(NASHVILLE, Tenn.) November 13, 2007 – Christian music’s top-selling artist Casting Crowns reaches another milestone this week with the RIAA Gold certification of its third album smash The Altar and The Door. This certification, signifying U.S. album shipments exceeding 500,000 units, comes only 10 weeks after the Aug. 28 release, making it the fastest-selling Casting Crowns album to date and frontrunner as the No.1 selling Christian music title of the year.
“What a wonderful achievement this is,” says Terry Hemmings, President and CEO of Provident Music Group. “A gold record at any point in an artist’s career is a milestone, but at this point in the storied career of Casting Crowns, this one is special. The current environment does not provide many record-setting performances such as this. We are so pleased to be a part of the artistry and ministry of Casting Crowns and congratulate them on this amazing achievement.”
The Altar and The Door debuted at No. 2 on The Billboard 200 chart with 129,000 scans, a new record for a Christian artist without crossover promotion in the mainstream market. The album remains No.1 on SoundScan’s Top Christian Albums chart, and the radio single “East to West” continues to hold at No. 1 at Christian AC radio for 13 weeks.
This week’s RIAA Gold achievement also follows the band’s back-to-back Platinum certifications on its first two albums, Lifesong and its self-titled debut, setting an RIAA record this year as the fastest Christian music 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 in 2000).
During its four-year career, Casting Crowns has been honored with a GRAMMY Award, three American Music Award nods and multiple Gospel Music Dove Awards serving as the industry’s “Group of the Year” for the last three years. Casting Crowns has been the most played artist on all Christian radio formats combined, with seven consecutive No.1 AC radio hits, and the group has sold more than 3 million albums to date. Casting Crowns’ lead singer and songwriter is full-time Youth Pastor Mark Hall, who is serving his 17th year as student pastor at Eagle’s Landing First Baptist Church in Atlanta. All seven band members remain active in student ministry in the Atlanta-area and tour part-time around their local-church duties.
Beach Street Records, an imprint of Reunion Records, a unit of Provident Label Group, was launched by Mark Miller, founder and frontman of the multi-platinum country music act, Sawyer Brown. SONY BMG MUSIC ENTERTAINMENT’s Provident Music Group is one of the world’s leading Christian music companies. Provident Music Group operates under the umbrella of Sony BMG Nashville.
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