Artist News March 19, 2014

Sidewalk Prophets Guitarist Ben McDonald is training hard as he gears up to climb Mt. Rainier this summer. He’s been running and swimming as he finalizes his preparations. But Ben says just spending time up north in their tour bus is also helping with his training. He tweeted: If Mt Rainier is gonna be cold then being in this bus is good training. I’m wearing my mountaineering socks and I still can’t feel my feet. Ben says the climb is less than two months away.

Mike Weaver is the lead singer for the group Big Daddy Weave. But did you know that he’s not the only Weaver in the group? Jay Weaver is Mike’s brother. He has also been with the band from the very beginning.

The band 7eventh Time Down has started their own March Madness Bracket challenge. The band announced the competition with their fans on facebook this week. But you don’t have much time to sign up. March madness games begin Thursday afternoon. Sign up for the 7eventh Time Down March Madness ESPN Bracket challenge by clicking on the link at

The Passion 2014 CD won’t be available until April 29. But member of Passion are at least giving you a taste of what it will look like. They recently released a preview of the cover of the project, recorded live during the Passion conference in Atlanta earlier this year. Check it out by clicking on the link at

Abolition International is continuing their fight again human trafficking. The group that Natalie Grant helped to start announced recently that they have trained over 1,500 medical professionals on how to identify and report victims of human trafficking.”

Jason Gray is out with a new blog telling the story behind his song Not Right Now. He says the song deals with the concept of pain and how best to minister to those going through difficult times. Read the entire blog and watch Jason’s acoustic performance of the song by clicking on the link at

Building 429 member Jesse Garcia says he’s found the perfect thing for an artist who loves to keep everything neat and organized. He is using fishing boxes to keep all of his guitar equipment in its correct place. Now he says he can find everything.

The Irish band Rend Collective are inviting you to join them for an St. Patrick’s Day Quest. Simply find 8 gold coins scattered throughout the Christian music sight New Release Tuesday and unscramble the letters and you will be entered in the drawing for a chance to win signed copies of Rend Collective’s new album, The Art of Celebration, and the grand prize of a Jingling Johnny–that crazy instrument the band plays during their shows. Find out more by clicking on the link at

VeggieTales came to the rescue for Mandisa this week. She tweeted: Confession: I have no idea what St. Patrick’s Day celebrates other than a color and physical assault caused by 2 fingers, also known as pinching. A fan directed her to the VeggieTales video about St. Patricks day and Mandisa issued a follow up tweet: Thanks for the St. Patrick’s Day lessons. What a great man to commemorate! However, she added: The color green and the 3 leaf shamrock I get. The pinching is still a mystery.

Tobymac is out with his weekly reminder to speak life into someone else’s life this week. He said on facebook: a servant’s heart is a key part of the Christian life. We can speak life through not only words, but our actions. Love is a verb. This week, look for opportunity to serve someone. Doesn’t have to be something big, just an act that reflects the love and humility of Christ.

All you moms with young children can probably relate to a recent post by Meredith Andrews. She tweeted: A solo trip to Whole Foods is basically like therapy.

Congratulations to Citizenway. They recently were honored with their first ever number 1 song. The bands song How Sweet the Sound reached the number 1 spot on the Billboard Soft AC/Inspirational charts.

Kutless member James Mead is feeling a little off kilter. He tweeted: I don’t have my glasses on, because I left them at the hotel…it’s very disorienting.

Matthew West is on an Acoustic tour right now, presenting a more laid back look at the stories that have made up his past two CDs. In an interview with the Christian music web site Matthew said “these are the stories that have inspired the songs that I’ve written, but they’ve done more then that they’ve really impacted and changed my life, they’ve change the way I view the world.” West explained his desire for this acoustic tour is to really delve in greater detail into the powerful testimonies behind his songs which are largely inspired by stories of tragedy that find redemption. Read the entire article by clicking on the link at

Tenth Avenue North was joined by Moriah Peters & Matt Maher during a recent Winter Jam Tour Spectacular stop. Moriah joined them for their song “Losing” and Matt joined them on the song “Worn”. Watch a clip from both performances by clicking on the link at

Tai Anderson would appreciate your prayers. The guitarist for Third Day was only home for about 48 hours this week. And he was struggling with the question: How will I make my wife and each of my 6 kids feel valued, loved, and respected in that short period of time. Tai said he was praying for the physical, mental, spiritual, emotional strength to make the most of it.

Artist News March 18, 2014

Josh Wilson is starting a book club. He’s encouraging his fans to join him in reading a book and then have a weekly or biweekly conversation about the book online. The first book in the book club discussion is Celebration by Discipline by Richard Foster. Josh says to get a copy of the book by March the 23rd. Then stay tuned at his website and he’ll update you on discussion times when they are announced.
Kevin Max is in the midst of another cycle. The lead singer of Audio Adrenaline tweeted over the weekend the beard has died again, only to be reborn again. Attached was a picture of Kevin clean shaven with the promise that the beard would return again. He said the cycle will continue.
Georgia native Mark Hall was on a concert run to the north and said the story must be told. He said Southerners who want more snow need to know the truth. He then showed a picture of what he called snood. Mark said it was a mixture of snow and mud that have been pushed out of the way, resulting in huge piles of the wet and muddy mess. Mark just wanted to make sure Southerns knew what they were asking for.
Want to learn more about adoption, foster care, and the orphan crisis? Mary Beth Chapman, wife of Steven Curtis Chapman, is encouraging you to download a free guide from Show Hope. The adoption organization was started by the Chapmans to help facilitate adoptions and reach out to orphans around the world. Read more by clicking on the link at
Ever wonder where it Jamie Grace got the concept for her custom made Gibson guitar featured on the cover of her latest CD Ready to Fly? Jamie says the idea for the guitar with her name in Pearl on the neck, was taken from a similar guitar owned by Johnny Cash. Check out the picture of both guitars by clicking on the link at
Matthew West’s record label was celebrating the success of his song Hello, My Name Is… over the weekend. And in celebration the label was showing off plaques made to commemorate the honor. Check out the picture by clicking on the link at
The members of the group Sidewalk Prophets are gearing up for their 4th annual Sidewalk Prophets March Madness pick em competition. Want to join? Simply click on the link at at info to join. The password is live like that.
Tenth Avenue North is celebrating a milestone. The members of the band tweeted over the weekend: we just sold our 1 millionth album.
Kerrie Roberts says she and the town of Nashville are not on good terms. Attached to the Facebook post by the Florida native was a picture of the temperatures for that day. The current temperature was 37 degrees and the high that day was only 46. Not bad for those up north, but pretty cold for the Florida native.
Matt Redman was back in Atlanta recently at the passion City Church and the worship leader from England said his favorite part of the visit was seeing brand new Christians take a light bulb and add it to the Jesus is life wall. The Passion City Church has a wall of lights. When someone is saved during one of their gatherings they put another light bulb in the wall. The goal is to eventually fill up a wall of lights that say Jesus is life. Matt Redman says it’s beautifully profound.
Keep Jimmy Needham in your prayers. The Christian artist says allergies are working against him. He says spring allergies are “bringing me down”. Not a good thing for a Christian artist on the road touring and singing around the country.
Third day lead singer Mac Powell received an award over the weekend. The music site Rhapsody named the Third Day lead singer Christian music’s Best Side and Solo Projects. Mac said it’s kind of an obscure category but he’ll take it.
The members of MIKESCHAIR are looking forward to heading south. They got stuck in the snow in Virginia Sunday night and finally got back on the road and headed home the next morning. Lead singer Mike Grayson said they are really excited to be heading south for this weekend’s concerts in Georgia and Florida as part of the Morning Rise tour. Mike Grayson tweeted its official, I am over winter.
The members of for king and country grew up in Australia but now make the United States their home. But band members tweeted that earlier this week, they have the chance to travel back to their native Australia briefly. They said it was the first time to make the trip in many years. They were back in the country for the wedding of their cousin Nathan.
Aaron Shust is one of four artists on the Morning Rises Tour. And he tweeted after this weekend’s concerts that one of his favorite moments was singing the acoustic version of the song Wondrous Love with new artist Lauren Daigle. Check out pictures of the first weekend of the Morning Rises Tour by clicking on the link at

Artist News March 17, 2014

MIKESCHAIR lead singer Mike Grayson says he was given a very cool gift over the weekend. He said a lady at one of their concerts gave him the token she had receiving for achieving 20 years of sobriety. He said she was a very inspirational lady.

Chris Tomlin was one of a number of celebrities participating in this weekend Tim Tebow foundation Celebrity Gala and Golf Classic. The event was billed as an opportunity for Tim Tebow to host his friends for a weekend of fun and entertainment. Past events have raised nearly 3-million dollars to support the outreach efforts of the Tim Tebow foundation. Chris tweeted: thank you Tim Tebow for letting me be part of your great work this weekend. The golf was pretty sweet as well.

After many weeks of combining a busy touring schedule and the filming of her reality show It Takes a Church, Natalie Grant said the last episode of the series was recorded this weekend. Natalie said the final episode was recorded in Phoenix, Arizona. No word yet on when the series will be broadcast on the GSN Network. The series follows church members as they compete to find a soulmate for one unsuspecting single. And Natalie has been all over the country filming episodes, from New York and Boston to Arizona and California.

The members of Shane and Shane are reporting a successful response to their Kickstarter project. The two Shanes had hoped to raise $100,000 to start an online worship resources called the worship initiative. In fact, they said that in preparation for the online service, they have already recorded more than 700 instructional videos. Over the weekend Shane and Shane announced that they had exceeded their $100,000 goal 12 days before the end of the fundraising event. So they say that, if they raise another $50,000, they will also record another Psalms record. They say another Psalms project has been one of the most requested things in their last 10 years of ministry. Check out more about the Kickstarter effort by clicking on the link at

Due to an emergency in their band, the group Family Force 5 cancelled two of their shows this coming weekend. Over the weekend they tweeted that their bass player Josh, also known as Fatty, unexpectedly lost his mother in law. As a result he and his wife Ami became legal guardians of Josh’s mother in laws four daughters. Due to the memorial service, Family Force 5’s concerts on March 20th and 21st had to be cancelled. The band also said a fund has been initiated to help Josh’s family cover the extensive financial strain through this transition. You can access the find and help Josh’s family by clicking on the link at Band members say your prayers and encouragement would also be appreciated.

The Gospel Music Association announced plans over the weekend for the inaugural GMA honors ceremony. The ceremony will be held on Tuesday, April the 29th. The event will celebrate those being inducted into the GMA Gospel Music Hall of Fame as well as the individuals and organizations that are impacting our culture globally both past and present. Michael W Smith and Amy Grant are the first performers announced for the ceremony, with more to be added later.

Jason Gray is asking for your input. He’s asking his fans to share a picture of someone in their life who is Been a “doorway” through whom God’s love has come to them. Include the hashtag milliondoors and Jason says, if they repost the picture, that fan will win one of his latest CDs. Jason started the process by sharing the picture of his friend and mentor George Landbolt. Jason said George has been the voice of God in His life for the last several years. His knowledge of God’s Word, wisdom, and love has helped me become more of the man I most want to be.

Britt Nicole has earned her first-ever gold album. The RIAA announced over the weekend that her CD Gold has been certified as a gold album. Gold certification means that a half million copies of the CD have been sold.

The members of the Sidewalk Prophets say their bus fundraising effort was a success. Members of the band wrapped up their fundraising effort titled mission transmission over the weekend. And they passed their interim goal of $10,000 before the campaign wrapped up. Band members say $11,000 was raised for the project. The band had to raise at least $10,000 or they wouldn’t have received any of the money. However, they had hoped to raise at least 17 thousand dollars to pay for the entire project. Sidewalk Prophets members say they’ll release a full report and also have a special gift coming soon.

Response has been good to the first weekend of Matthew West’s Hello My Name Is Acoustic Tour. Matthew tweeted that the first three shows of the weekend were sellouts. Matthew’s tour will continue through the end of April. It features an evening of acoustic songs and stories based on Mathews album Into The Light.

What you see isn’t always the way things are. Tiffany Lee, who goes by the name of Plumb on stage, tweeted that she had to fake it a lot as she performed on stage over the weekend. She said she was dealing with a stomach virus while performing. Tiffany tweeted that she was able to make it home after her concert and was glad to have a break to rest and recover at home.

Jeremy Camp has the best of both worlds. He is on the I still believe tour right now but this time his tour also includes his wife Adie Camp. Adie is a worship leader and former member of the group Benjamin’s Gate, then known as Adrienne Liesching. The tour is billed as a special night of stories and songs featuring both Jeremy and Adie. And Jeremy says: I love ministering alongside my wife.

Members of For King and Country didn’t let bus problems keep them from their concerts this weekend. Members of the band tweeted that, due to transportation problems, they had to rent a UHaul and a minivan so they could make it to their show in Chicago. After the show the band boarded a replacement bus at 3:15 a.m. so they could continue on to their next venue.

The morning Rises tour kicked off this past weekend. The tour headlines Aaron Shust and also includes Jonny Diaz, MIKESCHAIR, and Lauren Daigle. And Aaron says one of the highlights of the night was being joined on stage by the rest of the bands at the end of his song My Savior My God to close out the night. The tour kicked off an Aaron Shust’s home state of Pennsylvania. And he says it was a fantastic first night.

Christian artist Phil Stacey says he had a unique honor over the weekend. The Wichita, Kansas native had the chance to sing at a prayer luncheon on military base in Japan over the weekend. But Phil says he was the one who receive the blessing. He said he was blessed so much by the men and women who serve our nation.

The group Jars of Clay is celebrating their 20th anniversary this year. But even after 20 years they are still experiencing a few things they have never done before. The members of the band tweeted that later this year they are going to be playing their first ever concert in Hong Kong. The concert is scheduled for Friday, April the 11th. Jimmy Needham will join Jars of Clay at the concert.

God used one of Mandisa’s fans to provide the encouragement she needed over the weekend. Mandisa tweeted: I’m hormone, bloated, and my pants ripped just two minutes before I took the stage in Tyler, Texas this weekend. But when she ran back to her dressing room to change, Mandisa found a flower arrangement in her dressing room. The note with the flowers said: I’m an overcomer. In 2012 your music was a vital part of my fighting the toughest battle of my life. The note added: I hope you liked the flowers. They are just a small token of our appreciation for what your music means to us. Mandisa added: God sent me a sweet reminder of how blessed I am to do this for a living.

Steven Curtis Chapman says this past weekend was a bittersweet weekend. Steven Curtis wrapped up the 51st and final show of his the Glorious Unfolding Tour in Flint, Michigan.

Salah member of Todd Smith says there are some advantages to sleeping on the tour bus. He said one of those was still being in his pajamas at 11 a.m..

Artist News March 14, 2014

Phil Wickham is celebrating the six month anniversary of his latest CD. Phil tweeted this week: On the 24th of March “The Ascension” will have been out for exactly 6 months. Phil added that it is hard to put into words how amazing it is to pour your heart into a project and then watch how God chooses to use it in people’s lives. He also thanked everyone for their kind words, stories, and support.

Citizen way member Josh Calhoun says that, even in frigid Wisconsin, plant life has begun to appear. Josh tweeted a picture of the sprouts starting to come up in the transportable boxes placed in the windows of their home.

The Christian music website New Release Tuesday is hoping to start a movement. They tweeted a picture of TobyMac, Kevin Max, and Michael Tait back when they were all together as members of DC Talk. The caption on the picture said End the Intermission! We want DC Talk! Respond on Twitter with the hashtag End the intermission if you agree.

Top Christian artists are weighing in on the question of keeping Christian and secular music separate. TobyMac has long been labeled a pioneer in contemporary Christian music, being the first musician to introduce Christian rapping to the world on a large scale. Toby said he feels the Christian music title hinders artist from impacting the culture. On the other hand, Rebecca St James views secular and gospel music separately. She said quote: I mean, it’s not that the music itself is bad, but the lyrics. It’s the message of the song that I just don’t want to get in my head. That’s why I listen to Christian music. Read the entire article by clicking on the link at

Andrew Peterson is working on the encyclopedia for his Wing Father Saga. After totals in his fundraising project for the final book in the series were exceeded, Andrew promised a creaturepedia with information about each of the creatures in his book series. Andrew says he just finished work on horned hounds and is now working on huppitous gleezes.

The recent Switchfoot tour has been colored by the appearances of protestors at a couple of their shows. The protesters came prepared with large signs and megaphones condemning what they termed “Christian Rock.” But Switchfoot frontman Jon Foreman responded on stage by asking those attending the concert to respond with love. He encouraged them to give the protesters a cup of coffee or even give them a hug. Read the entire report, including video from Jon and also from the protesters, by clicking on the link at

Natalie Grant is encouraging support of a sex trafficking documentary. The In Plain Sight documentary is narrated by Natalie and it’s goal, in association with Abolition International, is to stop sex trafficking in the United States. But efforts to fund the $40,000 project still have a long way to go. The money must be raised by the end of the day today, March 14, but at least report, less than a quarter of the money needed has been raised. Find out more by clicking on the link at

NeedToBreath has announced plans for this years annual celebrity golf tournament. This years event will take place in South Carolina on May 20. Money raised through the charity event will benefit the Palmetto Medical Initiative. PMI builds sustainable medical clinics around the world. Last year more than $100,000 was raised through the golf tournament to construct a medical clinic in Nicaragua. It was dedicated in January. This years tournament proceeds will help build a clinic in Uganda. Read the entire article by clicking on the link at

The latest project from Big Daddy Weave is now available. The “Love Come To Life: The Redeemed Edition” released this week and includes 17 tracks. The special edition album includes all the songs from their latest CD Love Come To Life plus five bonus tracks. There will be both acoustic and live versions of the song “Redeemed” as well their current single “The Only Name”.

The web site Praise Charts is giving you some help in leading several Paul Baloche songs. The web site is giving away lead sheets for six songs from the well known worship leader. Included is help in leading the songs He Is Risen, Our God Saves, A Mighty Fortress, and three more. Access your free download by clicking on the link at

Worship leaders Shane and Shane continue to close in on their goal of raising $100,000 for an online worship initiative. At last report Shane and Shane had raised over $91,000. And there are still two weeks to go in the fundraising effort. Meanwhile Shane and Shane say they are ready to launch the project. 100 songs and 700 training videos on how to play them have already been recorded. Find out more about the worship initiative by clicking on the link at

The latest album from Mikeschair will be available on April the first. Members of the band announced at their new CD All or Nothing is scheduled to release on April the first. They went on to emphasize that even though the release date is on April Fools Day, it is not an April fools joke. Find out more about the latest music from Mikeschair, all or nothing, by clicking on the link at

Jason Gray recently sat down to talk about his latest CD Love Will Have the Final Word. In the interview Jason talks about the making of the album, his thought process behind the entire project, and several of the songs on the new CD. Jason sums up the CD by saying: I need constant reminding of it. Loss and pain and difficulty and regret, these things don’t have to have the last say over our lives. Love gets to have the final say. Read the entire article by clicking on the link at

The Sidewalk Prophets didn’t raise as much as they’d hoped during their Mission Transmission fundraiser but they did go over their interim goal. The guys in the band had hoped to raise at least $20,000 to help fund their transmission replacement project for their touring bus. But they had to raise at least half that amount to receive any of the money. At last report the Sidewalk Prophets Mission Transmission fund raiser had gone $500 over the $10,000 interim goal. The band has had several major problems with their tour bus in 2014, and so went to their fans in February to ask for their help.

Francesca Battistelli is wrapping up her Hands of God Tour with Sanctus Real this weekend. But she won’t have much downtime before heading back out on the road. She’ll be part of the Son of God Tour that kicks off next weekend. The tour will run from March 20 to April 13 a is described as an Immersive music and visual experience celebrating the Life of Christ. In addition to Francesca, the tour will also include The Sidewalk Prophets, Natalie Grant, Chris August, Meredith Andrews, and Jason Gray.

The members of 7eventh Time Down are asking for your prayers. During a recent stop in Indiana someone broke into their van and stole all of their backpacks, along with everything they had inside them. The members of the band are also asking for prayer for the people who took the items.

The group Jars of Clay was in Washington DC this week for a special Blood:Water Mission conference titled h2o:DC. The conference was billed as a different kind of gathering with the goal of bringing clean water and improved sanitation to 768 million people around the world. Jars of Clay performed at the event.

Matthew West is dealing with an injury just days before leaving on the first weekend of his acoustic tour. Matthew tweeted that he had cut his finger with a butter knife while slicing an English muffin just days before the start of his Hello My Name Is acoustic tour. That could cause problems since Matthew plays guitar in his shows, especially when they are acoustic shows. However Matthew promised that, in spite of the injury, the show will go on.

Artist News March 13, 2014

Jimmy Needham is less than $10,000 away from his second Kickstarter goal. A month ago he set out to raise $40,000 to record a new CD called Make the Gospel Rhyme. But with a week left he passed that goal so announced plans to make a second recording if he could raise another $20,000. Jimmy says if he reaches $60,000 he will record a Christmas EP. Find out more by clicking on the link at

After 15 years of reading the Christian music magazine CCM, Jason Gray says he was surprised to see his own face on the cover this month. The March issue of the CCM Magazine looks at Jason’s new CD Love Will Have the Final Word. You can download a free PDF copy by clicking on the link at

Jamie Grace has come a long way. But when you’re still in your early 20’s, looking back isn’t that far. She was reminiscing this week about her first CD, titled Rockstar, recorded in 2010. Jamie said she recorded half of the CD in her dorm room. Since then Jamie has joined TobyMac on a number of tours, quickly becoming a household name in Christian music.

Paul Baloche will be coming out with a new live CD later this year. But he says his goal for the worship CD is not just that it will be listened to, but that the songs on the CD will be sung in local churches around the world. That means he has to do more than just released an audio CD. Paul said he is currently in the process of putting together a new song book to release in connection with the CD coming out in April. The new CD and songbook will both be titled Live.

The Tenth Avenue North’s song Christ Is Risen is one of a number of songs featured on this weeks new album Wow Worship Lime. And Mike Donehay, lead singer of Tenth Avenue North, recently sat down to tell the story behind the song. Find out more about Christ is Risen, on the latest Wow worship CD, by clicking on the link at

Have you taken the Thrive challenge. Casting Crowns is giving you the chance to join lead singer and youth pastor Mark Hall as he teaches through each of the songs on Casting Crown’s new CD. So far teaching sessions are available for two of the songs on the new project. They include the CDs title cut Thrive and the song Dream for You. Mark says that more teaching sessions will be coming. But you can check out what’s available right now by clicking on the link at

The Red Bus project is gearing up to get back on the road on March 18th. The Show Hope Red Bus project will be heading to college campuses across the United States. The double decker bus, turned into a mobile thrift store, will travel from college to college, spreading awareness and raising money for orphan care. Show Hope was started by Steven Curtis and Mary Beth Chapman. You can find out more at

Mandisa is providing more help for her Word Warriors. If you are joining Mandisa in learning a passage of Scripture each month during 2014 you might want to check out her new calendar. She says the Word Warriors calendar is another tool to help fellow Word Warriors memorize a passage of Scripture each month. Check out the calendar by clicking on the link at

The Love Song Couples Getaways will take place later this spring. And you can now win a trip to one of those getaways. Either join Mac Powell of Third Day and Gary Chapman in the Bahamas or Bart Millard of MercyMe and Greg Laurie in Hawaii. Sign up to win the free trip by clicking on the link at

The Hillsong organization is putting together a series of short films about their vision for the church. The first video looks at how it all started. Check out more about Hillsong by clicking on the link at

Jodi King admitted this week that shoes are her love language. The female half of the couple that makes up Love and the Outcome was showing off her latest pair this week. Jodi said they were a present from her husband and her husband definitely knows her love language.

Your wait is nearly over. The new CD called Sovereign from Michael W Smith is scheduled to come out later this spring. Michael says he’s been working on this project for over 2 years and the final preparations are finally being made for its May 13th release.

The first volume of Kevin Max’s is new novel is now available online for free. Fiefdom of Angels Volume One is available as a free download on the NoiseTrade website. It’s the first novel by the lead singer of Audio Adrenaline. Check it out by clicking on the link at

Jenny Simmons is in the early stages of a new album. The Christian artist and former lead singer of Addison Road tweeted this week that she was starting to write music for her next project. No word yet on when the new CD will be available.

The band Hawk Nelson is giving away another song from their CD titled Made. The members of the group are making their song What I’m Looking For available as a free download on the Free CCM website. Access your free copy of the song by clicking on the link at

Passion 2015 won’t take place until for another 9 months and Passion 2014 just wrapped up a month ago. But officials for the Passion conferences say registration for Passion 2015 is already open. Registration for next year’s event for a college students ages 18 to 25 is starting this week. Find out more by clicking on the link at

Selah and Mark Schultz will be kicking off their You Amaze Us tour this weekend. The tour will feature songs from Selah’s new CD called You Amaze Us and also songs from Mark Schultz new Hymns CD. And the members of the tour are asking for your prayers as they travel around the country.

The members of Jars of Clay say this week’s online StageIt concert to benefit the Immunity project has been cancelled. On their website, the band announced at, due to a lack of response, the concert was going to be cancelled. The stage it concerts are going on throughout the year as Jars of Clay celebrates their 20th anniversary. And even though this month’s concert was cancelled, they still encourage you to check out more on the Immunity Project. You can check out details by clicking on the link at

You still have a chance to be part of the Winter Jam Concert Tour Spectacular in 2014. The Winter Jam tour stop this weekend in Lexington, Kentucky will be streamed live. The concert series will start at 6 p.m. Eastern Time on March the 15th. To access your free online ticket, click on the link at

Tour rehearsals kicked off on Wednesday for the Morning Rises tour. The tour that features Aaron Shust, MIKESCHAIR, Johnny Diaz, and Lauren Daigle will start this weekend. And members of MIKESCHAIR are promising that they’ll be providing plenty of pictures. For more on the Morning Rises tour click on the link at

Tiffany Lee says she is developing a new pre-concert routine. The artist that goes by the stage name of Plumb says she is visiting a chiropractor between each of her shows. Tiffany has already fallen twice during concert stops in 2014.

Artist News March 12, 2014

Mandisa say she’s found her new favorite verse. She says contrary to Toby Mac’s assertion, she’s not a morning person. In fact, Mandisa says she wrote the song Good Morning because she needed help getting out of bed in the morning. Because of that, Mandisa says she cracked up when a Twitter friend pointed her to Proverbs 27:14. She says it is now her favorite verse. The verse says: A loud and cheerful greeting early in the morning will be taken as a curse.

Do you believe you have to be awesome to be used by God? Mark Hall is out with second teaching video encouraging you to see how God views you. It’s the second teaching session based on Casting Crowns song Dream for You, from their new CD Thrive. It’s part of a three-part teaching session by the Casting Crowns lead singer. You can check out the first two videos by clicking on the link at

The novel by Audio Adrenaline lead singer Kevin Max is now available on the NoiseTrade web site. Max says the novel is a factious look at the Origin of Angels. Right now it’s only available in digital download format. Find out more at

Natalie Grant is back on the road filming another episode of her reality show called It Takes a Church. This time Natalie is in Southern California. The series is scheduled to air on GSN later this year.

TobyMac has been replaced by Larry the Cucumber from Veggie Tales. Jamie Grace tweeted this week no offense to Toby Mac but my favorite duet ever may be with Larry the Cucumber. You can check out the lyric video called Enough to Share by clicking on the link at

Building 429 will be hosting a live question and answer time on their Facebook page. This Thursday, March the 13th, they’ll be answering your questions and also debuting a brand new music video. The Building 429 Q&A time will take place on their Facebook page at 4 p.m. Central Time on Thursday.

Tenth Avenue North lead singer Mike Donehey is out with a new video journal. Released on the 10th of March, the Tenth Avenue North video journal is titled The Chair. Mike says perspective. He says perspective can change everything. In the video he talks about the perspective we have when we look at those around us. Watch the video journal by clicking on the link at

2014 is off to a rough start for Christian artist Meredith Andrews. She tweeted this week: sicknesses has touched my family way too many times this year. She added: we haven’t been 100 percent since Christmas. The latest illness to hit her family is the stomach bug. Prayers would be appreciated.

A new, live worship project from Paul Baloche will be available on April the first. The Deluxe CD/DVD combo features live performances of new songs recorded around the globe. All also include a congregation composed of worship teams from across Canada. The new CD features of collection of songs meant to be sung by congregations around the world. It features everything from anthems to classic hymns to familiar choruses. Included is the Easter inspired song He is Risen. Find out more about the new CD from Paul Baloche called Live by clicking on the link at

The latest CD from Jason Gray is titled Love Will Have the Final Word. And Jason says the song from the new project that people have commented on most is his song Not Right Here. Check out a video of an acoustic performance of the song and also read more about the entire project by clicking on the link at

Steven Curtis Chapman is cheering on the latest project from his daughter in law Jillian Edwards. The EP titled Daydream came out this week. And it has already become the number one album on iTunes singer/songwriter chart. Steven says the EP features beautiful music from a person with a beautiful heart. The EP is available on iTunes by clicking on the link at

Jars of Clay has released a remix of one of their recent CDs. The CD called in Landia came out in 2013. And now the band has released remixes of 7 songs from that project. You can listen to the remix songs by clicking on the link at

Matthew West will be heading out on his Hello My Name Is acoustic tour this week. He says the goal of the upcoming tour is to give fans a chance to go deeper by bringing life to the testimonies that make up the songs on his latest CD. Matthew talked with the website Breezecast about the tour and touched on the inspiration behind the songs. Read the entire article about Matthew stories and his upcoming tour by clicking on the link at

Dates for passion 2015 have been announced. And another event has been added. In 2014 conferences were held in both Atlanta and in Houston. This year next year a second conference in Atlanta has been added. Passion 2015 official say they’ll hold a passion conference for 18 to 25 year olds in Atlanta on January 2nd through the 4th and then a second conference in Atlanta January 16th thru 18th the third conference will be in Houston January the 30th through February the first 2015

The morning Rises tour will kick off this weekend on the East Coast. The tour features Aaron Shust as the headliner and also includes MIKESCHAIR, Johnny Diaz, and new artist Lauren Daigle. The tour will make 23 stops between now and May the 4th, wrapping up in the southeast.

The two Matts will be in three capital cities in 3 days coming up in May. Matt Redman and Matt Maher will be in Dublin, Belfast, and Edinburgh May 21st 22nd and 23rd.

Artist News March 11, 2014

MIKESCHAIR lead singer Mike Grayson is on a new adventure. He tweeted over the weekend: started the process of buying a house. Mike added: its more stressful than I thought it would be. But still exciting.

A music lesson from Newsboys keyboard player Jeff Frankenstein. Stabbing the cat is musical slang for a guitar solo gone wrong.

Casting Crowns had a chance to fulfil another request from their month of giving prior to their CD release at the end of January. Over the weekend they chatted with a soldier named Eddie serving in Afghanistan. His wife nominated him in Casting Crowns month of giving, requesting that he received a phone call from the members of the band. Casting Crowns members added: we are so thankful for his service and all the men and women serving this great country.

Natalie Grant says it may be difficult to transition back to her normal life after she completes her game show hosting debut. She tweeted a picture of her makeup being done for her over the weekend. Natalie added: my new normal since filming It Takes a Church. Someone to do my hair and makeup everyday. Natalie says: what will I do when I have to go back to doing it myself. She says: a girl could get used to this.

Tiffany Lee is having a rough 2014. The artist that goes by the name Plumb suffered her second fall over the weekend. Earlier in the year she fell backwards off the stage at one of her concert stops but was caught by the fans below and so suffered no injury. This time she wasn’t as fortunate, tweeting a picture of her damaged thumb, hurt in her most recent fall.

TobyMac was talking about his longevity over the weekend. He recently recorded an interview with the Christian music website New Release Tuesday and one of the topics was his 50th birthday coming up in October. TobyMac admitted that age 50 is “a little gross sounding”. But TobyMac shows no sign of going the shuffleboard route. He describes himself as a sneaker freak and his fans say he can still be out there rocking with the young audiences. Read the entire article by clicking on the link at

Robbie Seay is gearing up for another Psalms EP. He said he was in the studio this week starting to record Psalms EP volume 2.

The Christian music website Jesus Freak hideout is giving you the chance to win an autographed CD and autographed poster from Jason Gray. The CD is Jason Grays latest album Love Will have the Final Word. Sign up to enter the drawing by clicking on the link at

The next Wow Worship CD, Wow Worship lime, releases today. It features 9 new recordings including White Flag from Building 429. And lead singer Jason Roy recently sat down to talk about their recording of White Flag and about serving as a worship leader in his local church. Listen to the interview by clicking on the link at

The stars continue to make appearances at Winterjam. Earlier this year Jeremy Lin of the Houston Rockets was on stage to introduce Lecrae during the Winterjam stop in that city. Over the weekend Winterjam was in Oklahoma. And Oklahoma artist Carrie Underwood made a surprise appearance, singing with the group Thousand Foot Krutch.

Want to see a free concert by groups like Third Day, Skillet, Mandisa, Brandon Heath, Kutless or Audio Adrenaline? Food for the Hungry is asking for volunteers at the upcoming concerts they are sponsoring with those groups and more. If you would be interested in serving as a Food for the Hungry volunteer, check out the link at

Mandisa was commenting on her regular appearances with Brandon Heath over the weekend. She says it all started in 2012 when they were both on the Hits Deep tour. And Mandisa said they been on the road together on a regular basis ever since. Last month they were part of the 2014 edition of the Hits Deep Tour. This month both Brandon and Mandisa are touring with Skillet and Third Day. And next month they’ll be reviving the Brandisa tour. Mandisa says Brandon is a little country and she’s a little soul. But together it seems to be working.

Passion artists will again be coming together to celebrate Good Friday in April. The members of the Passion organization announced plans for another Good Friday event at the Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre in Atlanta on April the 18th at 7:30 p.m.. The theme this year will be a contemplation in celebration of the Cross. In attendance will be pastor Louie Giglio along with worship leaders Chris Tomlin, David Crowder, Christy Nockels and Kristian Stanfill. Find out more by clicking on the link at

Artist News March 10, 2014

Sometimes it’s the little things that matter. Newsboys keyboard player Jeff Frankenstein tweeted over the weekend: got a new garbage can for the bus. It’s the kind where you step on the pedal and the lid opens. It’s amazing.

It was a rough weekend for Tiffany Lee. While she was away on tour her husband got the stomach flu and had to be hospitalized. The artist that goes by the name Plumb ask her fans to pray for healing and that the couples children would avoid catching the illness.

Jenny Simmons have a lot of down time over the weekend. She was at the DMV updating her drivers license information on Saturday. But Jenny said it took 4 hours for her to finally get the job done. Then when she called the city commissioners to file a complaint, she was on hold for another hour. Jenny recently moved to Nashville and clearly is not impressed with the efficiency of the towns Government operation.

The Christian music website New Release Tuesday has hit a milestone. Their interview with Britt Nicole about her song Ready or Not was their 500th song devotional interview. You can check out the interview by clicking on the link at

Jimmy Needham recorded a video over the weekend thanking his fans for helping him reach his Kickstarter goal. The Christian artist was attempting to raise $40,000 to make a new CD called Make the Gospel Rhyme. And with 7 days left in the Kickstarter fundraising project, Jimmy tweeted that they had reached the goal. Now he’s going for a second goal of an additional $20,000 so he’ll be able to also record a Christmas EP. Find out more by clicking on the link at

Paul Baloche was reminded over the weekend that life is fragile. He said that just a week ago he was on the same flight as the one out of Malaysia that disappeared over the weekend. Paul said he is grateful for his safety and is praying for the families who lost loved ones. He added live everyday like its your last. Love God, love people.

The Sidewalk Prophets are asking for your help as they wrap up their Mission Transmission fundraiser. The guys in the band are hoping to raise at least $10,000 to help fund their transmission replacement project for their touring bus. With 5 days left they were just 800 dollars away from their intermediate goal. But the members of the band say at least $22,000 is actually needed to complete the project. Find out how you can help by clicking on the link at

Do you know what tomorrow is? It’s Tenth on the 10th. Tune in to Tenth Avenue North’s twitter and facebook feeds all day to see what they have planned for you.

The Dare To Be concert series wrapped up this past weekend after 13 stops around the nation since start of 2014. Dare To Be featured Christian artist Natalie Grant and Bible teacher and author Charlotte Gambill. Over the last couple of months, the Dare to Be series sold out 9 of 13 of venues and reached nearly 17,000 women. Officials added that almost 1,500 of those women came forward, making a commitment to Christ.

Francesca Battistelli was asking for some grace over the weekend. She tweeted I’ve spilled food on my show clothes three times tonight. So no pointing and laughing well I’m on stage.

An informal challenge from Third Day’s Tia Anderson. He tweeted over the weekend: excited that I get to share the stage with Mandisa during the coming weeks. Tia added: I’ll do Zumba, Mandisa’s exercise method of choice, if she’ll try CrossFit with me.

Jason Gray was thanking fans in two communities for their patience over the weekend. He said 1,700 people showed up for their concert in San Antonio on Saturday. But the venue only had 1,000 seats. Jason said they had to seat people on the stage as well as in an overflow room. Bands would go and sing in the overflow while the other bands were on stage in the main auditorium. The following night in Denver brought more of the same. Jason says 3,300 people showed up for the show. He says they had 450 people in an overflow room in that community. So the bands again rotated between the overflow room and the main room, allowing everyone to experience the concert.

Want an up-close-and-personal view of a Building 429 concert? Check out the video by lead singer Jason Roy recorded while the group was on stage at Asbury University over the weekend. Jason borrowed a phone from one of the fans next to the stage and filmed 60 seconds of concert footage before returning to the phone to its excited owner. Check out the video Jason recorded by clicking on the link at

The Passion 2014 global tour kicks off later this month. Members of the Passion organization will start off in the United Arab Emirates on March the 20th. They will also make stops in Delhi, Manila, and Singapore before wrapping up in Honolulu on April the first.

The members of MercyMe were in a little different type of venue over the weekend. And they said it was a nice change from their average work day. MercyMe play their first ever concert at an NBA game. They were the featured artist at the Milwaukee Bucks faith and family night.

The Christian band Lecrae had a special guest to introduce them at this weekend’s Winterjam tour stop in Houston. Houston Rockets player Jeremy Lin stop by to introduce the band during their set on stage.

Artist News for March 7th, 2014

Steven Curtis and Mary Beth Chapman recently got pictures in the mail of
their daughter Stevey Joy in the midst of a gymnastics routine. And one
picture prompted Mary Beth to comment: WOW AND OUCH! Check out the
picture of Stevey Joy doing the splits in mid air by clicking on the
link at
Got this in the mail.... WOW AND OUCH!  @steveyjoychapman I love you!  #proudmom

Casting Crowns member Megan Garrett is signing off. In her last twitter
post she commented: I want more of Jesus for the next 40 days. And with
that comment, she signed off, taking a break from social media.

Paul Baloche is getting away for a little rest and relaxation with
someone special. The worship leader tweeted that he was celebrating 27
years of marriage this month. And in celebration he and his wife are
getting away for a ski vacation.

Natalie Grant is back home after another round of filming for her
reality show It Takes a Church. The latest episode was in South
Carolina. Natalie tweeted on Wednesday that she’d wrapped up filming and
was headed for home. The show, hosted by Natalie, will air on GSN
network later this year.

The Passion Church will hold another Lift: A Worship Leader Collective
later this year. Chris Tomlin announced earlier this week that the
leader collective will be held at the Passion City Church May the 8th
and the 9th. The first such gathering was held last year. At the same
time Matt Redman recorded a live album with those in attendance. Find
out more about this years event by clicking on the link at

Shane and Shane’s Worship Kickstarter project is off to a very good
start. In just over one week the worship initiative has raised more than
70,000 dollars. They’re looking for $100,000 to start the online worship
initiative, geared toward helping worship leaders to lead in their local
church. Find out more by clicking on the link at

The Sidewalk Prophets are just days away from wrapping up their Mission
Transmission fundraising project. But they still have quite a ways to go
to raise the $17,000 needed to replace the transmission in their touring
bus affectionately known as Bubba. At last report 82-hundred dollar had
been raised. But that means nearly 9,000 dollars is still needed. If
you’d like to help go to

In 2008 Audio Adrenaline lead singer Kevin Max was featured in a movie
called The Imposter. Kevin tweeted that this week he re-watched the
movie with his kids. He said his kids wanted to see their daddy on
Netflix. But Kevin went on to add: now I know why Johnny Depp doesn’t
watch himself.

Brandon Heath needs your help. He and Jars of Clay are taking part in a
friendly competition. Both formed teams to help raise money for water
projects in Zambia, Africa. The goal is to provide clean water for 1,000
residence in that country. Both Brandon and Jars of Clay recruiting
people to join them in giving up their favorite drink for a little over
1 month to raise money for the project. But this the guys from Jars of
Clay tweeted Brandon: so far we have 67 people on our team. They added:
you have only 9. If you’d like to join Brandon in this friendly
competition click on the link at

The Afters song Moments Like This has been selected by NBC as the
feature song for their We Create Moments promo campaign. The song aired
frequently during NBC’s promo ads around the Winter Olympics in
February. And network officials say it will continue to run alongside
other programming in the weeks ahead.

A new episode of Beth Redman’s podcast now available for free on iTunes.
The podcast by the wife of worship leader Matt Redman is titled Ruth and
Naomi and features music by fellow worship leader Christy Nockels.
Access the free podcast by clicking on the link at

New Music/Free Music/Giveaways

The website All About Worship is giving you a chance to win Jason Grey’s
new CD Love Will Have the Final Word. You can sign up at the website by
clicking on the link at But the deadline to
enter is March the 11th so don’t wait too long.

Aaron Shust is back in the studio. He was again working on his new
Christmas record this week. Aaron tweeted that he tackled vocals for
both an anthem and a lullaby. The Christmas CD is scheduled to come out
later this year.

The new CD from MercyMe is titled Welcome to the New. It comes out on
April the 8th. But in advance of the release, Bart Millard, lead singer
for MercyMe, released of blog called The New Bart, not no longer legally
bound. Also in the blog was the first release of one of the songs on the
new CD. It’s called Wishful Thinking. And you can listen to the audio of
the song by clicking on the link at


The movie Son of God released in theaters last weekend. But if you are
one of the few that haven’t heard about the movie you might want to
check out the trailer. It features the song Crave by the group for King
and Country. Check it out by clicking on the link at

Phil Wickham is out with a new road video. This week Phil recorded a
video from Cleveland, Tennessee at LeE University. Watch the video by
clicking on the link at

Kutless was in the studio recently performing a live acoustic version of
their new song Never To Late. Check out the recording of the performance
by clicking on the link at

Humorous Tweets

Need a laugh? Bob Smiley was recently the featured comedian on the Daren
Streblow comedy show. You can check out Bob’s performance by clicking on
the link at

Tours/ Concerts

Matthew West was a guest artist during this week’s Winter Jam concert
stop in Fort Worth, Texas. Matthew said he had a blast joining his
friends but it was for one night only. Matthew is just coming off a
concert tour with TobyMac and his Hits Deep Tour with Tobymac, Mandisa,
Brandon Heath, and Matt Maher.

Jamie Grace is kicking off her first headlining tour this weekend. The
Do Life Big tour also includes her band call The Boys, her sister
Morgan, and the band called Now that Jamie manages.

Building 429 guitarist Aaron Branch is back in Wilmore, Kentucky. Aaron
tweeted that he was excited about Building 429’s show this week in the
town. That’s because they were playing at Hughes Auditorium at Asbury
College, Aaron’s alma madder, and a venue he has played in many times.
Aaron said it brought back a lot of memories and many hilarious stories.

7eventh Time Down recently announced that they will be joining the
Newsboys on both their spring and fall runs of the “We Believe Tour”.
The spring run will begin on April 12th. The band is currently on their
first headlining “Just Say Jesus” Tour and will also be playing at
numerous festivals, water parks, and amusement parks throughout the

Artist News for March 6th, 2014

About the Artists

Natalie Grant: It’s easy to say “of-course I worship him exclusively!”
But when I’m honest, sometimes I don’t even realize that I’m chasing so
many other things: success, acceptance, balance, the worship of “self”
just to name a few… And I’m often so busy working FOR God, that I
neglect just worshipping Him for who He is and spending time WITH God.

The weather roller coaster is getting to Mercyme’s Robby Shaffer. He
tweeted that he recently watched his son play baseball in 80° weather on
day and was slipping and sliding on a frozen road at 19° the next.

Francesca Battistelli sat down recently to talk about her song Write
Your Story. She told the Christian music web site New Release Tuesday:
the idea behind this song is that I want to be a vessel for God, I want
to be an open book, and I want my life to be available to Him for any
turn that He wants it to take, and write any story that He wants to
write. Read more by clicking on the link at

What do the two frontmen of Audio Adrenaline have in common? They are
both going Hollywood! Former lead singer Mark Stuart and current front
man Kevin Max will both be part of the movie As Dreamers Do. The movie
explores the early life of Walt Disney. Mark Stuart plays the part of
Disney’s father. And Kevin Max plays a Red Cross Instructor. The movie
releases May 2 of this year.

Avalon members Jeremi and Amy Richardson have put together a blog to
help you understand the depth of Ash Wednesday. They discuss everything
from what it is, to how it got it’s name, to the history of the day.
Find out more by clicking on the link at

Darlene Zschech is out with a blog update as she continues to walk
through her cancer journey. Earlier this week she wrote that, as she
heads into her third round of chemo, she was praising God that she’d
reached the halfway point. Darlene says this entire journey has truly
been a mind game, keeping her MIND focused on all God says, instead of
how she is feeling. Darlene is receiving treatment for breast cancer.
Read her entire blog by clicking on the link at

A friendly competition is developing between Jars of Clay and Brandon
Heath. Both have formed teams as they help to raise money to help fund
clean water projects in Zambia. The goal is to provide clean water for
1,000 residents of Zambia, Africa by giving up your favorite drink from
March 5 to April 15. And they’re are inviting you to join them if you
like a little competition for a good cause. Click on the link at to pick your favorite artist and join their

KJ-52 was part of a team that broke a world record earlier this year. He
and a team of fellow rappers recently broke the world record for the
longest team freestyle. Held at Crossover Church in Tampa, Florida, the
crew rapped for 13 hours straight.

Several Christian artists were honored last night at the Seasac
Christian music awards. Mikeschair lead singer Mike Grayson was honored
for the groups song All I Can Do. Josh from Citizenway received the
performance award for the groups new song How Sweet the Sound. And Hawk
Nelson’s Jon Steingard was honored for his first number one song as a
writer, the groups song Words.

Ben Shive has been playing keyboard for Andrew Peterson for 12 years.
But that string is now over. Ben played his last show as Andrew
Peterson’s full-time right-hand man earlier this month in Greeley,
Colorado. Read more in a blog by Ben talking about the last 12 years and
being a right hand man to Andrew. Click on the link at

New Music/Free Music/Giveaways

Michael W. Smith has been talking for some time about his next project
titled Sovereign. It’s scheduled for release on May 13. But you won’t
have to wait that long for new music from the long time Christian
artist. Michael this week announced plans to release a CD titled Hymns
exclusively at Cracker Barrel Old Country Store locations and on iTunes
on March 24. The CD will feature some of the most popular classic

The new Hymns CD from Mark Schultz is scheduled for release on March 25.
But you can now pre-order a signed copy of the project on his web site.
Check out more by clicking on the link at

Passion this week released information about their upcoming CD. The CD
made up of songs from Passion 2014 will release on April 29. And it will
be called Passion: Take It All.


The latest CD from Casting Crowns is titled Thrive. And the members of
the band recently sat down to talk about what Thriving means to them.
Watch the video and find out what they had to say by clicking on the
link at

Paul Baloche recently recorded a short video talking about his new song
He Is Risen. The video was recorded on the Great Wall of China during
Paul’s visit to the country. Watch the video by clicking on the link at

Jason Gray released his latest CD this week. And at the same time he
also premiered his new music video for the song Every Act of Love. Watch
the video by clicking on the link at

Michael Sweet of Stryper is out with a music video for their song I’m
Not Your Suicide. Watch the video by clicking on the link at

Humorous Tweets

Recently seen on twitter: That awkward moment when you realize Colton
Dixon’s hair is like that on purpose.

Tours/ Concerts

Now that you’ve seen the Son of God movie, join Christian artists for
the Son of God Tour. The tour will run from March 20 to April 13 and
include Francesca Battistelli, The Sidewalk Prophets, Natalie Grant,
Chris August, Meredith Andrews, and Jason Gray. It’s described as an
Immersive music and visual experience celebrating the Life of Christ.


Chris Tomlin: Our world doesn’t need more critics; it needs more
servants. Anything you can do today to serve?

Family Life Today’s Dennis Rainey: Are you being faithful in the small
tasks God has appointed you over? Have you compromised lately?

Jonny Diaz: Realizing how incredibly inadequate you are is the first
step in letting God use you for BIG things.

Casting Crowns Mark Hall: Religion is like a flower made of glass.
Almost real. Almost alive. Jesus is better than religion.