced forthcoming DVD, which the band plans to release August 28th on Forefront Records. The project will feature a concert of hits as well as plenty of behind the scenes footage of the band hanging out in Hawaii, surfing seeing the sites, etc. Stay tuned for more info to come... (from Audio Adrenaline; Jesusfreakhideout.com)
JoC
Jars Of Clay, who took home a Dove Award for Rock Album of the Year for their 2006 record Good Monsters, as well as one for their short form video "Work" last night at the 38th GMA Dove Awards, are planning to hit the studio this Spring to begin work on their first full-length Christmas album. While nothing is set in stone, the band has said they may tour with labelmates Third Day for a Christmas Offerings tour this Fall, and are currently kicking around some possible live project ideas, including maybe recording a new take on their incredible, legendary self-titled 1995 debut. Official details will be announced when the band's plans are finalized... (from Jars Of Clay; Jesusfreakhideout.com)
Casting Crowns
Pop giants Casting Crowns took home their third consecutive Dove award for Group of the Year, as well as Pop/Contemporary Song of the Year for "Praise You In This Storm" from their latest record Lifesong. At GMA Week, the youth leaders-turned-pop band debuted a brand new song from their forthcoming project entitled The Altar & The Door, which is slated for an August 28th release on Beach Street Records. (from Casting Crowns; Jesusfreakhideout.com)
*Sunday, April 22nd, 2007*

Newsboys
Rock mainstay newsboys is setting attendance records across the country, selling out many of the venues on its spring 2007 “GO” tour. In response to the tour’s popularity, newsboys will add additional concert dates this fall, bringing along tour mates Kutless and introducing new Inpop artist newworldson. Launched Feb. 16, the tour has sold out major venues in markets including Chicago, Minneapolis and Seattle. More than 10,000 fans attended the recent show in Houston. To date, the “GO” tour has sold in excess of 120,000 tickets. “The ‘GO’ tour has truly been amazing,” says newsboys manager Wes Campbell. “The lads have put together their best show yet. The production, in addition to being the first 100% LED lighted show, is highlighted by a series of video screens and the first-ever use of the video system known as ‘Pandora’s Box’ in the US to date. The show is translating into unbelievable box office results. It is only natural to extend the tour for another series of concerts in the fall.” A recent review by Minneapolis’ Pioneer Press raves, “Every contemporary Christian artist currently on tour in the United States should be required to attend a newsboys concert as soon as possible and take copious notes …Sunday night’s spectacle before a sellout crowd of 8,124 inside downtown Minneapolis’ Target Center was …a flawless rock show paced to perfection.” “This newsboys tour has revitalized the music industry,” comments Dale Bray, president of Inpop Records. “newsboys have come out with a live performance that is second to none, and the record attendances confirm that newsboys really is the hottest ticket in Christian music.” Wrapping late April, the tour will pick up again this fall with special guests Kutless and newworldson. Additional information and concert dates are forthcoming. For more information visit: www.newsboys.com. For a recent Jesusfreakhideout.com review of the tour, click here. (from Savvy Media; JFH)
Casting Crowns
U.S. performing right organization BMI saluted the writers and publishers of the past year's most performed songs on Christian radio and television during the BMI Christian Music Awards last night at the company's Music Row offices in Nashville. BMI named Casting Crowns' "Voice of Truth" Song of the Year, while the group's frontman Mark Hall earned the prestigious Songwriter of the Year title. BMI Vice President Jody Williams, along with Senior Director Thomas Cain and Associate Director Beth Mason, of BMI's Writer/Publisher Relations department in Nashville, presented awards for 25 songs in five categories: Christian Rock, Contemporary Christian, Inspirational, Urban Gospel and Southern Gospel. Gospel star Kirk Franklin, Christian rock outfit Sanctus Real and Casting Crowns' Mark Hall delighted the packed room by delivered scorching performances of their award-winning songs. \Longtime Christian music pacesetters Steven Curtis Chapman and Mark Hall took home BMI Song of the Year crystals for their stirring composition, "Voice of Truth." Recorded by Hall's award-winning band Casting Crowns, "Voice of Truth" was published by Club Zoo Music, Inc., My Refuge Music, Peach Hill Songs, Sparrow Song and SWECS Music. It was a good night for the lead singer of Casting Crowns, who also earned his second BMI Christian Songwriter of the Year honor. Mark Hall's hits ""Lifesong," "Praise You in This Storm" and "Voice of Truth," all recorded by Casting Crowns, garnered three BMI Christian Awards in both the Contemporary and Inspirational categories. The ceremony also feted Publisher of the Year Songs of Greater Vision. The award is determined by the highest percentage of copyright ownership in award songs. The company's two honored songs, "Do You Want To Be Forgiven" and "Don't Let The Sandals Fool Ya," secured individual BMI Christian Awards for their adroit writer, Rodney Griffin. Some of the night's other big winners included 2007 Trailblazers of Gospel honoree Yolanda Adams; prolific producer/songwriter Ed Cash; Urban Gospel star Kirk Franklin; premier producer, arranger and musician Jay Joyce; innovative songwriter/producer Kenny Greenberg; Gospel favorites Israel Houghton and Percy James Bady; songwriting heavyweight Fred Douglas Washington, Jr.; the Crabb Family's Gerald Crabb; hot new songwriter/artist Aaron Shust; producer/songwriter/author Matt Bronleewe; and brothers Henry, JoJo and Ringo Garza. Songwriters Marcia Henry, George Jordan, Sandy Knight, Doug McKelvey and Kevin Keith Walker, along with Day of Fire's Greg Hionis, songwriter/producers Ian Eskelin and Liz Hooper, Sanctus Real producer Chris Stevens and Sanctus Real member Dan Gartley each took home their first BMI Christian Music Award. Publishers winning multiple awards were BMG Music Group (Bridge Building Music/Careers-BMG Music Publishing/Zomba Songs), Club Zoo Music, Inc., My Refuge Music, SWECS Music, EMI Music Publishing (EMI-Blackwood Music, Inc./Sparrow Song) and Gotee Music, Inc. A complete list of the 2007 BMI Christian Awards is available on bmi.com. Broadcast Music, Inc.® (BMI) is an American performing right organization that represents more than 300,000 songwriters, composers and publishers in all genres of music. For more than 65 years, BMI has represented the most popular and beloved music from around the world, a vast repertoire that includes more than 6.5 million works. The non-profit-making corporation collects license fees from businesses that use music, which it then distributes as royalties to the musical creators and copyright owners it represents. (from BMI)
*Saturday, April 21st, 2007*

Jump5
One of Christian music's most successful groups will disband at the end of 2007. But not before embarking on a farewell tour that will take them across the country to say goodbye to fans with an all new live show packed with the group's biggest hits, including early material that hasn't been performed on recent tours. "The past eight years with Jump5 has been the most amazing experience, but there comes a time when experiences have to end," says group member Brittany Hargest. "We've had a long run, but we have decided that it's time to move on to other things. All of us have started entering our twenties now, and there are many things that each of us want to do. We're all very excited to see what God has in store for us for the next few years individually and as a group." "We can't wait to get back out on the road for the last time as Jump5 to see all of our incredible fans who have really supported us over the past eight years," adds Brittany. "Seeing every one of them again would make the experience complete!" Jump5 hit the music scene in 2001, billing themselves as a family-friendly alternative to the PG-13 pop music that was exploding into the marketplace. Siblings Brandon and Brittany Hargest, along with childhood friends Lesley Moore, Chris Fedun and Libby Hodges (who left the group in 2004) quickly became a teen phenomenon, touring worldwide and releasing nine albums on EMI-owned Sparrow Records which collectively have sold over 1.2 million copies. The group's inspirational lyrics reached out to teens and tweens with positive messages such as good self-esteem, being true to yourself, respecting and accepting others, and enjoying all that life has to offer. But their energetic live shows and undeniable pop hooks also earned the respect of fans of all ages. Jump5 was one of the first Christian artists to find success in both the Christian and mainstream music industries. The group's non-stop touring had them performing in churches across the country, as well as taking the stage at major venues while touring with such artists as teen pop star Aaron Carter, A*teens, Baha Men and numerous Radio Disney tours. The group also performed for millions on national television with appearances on major outlets including Nickelodeon, ABC Christmas Morning with Regis and Kelly, CBS Early Show and The Disney Channel, to name a few. They performed for President George W. Bush at The White House, and found their songs prominently featured in several major motion pictures, including The Lizzie McGuire Movie, Sleepover, Spy Kids, Ella Enchanted, Ice Princess and Brother Bear, as well as television programs like Kim Possible and Lilo & Stitch, for which they recorded the theme song. The Jump5 Farewell Tour will be booked by Nashville-based Jeff Roberts and Associates, the group's longtime booking agency. The tour will run through the end of 2007, and dates will be announced in the coming weeks. Some additional projects are also in the works, including a possible "Farewell EP" featuring all new songs and a few select covers. "We are planning on having a few more surprises before we finish," says group member Brandon Hargest. "And just because Jump5 is coming to an end, doesn't mean that we, as individuals, will be gone. We all want to keep performing, so look out for us in the future!" (from Nashville Publicity)
dctalk
ForeFront Records will issue a new dc Talk Greatest Hits project on June 26, 2007. Relatively inactive as a group since its members embarked on notable solo careers in 2001, the GRAMMY Awarded pop/rock/hip-hop trio of TobyMac, Michael Tait, and Kevin Max has sold more than seven million albums. Greatest Hits compiles eighteen dc Talk favorites, including: “Say the Words,” “Colored People,” “Jesus Is Just Alright,” “Between You and Me,” “Mind’s Eye,” “Consume Me,” “My Will,” “In the Light,” “Socially Acceptable,” “Luv Is a Verb,” “Supernatural,” “Jesus Freak,” “The Hardway,” “What If I Stumble,” “I Wish We’d All Been Ready,” “Godsend,” “Into Jesus,” and “Red Letters.” A deluxe package of Greatest Hits is also available featuring an added DVD with eight short form videos and three concert performances. Among those clips are: “Luv Is a Verb,” “The Hardway,” “Jesus Is Just Alright,” “Jesus Freak,” “Colored People,” “Between You and Me,” “Since I Met You (Live),” “Into Jesus (Live),” “Mind’s Eye (Live),” “Consume Me,” and “My Friend (So Long).” Although the group has not released an all-new studio album since 1998’s Supernatural, general interest in dc Talk remains exceptionally strong. The group’s double-platinum 1995 release, Jesus Freak, continues to chart among the bestselling catalog albums each week in the Christian marketplace. And in a recent poll at dcTakUnite.com, ninety-four percent of voters were hoping for a dc Talk reunion in the near future. (from Sparrow Records)
Avalon
After nearly 12 years with award-winning vocal group Avalon, founding member Jody McBrayer steps down due to pressing health issues. The group, although saddened by McBrayer’s departure, will continue to record albums and tour nationally. In March, McBrayer was diagnosed with a heart condition called Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy. The disease, although manageable, often affects an individual’s ability to undertake physical work, as in McBrayer’s case. After much prayer and lengthy discussions with his family, doctors and the members of Avalon, McBrayer will resign from Avalon, focusing on his health and his family’s welfare. “The past 12 years have been such a tremendous blessing, and I am thankful for the opportunities I’ve been given as part of this amazing group,” says McBrayer. “While the decision to leave Avalon saddens me, I feel that it is necessary in order to prolong my health both for myself and my family. I am so thankful for the love and support that my family has received from Janna, Greg and Melissa through this challenging time in our lives.” “I am saddened to see Jody leave Avalon,” says Avalon’s Janna Long. “He has walked this amazing road with me from the very beginning. And while we will all miss him tremendously as an outstanding vocalist and friend, I know it is in his best interest to step down and take care of himself. Even though he will not be performing with us, we all look forward to his friendship lasting a lifetime.” Currently McBrayer is in the studio recording his last record with Avalon, which is slated to release this September. The project will be a collection of classic CCM songs, selected by the group for their personal and professional impact on each of its members. The songs, recorded in true Avalon-style, showcase the foursome’s steady, stellar vocal performances on hits like Sandi Patty and Wayne Watson’s duet “Another Time, Another Place,” “El Shaddai” by Amy Grant, “For The Sake of The Call” by Steven Curtis Chapman and First Call’s “The Reason We Sing,” among others. McBrayer will travel with Avalon through the end of the year on its 40-city fall tour. (from Savvy Media)
Inhabited
Slanted Records has just announced the signing of Texas-based rock band Inhabited to its family of artists. After months of getting to know each other and comparing visions, both Inhabited and Slanted are excited about the future, beginning with the band’s label debut slated to release in the fall of ’07. Inhabited features front woman Sara Delight along with Marcus Acker (guitars/vocals), Chad Carouthers (bass/vocals) and Charlie Harper (drums). The band was the first artist in Christian radio history to chart as an independent band in the Top 20 on both CHR and rock radio formats (“Rescue Me”), prior to getting a record deal. The new release, produced by Monroe Jones (Third Day, Chris Rice, Mark Schultz) along with Acker, has just been completed. Featuring a more versatile sound with increased dynamics, Inhabited’s release captures their straight ahead rock sound with more groove and greater punch. The vocal nuances and passion of Sara’s lead vocals continue to give the band its standout persona. Those renderings often come from deep-rooted convictions that inspired much of the writing for the project that features tunes from the pens of both Sara and Acker. “So much of this album really has to do with love,” Sara describes. “We are commanded to love God with all of our hearts and to love our neighbors as ourselves. That overarching theme of love is a continuous thread throughout the album.” “Getting to partner with a band like Inhabited is an honor for us,” stated Derek Bruner, national radio promoter for Slanted Records. “The level of ministry that they exemplify is inspiring, and their energy is contagious. I'm excited about the songs on this release and can’t wait for the marketplace to hear them.” The first single from the new album is scheduled to hit radio in June, and the band is currently preparing for promotional tours and summer festivals including Ichthus among others. The band will be featured at radio and retail events and concerts throughout Gospel Music Week in Nashville, Tenn., in promotion of the new project. The new release will be distributed through Word Distribution/WEA with digital distribution from EMI CMG Distribution. For further information, visit www.inhabitedtheband.com. (from Spring Hill Music)
Superchick
Superchick founder and keyboardist Max Hsu has spoken about the recent Virginia Tech tragedy. Hsu writes, "When I was a kid at camp, you had to go with a buddy if you wanted to swim in the lake - and you had to stay with him the entire time you were in the water. If you lost your buddy, you had to tell the lifeguard and he would blow the whistle and everyone would have to stop swimming until your buddy was found. Lakes aren't pools; you can't see under the surface. With a hundred kids in the lake, this was a good way to make sure that no one slipped under, unnoticed. The lesson was clear: swimming in the lake could be dangerous, but together, we could watch out for one another. No one would go in alone. I wish we had a buddy system for life. We can't change what happened at Virginia Tech. We can't change what happened at Columbine. But maybe we can change the lives of the people around us. We shouldn't need tragedies to remind us that people are sad, broken and aching. The world is our family. If you notice someone alone or hurting or lost, reach out to them. Give of yourself. Heal the wounds inflicted by others. Replace hurt with kindness before hate grows in the empty space where love should be. Pray that God opens your eyes to those who need your love in their life. We have the power to make huge changes in society with our tiny lives. Make your life about something more than you. All around you, people need you. Let no one slip under the water, unnoticed. Peace and brotherlove, Max." The band's song "Hero," from their 2002 album Last One Picked, is about these issues. Superchick is offering it as a free download because they feel, more than ever before, that it's important that this message gets out. Download it now at: www.inpop.com (from Superchick; Jesusfreakhideout.com)
Mandisa
Mandisa, a favorite Top Ten finalist from season five of American Idol, will release her first single, “Only the World,” to retail outlets on May 22 via Sparrow Records. The powerhouse vocalist’s debut album will follow on July 31. Entertainment Weekly wrote “It’s all about Mandisa!” early in season five as she competed alongside other standout contestants including Taylor Hicks, Chris Daughtry, Kellie Pickler, Katharine McPhee, and Elliott Yamin. “If you weren’t doing a little bit of couch dancing when ‘Disa cut loose on the piping hot arrangement (of Chaka Khan’s “I’m Every Woman”), then you’d better check the cushions for your soul.” About her time on the show and the nationwide concert tour that followed, Mandisa says, “My faith certainly went through some tests of fire, but it’s stronger because of American Idol. I came out of that experience understanding Jesus better. I had been sheltered in Christian circles for a while, and A.I. helped me realize the kind of impact that Christians can make in the world around them.” Indeed, Mandisa has recently gotten more involved with mission work. Learn more about that here. “Only the World” will hit radio stations on May 11. The CD single edition in stores May 22 will include a second song, “True Beauty.” Mandisa’s forthcoming album features a dynamic team of producers including Shannon Sanders and Andrew Ramsey (India.Arie), Christopher Stevens (TobyMac), Shaun Shankel (Amy Grant), Double Dutch, and Brown Bannister. Up next, Mandisa will perform with TobyMac and Kirk Franklin at the 38th Annual GMA Dove Awards. The ceremony will be broadcast in syndication throughout May. Mandisa will also attend the 2007 American Idol season finale in late May, perform on the CBS Early Show on June 2, and be making appearances at several major summer Christian music festivals. Check out more Mandisa news and her American Idol blog at myspace.com/mandisa. (from Sparrow Records)
Casting Crowns
Atlanta-based, GRAMMY Award-winning band Casting Crowns received a rare invitation to participate in North Korea’s 25th Annual April Spring Friendship Art Festival in Pyongyang, D.P.R.K last week. Casting Crowns played three standing-room-only shows April 11-13 at the high-profile event which emphasizes artistic exchange and the promotion of peace and goodwill within the country. Performers from around the world were invited to the festival with Casting Crowns being the only native U.S. band to attend. Global Resource Services (G.R.S.), a U.S. based humanitarian organization, has worked in North Korea for the past ten years, and cooperated with the organizing committee of the Friendship Art Festival to facilitate the band’s participation. The band incorporated a few Korean favorites in its live show including the popular song “White Dove, Fly High” which is recognized as an anthem for peace. The band’s rendition of the song was warmly received by the full-capacity crowd. The Vice Chairman of the festival personally shared his gratitude to Casting Crowns for their participation and especially for the beautiful performance of the peace song. He further expressed his hope that groups like G.R.S., Casting Crowns and the people of the D.P.R.K. can work together to bring unity and peace. For more on Casting Crowns, visit www.castingcrowns.com, and for more information about Global Resource Services, please visit www.grsworld.org. (from Provident Label Group)
Dove Award nominee and Gold-selling recording artist Rick Cua recently inked a distribution deal with TAG Artist Group, the fourth-largest Christian distributor of exclusive product. After a stellar career in both the mainstream and Christian music arenas that includes two Gold records with the legendary group, The Outlaws, 11 solo albums and a half-dozen #1 hit songs on Christian radio, Cua is gearing up for the release of his first TAG Artist Group album, Won't Fade Away (All For The King Music). Won't Fade Away celebrates Cua's silver anniversary in music ministry. This 12-song collection of rock worship anthems pairs Cua with a stellar lineup of songwriting partners including Gary Sadler, Tom Lane, Joe Beck, Leonard Ahlstrom, Carl Cartee, Cactus Moser, Steven Furtick, Bob Halligan, Jr. and Tony Hooper and showcases Cua's ability to craft songs of genuine emotional depth and spiritual relevance. "A lot of the songs I write have a worship slant; it's what I've done for years. It's a natural thing. They will be congregational, but will also be energetic and pretty vibey," says Cua. "Musically, the recordings will rock with appropriate aggression and an uplifting message." After a 10-year recording hiatus, Cua is back and better than ever. Whether pondering eternity ("Won't Fade Away"), the worthiness of Christ ("King of My World"), the majesty of heaven ("Halls of Heaven") or the mystery of Communion ("Sweet Communion"), it is clear that Rick Cua is in a class by himself. Exhibiting his trademark blend of southern rock with a New York attitude, Cua combines his rich, encouraging voice with a fierce talent for songwriting that has been winning fans since his 1982 solo debut, appropriately titled Koo-ah. Beyond his brilliant recording career, Cua is also an artist, songwriter, artist manager, music publisher, music industry consultant, ordained minister, writer, speaker and teacher. "If there is one thing I want to be remembered for as an artist and friend, it is as an encourager, a man who always stands on the foundation of God's word and encourages through the love, support and promises of Christ," says Cua. "I'm not a hellfire and brimstone guy; it's just about 'You can do it, God's given you the power, and His grace is the power for you to do what you are called to do. Know who you are in Christ, get out there and do it.'" (from McCain & Co.)
*Wednesday, April 18th, 2007* - Afternoon UPDATE

Kevin Max
Infinity Music Distribution has partnered with former dcTalk vocalist Kevin Max for his upcoming album, The Blood. This is a very personal project for Max, allowing him to step back from his usual rock stylings in favor of a musical exploration of Gospel. "The Blood is not a classic hymns cover project or a white/homogenized version of black gospel or soul music," explains Max. "It's a sensitive and stylized adaption of the music that was at the root of rock and roll, blues and popular culture. The Blood is about the story of Redemption and Grace, found only in the salvation story of Jesus Christ. We intend to produce with kid gloves, but also with our hearts on overdrive and our heads in check. There is an extreme sense of respect and sensitivity to the art as we approach the choosing and arrangement of these songs." Having recently relocated to Nashville, Max is dividing his time between the studio and live concert appearances, including performances in London, England and Paris, France in May. Infinity Music Distribution plans to release The Blood in the fall, surrounded by an aggressive marketing campaign and additional touring. "We at Infinity Music Distribution are very excited to be in partnership with one of Christian Music's most innovative and gifted artists - Kevin Max," said Brad Mathias, Vice President of Operations at Infinity Music Distribution. "This project and partnership represents the core of our calling, to work with artists who have a clear and distinct message of hope, love and redemption for the body of Christ, and who have the talent, maturity and authenticity to back it up." With dcTalk, Max accrued album sales exceeding 8 million, as well as numerous Grammy and Dove Awards. In recent years, Max explored his art and his faith with several critically acclaimed solo projects, and live performances alongside artists like Warren Cuccurullo of Duran Duran, Psychedelic Furs and Rich Robinson of The Black Crowes. His regular sold out shows at Hollywood's famed Viper Room have drawn capacity crowds, and enticed the likes of Tom Arnold, Christian Slater and Gene Simmons of KISS to check out his live show. Max has made his point loud and clear: He wants to make music that moves everyone. "It has taken me almost 2 decades to come full circle and realize how much Gospel music has inspired me and influenced my decisions in music," says Max. "Long before there was rock and roll, the blues or country, there was Gospel. I look forward to digging deep into a historical art form that deserves as much attention as any musical genre in existence." (from Nashville Publicity)
David Crowder Band
With round one of recording now wrapped on its forthcoming studio album, Remedy, David Crowder*Band has just announced plans for a 25+ city Remedy Club Tour this fall. The trek begins October 5 in Dallas and concludes November 16 in Atlanta. A presale ticket deal is on now until April 30. Posting to the band’s fans on his in-studio blog, frontman David Crowder said, “We’re going to have presale tickets for our fall tour available through our website... they’re not available through regular ticket outlets for a month or so. The best part is through our site you can avoid the ‘convenience’ charges. We’re playing only small clubs and theaters, so there’s not going to be a tremendous amount of room, and we’d of course like for those who have been around for the making of this music to be the first to join us.” Check out the Remedy Club Tour dates and presale ticket deal here. (from Sparrow Records)
The Wedding
The Wedding's sophomore release Polarity hit stores and online outlets yesterday. The album is already the #1 Christian album on iTunes and are featured artist on purevolume, where they are streaming 6 new songs. "Say Your Prayers," the first single off "Polarity" is currently #7 on Rock Radio. They are currently on the road with Inhale/Exhale and will be hitting up most major festivals this summer including a main stage spot at Cornerstone. (from Brave New World Records)
Flyleaf
Flyleaf has announced more dates that are being postponed...
"Due to Lacey's throat problems, the following Flyleaf tour dates have also been postponed: 4/20 Minneapolis, MN; 4/21 Kansas City, MO; 4/23 Sauget, IL; 4/24 Indianapolis, IN; 4/25 Knoxville, TN; 4/27 Jacksonville, FL (Radio show: Flyleaf not appearing); 4/28 Orlando, FL (Radio show: Flyleaf not appearing); 4/29 Tampa, FL (Radio show: Flyleaf not appearing); and 4/30 Port Saint Lucie, FL. The second leg of the Justice & Mercy Tour will kick off as scheduled May 5 in Dallas with Kill Hannah, Sick Puppies, and Resident Hero. The postponed dates in April will be rescheduled for later this year. Check your local box office, our blog, and/ or www.flyleafmusic.com for an announcement about the new dates in the next two weeks. All purchased tickets will be honored at the rescheduled dates! Doctors determined that Lacey needs more time to heal her vocal chords-- they have become inflamed and swollen from overexertion. We apologize wholeheartedly for this inconvenience-- the time off will ensure that Lacey is back on the road, healthy and stronger than ever." (from Flyleaf; Jesusfreakhideout.com)
*Wednesday, April 18th, 2007*

Matt Kearney
Mat Kearney has a brand new acoustic EP available exclusively on iTunes. The 4-track collections features stripped-down acoustic versions of "Nothing Left To Lose," "Girl America," "In the Middle," and "Rennaissance." You can find the tracks here and you can preview the acoustic version of "Nothing Left To Lose" on Mat's Myspace profile. (from Mat Kearney; Jesusfreakhideout.com)
Underoath
After wrapping their hugely successful U.S. tour with Taking Back Sunday, Underoath--known for their thrilling mix of mayhem and melody, catharsis and experimentation--return to the road May 13-23 for their headlining “Dirty South Tour” with Norma Jean, Maylene and the Sons of Disaster plus The Glass Ocean. As I Lay Dying will make a special appearance on the two Atlanta, GA shows. From there, Underoath--whose critically hailed Define The Great Line album is now certified gold after having entered the Billboard Top 200 Album Chart at #2--head down under for four special shows in Australia with Emery (June 7-10) and a headlining gig in Hawaii. To date, the band has sold over one million albums worldwide. Next, Underoath will join the Vans Warped Tour midway on July 23 in Charlotte, NC and perform shows through August 9 in Boston. This fall, look for Underoath to storm America on a headlining tour where they’ll captivate audiences with material from such albums as Define The Great Line (a “transcendent” work which received a 5 out of 5 star review in Alternative Press) and They’re Only Chasing Safety--their 2004 indie smash that has sold over 405,000 copies. In the midst of this non-stop touring schedule, the band will also perform at the Cornerstone Festivals in Orlando, FL (May 12) and Bushnell, IL (June 30). For Underoath--lead vocalist Spencer Chamberlain, guitarist Tim McTague, bassist Grant Brandell, drummer Aaron Gillespie, keyboardist Chris Dudley and guitarist James Smith---the Dirty South Tour is “…exactly what it says it is--four bands from the Southeast that have all worked their way to where they are through years of hard touring,” according to Brandell. “We’re coming together to rock the South, eat some BBQ and hang out with each other and the fans that have supported all of us from the beginning." (from MSO PR)
Michael W. Smith
Gospel Music Channel will present the world premiere of Front Row Live: Michael W. Smith on Saturday, April 28 at 8:00p.m. ET/PT featuring one of contemporary Christian music’s best-loved superstars performing an intimate, hometown concert celebrating Smith’s 25-year career in Nashville. For an audience filled with family and friends, Smith performs several songs in support of his new CD, Stand, which released late last year and is his 19th studio album for Reunion Records. Five songs from Stand are featured in Front Row Live: Michael W. Smith – “Cover Me,” “Open Arms,” “How To Say Goodbye,” “Be Lifted High” and “Come to the Cross.” In addition to music from Stand, Smith also covered some of his favorite songs from recent recordings including “Above All” from Worship; “All I Want” and “Healing Rain” from Healing Rain; “This is Your Time” from The Second Decade; and “There She Stands” from Worship Again. And, as a special treat, Smith performs his signature song “Friends,” which was first recorded by Smith and Amy Grant in 1983. Front Row Live kicks off An Evening with Michael W. Smith on GMC and is followed at 9:00 p.m. by Faith & Fame: Michael W. Smith, as the popular performer takes viewers behind the scenes of his life, family, music and faith. A special installment of Hot List at 10:00p.m. features Smith hosting some of his favorite music videos. GMC will present encore presentations of Front Row Live: Michael W. Smith on May 3 and May 6; check www.gospelmusicchannel.com for complete listings. Stand emerges as another thought-provoking album from one of the most popular recording artists in Christian music. Smith has enjoyed chart-topping success on pop radio, and he’s amassed a staggering 31 No. 1 singles. To date Smith’s sold over 13 million units resulting in five RIAA-certified platinum records, 15 gold records, an American Music Award, three GRAMMY Awards and 40 Dove Awards. In addition to his work at New River Fellowship, Smith is founder and president of his Rocketown Records label and founder of a Nashville teen club, Rocketown. He also remains a regarded philanthropist active in DATA (Debt, AIDS, Trade Africa, established by U2 frontman Bono), Compassion International, and was recently appointed by President George W. Bush as vice chair of the President’s Council on Service and Civic Participation. (from Spinhouse PR)
downhere
One of Christian music’s most respected rock bands, downhere, won their second Juno Award at the Canadian Awards Show on April 1st. The group was honored for their critically acclaimed CD, Wide-Eyed and Mystified by winning the Contemporary Christian/Gospel ALBUM OF THE YEAR. The show was broadcast live from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan and aired on CTV, with Nelly Furtado serving has host for the event. downhere won their first Juno Award for BEST GOSPEL ALBUM in 2001 for their self-titled debut CD. downhere is currently headlining their “Wide-Eyed and Mystified” national tour, with guest artists, Jason Gray Circleslide, and SevenGlory. They interrupted the tour to attend the Juno Awards ceremony, which is Canada’s most prestigious music award. It was a thrilling experience for the band to be there and even more so with their win. “Having the opportunity to be at such an important music awards show in Canada was certainly an experience I'll never forget, and then to actually win a Juno was just icing on the cake,” exclaims Glenn Lavender, bass player for downhere. “The awards show is such a prominent event with major media coverage, so I always watched the show as a kid growing up in Canada. It was such an honor to stand on the stage, among some of Canada's finest musicians, and pick up our own award was an incredible experience.” (from Bozeman Media)
Red
If you are in the Nashville area on TODAY, April 18th, Red and Leeland will be taping a performance for The Dove Awards. Volunteers are needed to help build a crowd at Rocketown. The show kicks off at 1pm with Red, so get there around 12:45pm. Leeland takes the stage at 5:40pm. What could be more fun than a free show, hosted by Krystal Meyers, and a chance to be on TV? Rocketown is located on the corner of 6th Avenue South and Shirley Street, just south of Broadway and right behind the Gaylord Entertainment Center. Red can add three Dove Award nominations to its growing list of accolades. The band is nominated in the following categories: Rock Album, End of Silence; Rock Recorded Song, “Breathe Into Me”; and Short Form Music Video, “Breathe Into Me”. Leeland received nominations in the following categories: New Artist of the Year; Rock/Contemporary Recorded Song, “Sound of Melodies”; Rock/Contemporary Album, Sound of Melodies; and Praise and Worship Album, Sound of Melodies. Leeland Mooring and Jack Mooring received two additional nominations each, as songwriters, in the Worship Song category for “Yes You Have,” and the Rock/Contemporary Recorded Song category for “Sound of Melodies.” Krystal is nominated in the Female Vocalist of the Year category. (from Provident Label Group; Jesusfreakhideout.com)
*Monday, April 16th, 2007*

Flyleaf
Flyleaf has had to cancel several shows on their recent tour with Skillet, which even leaves Skillet without a few dates to play. "I'm so sorry everyone," Flyleaf vocalist Lacey Mosley announced in a recent letter to the fans. "We have been working very hard to get to see all of you and play in all of your towns. We have gotten so many beautiful letters and gotten to talk to so many of you these past three years of touring and as far as I can remember we have only had to postpone one other show. I guess what we have learned is that we are not robots and we can't treat ourselves like it. My voice has been acting up this whole tour. When I went to the doctor she looked at my vocal chords and immediately started to reprimand me for the damage I had done... "Didn't you know your voice was not well?" "Yes, that's why I came here." Appalled, she said, "And still you continued to sing??" "Its my job." I said. And very matter of factly she stated, "Not for long if you continue this way." So I was ordered to be silent for five days. I'm sorry about all the shows being postponed, but we will come back and hopefully all of you will too. Thank you for your prayers, patience and understanding. Much Love, Lacey." The following recent dates were postponed including tomorrow's show in Madison... 4/11 Columbus, 4/13 Detroit, 4/14 Cincinnati, 4/15 Chicago, and 4/17 Madison. (from Flyleaf; Jesusfreakhideout.com)
Project 86
Want a listen to the first single on the Project 86's new album, Rival Factions? As of last night, fans can now visit myspace.com/project86 and hear the song "Evil (A Chorus of Resistance)" on the band's music player. This song has been heralded by those who have known the band from the beginning as "one of the best Project 86 songs ever written." (We're not sure about that, but it's worth a listen!) Project is also releasing a new DVD soon. The band has been collecting footage shot by themselves for the past 8 months to put together on a new DVD which will accompany the new album. For those who have a copy of their previous DVD, this will be an entirely new take on life in the band over the past 1/2 year, including live footage and many entertaining clips of every day life in Project 86. More to come... (from Project 86; Jesusfreakhideout.com)
Jason Upton
Acclaimed indie worship artist Jason Upton will release Beautiful People, his first CD in a new distribution relationship with Integrity Music on May 29. Upton, who holds a Masters of Divinity from Regent University, is often compared to legendary songwriters Keith Green and Rich Mullins for the lyrical depth and prophetic voice present in his music. As with his previous albums, including the signature Faith, Beautiful People is both a musical experience and a bold and convicting worship encounter. Recorded live in Charlotte, N.C. last fall, Beautiful People offers a thematic approach beginning with the album cover art that is at the same time both poignant and ironic, and certain to be one of the most talked about covers in 2007. Inside the CD, the music runs the gamut from radio friendly songs to corporate worship anthems to intimate and spontaneous musical moments, all ultimately revealing Upton’s skill as a musician, gift as a songwriter and pastoral heart. “Integrity Music is honored and appreciative to partner with Jason and Key of David Ministries to release Beautiful People,” said Don Moen, president of Integrity Label Group. “I have long admired Jason’s ministry and the authenticity, sincerity and depth of his music. Our hope is that we can help create an even larger platform for this prophetic voice.” Integrity Music will support Beautiful People with a full-throttle marketing plan that includes print ads in major worship and Christian lifestyle magazines, banner ads on Christian music websites, digital vod-cast and pod-cast promotions and e-coupon promotions targeted to Upton’s vast fan base. For a full tracklisting and album art for Beautiful People, click here. (from Spinhouse PR)
Group 1 Crew
New Fervent Records' act, Group 1 Crew, is currently featured on the promo spot for popular reality television show The Simple Life with their standout track "A Lot In Common," from their self-titled debut. The Simple Life, a popular reality comedy starring Paris Hilton and Nicole Ritchie is set to begin its fifth season on Memorial Day weekend. In promotion of its upcoming season, The Simple Life promo spot features parts of the song "A Lot In Common" during the ad, which depicts the reuniting of the two main characters of the show. The ad and "A Lot In Common" can currently be heard and seen on E! Entertainment Television, the Style Network and E! Online. Group 1 Crew's self-titled debut album released on February 20th, and has garnered rave reviews following a successful promotional street-week tour. The group is currently set to join Superchick, Krystal Meyers, DecembeRadio and Nevertheless on the Generation Rising Tour, beginning April 29th in Orlando, FL. For more information on Group 1 Crew, visit www.Group1Crew.com or www.myspace.com/groupone (from Word Records)
Salvador
Word Records artists, Salvador and Jaci Velasquez, were both recently nominated for the 2007 Billboard Latin Music Awards. Salvador's Dismiss the Mystery album and Jaci Velasquez' On My Knees: The Best of Jaci Velasquez have both been nominated in the "Latin Christian/Gospel Album of the Year" category. Held in the Bank United Center in Miami on April 26, the 2007 Billboard Latin Music Awards will be televised live on Telemundo this year. For more information on the event, visit www.billboardevents.com For more information on Salvador and Jaci Velasquez, visit www.salvadorlive.com and www.jacivelasquez.com (from Word Records)
As the sole music provider for Women of Faith, Myrrh Records is proud to announce their debut album release from the Women of Faith Worship Team, Amazing Freedom. Consisting of four remarkable and dynamic vocalists, the Worship Team-Nia Allen, Allison Abbott, Corrie Farina and Missi Hale-is set to release their debut record on May 1. Produced by renowned vocal arranger Chance Scoggins (Avalon, Point Of Grace), Amazing Freedom consists of several popular worship songs including "Almighty (with Holy, Holy, Holy)" (Wayne Watson), "How Great Is Our God" (Chris Tomlin), "You Are" (Mark Roach) and "For All You've Done" (Clint Lagerberg). Amazing Freedom is just the first of many Women of Faith albums and musical resources to come from Myrrh Records. In addition to their upcoming album, the Worship Team will be appearing at every Women of Faith conference this year. For more information on the Worship Team or Women of Faith, visit www.womenoffaith.com (from Word Records)
*Friday, April 13th, 2007*

Family Force 5
On the heels of their Dove Award nomination for “Rock Album of the Year”, Family Force 5 will perform on this year’s 38th Annual Dove Award show bringing their “crunk-rock” musical style to the Gospel Music Association’s ceremonies. 2007 is already proving to be a year of high visibility for Family Force 5 as they zig-zag the country on various tours including the recently announced run on this summer’s Vans Warped Tour, of which they’ll play 27 dates on the Volcum Stage. Currently the five-some is out on the road with TobyMac, and will also hit the major summer music festivals including Creation East, Cornerstone Festival, Creation West, Ichthus, and Spirit West Coast. Family Force 5 has seen an onslaught of media exposure including performances on CBS TV’s The Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson, two performances on DIRECTV’s CD USA, and music video play on MTVU.com. The rockers have garnered success at Christian radio as well with two #1 rock radio hits “Replace Me” and “Love Addict”. 2006 tour highlights include Journeys Backyard BBQ Tour and Van’s Warped Tour. Fans can anticipate a one-hour “Front Row Live” performance special on the Gospel Music Channel to air this coming May 19th. The band’s current release Business Up Front, Party In The Back: Diamond Edition (March 20th), includes three new songs and expanded packaging added to the original 2006 album. The Diamond Edition debuted on the Billboard Heatseekers Chart at #12. The album has now sold over 50,000 copies since release. Led by front man and guitarist Solomon Olds (aka Soul Glow Activator), Family Force 5 includes Solomon’s two brothers Jacob Olds (aka Crouton) on drums/vocal, and his twin Joshua Olds (aka Fatty) on bass/vocals. The force of five is rounded out by Nathan Currin (aka Nadaddy) on keyboard and Derek Mount (aka Chap Stique) on guitar. (from LB PR)
The Almost
The Almost have entered the Billboard Top 200 Album Chart at #39 by selling over 29,136 copies of their debut album Southern Weather, out now through a joint venture with Tooth & Nail and Virgin Records. The powerful first single “Say This Sooner” is buzzing loudly at Alternative, Active Rock radio with over thirty stations on board already. The groundbreaking video for "Say This Sooner" launched on MTV2's premiere platform "UNLEASHED,” airing every hour on the hour on March 19th! The video is currently in rotation on MTV2, FUSE, Music Choice and The IMF! The music of The Almost will be the soundtrack for MTV2's "The Drop" - the channel's highest rated Rock Destination programming this coming Saturday, April 14th. The Almost just launched a week-long string of West Coast dates with Say Anything and Saves the Day including two Los Angeles shows at the House of Blues this Thursday, April 12 and Friday, April 13. In addition, they’ll headline the Vans Warped Tour kick-off party Friday, April 13 at the Key Club with K-Os, Meg & Dia, The Briggs, Bleed The Dream and Jimmy Mar. After the West Coast dates, The Almost will join Paramore and This Providence for a three-week East Coast jaunt which will include a New York City stop on Tuesday, May 2 and a performance at Bamboozle Festival in New Jersey on Saturday, May 5. The Almost is the brainchild of Underoath drummer/vocalist Aaron Gillespie who leads the group on vocals and guitar. The band is rounded out by: Jay Vilardi (guitar), Alex Aponte (bass) and Kenny Bozich (drums). Gillespie--who sings and performs virtually every note and instrument on his solo debut--teamed with acclaimed producer Aaron Sprinkle (Pedro The Lion) for Southern Weather. To watch the video for “Say This Sooner,” click here. Listen to The Almost online at: www.myspace.com/thealmost and www.purevolume.com/thealmost. (from MSO PR)
Michael W. Smith
Veteran recording artist/performer/worship leader Michael W. Smith joins an elite group of music industry figures later this month as he is inducted into the Music City Walk of Fame Sunday, April 22. The induction ceremony takes place at the Hall of Fame Park in downtown Nashville (across from the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum) starting at 3 p.m., and is open to the public. The 2007 class of inductees for the Music City Walk of Fame also includes country legend Emmylou Harris, Americana mainstay John Hiatt, country powerhouse Wynonna Judd, seminal rock ‘n’ roll combo The Crickets, and longtime BMI president/CEO Frances Preston. Smith comments, “I’m thrilled to share this day with Emmylou, John, Wynonna, The Crickets and Frances. I was surprised when I found out, and am humbled by the honor.” Jim Caviezel, who portrayed Jesus in the 2005 film The Passion of the Christ, is a longtime friend of Smith’s and will serve as his presenter into the Music City Walk of Fame. The Music City Walk of Fame is an official project of Music City, Inc., the charitable foundation of the Nashville Convention & Visitors Bureau, and the 2007 class represents the second group of honorees inducted. This class of inductees continues to showcase the diversity of the music that thrives in this city,” said Butch Spyridon, President of the Nashville Convention & Visitors Bureau. “Each honoree has left an indelible mark on music worldwide and on our city’s musical heritage. We’re privileged to pay homage to their great success.” The Music City Walk of Fame ceremony kicks off a busy Gospel Music Week 2007 for Smith, as he spends much of the week in back to back interviews, topped off with an appearance as a presenter at the 38th Annual GMA Dove Awards at the Grand Ole Opry House Wednesday, April 25. (from Provident Label Group)
Chasing Victory
Want to be in Chasing Victory's next music video? On May 6th, the band needs 20-25 extras to be part of a music video. This shoot will most likely take place from early afternoon until later on that night. The theme of the video is 1950s era speakeasy/jazz club. Interested people must be able to dress in attire that would be similar to that of the 1950s (casual-formal) Guys need to have a suit/tie. Ladies need to have a dress (not revealing). For a reference for clothing to wear, click here. The shoot will be in McKees Rocks, PA (a few miles outside of Pittsburgh, PA) at an old club. Volunteers only, please. Food and drinks will be supplied for everyone as well as a DVD of the final video. Please email Endeavor Media at iendeavormedia@hotmail.com if interested or if you have any questions. (from Chasing Victory; Endeavor Media; Jesusfreakhideout.com)
Avalon
American Music Award-winning, GRAMMY nominated vocal foursome Avalon will star in a 90-minute televised concert this fall offered to more than 4000 churches nationwide by the Church Communication Network’s new Renaissance Concert Series. Tentatively scheduled to air in September, the event plans to be a career-spanning concert for Avalon, who will perform songs from its more than 10-year history as one of contemporary Christian music’s most beloved acts. Joe Battaglia, president of Renaissance Communications and co-executive producer of CCN’s Renaissance Concert Series comments on the event’s significance, “I have always believed that the core audience for our music is in the local church. Much of this audience, though, has been underserved in exposure to our artists, mainly due to the lack of a consistent and sophisticated vehicle to get information to them. With the development of CCN’s programming distribution model to thousands of churches across America, we now have that access. It’s certainly been a pleasure to work with our friends at EMI and Avalon on our initial project.” “As a member of Avalon, I am thrilled to be a part of this CCN event,” say Janna Long. “We had a wonderful time singing songs from our past 11 years and the crowd could not have been any better.” The concert will have three special airings throughout a three-four month period. Information on dates, local times and host sites can be found at www.ccnonline.net. Avalon, considered a versatile standard in Christian music since 1996, continues to sing classic ballads and singable, spine-tingling pop songs with commanding vocals as well as compelling lyrics. With more than three million in sales worldwide, the band additionally has 20 number one radio hits to its credit. For more information on Avalon, visit www.avalonlive.com or www.sparrowrecords.com. (from Savvy Media)
SONICFlOOd
Modern Christian worship band SONICFLOOd will join World Harvest Church Senior pastor Rod Parsley on TBN’s Praise the Lord on April 24th. The episode is slated to air at 10:00pm EST and again on April 25th at 5:00pm EST. The segment will promote World Harvest Church’s upcoming Reformation Generation Weekend on May 25-27, which will feature a performance by SONICFLOOd. Known as the “Fathers of Modern Worship Music,” SONICFLOOd released its debut album in 1999, ushering in a fresh musical canvas of modern rock/pop music featuring electric guitars, hook-filled choruses, and audio effects alongside moving and personal praise lyrics. Since then, SONICFLOOd has been nominated for a Grammy award and has gone on to sell over 1½ million records. The band has produced the top hits “I Could Sing of Your Love Forever,” “I Want to Know You,” “Your Love Goes on Forever,” “Shelter,” and “Cry Holy.” SONICFLOOd has also earned Dove Awards for Praise and Worship Album and Compilation Album of the Year. Rod Parsley has served the Kingdom of God in public ministry for more than 30 years. He is the senior pastor of World Harvest Church in Columbus, Ohio, a non-denominational congregation of more than 12,000 people. He also leads nine other major ministries, including the Center for Moral Clarity, a grassroots organization focusing on the biblical response to moral issues; a Christian school; a Bible college; and Bridge of Hope, a worldwide missions organization. He is also the host of “Breakthrough,” which airs on the Trinity Broadcasting Network and around the world on 1,400 other local channels and cable outlets. For more information, visit www.sonicflood.com, www.breakthrough.net, or www.tbn.org. (from SONICFLOOd)
GMA
TobyMac, Kirk Franklin, Mandisa, Take 6, The Crabb Family, MercyMe and Chris Tomlin are among the first performers announced for the 38th Annual GMA Dove Awards, announced John W. Styll, president and CEO of the Gospel Music Association and executive producer of the Doves. Michael W. Smith, Brenda Lee and Bob & Larry from VeggieTales are among those slated as presenters. The Dove Awards (www.doveawards.com) is Christian/Gospel music’s biggest night of the year, where top artists from every style of gospel music come together for a national night of music and celebration as the GMA bestows the industry’s highest honor -- the Dove Award. Dove statuettes will be handed out on April 25, 2007 at the Grand Ole Opry House in Nashville. The awards show will then be televised in national syndication in May. Tickets are now on sale for the awards and can be purchased at TicketMaster (www.ticketmaster.com). Ticket prices range from $55 to $200. The more than a dozen musical performances will range from rousing soulful gospel to infectious hip-hop to powerful quartet harmonizing to rock n’ roll to inspiring modern worship, representing all the top Dove Awards nominees and reflecting all the diversity in gospel/Christian music. Several special Dove moments are planned including the show opener with TobyMac performing with Kirk Franklin and Mandisa and a multi-artist segment from the new Glory Revealed project and a performance from the soundtrack of the film, “Amazing Grace.” The list of artists confirmed to perform is:
TobyMac, Kirk Franklin, Mandisa, Brian Littrell (Backstreet Boys), Mac Powell (of Third Day), Mark Hall (of Casting Crowns), Steven Curtis Chapman, Chris Tomlin, Stellar Kart, The Crabb Family, Take 6, Aaron Shust, MercyMe, Brian Free & Assurance, DecembeRadio, Leeland, Red, Family Force 5.
Presenters will include teenage activist Zach Hunter, child actor Grayson Russell, country music legend Brenda Lee as well as artist Michael W. Smith, New Artist of the Year nominee Ayiesha Woods and songwriter/producer Ian Eskelin. Hosting the 38th Annual GMA Dove Awards will be Littrell, Donnie McClurkin and Natalie Grant. Additional performers, presenters and special segments will be announced soon. The 38th Annual GMA Dove Awards will be produced by Steve Gilreath Television for the sixth straight year. Dove Awards will be handed out in 43 categories. Many of the awards will be presented during opening ceremonies beginning at 5:30 p.m., while all the performances and seven awards will be presented during the broadcast portion of the Doves beginning at 8 p.m. Securing first-run syndication through broadcast network affiliates and independent stations nationwide is Central City Productions/Timeless International which also produces and syndicates the Stellar Awards. Broadcast affiliates in New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Washington D.C., Atlanta, Cleveland, New Orleans and Nashville are among the more than 120 television stations, including seven of the top ten Nielsen markets, that have already cleared the GMA Dove Awards for the 2007 broadcast. Following the broadcast syndication, The Gospel Music Channel will have the cable premiere of the GMA Dove Awards. (from Spinhouse PR)
Established urban gospel artist Tico Hudson, aka Khul Rhema (pronounced 'kool ray-mah'), the founding member of the GRAMMY-nominated group Ziklag Boyz, is excited to announce the national July 3, 2007, release of his debut solo album What The World Needs Now (Provident-Integrity/SONY BMG). Tico's own imprint, Powwerhouse Productions, entered into a joint-venture agreement with Gozpul Music, LLC (headed by “Big Earl” Franklin and Terry “Did’um” Bolen) in the winter of 2006 for the release of the album. What The World Needs Now adds a bit of maturity to Khul Rhema's characteristic energetic crunk sound. With a rap moniker that literally means “keeper of the word” in ancient Aramaic, his goal is to maintain the same party feel he’s known for while including a thread of God’s greatest commandment—to love Him with all our heart, mind, and soul, and to love our neighbors as ourselves—throughout the entire project. Although What The World Needs Now is Khul Rhema's solo debut, he is an established artist as the founding member of Ziklag Boyz, one of the originators of infusing the crunk sound into Holy Hip Hop. Ziklag was nominated for a GRAMMY in 2005 and has independently moved over 20,000 units internationally. As a result, Khul Rhema's fan base encompasses the globe as he has been called on to perform in most major U.S. cities and abroad in countries including Kenya, the Virgin Islands and Costa Rica. Like most sold-out believers, God’s love is something that Tico is intimately acquainted with, but it wasn’t always that way. Through a series of events that included dealing drugs, death threats, gang affiliation, and homelessness—Tico eventually accepted that the power of God could change his life. It is this acceptance that led Tico to the artistry that is admired by so many today. After encountering gospel rap for the first time, Tico’s initial negative reaction to the genre turned around when he realized that it was God's will that he get on the mic and use his gift of making music to represent the Kingdom of God. "This is what I want you to do," said the still, yet recognizable voice of God. Since then, Tico has set out to fulfill this great call of God on his life, winning souls through his music and dynamic performances, for the most part alongside the legendary Ziklag Boyz group that he founded in late 2000 on the campus of World Changers Church International. Before their retirement, Ziklag garnered such honors as GRAMMY and Stellar award nominations in 2005, as well as reportedly being the first gospel rap group to gain regular rotation on a secular station. Under Tico's leadership, Ziklag received love and admiration from believers and non-believers alike and was courted by the likes of Lil' Jon's independent label, BME Recordings, Outkast's now defunct independent label, Stankonia. Since Ziklag, Tico has worked diligently at developing his career as a producer. He won a Stellar Award in 2006 for his production work on "The Sequel," the LP release by Lil' I Rocc (Authority/Whitaker) which earned two Stellar Awards, one of which was for 'Best Hip Hop/Rap Album of the Year.' Tico has also produced work for renowned superstar producer, Dallas Austin, (TLC, Michael Jackson, Outkast, Boys II Men, Mariah Carey, etc.), contributing to Dallas's first gospel endeavor, Darlene McCoy, remixing the hit single, "Fallen In Love," which originally gained much attention and fanfare on the soundtrack to the blockbuster Tyler Perry big screen debut, Diary of a Mad Black Woman. He has also worked with other artists such as Ghetto Mafia and EJ the Witchdoctor of the Dungeon Family. After a much needed sabbatical dating from mid- to late-2005, Tico received instruction from God to get back to the business of doing damage to Satan's stronghold in urban music and entertainment as a frontline 'souljah.' In 2006 he independently released The Incredible HudRock, an EP release chronicling his bout with betrayal and his own 'self-destructive' habits. (from Recah PR)
*Thursday, April 12th, 2007*

Relient K will be performing "Must Have Done Something Right" TONIGHT on The Tonight Show With Jay Leno! Check your local listings for station and time! (from LB PR / Relient K)
*Wednesday, April 11th, 2007*

Mark Schultz
Platinum selling, Dove Award winning recording artist, Mark Schultz, is embarking on an Across America bike ride to raise support for orphans and widows. From May 6 through early July, Schultz will bicycle from California to New Hampshire stopping along the way to perform concerts featuring music from his acclaimed, best-selling album, Broken & Beautiful (Word Records). Everybody’s peddling something, but Schultz says, “My wheels are turning to actually get somewhere.” And that destination is his cause, helping orphans and widows. Schultz’s inspiration to make this 3,500-mile trek came from a visit he and his wife, Kate, made to orphanages in Mexico. In the spring of 2006, they went on a mission trip with The James Fund, a non-profit organization founded by Family Christian Stores, to meet the needs of orphans and widows in distress. Schultz’s own adoption drew him to explore this ministry. Seeing firsthand the harsh realities for many orphans and realizing that he could have easily been one of the boys in the orphanage, he wanted to make a difference. “I went to visit some orphanages last spring and hang out with the kids, and I thought, how can I raise money for these kids?” says Schultz. “It seemed like nobody in the music business had ever done a tour where they rode their bike across the country and did concerts. I thought, that sounds impossible, lets do that!” Riding his bike alone across the country, Schultz says he sees it as a team endeavor with all the sponsors who have come alongside him and The James Fund, including the Christian adoption and family services agency, Bethany Christian Services (bethany.org), as well as Trek Bikes (trekbikes.com), Epiphone Guitars (epiphone.com), AB Bike Company (abbike.com), Family Christian Stores (familychristian.com), Regal Boats (www.regalboats.com), Gospel Music Association (gospelmusic.org), Buffini & Company (buffiniandcompany.com), Stuph Merchandising (stuphmerch.com) and more. Fans can further support the cause by signing up to sponsor Schultz’s bike ride at www.markacrossamerica.org. The website will also track Schultz’s progress on the tour, list concerts and special events, feature a photo gallery and more. “The exciting thing for me is that on this bike tour, even though I’m riding my bike alone across the country, so many sponsors have come along side to help make this thing happen. I really feel that it is a team event because without them, I wouldn’t be able to do this.” Steve Biondo, president of The James Fund says, “The James Fund is honored to have Mark Schultz join us as an advocate for the fatherless and the widow. Mark's heart is like ours in that we desire to touch the lives of orphans and widows. Together we want to bring the news of Jesus Christ to these dear ones wherever we come in contact with them. We want to give them care for today and hope for eternity. This is the Father's heart for the fatherless and widows and it is the passion Family Christian Stores Foundation, The James Fund, shares with Mark.” Schultz finds his motivation for training for the bike tour from his wife’s encouragement and knowing that she completed a similar bike ride across America, and especially as he thinks about the orphans and the hopelessness he saw in their faces. He says that doing this tour to raise the money to support them makes it all worth it. “Not only am I excited about this, but this may be what I’m meant to do.” The Across America Bike Ride follows Schultz’s recent trip to Washington, D.C. where he was a featured performer at the Angels In Adoption Gala and shared the stage with Darryl “D.M.C” McDaniels, Representative Ginny Brown-Waite of Florida, Idaho Senator Larry Craig, and other distinguished guests and elected officials. During the gala, Schultz performed “Everything To Me,” which is the story of his own adoption. Schultz will perform the song during concert stops along the bike ride. The song is also featured on his Sept. 26, 2006 release and fifth career project, Broken & Beautiful, which debuted in the Top 5 on SoundScan’s Christian and Top 10 on the general market retail charts, marking the strongest street week of his career. After the 2005 release, Mark Schultz Live…A Night of Stories & Songs, sold Platinum and garnered Schultz his first GMA Dove award, Broken & Beautiful became one of the most highly anticipated albums of the year. With his thought provoking lyrics and appealing music, Schultz’s latest effort is being heralded as his “career” album. The title track is the first multi-format hit single and No. 1 inspirational song from the album. (from Hoganson Media)
GMA
The Gospel Music Association (GMA) has announced the final nominees for the Dove Award for Songwriter of the Year, to be presented at the 38th Annual GMA Dove Awards. The nominees are Kirk Franklin, Mark Hall, Mat Kearney, Mac Powell and Aaron Shust. The recipient of the Dove Award for Songwriter of the Year will be named during the awards show on April 25 at the Grand Ole Opry House in Nashville. Tickets are available at www.ticketmaster.com. “Songs are the soul of gospel music, making the Songwriter of the Year one of our community’s highest honors. We congratulate each of these fine songwriters for the impact they have made this year,” said John W. Styll, president and CEO of the GMA. In addition to other songs they have written, each songwriter is nominated in the Song of the Year category. Franklin wrote “Imagine Me.” Hall co-wrote “Praise You in this Storm” with Bernie Herms which was recorded by Hall’s band Casting Crowns. Kearney penned “Nothing Left to Lose.” Powell wrote “Cry Out to Jesus” for Third Day and Shust is the writer of “My Savior My God.” (from Spinhouse PR)
John Reuben
The Creation Festival, MonsterPod.org and iTickets.com, in association with the 38th Annual Dove Awards, Tooth & Nail Records, BEC Recordings, Gotee Records and Word Records are proud to announce the official GMA Dove After Party. The unprecedented event will be held Wednesday, April 25th at Rocketown in Downtown Nashville, immediately following the Dove Award ceremony. “We are very excited to be partnering with the Gospel Music Association and these top record labels to present this official Dove After Party,” says Nick Kulb, director of marketing and sales for Creation Festivals and MonsterPod. “We feel it’s the perfect way to close out an already great week.” Hosted by John Reuben, the party will feature live performances from Family Force 5, Disciple, KJ-52, Storyside B, Jackson Waters and The Send, as well as Reuben. In addition, there will be an iPod give away and light refreshment will be provided throughout the evening. Admission for the After Party is free to GMA Music Week registrants and Dove ticket-holders. The event is also open to the general public, with tickets for $8.00 in advance and $10.00 the day of. Doors will open at 11:00 pm with on-stage performances beginning at 11:30. The 38th Annual Dove Award Ceremony will be held earlier in the evening on Wednesday, April 25th at the Grand Ole Opry House and will be hosted by Natalie Grant, Brian Littrell and Donnie McClurkin. (from Springboard Entertainment)
Joanne Cash
The following statement was released yesterday by Joanne Cash, sister of the late Country music legend Johnny Cash, concerning the fire that has destroyed Johnny's Hendersonville home: "Of course we are all in a state of shock. I feel that an era has passed. Just today in prayer, I had decided to move on, even discarding old newspaper clippings not realizing that this terrible thing would happen. My prayers are with the Cash family and especially the Gibb family during this time." The Hendersonville, Tennesse home of Johnny Cash has been destroyed by a fire, that broke out at appoximately 2pm CST yesterday afternoon. The 13,000 square-foot house was purchased by Barry Gibb of the Bee Gees in 2006, and it was under renovation at the time of the fire. Initial reports indicate that the house was completely destroyed. Joanne Cash's new CD, Gospel, was released February 20th, and includes three previously unreleased duets with her famous brother. For more information, visit www.JoanneCash.com. (from Nashville Publicity)
*Tuesday, April 10th, 2007*

Switchfoot
Switchfoot debuts their brand new video "Awakening" today - a silly and fun little concept video featuring some faces you just might recognize from recent films and TV shows. "I can finally say that our new video for our new single, "Awakening," is done and ready for your happy consumption," announced bassist Tim Foreman today. "We really love this song, and we're glad that many of you do as well. I'm proud to say that this new video is one of our favorites! I hope you dig it as much as we do... The traditional concept of a music video can be a bit surreal, lip-synching to your own songs can feel especially comical at times! With this irony in mind we wanted to make a video that doesn't take itself too seriously, even if the song itself is dealing with weighty issues... to make a music video that tells a different story than the song is already telling us. The song exists in a space entirely on its own, and nothing will ever add or subtract from what the song already is- why not use the video as a vehicle to go somewhere new? Somewhere that the song hasn't already been on it's own? So here, my friends, is an attempt to do just that. We had a lot of fun making this video. We actually made this video on our own dime, with our talented good friend Brandon Dickerson, who made two of our earlier videos. We also had the incredible opportunity of working with three extremely talented and funny actors: Tony Hale (Stranger than Fiction, TV's Arrested Development and Andy Barker, P.I.), Adam Campbell (Epic Movie), and Jayma Mays (Red Eye, TV's Heroes). The most challenging and time-consuming portion of the video was the creating of the 'animated' television. To create this effect, we printed out each individual frame (24 frames per second -- that's a lot of frames!), and then hand-ripped each person from each frame, placing each frame sequentially after the other to re-create the action (think claymation with photos!). This technique has actually never been done before, and took a total of 8 days, with 10 to 20 people working around the clock." To check out the video now, visit www.switchfoot.com/awakening (from Switchfoot; Jesusfreakhideout.com)
Seventh Day Slumber
ZJAM Youth Ministries has been renamed Revolution Generation with Seventh Day Slumber front man and youth advocate Joseph Rojas appointed at the helm as the CEO and President. True to ZJAM's 11 year history, Revolution Generation moves forward in 2007 with a renewed commitment to global youth ministry via the media, discipleship, missions, prayer and God's Word. "We are so excited about the future of Revolution Generation. We know that God brought us together with Joseph and Seventh Day Slumber," says John Young, Executive Director of the ministry organization. "Joseph has the heart, experience and vision to lead this ministry to the next level in the battle for teens. Now is the time and I know we are a part of a greater movement to raise up a new generation of the church." Joseph Rojas has dedicated the last ten years of his life testifying for Christ and the life-changing impact of his own salvation from self-destructive drug and alcohol addictions, and near prison sentence and death. Prior to starting Seventh Day Slumber in 1996 Joseph earned a degree in psychology that helped him to become owner, counselor, and director of a chemical dependency center in Texas. He has also gone to Bible School and is an ordained minister. "I understand what it means to hurt so badly that suicide seems like the only option," says Rojas. "I know what it means to be abused, to be addicted, to feel abandoned and empty, hopeless and depressed, lost and confused. But I also understand what it means to be accepted by a King and loved by the creator of the universe. We are a generation who has no clue who we are. Our young people are searching for purpose, a reason to live. We need to get them the message of Jesus Christ at any cost. We need a Revolution!" Revolution Generation aims to raise up a generation of new leaders and missionaries, as well as reach out to the lost and hurting. This goal is realized through various branches of the organization including a mentorship program, a radio show (265 markets in North America and Europe), a cyber radio station (4000 listeners per month), crisis lines (www.teenhopeline.com with nearly 100,000 teens reached in 2006), discipleship resources, and youth conferences. The event branch will also now expand its reach through the existing ministry of Seventh Day Slumber with a focus on following up with the altar call responses at concerts. The Revolution Generation Team receives 25-35 rape, suicide and abuse calls per week with about 9-12 of those reported to the police. The team leads between 15 to 20 teens to the Lord each week, and sends out over 15,000 Bible studies a day to over 60 countries. Seventh Day Slumber just recently released their third album Finally Awake to stores everywhere. (from LB PR)
Day Of Fire
Successful rock band Day of Fire has begun a new chapter in their professional career. After selling nearly 150,000 units of their first two releases, this Grammy Award nominated and Dove Award winning band has recently begun touring with multi-Platinum American Idol, Chris Daughtry. Says Josh Brown, lead singer of Day Of Fire, "We love playing shows with Chris Daughtry. He is an extremely talented singer/songwriter and performer. We look forward to rocking the stage with him again in the near future." In other career developments, Day Of Fire's single “Hole in My Hand” was released to Rock and CHR radio in March. Their Cut & Move 20+ city tour continues through May following which the band will appear at numerous festivals this summer including Icthus, Creation East and West, Lifefest and Sonshine. The group also recently signed to new management with industry veterans Mitchell Solarek of Maximum Artist Management and Linda Klosterman of TKO Marketing. For more information visit www.dayoffire.com. (from Big Machine)
dctalk
dc Talk is one of the most influential groups to ever come out of the Christian Music world. With 7 million albums sold including the double platinum album, Jesus Freak, multiple Grammy and GMA Dove Awards, dc Talk fans will soon have the chance to get the definitive collection of their biggest songs. Greatest Hits, which releases June 26, includes 18 groundbreaking songs, and if that is not enough, the Special Edition version of the collection includes a DVD with 11 of the group's most recognized music videos including: “Jesus Freak,” “Between You and Me,” “Luv is a Verb,” “Jesus is Just Alright,” and more. All three members are still actively recording and touring individually. Their work away from dc Talk has been critically acclaimed with TobyMac recently receiving Gold certification on each of his first two solo projects (500,000 copies each). The release of Greatest Hits will also mark the discontinuing of their 2000 hits project Intermission, which featured 19 tracks including two new ones. (from EMI CMG; Jesusfreakhideout.com)
Rush Of Fools
Rush Of Fools front men Kevin Huguley and Wes Willis, the primary writers for all songs on the band’s upcoming Midas Records May 8 release, have recently signed a long term deal with EMI CMG Publishing. “We are very excited, and may I say impressed, to work with Rush Of Fools,” Eddie DeGarmo, president of EMI CMG Publishing said. “Kevin and Wes have written and recorded a wonderful album full of truly great songs that will stand the test of time” The agreement with EMI CMG Publishing will position Huguley and Willis within over 300 of the top writers in a company that has produced over 30,000 songs in the Christian music industry today. Co-published by EMI CMG along with Midas Publishing, Rush Of Fools join some of Christian music’s most recognized writers such as Steven Curtis Chapman, Tim Hughes, Matt Redman, Peter Furler, Nichole Nordeman, Mark Hall, Leeland, Jeremy Camp, Toby Mac, Stacie Orrico, and Switchfoot, among others. Top level music producer Jason Ingram (Bebo Norman and Gray Holiday) recently joined writing forces with Rush Of Fools’ Huguley and Willis for the bands upcoming debut project. “Kevin and Wes are truly gifted song writers with a knack for extremely catchy pop melodies,” Ingram said. “What impresses me most is that they aren't content to settle on just whatever lyric feels good but aim to probe the heart and craft lyrics that are truly significant.” In addition to their publishing agreement, Rush Of Fools are currently touring with By The Tree and The Turning on the multi-city “World On Fire” tour in support of their debut release. “Undo”, the first single from the band is ranked as the 4th Most Popular EMI CMG Digital Download (week of 3/18 - 3/24), selling 7,112 copies in a three week period. The single is also #4 on Billboard’s “Top Christian Songs” chart this week after an unprecedented response from Christian radio since going for adds January 12th. For more on Rush Of Fools and upcoming tour dates, please visit www.RushOfFools.com or www.MySpace.com/RushOfFools (from L.A.B Media)
"Since their thrashing 1989 debut, Deliverance has been breaking new ground wherever and whenever they decide to make their metal presence known. The video for “Weapons of Our Warefare” was the first Christian video to ever get airplay on Headbanger’s Ball. And, when the band stepped away from speed metal and thrash in favor of progressive metal in the mid 90’s, they ascended to musical and artistic brilliance without peers. From the very beginning, Deliverance enjoyed both commercial and critical success that allowed them to dominate the Christian market as the most distinguished heavy metal band on the scene, period. Over a decade of aggressive touring, exposure in the mainstream markets, and 12 albums later, Deliverance continues to hold icon status among legions of metal enthusiasts world-wide. In spite of years of rumor-filled message boards and relentless requests from fans, this is the first new Deliverance album from vocalist Jimmy Brown and company since 2001. Never has Retroactive Records been privileged to release an album met with such fan appreciation and unbridled anticipation! Jimmy knew how high fan expectations would be for a new release, and has worked relentlessly with the band for over a year to deliver Retroactive Records an album that would not only delight, but astound fans….an album that would hold up under the most scrutinizing fan critique. Jimmy’s goal was to create the greatest Deliverance record of all-time; a culmination of a brilliant career, while continuing to break new ground. As Above ~ So Below is a prayer that things would be on earth, as they are in heaven. Musically, this 13th album represents a unilateral step forward in the heavy music genre; few groups have ever blended epic thrash / speed metal with the elegance and beauty of progressive metal (later period Deliverance) with such devastating skill and brutality. Never has a Deliverance album alternated so many moments of beauty (e.g.The Omen inspired opening track) with beastly moments of metallic fury and spine snapping riffs that would seem right at home on a Slayer, Believer, or early Deliverance album. The end result is arguably the heaviest Deliverance album yet. Jimmy continues to deliver vocal melodies that are as commanding as a thundering voice from above. What no one could have anticipated is that the band would deliver one of the most enormous-sounding metal records ever made. In our minds, it seems like the album is a piece of heaven here on earth, which, ironically means that the album is an answer to it’s own prayer! This CD as well as other Retroactive Records releases available in all Mardel Christian stores and all Northwestern Christian bookstores as well as www.amazon.com, www.cdbaby.com, www.radrockers.com, www.ebay.com." (from Retroactive Records PR)
*Friday, April 6th, 2007*

JoC
The month of April will have the members of multi-platinum selling band Jars of Clay looking at their past, present and future simultaneously, with honors from The Recording Academy, radio chart success and a strong slate of upcoming shows all vying for the veteran group’s attention. The band has been named as one of the recipients for this year’s Recording Academy Honors, announced by the Nashville chapter of National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences, the organization behind the GRAMMY Awards. The gala event honoring the band, along with country trio Rascal Flatts, gospel stalwarts the Fisk Jubilee Singers and country legend Loretta Lynn, will take place Monday, April 9 at the Loews Vanderbilt Hotel in Nashville. The Recording Academy Honors events were established to honor outstanding individuals in each Chapter's region whose work embodies excellence and integrity and who have improved the environment for the creative community. The recognition for the band’s past work comes right alongside its current success at radio, with the most recent singles from the band’s 2006 effort Good Monsters impacting both Radio & Records’ AC (“There Is A River” at No. 24) and CHR (“Work” at No. 7) charts. Radio programmers continue to see great result from the group’s presence on both their airwaves and their markets. “‘Work’ from Jars of Clay is living up to its name… It’s working great on the radio!” says Dave Senes, network program director at WAYM (WAY-FM Nashville). “All of us at WAY-FM are thrilled that our listeners will have the chance to see them perform live Labor Day weekend.” The spring leg of the Good Monsters tour has already produced results in a number of North American cities, including Greeley, Colo.; Surrey, British Columbia; Walla Walla, Wash.; Missoula, Mont.; Great Falls, Mont. and Kalamazoo, Mich., with a strong slate of shows already on the books for the balance of 2007. For the latest info and tour dates, visit www.jarsofclay.com! (from Provident Label Group)
Flatfoot 56
Bringing the rollicking barrage of Celtic-Punk to the table with their second Flicker Records’ release, Chicago natives Flatfoot 56 is packing up to head to Japan for a tour run with Celtic-Punk powerhouse Flogging Molly. Flatfoot 56 will be joining their genre peers in Osaka, Japan on April 12 performing in three major cities. This international run will be supporting the upcoming May 15th release Jungle of the Midwest Sea, with the title track mirroring Upton Sinclair’s infamous turn-of-the-century novel The Jungle. The ensuing 14-track onslaught more than underscores the sentiment, “Where you live is who you are, so don’t blow it.” Comprised of brothers Tobin, Justin and Kyle Bawinkel (respectively frontman, drummer and bassist) along with tartan-toting multi-instrumentalist Josh Robieson, Flatfoot 56 attacks dark subject matter on “Jungle of the Midwest Sea”—avarice, faithlessness, cowardice—with a gravity that belies their barely legal ages. That said, in the tradition of their street-punk forefathers, they’re just as adept at dialing up bone-crunching good times. Most of the Flatfoot live show is improvised, and it’s all contingent on Robieson and crew making swift transitions between guitar, mandolin, bagpipes and whatever other eclectic instruments they bring to the party. “He’s got it down to a science,” Tobin says of Robieson’s equipment juggling. “We don’t really make set lists. We kind of go with hand signals because we like to play certain songs to get certain crowds involved. Because of that, Josh has become really quick at flipping instruments. He’ll have a guy stand on the side for bigger shows to throw him the instrument he needs. It helps to tailor our set to each crowd as opposed to playing the same songs every night.” For more information on Flatfoot 56, visit their myspace. (from The M Collective)
Purevolume.com just posted three videos of Anberlin performing acoustically at their offices recently. To see the band perform unplugged versions of "A Day Late," "Inevitable," and "Unwinding Cable Car," visit www.purevolume.com/promotions/anberlin! (from Anberlin; Jesusfreakhideout.com)
Project 86
Project 86 will be joining the Tooth and Nail Tour for several dates this spring/summer with labelmates MXPX, Classic Crime, The Fold, and Sullivan. Check Toothandnail.com for tour announcements as well as the tour site for updates and current information. The band will also be going out on a headlining tour in June with friends Showbread and Chasing Victory. The entire summer is packed with festivals so keep checking the band's MySpace for updates on shows. Project's new record Rival Factions is almost complete and they're looking forward to unveiling the latest tunes soon. Keep an eye on their MySpace for a sneak peek soon... (from Project 86; Jesusfreakhideout.com)
Mike Farris
Traditional spirituals, turn-of-the-century New Orleans Gospel, and a slice of influence from Johnny Cash describes the musical portrait from INO Records’ newly signed artist Mike Farris, whose musical background stems from founding the Screamin' Cheetah Wheelies to touring with the likes of Blues Traveler, Sheryl Crow and the Allman Brothers Band. Farris’ INO debut, Salvation in Lights, is set to release June 26th. Salvation in Lights is a traveling tent-revival of an album, working its way up the banks of the Mississippi River from New Orleans through Memphis and onto points north. Recorded at the same Nashville house-studio where White Stripes/Raconteurs leader Jack White recorded Loretta Lynn's award-winning Van Lear Rose album, Farris' sophomore solo effort uses the musical language of spirituals, timeless stories of struggle, some of which are centuries-old slave spirituals, and soul to tell a uniquely redemptive story. "When I'm playing music, it's like prayer to me," Farris says. "I'm closer to God than I ever am, outside of my prayer. That's the best way I can portray what I'm feeling in my heart." Farris recorded Salvation in Lights with a band that included Johnny Cash's longtime bassist Dave Roe, singer Ann McCrary — daughter of the Fairfield Four's founder, the Rev. Sam McCrary and a host of top shelf Nashville musicians. Farris plants his own roots deep, down to traditional songs like "Oh Mary Don't You Weep" and "Can't No Grave Hold My Body Down." "A Change Is Gonna Come" and "I'll Take You There" come from a soul movement that identified with struggle and the ongoing search for transcendence and peace to songs that are turn-of-the-century New Orleans Gospel. "When I was growing up, we had five records in my family – and three of them were by Johnny Cash," Farris says. "I didn't realize how much that stuff was engrained in my being." Perhaps nothing, though, reflects Farris' own journey so perfectly as "Precious Lord, Take My Hand." Written by Thomas A. Dorsey, a writer and performer of bawdy blues tunes who later became the "Father of Gospel Music," the song's plea to "guide my feet to the light," is one that Farris has made his own. Nearly dead from an accidental overdose of pills and alcohol before he turned 21, Farris made a desperate cry out to God, and God responded. That began a 15-year journey to get back to God. Farris continued to write, and he formed a band, the Screamin' Cheetah Wheelies. The band had some success, signing to Atlantic Records and having a Top 10 rock-radio hit, but, deep inside himself, Farris knew that the bars and clubs the band often played were the last places somebody with his struggles needed to be. The addictions returned with a vengeance, throughout the Cheetah Wheelies' existence and beyond, even as Farris fronted Double Trouble, the rhythm section of the late guitar legend Stevie Ray Vaughn. In the winter of 2004, Farris found himself at the end of his rope, standing graveside, at a relative’s funeral. “ I realized how tired I’d become from running all those years, and I just wanted to go back home. Just like the prodigal so,” Farris says. “I’d had enough of it all and decided I was not going to be that man ever again.” With the help of his family and church, Farris became sober, and soon after he began writing in order to heal again. He quickly realized the new songs he was writing dovetailed nicely with those old familiar songs that had been with him all along. “If not for the grace of God I would surely be dead or wishing I were dead,” Farris continues. “My life is a testament that God has an unique and special place for everyone. God will use people no matter how tattered and torn. Just surrender to His love and trust in His grace." (from The M Collective)
*Wednesday, April 4th, 2007*

SCC
Tracking began recently on the new Steven Curtis Chapman studio release. Just prior to Christmas, Steven jammed in a week long tracking session in Los Angeles with talented producer Matt Bronleewe and engineer Rusty Varenkamp, and some legendary players. On guitars Eric Schermerhorn and Lyle Workman, on bass Chris Chaney, drums by Abe Laboriel Jr., and on keys Patrick Warren. In between sound check and concert sets on the Winter Jam tour, Steven is continuing writing and recording. The obvious question... When will it be in stores? According to today's SCC newsletter, "later this year." Hmm. We'll keep you posted! (from Steven Curtis Chapman; Jesusfreakhideout.com)
Showbread
Showbread's longtime member Ivory Mobley has decided to part ways with the band ten years since joining the band. Frontman Josh Dies wrote on Showbread.net on Monday, "We were in Miami Florida, facing the conclusion to a six-week tour with Pillar and Tyler Read when Ivory told me he was leaving. About an hour before we would go on that night, I was sitting in the van by myself, what I was doing I can't recall, and it all ended much like the way it began. A little while after ivory told me he would be going, he explained that there have only been two other times when God had spoken to him so clearly. When he was younger, he told me, he had clearly heard Jesus tell him "Come and know me", and he did so obediently. As a Junior in high school, he knew that Jesus was telling him "Go and serve me with Showbread." And he was obedient once again. And now, ten years later, the voice of his beloved God called to him again. This time the words were bittersweet as Jesus told him "Your work with Showbread is finished". When we were in elementary school, Ivory and I spent most of our time with our friend Paul Carrington, playing "American Gladiator" and laughing at farts. I remember vividly when he was sitting next to me in our ninth grade P.E. class asking me if he could be a part of Showbread. Then, all this time later, it was just he and I again when he told me his time was up. We don't yet know the reason why God has called Ivory away from the band. He tells me that one morning during that tour he was up early, spending time with the God he has loved so much as to follow his voice, and to his dismay, that very voice called him to give up what is most dear to him. When that tour started, I was reading a book by Andrew Murray called Absolute Surrender. One morning in North Carolina I led a bible study in which I asked my band mates if they were prepared to give up anything and everything for the God we serve. I asked myself if I would brave enough to give up what is most dear to me if God asked this of me, not knowing if I could. Weeks later, God asked this very thing of Ivory. With tears in his eyes he told me that he did not understand why his time was ending, but he had to follow where his good Sheppard led him, and my heart broke. I had always believed that in the end, I would take the final bow with Showbread with my brothers who were there when it all began. So the seven of us sat in the van that night eventually, wondering what we would do and what our life as Showbread would be like without someone who had been so important to it since the very beginning. But more so, we were all inspired beyond words at Ivory's example of loving obedience to his God, whom he willingly follows away from the only life he has known for a decade. And so, after every incarnation, lineup and change Showbread has ever known, every wonderful day and horrible trial, all the friends we've made and places we've been, every second of laughter and joy and every incredible aspect of this adventure we have made our lives, Ivory Mobley will perform for the last time with Showbread in May at this year's Cornerstone Florida. Though he moves on into the unfamiliar and terrifying territory known as "The Real World", he remains just as much a part of the heart and soul of Showbread as he did when it all began in 1997. And with pain and joy, we press on with a missing member, but with a fire in our hearts to serve our Jesus. Tae, you are an inspiration to us and we love you with all our hearts." For more on Showbread, visit Showbread.net (from Showbread.net; Jesusfreakhideout.com)
*Tuesday, April 3rd, 2007*

EMI CMG
EMI Music announced yesterday that it is launching new premium downloads for retail on a global basis, making all of its digital repertoire available at a much higher sound quality than existing downloads and free of digital rights management (DRM) restrictions. The new higher quality DRM-free music will complement EMI's existing range of standard DRM-protected downloads already available. From yesterday, EMI's retailers will be offered downloads of tracks and albums in the DRM-free audio format of their choice in a variety of bit rates up to CD quality. EMI is releasing the premium downloads in response to consumer demand for high fidelity digital music for use on home music systems, mobile phones and digital music players. EMI's new DRM-free products will enable full interoperability of digital music across all devices and platforms. Eric Nicoli, CEO of EMI Group, said, "Our goal is to give consumers the best possible digital music experience. By providing DRM-free downloads, we aim to address the lack of interoperability which is frustrating for many music fans. We believe that offering consumers the opportunity to buy higher quality tracks and listen to them on the device or platform of their choice will boost sales of digital music. "Apple have been a true pioneer in digital music, and we are delighted that they share our vision of an interoperable market that provides consumers with greater choice, quality, convenience and value for money." "Selling digital music DRM-free is the right step forward for the music industry," said Steve Jobs, Apple's CEO. "EMI has been a great partner for iTunes and is once again leading the industry as the first major music company to offer its entire digital catalogue DRM-free." Apple's iTunes Store (www.itunes.com) is the first online music store to receive EMI's new premium downloads. Apple has announced that iTunes will make individual AAC format tracks available from EMI artists at twice the sound quality of existing downloads, with their DRM removed, at a price of $1.29/€1.29/£0.99. iTunes will continue to offer consumers the ability to pay $0.99/?0.99/£0.79 for standard sound qquality tracks with DRM still applied. Complete albums from EMI Music artists purchased on the iTunes Store will automatically be sold at the higher sound quality and DRM-free, with no change in the price. Consumers who have already purchased standard tracks or albums with DRM will be able to upgrade their digital music for $0.30/?0..30/£0.20 per track. All EMI music videos will also be available on the iTunes Store DRM-free with no change in price. EMI is introducing a new wholesale price for premium single track downloads, while maintaining the existing wholesale price for complete albums. EMI expects that consumers will be able to purchase higher quality DRM-free downloads from a variety of digital music stores within the coming weeks, with each retailer choosing whether to sell downloads in AAC, WMA, MP3 or other unprotected formats of their choice. Music fans will be able to purchase higher quality DRM-free digital music for personal use, and listen to it on a wide range of digital music players and music-enabled phones. EMI's move follows a series of experiments it conducted recently. Norah Jones's "Thinking About You", Relient K's "Must've Done Something Right", and Lily Allen's "Littlest Things" were all made available for sale in the MP3 format in trials held at the end of last year. EMI Music will continue to employ DRM as appropriate to enable innovative digital models such as subscription services (where users pay a monthly fee for unlimited access to music), super-distribution (allowing fans to share music with their friends) and time-limited downloads (such as those offered by ad-supported services). Nicoli added: "Protecting the intellectual property of EMI and our artists is as important as ever, and we will continue to work to fight piracy in all its forms and to educate consumers. We believe that fans will be excited by the flexibility that DRM-free formats provide, and will see this as an incentive to purchase more of our artists' music." (from EMI CMG Label Group)
Jeremy Camp
BEC Recording artist Jeremy Camp kicked off 2007 in a big way in support of his latest best-selling CD Beyond Measure by hitting the road on the Winter Jam tour and selling out House of Blues (HOB) venues across the U.S. on his own run of dates. Following up his Chicago HOB sell out in January, Camp hit southern California this week , selling out HOB locations in Anaheim, San Diego and Hollywood. Camp will perform at the New Orleans location in August. Co-headlining the 2007 WinterJam tour in it’s 11th year, Camp witnessed over a quarter of a million fans attend the event, nearly 23,000 more tickets than the 2006 tour. With eleven back to back No. 1 singles under his belt, including his first two releases from Beyond Measure, “Tonight” (CHR) and “What It Means” (AC), Camp garnered the highest debuts on both AC charts this week with his new single, “Give You Glory.” The song debuted on Monitored #23 and on Indicator at No. 19. In addition to AC and CHR, Camp proves he’s truly a multi-format hit machine with “Tonight” also landing in the top 5 at Christian Rock and “Give Me Jesus” currently at #3 on the Inspo chart. Jeremy goes for adds at CHR with another new single, “Let It Fade” on April 6th. Camp also recently filmed a music video for “Give You Glory” during live dates on the WinterJam tour. This summer Camp will continue to pound the pavement, headlining summer festivals and is in the beginning stages of planning an acoustic tour for the fall. (from The M Collective)
David Crowder Band
MSN’s Artist of the Year 2006 and sixstepsrecords/Sparrow Records’ David Crowder Band is currently in the studio recording songs for the follow up to the band’s groundbreaking album, A Collision. The first new full-length studio album in two years, Remedy, is slated to release this fall. Always transposing the norm, David Crowder Band gives its audience an inside look at the recording process for the new album, offering an eight-webcam view of The Barn, a recording facility built by the David Crowder Band in the legendary barn of Dr Pepper fame. Fans can check out all the action 24 hours a day in real time by logging onto www.dcb01.com/remedy. There are also video clips and blogs featured at www.remedyiscoming.com, where unprecedented early hints of what is to come on the highly anticipated new album can be seen and heard. Fans also received a firsthand look via MSN at the debut David Crowder Band concept video, an animated video for the hit song “Foreverandever, Etc.” from A Collision. MSN already named the video “This Week’s Hottest Feature” and exclusively premiered it on its music home page last week. The video begins with a small altercation between Crowder and a squirrel. The seemingly adorable rodent observes David playing guitar on his porch, but instead of being drawn in, the squirrel scoffs. Thus begins a duel of wits that eventually escalates into a battle of epic proportions. The full video can still be seen at http://music.msn.com/musicvideos, or by going to one of the following links: Quicktime, Real Video, or Windows. After the David Crowder Band was voted MSN’s Artist of the Year 2006, MSN noted, “They've single-handedly redefined what contemporary Christian music should sound like…” The upcoming album, Remedy, will follow the success of A Collision, which was widely regarded as one of the best albums of 2005, receiving five-star reviews and comparisons to groundbreaking albums of the past and artists such as The Beatles, Bob Dylan and Hank Williams. The album further garnered an iTunes No. 1, debuted at No. 39 on the Billboard Top 200 and received GMA Music Dove Award honors for Best Rock/Contemporary Album and Best Rock/Contemporary Song (“Here is Our King”). As the momentum continues, the band received a 2007 Group of the Year Dove Award nomination for the upcoming award show April 25. Featured at the enormously popular collegiate Passion gatherings, the band also makes it a point to get back to the church they helped found, University Baptist Church, on most Sundays. Crowder is further an acclaimed author, having penned two books, including his acclaimed, highly personal, Everybody Wants to Go to Heaven, But Nobody Wants to Die: Or (The Eschatology of Bluegrass). (from Hoganson Media)
The Afters
The Afters had a bit of misadventure on Sunday when they arrived for a show only to be told it wasn't going to happen! "When we showed up in Springfield, MO we were told that the city had not issued a permit to the venue and so we would have to cancel our show," the guys wrote in a recent blog. "April fools you say, we wish, it really happened! So, to our fans that were coming out, first we say we are very sorry! And second, we have rescheduled for this Wednesday the 4th at a different venue. Check out the link for more info and thanks to Justin Long for helping make this happen." The show has been moved to the South Gate Baptist Church (5701 South Farm Road 157 / Springfield, MO) and will also feature Mainstay and Our Hearts Hero, who are currently touring with The Afters. (from The Afters; Jesusfreakhideout.com)
Nicole C. Mullen
Platinum-selling, Grammy nominated, and eight-time Dove Award Winner, Nicole C. Mullen, made an appearance Monday morning on Good Day Atlanta. She performed the first single, “Convinced,” from her new CD on Word Records, Sharecropper’s Seed, Vol I, that releases today, April 3rd. Nicole is in Atlanta performing at special events in connection with the Final Four basketball tournament. Actress Jane Fonda (Monster In Law) was also appearing on the show to promote her new movie and she caught Nicole’s performance. She went out of her way to say hello to Nicole and let her know how much she enjoyed, “Convinced.” She really liked Nicole’s outfit, which was a great compliment. Nicole designs her own clothes and is scheduled to have her own clothing line in the near future. For a photo of Nicole and Jane together, click here! (from Turning Point PR)
NewSong
Winter Jam Tour Spectacular 2007 wrapped up its 33-city run, with 268,473 in attendance, nearly 23,000 more than 2006’s hugely successful tour, announced Troy VanLiere, partner in VanLiere-Wilcox, tour producer and manager for Integrity Music’s NewSong, which hosted WINTER JAM for the 11th straight year. “Winter Jam certainly exceeded our expectations not only in attendance, but more importantly in the kingdom decisions that were made,” said VanLiere. “In its 11th year, the reputation and branding of Winter Jam remains strongly established as an entertaining and inspiring event with top artists, great value and most importantly providing an opportunity for people to make life transforming decisions. People continue to show up for an event like this.” Winter Jam 2007 Tour Spectacular (www.jamtour.com), once again promoted by Premier Productions, was hosted by NewSong and featured headliners Steven Curtis Chapman and Jeremy Camp, with special guests Hawk Nelson, Sanctus Real, new artist Britt Nicole, Speaker Tony Nolan, Presidential impersonator and comedian John Morgan and the breathtaking, fire breathing Andre the Hollywood Cowboy. “Promoting Winter Jam is always a joy, and this year was no exception. Winter Jam had it all – the best musicians, best speakers and most exciting show, but most importantly, it had heart and there will always be a big audience for a show with heart. The reception in the marketplace to this tour just keeps getting bigger and bigger. I am already looking forward to next year,” said Roy Morgan, partner in The Premier Group. “I’m so grateful to God for the amazing spirit of humility in the community of artists that were a part of each night. It was profound to see each of the artists put aside our own agendas and consciously come together focused strictly on the one goal of presenting the gospel,” said Chapman. Camp added: “This tour was amazing to see almost 40,000 people make a personal decision for Christ! Praise God! We’re so blessed to be a part of something that has an impact for the kingdom like that.” For all those involved in Winter Jam, the ministry aspect of the tour is as important as the great music and entertaining show. At the conclusion of this tour, it had seen more than 38,000 concert-goers make personal decisions for Christ and 4,717 made commitments to sponsor children in Holt International (www.holtintl.org) Children’s Services “Waiting Child Program,” a monthly sponsorship program that brings sustaining hope and support to orphaned, abandoned or vulnerable children awaiting full-time adoptions. Along with Holt International, Winter Jam Tour sponsors include Gospel Music Channel, Walden Media’s release “Amazing Grace”, HearItFirst.com, CCM Magazine, Tennessee Temple University, ZAP! Cars, Wayne E. Bailey Produce and Midnight in the City (a program of Convey of Hope.) Eddie Carswell of NewSong concludes, “I truly believe that as long as we keep God as the ultimate headliner of the tour that He will continue to bless Winter Jam for many years to come. I know the most important memories for all of us on the tour will be the lives that committed to Christ and the kids who were supported by the fans.” In April, NewSong will be at the 2007 GMA Dove Awards, where they are nominated for a Dove Award for their critically acclaimed Christmas CD, A Christmas Hope. They will be entering the studio this Spring to work on a new album slated for a Fall 2007 release. (from Spinhouse PR)
SONICFlOOd
“The momentum is building as pro-lifers nationwide are preparing to participate in the fifth annual National Pro-Life T-shirt Day (NPTD),” said Erik Whittington, American Life League’s youth outreach director. “[April 24, 2007] is one day out of the year that can help to save an untold number of lives as young people bravely put the pro-life message on their backs.” This year’s event is expected to be a success as schools, youth groups and individuals across the country have pledged to participate. NPTD recently gained an extra boost when the award-winning popular Christian band SONICFLOOd signed on in support of the event. “We are in full support of young people actively living out their faith by wearing a pro-life t-shirt and spreading the truth about the sanctity of human life,” said Rick Heil of SONICFLOOd. “This is what it is all about – not being afraid to stand for the truth.” On April 24, young people across the country will participate in American Life League’s National Pro-Life T-shirt Day by wearing shirts with pro-life messages. To help get the word out about the event, American Life League is hosting a comprehensive web site at www.NationalProLifeTshirtDay.com. “We are extremely excited that SONICFLOOd has thrown its support behind NPTD,” said Whittington. “It’s always encouraging when groups and individuals who are in the position to influence so many use that power for a greater good. That is what SONICFLOOd does every day with their music and concerts and now they are taking it another step further by supporting the protection of the innocent babies in the womb. (from Sonicflood, Rock For Life)

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Music Out This Week

This Friday, June 22
Fades Away Resurrection Part I EP [Voluminous]
Here Be Lions Only a Holy God [Live] [Integrity]
Impending Doom The Sin and Doom Vol. II [eOne]
Javen Grace [Tyscot]
Lecrae Let the Trap Say Amen [Reach]
Peabod Healthy Snacks [Centricity]
Plumb Beautifully Broken [Centricity]
Plumb Fight For Her Book [Shoe Publishing]
Matthew West All In (Re-Release) [Sparrow Records]
Urban Rescue Run (single) (Independent)

NEXT Friday, June 29
Hillsong Young & Free III [Capitol CMG]
John Mark McMillan The Mercury Sessions [Lionhawk]


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