Monday, February 27, 2012

StowTown Records Garners Eight GMA Dove Award Nominations

NASHVILLE, TENN. (February 23, 2012) - The Gospel Music Association (GMA) announced the nominations for the 43rd Annual GMA Dove Awards earlier this week at a press conference in Atlanta, GA at the Georgian Hotel.
StowTown Records is pleased to congratulate Ernie Haase & Signature Sound, Doug Anderson, The Collingsworth Family and producer Wayne Haun on their GMA Dove Award nominations in the following categories:

Song of the Year: “I’ve Been Here Before,” Ernie Haase & Signature Sound
Southern Gospel Recorded Song of the Year: “I’ve Been Here Before,” Ernie Haase & Signature Sound (Here We Are Again)
Country Recorded Song of the Year: “Dreamin’ Wide Awake,” Doug Anderson (Dreamin’ Wide Awake)
Country Album of the Year: Dreamin’ Wide Awake, Doug Anderson
Inspirational Song of the Year: “I’ll Take What’s Left,” Doug Anderson, (Dreamin’ Wide Awake)
Southern Gospel Album of the Year: Part Of The Family, The Collingsworth Family
Long Form Music Video of the Year: Fear Not Tomorrow, The Collingsworth Family
Producer of the Year: Wayne Haun
StowTown Records, founded in 2011 under the direction of Ernie Haase and Wayne Haun, is distributed worldwide through Provident Distribution. The independent label has quickly gained industry attention with chart-topping releases from their artist roster. For more information on StowTown Records, visit

The GMA Dove Awards is Christian/Gospel music’s biggest night of the year, where top artists from every style of gospel music come together for a night of music and celebration as the GMA bestows the industry’s highest honor. The 2012 GMA Dove Awards will be held on Thursday, April 19th at Atlanta’s famed Fox Theater. For more information, please visit or

Gold City 24K Gold Event

From Gold City E-newsletter February 26, 2012:
We are quickly approaching the first 24K Gold Event here in Gadsden, AL on April 7, 2012!

If you haven't made plans to attend, we would love to have you join us for a spectacular evening of "pure gold" featuring Gold City Quartet, Mark Trammell Quartet, Wilburn and Wilburn and Vocal Event with Jay Parrack.

Plus an exciting reunion concert featuring one of the most award winning Gold City lineups of all times, Tim Riley, Mark Trammell, Jonathan Wilburn & Jay Parrack!

Two tickets prices available:
Reserved Gold Circle which includes a meet & greet prior to the concert...$50
General Admission....$20
General Admission at the door....$25 (We are expecting a sell out)
Tickets are moving fast, so order yours today!

Additional dates for the 24K Gold Events for 2012 have not yet been confirmed. We will announce those dates as soon as they are confirmed.

Friday, February 24, 2012

JASON CRABB Tops List of 2012 GMA Dove Nominees

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (February 23, 2012) — Christian music mainstay Jason Crabb led the number of Gospel Music Association (GMA) DOVE Award nominations according to the press conference held by the GMA at The Georgian Terrace Hotel in Atlanta, GA on February 22, 2012.

Crabb’s eight nominations include: Artist of the Year, Male Vocalist of the Year, Country Recorded Song of the Year (“Why Me”), Southern Gospel Song of the Year (“If There Ever Was a Time,” Crabb Family), Traditional Gospel Recorded Song of the Year (“I Saw the Light”), Contemporary Gospel Recorded Song of the Year (“I’d Rather Have Jesus”), Southern Gospel Album of the Year (The Song Lives On) (Gaither Music Group) and Long Form Music Video of the Year (The Song Lives On) (Gaither Music Group).

Crabb’s current southern Gospel radio hit “Who Am I,” written by Rusty Goodman and also featured on his nominated release The Song Lives On, is also nominated in the Song of the Year category for the 2012 GMA DOVE Awards.

“I’m just blown away,” stated Jason. “My latest release, The Song Lives On, is a project I’d always dreamed of recording. I wanted to go back to my roots…back to the church where I grew up singing. To see the songs I sang in a little country church be honored in this way is special. This album is something really dear to my heart. I am grateful to the three B’s—Bill Gaither, Barry Jennings and Bill Carter—for making this dream a reality for me.”

Crabb received the news while traveling back from Tuesday night’s college basketball game, broadcast on ESPN, between the Mississippi State Bulldogs and the University of Kentucky Wildcats where he performed the national anthem for a packed house at the Humphrey Coliseum in Starkville, MS.

“I want to thank Mississippi State University for allowing me to be a part of such a big game,” commented Jason. “What an honor and what a great game!”

Crabb, a Kentucky native and lifelong Wildcat fan, was able to meet Coach Calipari, the University of Kentucky’s head coach. Calipari tweeted later in the evening about his Kentucky team stating, “Our boys still have the will to win.” Included in the tweet was the attached photo with Crabb.

Crabb’s recorded products are available online and at retail everywhere and are distributed through EMI CMG Distribution. For further information regarding Jason Crabb, visit
About Jason Crabb
Known as one of the most respected and diverse vocalists in Christian music, Jason’s soulful, heartfelt vocals have made him a critics’ pick and a fan favorite on stages ranging from “The Grand Ole Opry” and the Brooklyn Tabernacle to the Gaither Homecoming arena platforms. With a string of number one hits and chart-topping singles, a tour schedule of over 200 dates annually, ongoing tv appearances, a book on the shelves and a recent acclaimed recording, this vocal powerhouse’s talent is topped only by his genuine personality and concern for others.

About GMA
Founded in 1964, the Gospel Music Association serves as the face and voice for the Gospel/Christian music community and is dedicated to exposing, promoting and celebrating the Gospel through music of all styles including Pop, Rock, Praise & Worship, Urban Gospel, R&B, Hip Hop, Southern Gospel, Bluegrass, Country and more. The GMA community membership consists of agents, artists, church leaders, managers, promoters, radio personnel, record company executives, retailers, songwriters and other industry visionaries. The GMA produces the GMA Dove Awards and IMMERSE. For more on supporting the GMA or becoming a member, please visit or contact the GMA directly at 615.277.1376 and

Karen Peck and New River Receive Dove Award Nominations

From Karen Peck and New River email newsletter February 23, 2011:

Hey Friends,

We are very excited and honored to receive two Dove nominations!
Album: Reach Out
Country Song: Good Things Are Happening

We worked very hard on this album and are thankful to all of those who voted. (KPNR is about serving the Lord and doing His work, however, we love it when we feel that people are connecting with our songs!)

We had a great time on the “Singing at Sea” cruise last week. It averaged in the upper 70s, making the weather absolutely perfect. It was a special treat to have Rickey’s momma and friend, Jean, with us. They had a blast! We will be going back to the Bahamas in February of 2013. If you want to go with us just send us an email. ( Be sure to tell Templeton Tours that you are signing up with KPNR.

As always we want to say a very special thanks to all the DJ’s for playing our music. We just found out that “Mighty Big God” is #16. Yay! Also, we want to thank everyone for calling into your local radio stations and requesting it.

Abraham Productions is gearing up for the Singing In The Sun concerts starting April 17 and running through April 21 in Myrtle Beach, SC. This is an event you will not want to miss! You can purchase tickets at: KPNR will be there on Saturday night. Keep in mind Abraham Productions features the finest in Southern Gospel Music along with the greatest speakers. At the 2011 event, 205 people were saved! I’m getting so excited about being there!

We are already casting our votes for the 2012 SGMA Hall of Fame Inductees. The SGMA Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony and the Singing News Fan Awards will be October 3 at Dollywood. Be sure to go to to become a member of SGMA!

We would love for you to come and see us some time when we’re in your area. Remember we’re on Facebook and you can follow us on Twitter.

Karen Peck and New River Fan Page
Karen Peck Gooch
Susan Peck Jackson
Jeff Hawes

Karen, Susan and Jeff are currently planning this years annual homecoming,
“Christian Music Nights”
Father’s Day weekend (June 15-16, 2012).
Scheduled Artists:

Triumphant Quartet
Brian Free and Assurance
Voices Won
New River Band


Nashville, TN (Feb 24, 2012)
Coming up on the next Daniel Britt & Friends the week of 2/27/12: Ups and downs of life: Gospel music gives us a view of life with a perspective that's uniquely filled with hope in Christ. And a group with a name like Beyond the Ashes certainly offers just that!
Daniel spends the hour with Casey, Anthony, and Kellan of Beyond the Ashes to learn their passions, their reasons for unique variety, and recount how they are living up their name after not one, but two on-the-job fire incidents surrounding their performances! Featuring music from their latest project, Treasures Unseen, get to know Beyond the Ashes on the next Daniel Britt &

About Daniel Britt & Friends

Daniel Britt & Friends is a one-hour Gospel music radio show, available each week to nearly 30 million satellite subscribers* throughout the U.S. and Canada on SIRIUS XM SATELLiTE RADiO's enLighten (Sirius XM Channel 18) - Mondays at 7PM ET, Thursdays at 10PM ET, and Saturdays at 12 Noon ET. You can also catch the show online at, smartphone devices, or with Dish Network
on channel 6018. After the broadcast, you can download the extended interview from

About SIRIUS XM Radio

Sirius XM Radio is America's satellite radio company. SiriusXM broadcasts more than 135 satellite radio channels of commercial-free music, and premier sports, news, talk, entertainment, traffic, weather, and data services to over 21 million subscribers. SiriusXM offers an array of content from many of the biggest names in entertainment, as well as from professional sports leagues, major
colleges, and national news and talk providers.

SiriusXM programming is available on more than 800 devices, including pre-installed and after-market radios in cars, trucks, boats and aircraft, smartphones and mobile devices, and consumer electronics products for homes and offices. SiriusXM programming is also available at, and on Apple, BlackBerry and Android -powered mobile devices.

SiriusXM has arrangements with every major automaker and its radio products are available for sale at and at retail locations nationwide, including Best Buy, Circuit City, RadioShack, Target, Sam's Club, and Wal-Mart.

*Through its partnership with Dish Network, SIRIUS XM Radio programming is available to over 30 million satellite subscribers.

About Beyond The Ashes

To learn more about Beyond the Ashes, visit You can find them on Facebook at and on Twitter @beyondtheashes1. You can also see them on YouTube at

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Retro SGM Radio: Savana Foust - Still Writing Love Songs

Still Writing Love Songs: Savana and Lou Foust

Savana Foust has written hundreds of Southern Gospel favorites, including Somebody Touched Me, Blood Washed Band, Somebody Touched Heaven For Me and many more. At 84, Ms. Foust is still writing the love song of her life with her husband, Lou Foust. Their daughter, Cindi Foust Wolfe, shared her mother’s love story with SGM Radio. We share this valentine with you as written by Cindi:

It was an extremely cold winter in February of 1945 when our love story began. Some may have thought of these days as gloomy, with our country coming out of the great depression into World War II. But with all that seemed wrong in the world, our world seemed so right.

A few days before Valentines, I met the man who would eventually become my husband. We were introduced by a mutual friend, but we were teenagers, so no one took us too seriously. I knew from the moment he reached for my hand, that I'd found the man I'd be with for the rest of my life.
Months later, with $5 between us, our journey began....

We had no money. I guess we would have been called 'poor' by today's standards, but we were rich in one way: our Love. We found out early what it really meant to find true love. It didn't mean we drove the finest car, lived in the biggest house, or even had lots of money in our bank account. In actuality, we had none of these, but we had God first and each other. So during the hard times, we learned to trust God, and through our faith in God, our love story has lasted!

Ten years after we married, our daughter, Cindi, whom the doctors said never would happen, was born. Almost ten years after that, we were blessed with the son, Johnny, that God had planned.
In the giving of these gifts, He sent us three grandchildren, Stania, Christian and Drew. And from there we have three great-grandchildren: Alexis, Zoe and Cameron.

So, I guess you could say that we are blessed beyond measure with love from above and each other.
We just celebrated 65 years of marriage in December. Our steps are smaller now and our eyes aren't quite as bright as they were long ago, but when he looks at me, I still see that tall young man that stole my heart many years ago.

So I reach for his hand again today, knowing he'll hold on tight and not let me fall. I pray that when we go Home, we go together, because I don't know what my life would be like without him. And I thank God daily for sending him to me to create the Love Story that's lasted through time.

By Cynthia Foust Wolfe: Written about my parents, Lou and Savana Foust
Reprinted by permission.
Pictures courtesy Cynthia Foust Wolfe

First Published 2011 February for SGM Radio
For current features please click

Daywind Music Group Shines In The 2012 Dove Award Nominations

Hendersonville, TN (February 22, 2011) – During a press conference, held this morning at the Fox Theatre’s Grand Salon in Atlanta, GA, the final Dove nominees for the 43rd Annual GMA Dove Awards were announced.
Daywind Music Group is incredibly honored to have received 10 nominations this year.The Perrys were honored with a Song of the Year nomination for “Celebrate Me Home” (Lindsey & Haun), in addition to one for Southern Gospel Song of the Year.
Karen Peck & New River’s newest album, Reach Out (Haun), received a nod for Southern Gospel Album, with the song “Good Things Are Happening” (Haun & Isaacs) being recognized for Country Song of the Year.
The Chigger Hill Boys & Terri garnered two nominations, with their album, Indescribable: Bluegrass Meets Worship (Mark Dunham), receiving a nod for Bluegrass Album of the Year and the song, “Indescribable” (Reeves & Story), receiving one for Bluegrass Recorded Song of the Year. Daywind received three nominations in the Country Album of the Year category, with Marshall Hall’s Brighter One (Hall, DeMarcus & English), Wilburn & Wilburn’s Family Ties (Isaacs), and Going Places (Sykes) by Crabb Revival all earning recognition.
Rounding out the Daywind nominations is Love Won by Kenna Turner West, published through Daywind Music Publishing, and nominated for Musical Of The Year.
Ed Leonard, President of Daywind Records, shares, “We are so proud of our artists, songwriters, and producers for their Dove Award nominations. It is an honor that the Dove voters have recognized them for their creativity in this way.”
The 43rd Annual GMA Dove Awards will be held on Thursday, April 19, 2012, at the historic Fox Theatre in Atlanta, GA. While the awards are the purpose of the show, music performances will definitely share center stage at the GMA Dove Awards, showcasing some of Gospel music’s hottest and most diverse artists.
Tickets to the 43rd Annual GMA Dove Awards are currently on sale through the Fox Theatre Box Office or at For more information on the GMA, visit Records is based in Hendersonville, TN, and is distributed worldwide through New Day Christian Distributors.
In addition to the artists mentioned, Daywind is home to many other great artists such as Greater Vision and the Blackwood Brothers, among others.
For more information on Daywind Records, visit

Phil Cross and Poet Voices Sign With EHA - Nashville

{EHA-NASHVILLE 2/21/2012} With the relaunching of Poet Voices this week, founder Phil Cross enlisted the publicity services of EHA-Nashville. Evie Hawkins notes, “It’s an honor and privilege to be a small part of Phil’s mission. I’ve always been a fan of Poet Voices, and I look forward to the road ahead!” Poet Voices is one of the nation’s most beloved groups and their fanbase continues to thrive. The highly-acclaimed group consists of Phil, Donny Henderson, and Dan Callahan.

For more info:
CROSS MUSIC GROUP PO BOX 11444, Chattanooga, TN 37401main – 423.285.8755

Brian Burchfield 423.754.4350

More info:


Nashville, TN (Feb 22, 2012) –Powerful vocal trio, Beyond The Ashes (BTA), is overwhelmed with gratitude with news of two prestigious DOVE AWARD nominations. The Gospel Music Association (GMA) announced the nominees at a press conference held in Atlanta, GA this morning. The announcements were hosted by comedienne extraordinaire, Chonda Pierce.

The trio's DOVE AWARD nominations include NEW ARTIST OF THE YEAR and CONTEMPORARY GOSPEL RECORDED SONG OF THE YEAR, "What I Have I Give," written by Wayne Haun, Joel Lindsey, and Depp Britt. The nominated song is from the album, Treasures Unseen, produced by Haun on Vine Records.

Group members Anthony Facello, Casey Rivers, and Kellan Monroe are beyond blessed by all God is doing in their ministry. These nominations have "almost" left them speechless, but BTA owner and tenor singer, Facello, tried to sum up the emotions as he shared; "We are stunned, overwhelmed, and absolutely thrilled with this tremendous news. The last 12 months have been quite a rollercoaster as we experienced successes and, also, some tough trials. The best part has been seeing souls trust Christ and lives changed forever. The hardest parts are tests of faith in moving forward, like when our bus caught on fire and we lost just about everything inside, including the transporation itself. But, what GOD has proven, and continues to prove over and again, is, HE IS FAITHFUL. There is no trial He doesn't understand and there are no victories more important than the spiritual ones we encounter as we continue to press on and serve Him in this ministry. Knowing we have received these nominations only fuels our desire to take it to the next level in this ministry and to really pray that accolades like a DOVE nomination (and, if it comes, a DOVE AWARD) will only open more opportunity to reach out to the hearts of hurting and lost people. WOW...THANK you everyone!"

The news of the nominations follows so many other incredible areas of growth for this talented group of guys, including their recent and first top 10 song, “The Coming Of The King.” Their new single, “Whenever We Pray,” is poised to be another chart busting hit. Both songs can be found on Treasure Unseen.

To learn more about Beyond the Ashes, visit You can find them on Facebook at and on Twitter @beyondtheashes1. You can also see them on YouTube at

The 43rd Annual GMA Dove Awards will take place April 19 at the Fox Theater in Atlanta. The award show is produced by the Gospel Music Association (GMA) to offer the most comprehensive platform of music celebrating Christian and Gospel music.

The Gospel Music Association has been the face and voice for the Gospel/Christian music community since 1964 and is dedicated to celebrating the Gospel through music of all styles including Pop, Rock, Praise & Worship, Urban Gospel, R&B, Hip Hop, Southern Gospel, Bluegrass, Country and more. GMA members include agents, artists, church leaders, managers, promoters, radio and record company executives, retailers, and songwriters.


Photo Above: Beyond The Ashes- (top to bottom) Kellan Monroe, Anthony Facello,
and Casey Rivers

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Retro SGM Radio: Artist Love Stories - Adam Crabb

Adam Crabb: Making a House a Home

From the Crabb Family to Crabb Revival, Adam Crabb’s life on the road has been busy and exciting. This singer, musician and evangelist has a fervency to touch hearts and see lives changed with the power of Jesus. A huge part of Crabb’s wild life has been a lady by the name of Kristi who became his wife ten years ago.
Adam Crabb freely admits that an artist’s life is not easy on a marriage and the couple have had some rough times. In an interview on New Year’s Eve 2010, Crabb talked about keeping a marriage solid when everything around is in turbulence. Be sure to read the March edition of SGN Scoops for the full Crabb Revival interview.
“Kristi traveled with me for nine years,” Crabb begins. “2010 was our tenth year anniversary. I have learned that being married is an every day process. You have to understand them and they have to understand you. But more than that, without the Word of God and the Love of God in your house, it won’t work. It is the glue that holds it together.”
Adam Crabb has made the Lord the center of their home. “My Dad wrote a song called, A House Ain’t A Home ‘Til Jesus Moves In. That is so true. The moment you allow other things to take the place of Jesus, that’s when it all starts caving in.”
“You have to keep Jesus as the focal point and pray with your spouse,” continues Crabb. “Have I always been faithful in this? Not always, but I’ve tried to do the best that I could. I believe that this year is going to be our best year as a couple, in our marriage and as a family. I’ve got two beautiful kids, my boy is four and my girl is eight. They are the greatest kids in the world. I’m a blessed man.”
Many marriage counselors will urge couples to continue doing the romantic things that they did while they were courting. Crabb says he does try to do little things to keep the romance in their relationship.
“I do try, but I’m a man, you know how that is,” Crabb laughs. “This past year I probably did [those things] a lot more. I think that’s important to do those romantic things because women need that and women want that. But the main thing I think a woman wants to see is a guy that is secure in himself and is stable. She wants to see a man that knows where he wants to go in life. And men: with Jesus, you can’t fail.”
Every marriage takes work, even those relationships founded in Christ. Crabb says, “Marriage is a fragile thing and the least little thing can break it. The reason I’m saying that is that this last year we went a lot. I learned so much. Sometimes you say, ‘God, why in the world did I have to go through that?’ But it’s for a reason. I can’t tell you the number of husbands and wives that have come up to me and said, ‘You were speaking right to me. You knew everything I was going through and it’s because of you that we are going to stay together.’”
As a Christian artist and an exhorter of the Word of God, Adam Crabb recognizes his responsibility to walk his talk. “Somebody told me one time, ‘You are a shepherd, guiding the sheep. I didn’t really understand that until this year,” says Crabb. “There are a lot of people watching. If I fail in my marriage, what kind of a sign is that to those people? So it’s important to me to keep my marriage and my house strong.”
“I’ve been blessed to have ten incredible years in which my wife has been behind me and supported me,” continues Crabb. “My kids love their Daddy and they go with me as much as they can.”
Crabb does have a warning for those who are careless about their marriage vows or their family commitment: “The enemy loves to destroy a family. If he can get your family, he’s got you. I don’t care what anyone says, once you’ve been through a struggle with your family, whether its divorce or whatever, there is always something there. God can heal it, but it’s always there. I encourage everyone to work on your marriage and work to make your house a better home.”
Adam and Kristi Crabb have a beautiful family and they are working to keep Jesus at the center of their home. As Adam continues to travel across the country, he continues to encourage his audience to strengthen themselves, their relationships and their marriage in God. That’s the way to keep real love strong, no matter what day it is. Happy Valentine’s Day!

Pictures above courtesy of Adam Crabb
For more information:

By Lorraine Walker
First Published on SGM Radio, February 2011
For more artist features and current interviews click on to


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (February 14, 2012) – RSI recording artist, Gordon Mote, is featured in Country Weekly magazine’s “The Pro File” section in the February 20, 2012 issue on newsstands now.

Country Weekly journalist Jessica Nicholson's recent interview covered Gordon's life of music including his work as one of Nashville's most in-demand studio session players. In the article, Gordon recalls memories of working with Lee Greenwood (his first job in the music business), Brad Paisley, Carrie Underwood, Lionel Ritchie, Rascal Flatts and more.

Totally blind from birth, Gordon Mote began playing piano as a young three-year-old on Thanksgiving day when he shocked his parents by playing “Jesus Loves Me” on the piano. Named the 2009 and 2011 Keyboard/Piano Player of the Year by the Academy of Country Music after seven consecutive nominations, and a Gospel Music Association Dove award winner, Gordon has met and exceeded some of his wildest dreams. He has quickly joined the ranks of gospel music’s most entertaining stage personalities. A brilliant performer, insightful songwriter and prodigious musician, Gordon’s physical blindness somehow attunes his other senses more keenly and fuels his vision for bringing honor to Christ through his music.

His latest release Songs I Grew Up Singing is in stores now and available online at iTunes, Amazon and more.

Gordon is actively touring as a solo artist along with appearing on the Gaither Homecoming tours. Be sure to check out Gordon’s schedule at

You can connect with Gordon Mote on and Twitter @GordonMote.
# # #

Additional Performers Announced for 2012 Absolutely Gospel Music Awards

Gold City, The Bowling Family, and Southern Sound Added to Growing List of Performers

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – (January 30, 2012) – The administrators and staff of (formerly are pleased to announce additional performers for the 2012 Absolutely Gospel Music Awards.

Gold City, The Bowling Family, and Southern Sound were recently added to the already strong list of performers for the upcoming event. It was announced last month that this year’s performers also included The Isaacs, Karen Peck & New River, The Perrys, Wilburn & Wilburn, Beyond the Ashes, Eighth Day, and Mark209. In addition, Jeff & Sheri Easter are spearheading a multi-artist tribute to a legend in the Gospel music industry (like the 2010 tribute to The Singing Cookes). More information will be announced at a later date about the specifics of that tribute. Additional performers are still being confirmed as well.

Karen Peck Gooch will also be performing “Mighty High” from the Joyful Noise soundtrack with an all-star choir made up of multiple nominees in this year’s Absolutely Gospel Music Awards.

“We are absolutely thrilled with how the event is shaping up so far,” mentioned Deon Unthank, President of “We’ve got so many other really cool things planned that we are currently working out the details for. We can’t wait to announce what all we have in store for this year’s awards program!”

The hosts for this year’s Awards Celebration of two of the industry’s most respected female voices and personalities. This year’s hosts are Karen Peck Gooch (Karen Peck & New River) and Sonya Isaacs Yeary (The Isaacs).

More information on the 2012 Absolutely Gospel Music Awards Celebration will be forthcoming, including additional performers and sponsors. The date for this year’s Absolutely Gospel Music Awards Celebration is Tuesday, April 10, 2012. The event will again take place at the River of Life Church in Smyrna, Tennessee and is free to the public. The event is scheduled to be streamed live on the internet this year.

The awards program sees two records broken this year. The Isaacs broke the record for the most nominations by an artist in a single year – this year earning 12 nominations. In addition, producer/songwriter/Ernie Haase & Signature Sound pianist Wayne Haun earned a staggering 15 nominations – also breaking a record for the most nominations in a single year by an individual.

In addition, for the first time in the 10 years of the Absolutely Gospel Music Awards – a song that wasn’t released to radio (also known as an album cut) earned a nomination for Song of the Year – the Booth Brothers’ critically acclaimed song “What About Now.” In addition, last year’s Songwriter of the Year (Professional) winner Kenna West earned a nomination for the 2012 Pacesetter Award – the first time a professional songwriter has earned a nomination in that specific category.

Social networking paid off in a big way for artists in the Fan Favorite Artist of the Year category – the only category chosen strictly by the fans and readers of Surprise nominations from acts like Sharron Kay King, The Ladd Family, and Mark209 saw a huge surge of votes due to their support from fans on social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter.

For more information on the Awards, visit

About (formerly has grown from relative obscurity to the industry's leading internet publication for Southern Gospel news and information in only a few short years. The site includes a wide variety of features, consisting of artist interviews, a weekly chart, late-breaking news, and much more.


NASHVILLE, TN (February 16, 2012) – The Southern Gospel Music Guild has announced that they will be partnering with the National Quartet Convention to create a brand new awards presentation called the NQC Music Awards. These awards will be presented at the National Quartet Convention on Friday afternoon, September 14th during the Friday afternoon NQC Showcase Spectaculars in Freedom Hall.

“This awards presentation will be unique in several ways,” states Clarke Beasley, SGMG President and NQC Executive Vice President. “I believe we can expect a very large voting base to participate and much interest will be generated by the fact that awards will be given in both fan popularity and professional excellence divisions.”

There will be two divisions of awards that will be presented. The first division will be the Fan Awarded categories where awards will be determined by fan voting. To participate in the voting, all that is required is to sign up on the NQC e-mail list at There is no purchase of anything required. The second division will be the Industry Awarded Categories, which will be determined by the music professionals that participate as exhibitors during the National Quartet Convention.

The Southern Gospel Music Guild will determine the category criteria as well as screen entries for eligibility. The SGMG professional membership will also determine the voting base for the industry categories and the recipient of the annual Les Beasley Award, given to a person or company that has made a significant impact in the field of Gospel Music.

To participate in the voting of the NQC Music Awards by signing up on the NQC e-mail list, just go to A complete schedule of events set to take place during the 2012 National Quartet Convention may also be obtained there.

About the Southern Gospel Music Guild: In 1986, several Southern Gospel music leaders decided the industry needed an organization to foster the growth of the Southern Gospel music genre. Through the years, the Guild has grown to include every facet of the Southern Gospel music industry, encompassing artists (full-time and part-time), record companies, radio, promoters, publishers, distributors, talent management, media representatives, and booking agents. These professionals work together collectively to expand the economic base of the Southern Gospel Music industry.

This year marks the 55th Annual National Quartet Convention. The Convention has made its home in the city of Louisville since 1994. Approximately 40,000 people will attend the 2012 event, which takes place September 9-15, with at least 40 states and a half dozen foreign countries represented. The Convention is Christian music's largest marketplace and largest annual event with more than 500 exhibitors and nearly 300 Southern Gospel recording artists in attendance. Seats for daily and evening performances may be purchased at the NQC office, online at or on site during the week of the Convention in the North Wing lobby at the Kentucky Expo Center.

Crabb Family Release on Billboard Top 200

Together Again Tops National Sales Chart

Crabb Family's New Recording Lands on the BILLBOARD Top 200, Contemporary Christian and Southern Gospel Charts

NASHVILLE, Tenn.—February 17th, 2012—Together Again (Gaither Music Group), the all-new studio recording from the multiple award-winning Crabb Family, hit shelves and online stores this week, taking the #1 position on the southern Gospel sales chart according to Nielsen SoundScan. The ten-song release, produced by lead singer and GRAMMY® Award-winning solo artist Jason Crabb, landed the #6 position on the contemporary Christian sales chart in addition to landing at #123 on the BILLBOARD Top 200 list.

“This is really an encouragement to us,” stated Jason. “As a family, to be back in the studio and back on stage for a limited run has been a blast. To see others embrace us and get excited about new music from us, well, that is an honor and it inspires us. We are all doing what we do today because of the support of countless friends and fans over the years. We are reminded yet again of their encouragement and love to us. We appreciate them so much.”

“We are pleased to see such a strong response to the new Crabb Family release,” stated Barry Jennings, president of Gaither Music Group. “This family created something special years ago that clearly remains significant to their many fans who keep coming back for more.”

An extensive tv and media campaign surrounding the new release began earlier this month on networks including GAC, GMC, RFD, FamilyNet, TBN, CTS, CTN, Vision TV, Grace, Legacy, FFE, Miracle and Airtime.

Together Again is available digitally and at retail stores everywhere. It is distributed exclusively by EMI CMG Distribution. For further information regarding The Crabb Family, visit

About The Crabb Family
Siblings Jason, Adam , Aaron, Kelly and Terah, known as The Crabb Family, took the Christian music industry by storm in the 90’s with their signature brand of country-tinged Gospel, live stage band and powerhouse musical arrangements. The Crabb Family took home 11 GMA DOVE Awards, garnered three GRAMMY® nominations, and blurred the lines between Christian music genres with recordings and nominations ranging from bluegrass to black Gospel.

Their family blends became a hit on platforms varying from the Gaither HOMECOMING stages and “The Grand Ole Opry” to the Brooklyn Tabernacle and Carnegie Hall. Their downhome appearances, highlighted by songs written by the group’s original founder Gerald Crabb, made them a household name in the southern Gospel music community and a “new favorite” across several genres. Heralded by the industry and fans alike, the group produced numerous Top 10 hits and 16 number one hits.

Ernie Haase and Signature Sound: Note from Ernie

John Chapter 3
John 3:1-30
As I sit here and read the scriptures of John, I am blown away afresh and anew by their power to transform. I am also blown away by something else: God’s patience in mentoring me along.

I used to read and memorize scriptures and quote them like a parrot. I really did mean well in my young, excitable heart. I think back and can truly say I was trying my best to love God, but I also wanted to impress and maybe even win a debate or two. How foolish. Yet God would still say, “I will keep working with this kid. I have a plan for him.” How loving - how nurturing - how kind. What A Savior!

So here are some thoughts on what I was reading today:

John said to his followers in Chapter 3 Verse 30, “I am really happy that He (Jesus) is getting all the attention now. He must become greater and I must become less important” (my paraphrase).

As I grow and let the Word (realize I’m not talking about letters formed together to make a book,) the true Word, the Spirit of Christ, blow where it wants, I am left helplessly small and yet empowered. How does this happen? Why just now? The second half of my journey should prove to be very interesting.

Some may say I’m having a mid-life crisis. I have even joked about this with my wife. I’m experiencing feelings and hearing of things that I never dreamed I’d see or hear. My body is weak and my nerves are frayed, but I have to believe this is part of the decrease / increase phase of the Spiritual Walk of Faith.

So, I am not having a mid-life crisis. I choose to think that I am having a mid-life Christ Excitement! All my little powerhouse maneuvers cannot and will not work for what true life has to offer. He must increase and I must decrease. I don’t have a clue where the wind will blow next.

Back tracking to verse 8: Verse 8 says clearly what I should expect: “It is the same with every person who is born of the Spirit of God. You are going to be blown all over the place. Unknown but felt.” (Once again my paraphrase. Read the whole chapter to see the context.)

At this point you and I can look at life and all its harsh, horrible realities (and the times of its lovely wonder and awe) and think “This is too much; I just don’t get it anymore” and cave in. Then spend the second half of our lives trying to feel young again and relive the glory days when life was not so complicated and harsh. Or, we can give in to the wind of the Spirit and let it take us and use us to help others who are still spitting into the wind.

This is the great mystery of life. Should be an interesting ride. Gone with the Wind for sure.

Love you all.


The Roys' Musical Voyage Continues

Hot New Single, High-Profile Performances & Heavy Media Exposure Keeps Spotlight On Duo
Nashville, TN (February 20, 2012) -- The Roys' musical voyage continues as they enjoy a hot, new single; several high-profile performances and multiple TV and radio opportunities keep the spotlight focused on the popular, award-winning Bluegrass brother/sister duo.

The siblings recently returned from dates in Australia and Canada to find that their hot new single, Trailblazer, hit the Top 10 on the Bluegrass Today Weekly chart during their absence. Fans can enjoy the video by clicking HERE.

The duo is featured in the upcoming PBS Television show, Music Voyager: Tennessee, which premieres worldwide on February 24. The episode is part of the Music Voyager international music and travel series, and takes viewers to various destinations around the world. Lee and Elaine appear in EPISODE 1, Eastern Tennessee: Cradle of Country Music. Host Jacob Edgar caught up with The Roys at the Ernest Tubb Record Shop where they chatted aboard Tubb’s touring bus and performed their previous hit single, Coal Minin’ Man. That track rocketed up the Bluegrass charts, landing at #1 on Power Source's Bluegrass Top 35 Chart, #1 on HotDisc International Top 40 Chart, #3 on Bluegrass Unlimited’s National Bluegrass Survey and #4 on Bluegrass Music Profiles’ Top 30 Hot Singles Chart.

Coal Minin' Man (SPBGMA-nominated Song of the Year 2011) and Trailblazer are both from The Roys' critically-acclaimed Rural Rhythm Records' disc, LONESOME WHISTLE, one of BILLBOARD'S Top 50 Bluegrass Albums of 2011. Music Voyager: Tennessee, put together in part by the support of the Tennessee Dept. of Tourist Development, will make its way into 170 million homes in 140 countries and broadcast in 33 languages, upping The Roys' exposure exponentially. To learn more about the popular series, go to

Additionally, Country Music USA Radio Network will air an exclusive interview with Lee and Elaine this week. The show is Europe's most-listened to syndicated Country FM radio program, reaching 10 million listeners in 74 countries and territories around the world, including: France, Belgium, Switzerland, Luxembourg, Monaco, West Indies, Mayotte and Reunion Island. The show streams live and will be archived for 30 days at

After this week's Country Radio Seminar, the duo hits the road for upcoming shows:
02.23-24 Memphis, TN – 2012 Folk Alliance Convention (four showcases)
02.24 Waldo, FL – Dixieland Spring Bluegrass Festival
02.26 North Miami Beach, FL – Everglades Bluegrass Festival
03.03 Argyle, TX – Argyle Bluegrass Festival
03.07 Nashville, TN – Music City Roots
03.09 Mountain View, AR – Mountain View Spring Bluegrass Festival
03.23 Shelby, NC – The Don Gibson Theater (w/ Janie Fricke)
03.24 Wheeling, WV – Wheeling Jamboree (w/ Janie Fricke)
03.30-31 Brooksville, FL – Sertoma Spring Bluegrass Festival
04.05-06 Perry, FL – Florida State Bluegrass Festival
04.07 Nashville, TN – Midnight Jamboree / Ernest Tubb Record Shop (w/ Janie Fricke)
04.12-15 Florence, AZ – Country Thunder
04.14 Florence, AZ – Country Thunder – Main Stage Performance
05.01 Woodlands, TX – Real Life, Real Music (w/ Janie Fricke)

05.05 Green Island, IA – Mooney Hollow Barn (w/ Janie Fricke)

05.12 Denton, NC – Doyle Lawson Bluegrass Festival – Denton Farm Park

05.25 Hesston, KS – Prairie Window Concert Series – Dyck Arboretum of the Plains

05.26-28 Branson, MO – BG & BBQ Festival – Silver Dollar City – Riverfront Theater

05.30-31 Pigeon Forge, TN – Dollywood’s Show Street Theatre

06.02 Marion, VA – Song of the Mountains – The Lincoln Theatre – PBS TV Taping

06.09 Lexington, KY – Festival of the Bluegrass – Kentucky Horse Park Campground

06.16 Lanexa, VA – Rockahock Bluegrass Festival – Rockahock Campground

06.23 Charlotte, MI – Wilder Bluegrass Festival – Eaton County Fairgrounds

06.28-29 Benton, PA – OATS Bluegrass Festival – Benton Rodeo Grounds

07.03 Morganton, NC – Red, White & Bluegrass – Catawba Meadows Park

07.05 Nashville, TN – Bluegrass Night at the Ryman – Ryman Auditorium

07.10 St. Cloud, MN – Paramount Theatre (w/ Janie Fricke)

07.12-15 Craven, Saskatchewan CANADA – The Craven Country Jamboree Festival

07.17 Anita, IA – Oak Tree Opry

07.19-21 Twin Lakes, WI – Country Thunder

07.22 Twin Lakes, WI – Country Thunder – Main Stage Performance @ 1 PM

07.23 Hiawassee, GA – GA Mountain Fair – Anderson Music Hall (w/ Janie Fricke)

Catch up with Lee and Elaine at Launches Online Interactive Folk and Bluegrass Radio Station

(PORTLAND, OR -- February 21, 2012) -- A new composite Internet radio station has launched online and it's titled The station, based in Portland, Oregon, plays roots, traditional folk, new folk, and bluegrass 24/7., without subscription fees.

What makes the station fall into the category of composite is its split personality: on the desktop or laptop, you can create your own playlist from the station's large library of songs, and on your smartphone or tablet, you can listen to NewFolkRadio as a streaming broadcast, or with one click you can transfer your own playlist to a mobile player for on the go listening. is the first Internet station to feature custom playlists for listeners on the go. With just one click, a listener can save a custom playlist and have it available on any mobile device, such as smartphones and tablets.

The founder of, John Hart, has been involved with folk, roots and bluegrass music since the early 60's when he learned to play 5-string banjo by slowing down the vinyl records of Flatt & Scruggs. "In today's marketplace, it's frustrating to listen to folk, roots and bluegrass music that I want to hear without paying a subscription fee, so I started NewFolkRadio, and it will always be free. It's an advertising business model," he said. launched on January 3, 2012, and already has hundreds of listeners, 53% of whom are repeat listeners (stats provided by Google Analytics), according to Hart. "I really want to promote local bands in each city who are in the process of recording a CD or already have a CD but have little exposure yet," Hart said. He added, "Northwest bands have already started to jump on board, but I'm anxious to have undiscovered bands around the world on our station." is an organizational member of the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA), and a signatory to ASCAP and BMI. NewFolkRadio requires Adobe's free Shockwave player for desktop or laptop performance, but not for smartphones or tablets.

John Hart
503-946-8890 (8a-5p PT)
Facebook: NewFolkRadio
Twitter: #newfolkradio

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Crabb Family’s New Recording Hits the Street and National Airwaves

Websites Offer Exclusive Interview and FREE Download with The Crabb Family’s Together Again
NASHVILLE, Tenn.—February 8th, 2012—Together Again (Gaither Music Group), the all-new studio recording from the multiple award-winning Crabb Family, hit shelves and online stores everywhere this week. The ten-song release, produced by lead singer and GRAMMY® Award-winning solo artist Jason Crabb, offers fans the first new music from the popular siblings in several years.

An extensive tv and media campaign surrounding the new release began this past weekend on networks including GAC, GMC, RFD, FamilyNet, TBN, INSP, CTS, CTN, Grace, Legacy, FFE, Miracle and Airtime. is currently featuring an exclusive interview with the entire Crabb Family. Members of can log on, starting today, to get a FREE download from the new release.
Coinciding with a recent, limited run of national tour dates that the group has just completed, Together Again was recorded with a vocal approach that was musically different for the group, which traveled together for around 15 years, garnering national attention and recognitions.

Apparently, the new style is working as the release has already been described by one reviewer as the group’s best album to date--a big statement given the siblings’ history of hit songs and glowing reviews.

Together Again includes three songs written by the award-winning country writer Neil Thrasher (who co-wrote Jason’s solo hit “Somebody Like Me”) in addition to tunes written by such industry pacesetters as their father, Gerald Crabb; Sue C. Smith; Lee Black; David Moffitt; Gina Boe; Don Poythress; Ronnie Freeman; Stephanie Lewis and Caleb Collins. The recording also features two songs co-written by Jason alongside longtime friend Sonya Isaacs Yeary, country tunesmith Jimmy Yeary, as well as Carl Cartee and Barry Weeks.

“If There Ever Was a Time,” the first single from the new release, is currently playing at radio stations nationwide. The song, a pick hit at several southern Gospel charting stations, just hit the Top 10 New Release chart for February according to reporting stations for The Singing News Magazine.

Siblings Jason, Adam, Aaron, Kelly and Terah, known as The Crabb Family, took the Christian music industry by storm in the 90’s with their signature brand of country-tinged Gospel, live stage band and powerhouse musical arrangements. The Crabb Family took home 11 GMA DOVE Awards, garnered three GRAMMY® nominations, and blurred the lines between Christian music genres with recordings and nominations ranging from bluegrass to black Gospel.

Their family blends became a hit on platforms varying from the Gaither HOMECOMING stages and “The Grand Ole Opry” to the Brooklyn Tabernacle and Carnegie Hall. Their downhome appearances, highlighted by songs written by the group’s original founder Gerald Crabb, made them a household name in the southern Gospel music community and a “new favorite” across several genres. Heralded by the industry and fans alike, the group produced numerous Top 10 hits and 16 number one hits.

Together Again is now available digitally and at retail stores everywhere. It is distributed exclusively by EMI CMG Distribution. For further information regarding The Crabb Family, visit


New Website Officially Launced with Full Concert Schedule

Twila Rohrer and Landon Beene

Nashville, TN – February 8, 2012 – IMC Concerts/Innovative Management, LLC announced today that it has completed its acquisition of Garden Spot Promotions adding the legendary company to its concert promotions business. Although Garden Spot Promotions is changing ownership, the name will stay the same.

Landon Beene, CEO, states: “Twila Rohrer has built a history of excellence in concert promotion with Garden Spot Promotions and we honor that in keeping the name. We are looking forward to carrying on the vision and wonderful tradition of Gospel music in Pennsylvania.”

Nathan Goble, managing partner, comments: “It is with great excitement and great responsibility that we step into Twila’s shoes as owners of Garden Spot Promotions. The leadership of Twila is an inspiration to us as we continue this legacy.”

Garden Spot Promotions was founded in 1969 by Richard “Dick” and Mary Carper out of a love of Gospel music. The company transferred ownership to Twila Rohrer on January 1, 2004. Twila’s involvement with the company started as she volunteered at concerts. Twila casually mentioned that she would be interested in buying the business from Mary if she ever decided to retire. In Mary’s words “Twila attended concerts and asked to help. She later said if I ever retired, she would be interested in taking over. Of all the people who wanted to buy Garden Spot Promotions, I found Twila was the best for the job.” The tradition of excellence continues with the transfer of ownership to Landon Beene and Nathan Goble of IMC Concerts / Innovative Management.

Twila Rohrer comments: “I am delighted and honored that Landon Beene and Nathan Goble have taken on the leadership of Garden Spot Promotions. As I ponder the journey that I have taken during the past eight years, I recall many exhilarating moments and wonderful memories. It has been a privilege to work with the artists, develop lifetime friendships and to promote the greatest music on earth. Thank you to everyone who has ever volunteered and worked with us. A very special thanks to my husband, Dale, and my children, Christy, Hillary, Dresdon and son-in-law Neil Hershey for all the work through the years - I am very proud of them. Please continue to pray for Landon, Nathan and their staff. I also ask you to pray for the success of the mission to continue to bring the message of salvation through our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Connect with Garden Spot Promotions through their brand-new website at, on and For more information, call 423-239-6262

Greater Vision News

From Greater Vision's E-Newsletter, February 8, 2012:

We're "on the road again!" Chad is at the wheel, and we're rolling south toward Atlanta, GA, on our way to Florida to kick-off an eleven-day trip.

Speaking of Florida...our first stop on this trip will be in Manatee, Florida, where we'll join Dr. Charles Stanley on Thursday afternoon at the Palmetto Convention Center. The program begins at 1:30pm, so if you're in the area...come on out for an afternoon with Dr. Stanley and Greater Vision! We'll stay in Manatee for Thursday night's "Jubilee!" concert, which begins at 7pm! This will be the only time this year you'll be able to see The Booth Brothers, Legacy Five, and Greater Vision together in Florida!

Check out our schedule below to see where else we're headed on this trip! We would love to see you, if we get close to your area!

11 Days, 3 States, 1 Foreign Country, & A Cruise!
Thursday - Palmetto, FL
Friday - Anderson, SC
Saturday - Deatsville, AL
Sunday - Saraland, AL
Monday thru Friday - Singing At Sea Cruise
Saturday (2/18) - Lakeland, FL
Sunday (2/19) - Bradenton, FL

To see our complete Concert Schedule, click HERE!

Did You See It?
We have received lots of email about last Saturday's TV Program, "Gospel Music Showcase", and we hope you were able to watch it!

If you didn't have the opportunity to see the program, click on the picture to watch it online.
If you enjoyed the program, be sure to send a quick "thank you" email to the folks at Daystar Network for inviting us to be a part of their programming. You can send them an email by clicking HERE! It will only take a minute of your time, and it will let them know there are lots of people who enjoy seeing Gospel music on television!

According to the GPS, it looks like we'll be driving through Atlanta during "Rush Hour". By then, I will be behind the, now you have something to pray about!
I've never understood why it's called "Rush Hour", when traffic is barely moving. Wouldn't "Slow Hour" be a better name?

Please pray for us, when the Lord brings us to your mind, and pray for our families while we're away. We really appreciate your friendship and your prayer support.

We hope you have a great remainder of the week!

Gerald Wolfe
Greater Vision

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

2nd Generation Announces Addition of Josh Adams to Group

OAK GROVE, Ark. – (February 7, 2012) –Diamond Award winning trio 2nd Generation is excited to announced the addition of Josh Adams to the group.

Josh started studying music at a very early age and began leading worship as young as 12 years old. He has had the pleasure of performing in such places Kemper Arena in Kansas City, Missouri and Carnegie Hall in New York. Josh is currently on staff as the Band Director for the Jim Bakker Show in Branson, Missouri.

Josh said, “God has blessed me so much, and I’m humbled by the fact that He is using me to do a mighty work for him! He has blessed me with the opportunity to minister on stage with such ministers as Dottie Rambo, The Couriers, The Ascensions, and now 2nd Generation!!”

Josh is an accomplished musician and will be adding his keyboarding skills to 2nd Generation’s live programs.

“We are so excited about the possibilities that we now have with Josh in the group,” mentioned 2nd Generation’s Brenda Denney. “We can now look at our live programs with a fresh perspective. Josh is already doing such a great job with us!”

2nd Generation is planning to record their follow-up to the breakthrough recording I See a City later this year with award-winning producer Roger Talley (Talley Trio, Kingsmen). Until then, 2nd Generation released their latest single, “Dust On the Altar,” to Southern Gospel radio. All radio promotions are being done in-house for the group, so for more information on how to attain the single, email

For more information on 2nd Generation – visit

You can also find out more information about the group on their Facebook at .

About 2nd Generation
2nd Generation is based out of the Oak Grove, Arkansas. 2nd Generation has appeared at churches, state fairs, Singing in the Sun, Trinity Broadcasting Network, the Jim Bakker Show, Branson Gospel Music Convention, and many other events. The group’s current project, their sophomore album I See a City, has spawned off four hit singles including the #1 Fan Favorite songs “Feel the Joy” and “The Blood Covered It All.”

Eighth Day Nominated for Two Absolutely Gospel Music Awards

SPARTANBURG, S.C. – (February 7, 2012) – Popular Southern Gospel trio Eighth Day were honored to received word last month that they have been nominated for two Absolutely Gospel Music Awards.

The group has received nominations for Song of the Year and Progressive Song of the Year for their first ever #1 hit from last year – “May I Never Get Over the Cross.”

“Words really can’t describe just how much of an honor this is for our ministry,” said Scott Robinson of Eighth Day. “We are such big fans of this awards program. We love and what they contribute to this industry. We are so excited to be a part of this year’s program.”

Eighth Day will be performing “May I Never Get Over the Cross” on the awards program as was announced last week.

“We performed on this program back in 2009 when we were nominated for Breakthrough Artist of the Year,” recalled Scott. “We had a blast at that program, and we know we’ll enjoy ourselves this year as well!”

Fans are getting a chance to vote for their favorites in several categories now through February 14, 2012. The Absolutely Gospel (SGN) Music Awards will be handed out at a live ceremony on Tuesday, April 10, 2012 at River of Life Church in Smyrna, TN. The event is tentatively scheduled to be streamed live like in 2010. More details on the Absolutely Gospel Music Awards will be announced at a later date.

Eighth Day started off the year with a bang. The group has seen an abundance of radio and media exposure due to the group’s #1 hit “May I Never Get Over the Cross” and current rising single “Are You Ready.”

Eighth Day’s #1 hit from last fall, “May I Never Get Over the Cross,” was named the 2nd most played song of the year according to The song spent an impressive 4 weeks at #1 and was only surpassed in spins this year by one other song – Karen Peck & New River’s “On the Banks of the Promised Land.”

Eighth Day’s latest single, “Are You Ready.” recently made a huge surge at radio. The song jumped from #11 to #9 on the upcoming March 2012 Singing News Top 80 chart. The song also sits at #3 on the Top 40 Weekly Chart.

More information on Eighth Day can be found at

About Eighth Day
Eighth Day is a popular trio based out of Spartanburg, South Carolina. The group has quickly established itself as one of the top new talents in Gospel music today. Their fresh and progressive sound has been described as a little bit country, a touch of bluegrass, and a whole lot of Gospel!

Sharron Kay King Nominated For “Fan Favorite Artist of the Year”

BYRON, Ga. – (February 7, 2012) – Singing News Fan Award nominee Sharron Kay King was honored last month to see their name among the 10 nominees for Fan Favorite Artist of the Year in the highly-respected Absolutely Gospel (SGN) Music Awards.

“I am so humbled to have been nominated for this award,” mentioned Sharron. “I am honored that so many of my friends would place their vote for me in this category. Words can’t describe how blessed I feel to be nominated for such a big award!”

This is the second time in her career that Sharron has been nominated for an Absolutely Gospel Music Award. She was previously nominated in 2007 in the Country Album of the Year category for her The Road I Know project.

Chris Unthank, Editor-in-Chief of said, “We as a staff have grown to really love and appreciate the ministry of Sharron, so we were thrilled for her when the votes were tallied, and she landed in the Top 10 for this category. Sharron is the real deal, and I think this nomination is a testament to that fact.”

The Fan Favorite Artist of the Year category is the only one where the nominees are strictly chosen by the fans. The nominees in the other 23 award categories are chosen by the staff of and select media representatives.

Fans are getting a chance to vote for their favorites in several categories now through February 14, 2012. The Absolutely Gospel (SGN) Music Awards will be handed out at a live ceremony on Tuesday, April 10, 2012 at River of Life Church in Smyrna, TN. The event is tentatively scheduled to be streamed live like in 2010. More details on the Absolutely Gospel Music Awards will be announced at a later date.

Sharron just released her latest single to radio. The new song, titled “Look Up,” is the fifth single released from King’s SGN Music Award-nominated project Don’t Stop Believing. “Look Up” was written by Eric Horner and was just released to Southern Gospel radio through Eddie King & Crown Communications.

All four of Sharron’s previous singles from Don’t Stop Believing landed in the Top 20 on the Top 40 Weeky Chart – the industry’s most watched weekly radio report in Southern Gospel music.

More information as well as booking information on Sharron Kay King can be found at Fans can visit Sharron on Facebook at .

About Sharron Kay King
Sharron Kay King is a talented singer/songwriter based out of Byron, Georgia. Sharron’s last release, Don’t Stop Believing, spawned off the #1 fan favorite “God’s Been Good.” King was a 2008 Top 5 finalist in the Singing News Fan Awards for Favorite Horizon Individual and a 2009 Top 10 finalist for Favorite Soloist.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Allen Smith: The Man Behind the Diamond Awards - Retro SGM Radio 2007

(Editor's note: The following feature was first published in March 2007 on

Every year during the National Quartet Convention in Louisville, Kentucky, a special event occurs. In the midst of showcases, media interviews and listening parties, attendees and fans alike pause for a moment to give honour to the main influence behind Southern Gospel Music. At the Diamond Award ceremonies the Lord is honoured first, and in the middle of this afternoon of praise, those who are involved in His music are thanked for their dedication to His purpose. For the last few years, the man behind these awards has been Allen Smith.

A Pastor with over 40 years in the ministry, Rev. Allen Smith became involved in Southern Gospel music through concert promotion in the churches where he was ministering. In the mid-90’s he began to DJ in a radio station in DeSoto, Missouri. He and his church started a southern gospel magazine, which grew quickly and became the Southern Gospel News Magazine. A weekly email newsletter followed, SGN Scoops Ezine. Today the publication is known as SGN Scoops Magazine, and the daily email newsletter is SGN Scoops Today. Allen is seen as an industry innovator, a man who is finding ways to continuously promote Southern Gospel music.

Allen Smith recently talked with SGM Radio about his involvement with the prestigious Diamond Awards. “They were started about 16 years ago by the Gospel Voice Magazine”, Allen explains. “As you know, they went out of business a few years ago, and the Diamond Awards lay dormant for about two years. One day about four years ago I realized that I knew the owners of the Gospel Voice… I had been praying for some time about the possibility of our magazine having an awards program. But, I did not want to just start a new awards show that very few people knew about, and that no one would attend. Feeling the direction of the Lord in the matter, I spoke with the owner of Voice Magazine that I knew, and asked if it would be possible for us to take over the Diamond Awards. He told me he would have to talk it over with his partner, and get back to me the next month. He did get back to me, and the rest is history. They just handed the Diamond Awards over to us.”

In an industry that currently has many award ceremonies occurring throughout the year, Allen explains why the Diamonds are special. “The Diamond Awards are unique in many ways. First of all, they were resurrected from the grave, so to speak. Secondly, they are truly fan-based. The fans even select the nominees. Third, we knew that once again that we would be innovative when it came to balloting. You see we do not have a really large subscription base. So, in order to make the balloting realistic and legitimate, we made the decision to let every Southern Gospel fan vote if they wanted to. So, in addition to a printed ballot, we also made an electronic ballot available on the internet. We were the first to do this, and it has worked quite well for us.”

Allen explains that safeguards are put in place to prevent people from voting more than once, to retain the integrity of the awards. The Diamond Award ballots can be accessed online and submitted in two different ways. Artists can print off the hardcopy ballots found at and have them available for fans at their product tables. Fans can also vote online at

Electronic access to voting is not the latest innovation to the Diamond Awards. Allen explains, “We introduced a category a few years ago called the Favorite Artist/Industry Website Award. This past year, we split it into two different awards. We now have the Favorite Artist Website Award and the Favorite Industry Website Award. It is interesting to note that this past year, the Singing News Fan Awards has also introduced a website award. That is not all, for we introduced a duet award four years ago. The 2007 Singing News Fan Awards will has a duet award for the first time in their history.”

There is always a lot of discussion and rumour among fans and artists about alterations in the long-running Singing News Fan Awards. Allen comments, “Many people in the industry are now talking about the changes that are being made in the Singing News Fan Awards this year. It is being said that they are dropping several of their categories. I want to make this clear, that as far as I know, they have not yet officially announced these changes. But if this information is correct, then The SGN SCOOPS DIAMOND AWARDS will still have the categories, and will still be recognizing those artists that the Fan Awards will no longer be recognizing.”

Through their commitment to recognizing the work accomplished by Southern Gospel artists and industry personnel, the Diamond Awards encompass regional groups as well as those that are nationally known. Regional groups do appear on the nominating ballets, and occasionally receive enough votes to win the award.

“We also have regional groups performing during the Diamond Awards”, says Allen. “This gives them a platform to be seen and heard by not only fans, but also top industry personnel. We receive reports from these regional groups that we spotlight each year. Some have had promoters see them who then have provided many new dates for them. Some have been seen by major record companies and received contracts. Some have been nominated for Singing News Fan Awards, and they have told us that it is because of the exposure they received at The Diamond Awards.”

The Diamond Awards are seen as a true reflection of the fan’s favourites in Southern Gospel. Allen commented on the ratio of fan vs. industry respondents. “ It is very hard to determine. Of course, there are many more fans that vote than those in the industry. However, you would probably be surprised by the industry names that appear on our ballot registrations. There are a lot of industry people who do vote. The Diamond Awards have become very prestigious, and almost everyone wants to be involved in some way or another.”

“As far as how this compares with other awards in Southern Gospel, I am not sure”, Allen continues. “What is being said is that The Diamond Awards are at the very least the second largest and second best award program in the industry. I am very humbled by this, and I want to state for the record that I want to make sure that God gets all the glory for this, if it is correct.”

The ultimate mission of the Diamonds is to lift up the Lord, the Source of the Gospel the music promotes. Allen comments, “We never want to have just an awards program. We want God to feel welcome.In other words, in addition to handing out awards, we also have church. This is our mission, to allow the Holy Ghost to change lives during The Diamond Awards.”

“The vision of The Diamond Awards, is to continue to grow”, states Allen. “This year the room we will be in will be twice the size of former years. That is just part of the vision. We desire to continue to recognize people for the work they do. We desire to provide a platform for regional groups. But most of all, we desire to reach hearts with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. That is first and foremost. I am a pastor, and I have a pastor’s heart. We want to do all we can to help the industry, but the greatest way we can help the industry is to allow God to be real in all that we do.”

This Pastor with a heart for the lost recognizes the need reach out to others both in the pew and outside of church. Beginning to preach at age 15, with experience on the mission field and in prisons, he has been pastoring his current church for 25 years. Southern Gospel has always been a major part of his life.

“I can remember the first Southern Gospel group I ever heard. It was a regional group, not a national group. I do not remember the name of the group, but I was blessed by the tenor they had. His name was Junior South. I was probably about 13 or 14 years old”, Allen recalls.

“Down through the years, I have been blessed by many groups. Groups like The McKameys, The Bishops, The Kingsmen, Tony Gore & Majesty, The Perrys, and the list actually goes on and on”, Allen explains. “Just a few years ago, I was especially blessed by a song The McKameys sang. It was written by a friend of mine, Barbara Huffman. Barbara is a writer for the Singing News, as well as a songwriter. At this point in time, I cannot even remember the name of the song, but it really blessed me and I knew I had to learn it.”

Allen continues, “I learned it and sang it at our church about three times. The burden I had for that song then lifted. A few days later, I found out that one of the young ladies in our church was going through something in her life that was really hard. When she heard me sing that song, the Spirit of God lifted her up and set her free from what she was going through. I believe that is what Southern Gospel music is all about.”

“Southern Gospel has changed a lot in the last few years,” says Allen. “I believe it has become more industry, and less ministry. I believe this is very sad. Do not get me wrong; I am not opposed to business. In fact, a ministry that is not run as a business will die. But, on the other hand a ministry whose focus becomes business and not ministry, is dead to begin with.”

Allen believes that the industry does not have to keep going in that direction. “As far as a positive change, I believe we need to get back to the roots of Southern Gospel. What are those roots? True Southern Gospel music and words, and allowing the Spirit of God to have His way in the hearts and lives of everyone, fans and industry personnel.”

This gentleman who loves Southern Gospel music and whose innovative direction has lead the Diamond Awards to their current prestigious status, is still a Pastor whose main goal is to reach the lost. This is emphasized when he shares what the Lord has been speaking to him about lately: “Being all I can be for Him. Doing all I can to reach souls for Him.”

“If you look in Southern Gospel News Magazine on page 4 every month, you will find the Plan of Salvation. We call it The Priceless Corner. If you go to our website (, you will also find The Priceless Corner.” And that gift of salvation, truly priceless, is worth more than any award.

By Lorraine Walker
First Published March 2007 in

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Diamond Awards 2012 - Vote Today!

News from SGN Scoops:

We’re excited to say we’ve had a great participation with voting during the first round of nominations. The first round of voting started in January and will end on March 28th.

If you have not voted, please do so and encourage your friends, family and fans to do so as well by adding this link to all of your social media outlets.

Remember- The Diamond Awards is FAN based, FAN driven, so speak out- your voice REALLY counts.


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SGN Scoops Digital and Coastal Media Group reserves the right to discard any vote believed tobe fraudulent (ie, using a fake email address for mass voting) and reserves the right to determine eligibility in all categories.
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Southern Gospel Love Stories - Retro SGM Radio

In a world of broken promises and shattered relationships, it is always heart-warming to hear of those who have learned the secret of a lasting marriage. The job demands of a southern gospel artist can be hard on family life and often make married life difficult. SGM Radio was able to chat with several artists who have learned the secret to making relationships work and these wonderful couples are sharing their stories this month.
Soloist Mark Bishop and wife Carolyn, Kentucky: “ I met my wife Carolyn back in the early 80's. Mom and dad had decided that they wanted to start taking their boys ( I was the oldest of four boys ) to the church they grew up in and were later married in.

When we first walked in the church house, as folks do, many turned to see who was walking in. Carolyn was sitting on a pew with one of her friends and I can still see her turning and looking over her shoulder as we caught each other’s eye for the first time. We were both high school age at this time and the courtship process that ensued was filled with all of the awkward moments and memorable milestones that many relationships begin with.

Later on, after graduation and employment, we were married in that same church that my mom and dad had been married in so many years later... by the same preacher!
Mark shares these words of advice: “We have now been married 23 years, have two daughters, Courtney aged fifteen and Haley aged eight. I have never, ever regretted my commitment to this woman. She is still the most wonderful person I know. We were given some wonderful advice when we were first married and it was this... marriage is not a fifty/fifty deal. It is a 100%/ 100% commitment. Some days you may feel like you are giving all 100% and the other is giving nothing, but you do it anyway. Because the time will come when the other partner will be carrying you.

In today’s "disposable, fast-food society", folks give up to easily if something doesn't meet their idealized, romanticized ideas. But there are rewards to be reaped from a relationship that endures for the length of two life-times.”
Psalms 101, Angela and Bill Fulkerson, Florida: “I [Angela] am a preacher's kid and being raised in church is all I've ever known. I started singing when I was 3 years old in revivals and camp meetings. My dad was an evangelist and I traveled with my family all over the country. Our home base was Florida and in 1987 our family ministry took us to Houston, Texas. I had no idea that this revival would be such an important part of my life.

We went to a church in Houston that had just lost their pastor. We were there to hold them a revival while they searched for a new pastor. After the first service they voted my Dad in as their new pastor. On the back row of that little church that day was Bill, a 14 year old boy who came from a broken home. His dad left him when he was a baby, his mom raised him from pillar to post and from step-dad to step-dad. Those step-dads were cruel and abusive and told him he would never amount to anything. He dropped out of school, started hanging with the wrong crowd, got addicted to drugs and had just started drinking alcohol. He had already been in trouble with the law several times and sent to the Juvenile Detention Center. Bill happened to be in the service that morning because his grandparents had just decided to raise this troubled teen and this was their home church. It was in this very service that Bill accepted Jesus into his heart, was delivered from his drug addiction and his life was changed forever.

In the year and a half that my dad pastored this church, Bill & I became best friends. We found out he had a talent and he joined our family group playing acoustic guitar. We were only 15 and 16 years old and having the time of our lives traveling around in a big old bus singing with our heroes like Kenny Hinson, the Hemphills and many others.

The time came when my dad was called to go somewhere else. Two weeks before our last Sunday there, I got a phone call from my friend Bill. He decided to inform me that he wanted to be more than just friends. We called & wrote each other love letters every week for 6 months. My family stopped traveling full time and we started doing just weekends. I went to nursing school and tried to get Bill out of my mind. One day he called and said he had been working odd jobs and saved up enough money to get a bus ticket from Houston to Lakeland, Florida and that he would be down to see me in a few weeks. We did not think he was serious. He was only 15 years old.

One month later, we picked him up from the bus station and brought him home for a visit. Well, he did not stay in our house. My dad would not have that. Bill had to stay in the back yard in our old singing bus. He also had to get up at 7am every morning and go to work with my dad & brother in their painting business so Bill & I would never be left alone at the house. Bill quickly caught on to painting and my dad started paying him. After 3 weeks, my dad saw the way Bill and I were looking at each other across the dinner table and finally told Bill it was time for him to go back to Texas. Well he did and this time we both knew that we loved each other and that God had something special for us.

At 16 years old, Bill worked hard for 4 more months and saved enough money to come back to Florida. Daddy was going to make it hard for Bill. He would not allow him to stay with us this time. So, some dear friends of mine allowed Bill to live with them and gave him a job in construction. However, they lived 3 hours away from us. So, Bill & I only got to see each other on a weekend here and there. Bill kept on working and he saved enough money to buy him a car and rent a little apartment 1 mile from my parents house and right across the street from the church my dad was pastoring. At 17 years old, Bill started his own painting business, which he still has today. Nobody could tell him this time to go back to Texas. He was here to stay. We still had never been on a real date and never even kissed. We were never left alone!

When I turned 18, my dad let me go on a first date with Bill. He had finally earned my parents trust and they saw how much Bill loved me. You better believe we kissed on our first date! We were both each others first love and we knew God wanted us to be together for a purpose. We dated for 2 more years and finally daddy performed our wedding in 1992. My dad went evangelizing full time again and Bill & I were the music part of his crusades for over 6 years. Our travels took us to over 40 states and 6 countries. We had the opportunity to sing to our military at the service centers in Germany. We saw many miracles and many folks saved.

In 2003, the Lord called Bill & I to our own music ministry, Psalm 101, and we are now raising our son on the road as well. September 15th of this year Bill & I will celebrate 15 years of marriage and we are still each other's best friends and he still makes me laugh. We have just produced our 2nd CD and we are still having the time of our lives traveling and telling others about the love of Jesus. The name of our new CD is Worth The Wait. We get invited to churches, youth events and marriage classes to share our love story of how we stayed pure and waited for each other. God is so good and we thank him everyday for bringing us together for His glory.

Soloist Melinda Hand and husband Paul, Missippi: “Melinda and I met at a Mike Warnke (Christian Comedian) concert in Jackson, MS. I was 15, a sophomore in high school and had talked my parents into letting me take my car and some friends to the concert. We were basically going scouting for girls! Anyway, when we got to the concert hall, I spotted a gorgeous blonde all the way across the foyer. I punched my buddy next to me and said...."Do you see that girl over there? I'm gonna marry her!" I had never met or seen her before. A couple of minutes later after watching her from afar, I saw another girl approach her and start talking...I recognized this girl, so I decided that this was my chance to meet this dream girl! After meeting Melinda( and her boyfriend that walked up later), we all proceeded to our seats...our seats somehow ended up being directly behind hers! She ended up flirting me most of the night...I have no idea how I avoided a fight with the boy friend! I did not see or talk to her for the next six months, but did find her when school started back in the fall as I had moved to the school where she attended. I asked her out a couple of weeks later and we have been together since....boy, she sure is lucky!”

Paul’s recommendations: “We both would agree that the best advice for other couples: Christian couples must remain focused on God. Priority to Him is a must. When we each are where we need to be in our relationship with God, then there is no way He will let it (marriage) fail.”

Paul and Melinda’s story is more than just a fairytale of ‘happily ever after’. They will be celebrating their 16th anniversary this May, but there was a time when they thought that might not happen. They told their story in a quarterly church publication and they have agreed to share it with SGM Radio readers.

Melinda and Paul married young and were both working and going to college during the first four years of their marriage. Starting a family, beginning careers and building a home left little time for togetherness. Both were extremely active in their church and they appeared to be the perfect Christian couple.
Despite appearances, Paul says that this was not a good time for him spiritually. “There were so many things in my life that were not God’s will, things that kept me from getting close to him. It took almost losing my wife for me to finally ‘get it’”, Paul explains in the article. The couple was drifting apart spiritually and emotionally.

At this point, Melinda began to develop a closeness with her boss, which ended abruptly when a minister from their church confronted her. She immediately quit her job and confessed what had happened to her husband. Paul knew he had to make things right with the Lord and with Melinda. They asked forgiveness of each other. Then they asked forgiveness from God. “We asked God to restore all the love we had for each other [and] He did”, says Melinda.

Since that point, Melinda and Paul have developed a strong, growing marriage that is founded on the Lord. Their focus has switched from a big house and material things to family and relationship. The Hands attend a yearly marriage retreat, schedule regular date nights, and take time to get away as a couple, twice a year.

Prayer is a strong focus for this couple as well. Paul and Melinda pray together every morning. They never pray alone with a member of the opposite sex. Each night, they re-affirm their love and faithfulness to each other verbally before retiring. They are bonded spiritually and emotionally, and their marriage grows along with their relationship to Christ.

Anyone spending time with this lovely couple can see the deep love and commitment they have for each other. It’s a blessing to see how a marriage can not only last but even become stronger despite being dealt a hard blow. They are living out the reality that the strength of a bond between husband and wife is only as strong as each individual’s bond with the Lord. And that is the secret of an enduring, Christ-centered marriage.

We thank each of these couples for sharing their love stories with us this month. It’s great to know that even with the demanding schedules of artists in Southern Gospel, building a strong relationship with God and each other is not only possible, but also necessary. SGM Radio salutes all those couples whose commitment to marriage and family demonstrate the love of God. Your lives are a witness to the message you sing about. Happy Valentine’s Day!

Southern Gospel Love Stories By Lorraine Walker First Published February 2007 on

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