tobymactour

TobyMac to tour this Fall with Matt Maher

Five-time GRAMMY® Winner TobyMac has announced the “Worship, Stories & Songs Tour” which will hit the road this fall and will feature Matt Maher and Ryan Stevenson. TobyMac, who is renown for his live performances, will bring together the three artists in a night of fellowship in intimate venues and musical settings across the country.

The “Worship, Stories & Songs Tour” will be a totally different TobyMac show, a time where it’s not about the lights, smoke or big stage. Instead, it will be more intimate and personal, a “storyteller’s night” where Toby will share where the songs came from.

Kicking off in Madison, MS on November 6, the tour will make select stops in 20 cities before wrapping in Ft. Wayne, IN in mid-December.

“Worship, Stories & Songs Tour” Dates
More to be added, tour dates subject to change

November 6 – Madison, WS
November 7 – Texarkana, TX
November 8 – Wichita Falls, TX
November 9 – Lewisville, TX
November 13 – New Albany, IN
November 14 – Lexington, KY
November 15 – Akron, OH
November 16 – Troy, OH
November 20 – Joplin, MO
November 21 – Lincoln, NE
November 22 – Bourbonnais, IL
November 23 – Grand Rapids, MI
December 4 – Toledo, OH
December 5 – York, PA
December 6 – Williamsport, MD
December 7 – Richmond, VA
December 11 – Normal, IL
December 12 – Appleton, WI
December 13 – Milwaukee, WI
December 14 – Ft. Wayne, IN

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Christian worship leaders go viral with “Rude” cover/parody

Well this is interesting: Benji and Jenna Cowart were the worship leaders at The Chapel at CrossPoint in Buffalo for about a decade, and this week they’re viral YouTube stars! Benji does a parody of Magic!’s “Rude” song (the #1 hit on Billboard by the way) and in less than a week, the video has about 5 million views! Even Good Morning America was talking about it.

Enjoy the video here:

By the way, the Cowarts have three kids, including a daughter who is not yet in her teens. They recently moved back to their native Nashville, and are primarily known for writing Christian praise and worship music, like this one:

Larnelle

Larnelle Harris’ Kentucky honor

Christian singer Larnelle Harris will receive the 2014 Kentucky Governor’s Artist Award in a public ceremony in the Capitol Rotunda in Frankfort, Kentucky this October. The prestigious award is given to Kentuckians who have made significant contributions to the arts in the Commonwealth, across the country, and around the globe. Harris will be the first Christian vocalist to receive the Artist Award since its inception 29 years ago.

“It is always an honor to be recognized by your home state,” said Harris, who was born in Danville, Kentucky and resides in Louisville.  “I am humbled by this award and sincerely appreciate the Kentucky Arts Council for their recognition.”

The Governor’s Awards in the Arts are presented in nine categories during National Arts and Humanities Month. At the October ceremony, Harris’ hometown of Danville will also be honored with the Government Award for playing an integral role in the success of creating an arts-and-culture-focused atmosphere that benefits its residents and attracts tourists from across the nation.

“It is my great honor to recognize these individuals, both native sons and daughters of Kentucky and others who have chosen to make their homes in Kentucky and enrich our state’s unique culture,” said Governor Steve Beshear.

Harris is the only person in history to be a member of three distinct hall of fame organizations: the Gospel Music Hall of Fame, the Kentucky Music Hall of Fame and the Amateur Radio Hall of Fame. In addition to his five Grammy and eleven Dove Awards, including being named Male Vocalist of the Year three times by the gospel music industry, Harris has garnered nineteen #1 national radio singles and countless top 10 hits. Songs such as “How Excellent Is Thy Name,””I Miss My Time With You,” “I’ve Just Seen Jesus,” plus many others, including his signature song, “Amen,” are now considered modern gospel classics.

From the White House to the 38th Parallel, Harris has impacted audiences across the globe with his music.   He was the first gospel artist to perform inside the Kremlin after the fall of the Soviet Union.  He is one of a handful of celebrities to receive the Ad Council’s Silver Bell Award for Distinguished Public Service in recognition of his song “Mighty Spirit” as the theme song for the longest-running Public Service Announcement in television history.

Harris continues to tour worldwide, with upcoming tour dates at Carnegie Hall and in Paris, France scheduled for this fall. In addition to his numerous solo dates, Harris also travels with various multi-artist tours including this fall’s Compassion International Savior Tour, the Gaither Homecoming tour, the God of All Glory tour, and the Sandi Patty & Friends tour, the latter of which CCM Magazine recently reviewed and described Harris as having a “larger-than-life stage presence with impeccable vocal prowess.”

The Kentucky Arts Council, the state arts agency, creates opportunities for Kentuckians to value, participate in and benefit from the arts. Kentucky Arts Council funding is provided by the Kentucky General Assembly and the National Endowment for the Arts. For more information, visit http://artscouncil.ky.gov/. For more information on Harris, visit www.Larnelle.com.

 
papasan

Reggae artist Papa San is back with One Blood

Papa San has released a new music video for the single, “Step Up,” featuring Da’ T.R.U.T.H. The video is already available on MTV.com, Buzznet, Starpulse, Blastro.com, Pulse TV Network, Video Hits, Aspire, Video Box, Flows & Beats, Hawk TV, Video Madness, California Music Channel and hundreds of outlets and affiliates.

The track is the first single from his latest album, ONE BLOOD, which released in January, landing at #1 on the iTunes Reggae Chart, Amazon Reggae Chart and the Billboard Reggae Chart. The album features guest performances from some of Gospel’s biggest names, including Fred Hammond, Israel Houghton, LeCrae, Da’ T.R.U.T.H., Stitchie, Jael Wiafe and more.

“ONE BLOOD is not just a title on this album but an embodiment of one blood,” says Papa San. “The mixture of reggae, dancehall, techno, pop and rap has given this album a diverse feel.”

The album even has some pure Gospel flavor, with Fred Hammond turning up on “Your Eyes Are On Me” – which is being serviced to Gospel Radio.

With a career spanning over twenty years, Papa San has recorded over 15 albums with over 15 hit singles, including two #1 singles on Billboard’s Dance Chart. Now a born again Christian, Papa San delivers his sixth Gospel album – making history by topping the Billboard Reggae chart, iTunes and Amazon at #1. The Jamaican Gospel Reggae and Dancehall singer, songwriter and producer is a 13-time Marlin Award winner, GMWA, Tamika and Stellar Award winner, as well as Dove Award and Soul Train Music Award nominee. As one of the most recognized Gospel Reggae artists in the world today, he has collaborated with the likes of Kirk Franklin, Toby Mac, Nicole C. Mullen, Percy Bady and many more.

Papa San has been hailed as a trendsetter, mastermind and genius. But he’s more interested in being considered a man of God. ”I’m a fisher of men and music is my bait,” he says.

Papa San will be touring throughout 2014 promoting ONE BLOOD, with special appearances by his daughter, Tasan, who provides vocals on the track “Running.” In addition to his music career, Papa San is an ordained minister, who, along with his wife Debbie, launched Our Father’s Kingdom Ministries International in 2011.

For more information, visit the official website at www.papasanlinkup.com.

Kingdom from Covenant Worship Dallas

The worship album, Kingdom, from Covenant Worship, the dynamic music ministry of Dallas, TX-based Covenant Church is set to release July 1st.

Recorded live at Covenant Church, a 10,000 member, multi-cultural and multi-campus congregation led by Pastors Mike and Kathy Hayes, Kingdom features Covenant’s choir and worship team led by worship pastors David and Nicole Binion. Kingdom also features Covenant worship leaders Joshua Defrene and Colin Edge and guest vocals from five-time GRAMMY Award winner, Israel Houghton, who produced the project and co-wrote eight of the album’s tracks.

Jesus Culture Music: Unstoppable Love

Jesus Culture Music, known as one of the most influential youth and young adult movements around the world, released its critically acclaimed Jesus Culture Unstoppable Love internationally at digital and physical retailers everywhere June 3 through Fuel Music.  The album immediately launched to No. 1 and spent all week on top of the iTunes® “Christian/Gospel” chart while climbing all the way to No. 2 on the iTunes overall “Top Albums” chart. The album also lands this week at No.25 on the Billboard Top 200 and No. 1 on the overall Top Christian/Gospel Albums Billboard retail chart, while the Jesus Culture Unstoppable Love iTunes® Movie spent time at No. 1 on the Top Concert Films iTunes chart.

This new album from Jesus Culture band was recorded live during Jesus Culture’s annual Encounter Conference held Jan. 2014 in Sacramento at California’s historic Memorial Auditorium.  Featuring a dynamic collaboration of voices who have helped shape, and continue to inspire, generations of worshippers, the 11-track album consists of mostly new original songs, as well as a companion Blu-ray Disc™ (in the US) and DVD (outside of the US) that includes two additional tracks and a compelling message from Jesus Culture Director Banning Liebscher, “Answering the Call to Prayer.” The full 13-song Blu-ray also comprises the iTunes® Movie.

Whatever happened to Christian singer Kelly Minter?

kellyminterKelly Minter. The name rings a bell. I know she sang Christian music way back when. I can’t name a song of hers, but I remember her name.

Whatever happened to Kelly Minter? Well, she has written a book called Wherever The River Runs: How A Forgotten People Renewed My Hope In The Gospel, due out on August 1st.

The book is real life adventure of one woman’s journey from Nashville’s stages to the Amazon jungle where machete wielding mothers, heroic jungle pastors, faith-filled children and miracles too little experienced in the Northern Hemisphere transformed her faith. Minter’s unfettered narrative pulls back the curtain on one of the most captivating places on earth and reminds us that no matter where the river runs and how deep or far it flows, it will never reach a place where the gospel is not enough.

Despite a mostly comfortable, American Christianity, Kelly Minter found herself striving for more: Not more accumulation, but a deeper experience of Christ. Wherever The River Runs tells the surprising story of how this fuller meaning came through the poor and forgotten people who live along the vast riverbanks of the Amazon River that teems with piranhas, caimans and poverty. Through honest and often humorous narration, Kelly reveals the tension and deliverance that arises when we come face to face with suffering, while also reminding us that the gospel is still the best news to be had no matter where the river takes you.

Encountering widespread hopelessness and suffering along the Amazon River, Minter comes to the disturbing realization that her resources are not enough, her compassion is not enough and even her tightly wrapped theology is not enough. Here she discovers that only the hope and power of Christ are sufficient, leading her to a deeper understanding of the gospel.

“I thought that all our stuff, our fancy-dancy help, our American know-how would be the answer here, the rattle that finally got the baby to smile,” says Minter.  “Could it be that the tangible offerings of food and clothing were but the sideshow to a young boy in the middle of the jungle who needed to understand that God knew him?”

Her honest and engaging narrative pulls back the curtain on parts of the gospel we may be able to recite, but have never fully believed.  For anyone feeling complacent in their American Christianity, Minter’s story is a life-changing reminder that wherever you live, whatever your calling, the gospel is alive, powerful and always enough.

So now you know what Kelly Minter has been up to lately! –ChristianMusicMakers.com

yancy

Yancy’s Spanish Praise Party

Yancy has long been Christian music’s reigning Queen of Diversity, but with the upcoming release of “Pequeña Fiesta de Alabanza!,” she’s expanding her reach far beyond English-speaking fans. Her all-new Spanish language children’s project, a CD/DVD set, will be available online and in Christian bookstores everywhere on June 24th, via Elevate Entertainment.

Yancy and friends (including Jaci Velasquez and Salvador frontman Nic Gonzales, who provided vocal production) have taken some of the most popular songs from her “Little Praise Party” series and translated them into Spanish. The result is a fun collection of 15 songs that will warm the hearts of kids and their parents too. The accompanying DVD features animated music videos (one for each song!) that are sure to capture the imagination of children.

“Last year, I received a request to make my music available in Spanish,” says Yancy. “This wasn’t unlike previous requests, but on this particular day, the seed took root. A few weeks later, I couldn’t shake it. I realized that now was the time. It was time to take that step and help make my music and worship resources available in another language. Jesus told us to go into all the world and preach the good news to everyone (Mark 16:15), so here I go!”

“Little Praise Party” has an app for iOS and Android. The songs from “Pequeña Fiesta de Alabanza” will be featured in the monthly playlist in addition to the English versions of the songs. The app is a wonderful resource for praise sing-along fun on the go.

“I’m so happy there’s music like this for kids and even happier that Yancy took the plunge and did this fun praise music in Spanish,” says Jaci Velasquez. “I’m glad to have been involved, I foresee lots of kids around the world worshipping alongside Yancy in every language.”

“I am so thrilled that Yancy has lent her considerable talent to the Spanish community,” says Beth Guckenberger of Back 2 Back Ministries (www.back2back.org). “From ‘Me Gusta’ to ‘Es Navidad,’ it’s an album chocked full of God’s Biblical truth. I can’t wait to share these catchy songs and creative lyrics with the children we serve in the Spanish speaking world.”

For more than a decade, Yancy has released radio-friendly pop/rock albums and multiple projects for kids and young adults, all while sharing the stage with such artists as Michael W. Smith, Newsboys, Mute Math and Nichole Nordeman. As a writer, Yancy has teamed up with Third Day’s Mac Powell, wrote Avalon’s #1 hit “I Don’t Want To Go” and Jaci Velasquez’s “Something Beautiful,” among others.

For more information, visit www.yancynotnancy.com.

 

Pictured in the studio (L-R): Nic Gonzales, Jaci Velasquez, Yancy and Chris Rodriguez
Pictured in the studio (L-R): Nic Gonzales, Jaci Velasquez, Yancy and Chris Rodriguez


“Pequeña Fiesta de Alabanza!” Track Listing:
Me Gusta (I Like To)
Hosanna (Hosanna Rock)
Gritar (Shout!)
Padre Abrahám (Father Abraham)
Uno, Dos, Tres (One Two Three)
Si Te Sientes Muy Feliz (If You’re Happy And You Know It)
Dios Es Mi Amigo (My Best Friend)
Dios, Buenos Es (God Is So Good)
Nuevo Día (Brand New Day)
Fiesta de Alabanza (Praise Party)
Esta Lucecita (This Little Light Of Mine)
Ir (Go)
Adios Al Temor (Bye Bye Bye)
Es Navidad (It’s Christmastime)

jackieg

Jackie Gouche’s new video filmed in Nigeria

Most of you already know Jackie Gouché from the music she writes. Jackie wrote “My Help” in 10 minutes. The song was made popular by Bam Crawford’s Purpose, and also recorded by Donnie McClurkin, The Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir, and CeCe & Ronald Winans. It is sung in many churches across the world every Sunday.

Now, she has a new music video, “Every Fiber,” that was shot in Abuja, Nigeria, and it’s both uplifting and gorgeous.

“Every Fiber” is a beautiful song. It’s off her new CD entitled, “BIG GOD, little me.”

You can find Jackie every Sunday at Pastor Beverly “BAM” Crawford‘s Bible Enrichment Fellowship International Church in Inglewood, California, where she is the Minister of Music and Worship Leader.

 

kevinmax

That rascal Kevin Max is now solo

In the early 1990′s I had the privilege of meeting the members of a band from Kentucky Christian College called A180. Before long they changed their name to Audio Adrenaline, signed to Forefront Records and began to tour and make music from their new home base of Nashville, Tenn. I remember those days fondly as I sang on one of their first breakout albums called ‘Don’t Censor Me’ and appeared in their video ‘AKA Public Schools.’ We toured together on the Jesus Freak and Bloom records, which became one of the largest grossing tours of both our careers. To say we have made memories together would be an understatement. I loved the guys in Audio Adrenaline because they stood for the misfit and the underdog.

I was a misfit and an underdog, even before joining dc Talk, and I could identify with their quirky brand of rock-and-roll and pop music. When dc Talk dissolved because of an interest to pursue solo careers, I never imagined I would find myself back with these brothers, literally, making music as Audio Adrenaline. The past two years have been an epic pursuit of music, missions and bringing hope to the ‘least of these.’ Being zoomed in close to Mark Stuart’s vision with Hands and Feet, and seeing first hand the work that was being done in Jacmel, Haiti, has given me a broader picture of what a rock-and-roll band could accomplish for the kingdom. It was beyond a joy to film a video in Haiti, and see the single ‘Kings and Queens’ capture a small glimpse into the lives of these beautiful children. It has been an honor to create an album with Mark and a handful of like-minded musicians, and tour this album for the last couple of years. Our friendships and bonds have strengthened beyond music, and the door that God opened for me to step through became a much bigger portal to finding myself. I am learning the difference between performing for God and serving Him through the gift of music.

When I was informed that Audio Adrenaline was moving forward into more of a ‘Worship Music’ direction, I had initial feelings of confusion and doubts. However, I truly believe that whatever the band decides to do, they will have meaning in God’s kingdom as they are men with pure hearts. I had to be honest with myself accepting that my calling was not in this specific form. God has wired me as an artist and given me a desire to create music in many different genres. I move forward now to be a steward of what He has given me, and through faith I am believing He has lead me again to a career in solo music. I support and stand behind my former bandmates and consider myself an ally and a friend both personally and musically.  

As many of you know, I have spent a prior decade in solo music. After dc Talk, I went through a period of finding myself and learning the hard way that without a team around me, left to my own devices, I could easily get lost in myself. Lost in my own ego, God found me and broke me of my pride. He then brought me back to Nashville. I have spent the last two years being refined and restored. I feel revitalized. I am excited about what is around the corner for my family, friends and the music that God continues to gift us with. I have no desire to run from Nashville. I have no desire to run from what I have continued to pursue in the Christian Arts. If anything, I feel that these last two years have given me the tools and desire to make the best art I can within this industry. One of the first dc Talk monikers was ‘if it’s Christian, it ought to be better.’ That is my new goal and again more than ever, a slogan in my life. I, Kevin Max, promise to dive deep into music, poetry, stories and imagination, but most of all into the web of wonderful relationships and people that God has brought into my life on this amazing journey of the soul. 

I am proud to announce the lead single from my upcoming album ‘Broken Temples.’ It is a song about the beauty, mystery and perfection that is our God-it is called ‘INFINITE.’ It will be available on iTunes on June 10. –Kevin Max

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News about Christian and Gospel music from Mark Weber

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