NASHVILLE, TN – Reigning Dove Awards’ “New Artist of the Year,” for KING & COUNTRY, just received an additional honor Down Under as they garnered the “Artist of the Year” title from Australia’s national Christian music airplay chart, The Rock Across Australia (TRAA). In 2013, for KING & COUNTRY generated the highest airplay by a Christian act spending 51 of 52 weeks on the chart and multiple weeks in the Top 10 with songs “Middle of Your Heart” and “Hope Is What We CRAVE” from their critically-acclaimed debut album Crave. The Australian-born duo is currently gearing up to head out on Casting Crowns’ “Thrive Tour” on February 20 for 33 dates through May 3.
For King & Country
Carrying a name that evokes substance and a sense of purpose, for KING & COUNTRY make their debut with music that more than lives up to their clever moniker. Enveloping their insightful lyrics in a sea of ear-grabbing melodies, brothers Joel and Luke have forged a distinctive sound that has earned them an enthusiastic fan base as well as the respect of industry professionals who keep tapping their music for use in high profile TV shows. Together, Joel and Luke ignite each other’s individual passions to form a unique, distinctive voice that blends into simmering sibling harmony, unrivaled by any other collaborative group to date.
Born in Sydney, Australia and relocating with their family to Nashville, TN, Joel and Luke remember music being a constant presence in their life. Growing up in a large family of seven kids, the siblings began their creative experimentation early on, soaking up life experiences that would influence their musical future.
“Our father was a promoter in Australia and so we grew up as a musically-centered family. I remember going to these rock shows, sitting on his shoulders, plugging my ears. It was very influential at an early age and I saw the power of music and how a melody fused with a lyric can impact someone’s life,” recalls Joel. “Honestly, in a lot of ways I feel like music chose me and as I grew older, I made a clear decision to fully lean into it.”
The group’s strengths are showcased not only through their voices, but their name as well. The name, ‘for KING & COUNTRY,’ was decided on after several attempts to find a name that appropriately encompasses who they are as musicians as well as their passionate personalities.
“While working on our debut record, I came up with the idea of calling us ‘All the Kings Men,’ but it just didn’t fit exactly with what we were looking for,” said Luke. “We were in the studio with our producer and he said, ‘what about for king and country?’ The history of that phrase is that back in the olden days, the British would go into battle shouting, chanting, ‘For King and Country,’ sort of as an anthem of fighting for something that they believed wholeheartedly in. We all looked at each other in the studio and we just knew that was it.”
With tracks produced by Shaun Shankel, Aqualung and Ben Glover, for KING & COUNTRY’s debut album, Crave, is a vibrant collection of songs, marked by emotional honesty and a riveting transparency. The first single, “Busted Heart (Hold On to Me)” is among the duo’s newer compositions and was inspired from a conversation on the brokenness that every person feels at some point in their life.
“There comes those defining moments in each of our lives where we so severely need someone to hold on to us,” explains Joel. “It seems we are all, in different ways, shapes and forms, busted to some degree. This song is an honest confessional of: ‘I can’t do this thing called life on my own. I need something, or more specifically, someone greater than myself to hold on to me.”
for KING & COUNTRY’s music continues to gain momentum with fans and peers alike as several album tracks have already been featured in primetime television spots. “Love’s to Blame” and “People Change” have been featured on the popular The CW series, “The Vampire Diaries” and “Light It Up” and “Sane” have been heard on the Lifetime network’s “Drop Dead Diva.”
The song “Light It Up,” a tangible anthem for the group, was inspired by a friend of theirs who has had a long standing struggle with depression.
“For a time, our friend lived in a house where he would stuff blankets in the windows, switch off the lights and live for days at a time alone and in literal darkness,” says Luke. “We wrote this song for him, but for the longest time couldn’t work up the courage to tell him. Partly because it was his favorite tune and also because we were afraid of how he would handle it.”
When Joel and Luke finally worked up the courage to tell him, their friend stood up, walked out of the room, got in his car and drove off. Roughly 20 minutes passed until he called them up and with tears in his voice saying, “Thank you for writing that song for me. It moves me, encourages me, it gives me hope.”
Poignant stories and experiences like these are merely one of the many that spark for KING & COUNTRY’s underlying message and what ultimately drives both Joel and Luke in the authenticity behind their music and lyrics.
“We want to deliver a message that is about believing in something much bigger than oneself,” explains Luke. “The title track of the album has a line in the chorus that very plainly says, ‘hope is what we crave.’ You can confidently go through the ups and downs in your life because you know that life isn’t all about you and what you do but rather the hope and salvation of Christ.”
“We want to be known for writing music that is authentic, real and from the heart,” adds Joel. “Music has been a very therapeutic thing for us. There’s a lot of blood, sweat and tears that went into this record and what spurred us on is this whole idea that we can make a difference. That music, our music, can have the power to impact someone’s life for the better.”
NASHVILLE, TN – The Gospel Music Association (GMA) announced today, from Allen Arena on the campus of Lipscomb University, the nominees in 42 categories for the 44th Annual GMA Dove Awards. The awards show will take place on Tuesday, October 15, 2013 at Allen Arena on the campus of Lipscomb University in Nashville, TN at 7:30pm CT. The show will be broadcast on Monday, October 21st at 8:00ET exclusively on the UP! Television Network. Voting for the final winners will run from September 3rd through September 24th. All tabulations certified by the independent accounting firm, Kraft CPAs PLLC.
Additionally, key partners for this year’s show were announced including Food for the Hungry, Official Humanitarian Partner; Cantinas Ranch, Nominee Lunch Partner; Kia Motors, Dove Cares Red Carpet and HearitFirst.com, Technology Partner. Hearitfirst.com will live stream the red carpet, pre-telecast and other non-broadcast show activities.
The nominees in 22 categories were revealed today during the press conference and the remaining categories can be found at www.doveawardsvoting.com/nominees. Included here are five of the top categories announced today.
Song of the Year
“10,000 Reasons (Bless the Lord)”, Matt Redman, (writers) Matt Redman, Jonas Myrin
“All I Can Do (Thank You)”, Mikeschair, (writers) Mike Grayson, Ben Glover, David Garcia
“Break Every Chain”, Tasha Cobbs, (writer) Will Reagan
“Forgiveness”, Matthew West, (writer) Matthew West
“From My Rags To His Riches”, Devin McGlamery featuring Dailey & Vincent, (writers) Ernie Haase, Wayne Haun, Joel Lindsey
“Greatly Blessed, Highly Favored”, Gaither Vocal Band, (writers) Larry Gatlin, Bill Gaither
“Hold On”, Canton Junction, (writer) Gerald Crabb
“I’m Learning”, Aaron & Amanda Crabb, (writers) Lee Black, Michael Fordinal, Kenna West
“Live Like That”, Sidewalk Prophets, (writers) Dave Fray, Ben McDonald, Ben Glover
“Need You Now (How Many Times)”, Plumb, (writers) Tiffany Arbuckle Lee, Luke Sheets, Christa Wells
“Not For a Moment (After All)”, Meredith Andrews, (writers) Meredith Andrews, Jacob Sooter, Mia Fieldes
“One Thing Remains”, Kristian Stanfill, (writers) Brian Johnson, Christa Black Gifford, Jeremy Riddle
“Redeemed”, Big Daddy Weave, (writers) Mike Weaver, Benji Cowart
“Sometimes I Wonder”, Ernie Haase & Signature Sound, (writers) Ernie Haase, Wayne Haun, Joel Lindsey
“Take Him To The Place”, Aaron & Amanda Crabb, (writers) Aaron Crabb, Amanda Crabb
“Take Me to the King”, Tamela Mann, (writer) Kirk Franklin
“The Proof of Your Love”, for King and Country, (writers) Joel Smallbone, Fred Williams, Luke Smallbone, Ben Glover, Mia Fieldes, Johnathan Lee
“What The Blood Is For”, Jason Crabb, (writers) Ronnie Freeman, Tony Wood
“Where I Belong”, Building 429, (writers) Jason Roy, Jason Ingram
“Whom Shall I Fear (God of Angel Armies)”, Chris Tomlin, (writers) Chris Tomlin, Ed Cash, Scott Cash
“Why Can’t We”, The Isaacs, (writers) Rebecca Isaacs Bowman, Sonya Isaacs, Jimmy Yeary
Inspirational Film of the Year
Amazing Love: The Story of Hosea, (director) Kevin Downes, (producers) Daryl LeFever, Rich Christiano
Christmas With A Capital C, (director) Helmut Schleppi, (producers) Michael Scott, James Chankin, Peter Yoder
Courageous, (director) Alex Kendrick, (producer) Stephen Kendrick
Jerusalem Countdown, (director) Harold Cronk, (producers) James Chankin, Michael Scott, Matthew Tailford, David A.R. White
Love Begins, (director) David S. Cass Sr., (producers) Erik Heiberg, Lincoln Lageson
MONUMENTAL: In Search of America’s National Treasure, (director) Duane Barnhart, (producers) Duane Barnhart, Kirk Cameron, Angela Alvarex
October Baby, (directors) Andrew & Jon Erwin, (producers) Dan Atchison, Justin Tolley, Jon Erwin, Andy Erwin
The Bible, (directors) Tony Mitchell, Crispin Reece, Christopher Spencer, (producers) Lightworkers Media, Hearst Productions
Travel The Road: Season One, (directors) Will Decker, Tim Scott, (producers) Will Decker, Tim Scott
Seven Days In Utopia, (director) Matt Russell, (producers) James Berman, Mark G. Mathis
“Congratulations to all the nominees of the 44th Annual GMA Dove Awards,” said Jackie Patillo, executive director of the Gospel Music Association. “The Doves celebrate the impact of all genres of Gospel music, recognizing talent, ministry and outstanding performances. The excitement and energy of the Dove Awards show is something we all look forward to – and this year will prove to be better than ever.
“We appreciate Lipscomb University hosting our awards, especially as we bring the show back to Music City. It is also an honor to have Mayor Dean be a part of today’s celebration,” continued Patillo.
Out of 42 categories, nominees in 22 of the categories were announced today in Nashville, Tennessee where such dignitaries as Nashville Mayor Karl Dean, Lipscomb University President L. Randolph Lowery, and Nashville’s Convention and Visitor’s Bureau President Butch Spyridon and numerous GMA board members were in attendance. The press conference was hosted by a formidable list of Dove and GRAMMY nominees and past winners including Francesca Battistelli, Jason Crabb, Dailey and Vincent, James Fortune, Mandisa, Rhett Walker, Tenth Avenue North, Lady Shaunte of 760AM The Gospel, Les Butler of Solid Gospel 105FM, Nashville’s 94FM The Fish Doug Griffin and Jaci Velasquez as well as other industry leaders. The GMA Dove Awards, Gospel music’s biggest night of the year, will feature artists from every style of Gospel/Christian music coming together to celebrate the impact of its music.
The 44th Annual GMA Dove Awards will be held on Tuesday, October 15, 2013 at 8:30 p.m. EST with red carpet reception ceremonies starting at 6:30 p.m. EST at Lipscomb University’s Allen Arena in Nashville, Tennessee. The evening will be full of rare and exciting performances showcasing the genre’s hottest, most diverse artists and televised live nationwide exclusively on UP TV.
Salem Communications’ Nashville-based print and radio media outlets (including CCM Magazine, 94FM The Fish and Today’s Christian Music) will offer an unprecedented look inside the Dove Awards, enabling fans a special view inside the industry’s most celebrated event. “We are thrilled to be a partner with the GMA in the 44th Annual GMA Dove Awards and will provide exclusive content across our Christian music networks, publications and Nashville-based radio station. The fans will be able to follow the week of activity and special behind-the-scenes moments like never before” said Michael Miller, Vice President and General Manager of Salem Publishing, Nashville’s 94FM the Fish and Salem Music Network.
“We are deeply rooted in Christ-centered and positive content, always striving to provide a close connection to the artists for the fans. Heartifirst.com is honored to once again partner with the GMA to bring real-time content directly to the fans during the industry’s most treasured event” says Hearitfirst.com General Partner James Ackerman.
Dove Awards will be handed out in 42 categories. The Dove Award nominations go to recordings released during the eligibility period of November 1, 2011through April 30, 2013 and voted on by the members of the GMA. The complete list of nominations is available at www.doveawardsvoting.com/nominees. This year’s press conference was streamed live on www.hearitfirst.com.
Nashville, Tenn – Winners were announced on Saturday evening at the K-LOVE Fan Awards, the first ever fan-voted awards show in Christian music history. The K-LOVE Fan Awards were held in front of a sold out audience at Nashville's historic Ryman Auditorium and heard live on air on the K-LOVE radio network. The entire weekend, tapped as the Ultimate Fan Experience, sold out weeks earlier. This inaugural three-day event, which brought together the biggest names in Christian music, sports, books and movies, began Friday, May 31 and culminated yesterday, Sunday, June 2, highlighted by Saturday’s Awards show.
The K-LOVE Fan Awards awarded TobyMac the biggest honor of the evening, Artist of the Year. The official list of winners is below:
Artist of the Year: TobyMac
Male Artist of the Year: Chris Tomlin
Female Artist of the Year: Kari Jobe
Group/Duo of the Year: Casting Crowns
Breakthrough Artist of the Year: For King & Country
Song of the Year: “Redeemed” by Big Daddy Weave
Sports Impact: Mike Fisher, Nashville Predators
Movie Impact: “Courageous,” Alex Kendrick, director/co-writer
Book Impact: "The Love Dare" by Alex Kendrick & Stephen Kendrick
Numerous and unforgettable performances, appearances and interviews were held throughout the evening. Highlights were fan favorites such as TobyMac, Amy Grant and Steven Curtis Chapman, Michael W. Smith who performed with Missy Robertson of "Duck Dynasty," Third Day, Matthew West, Casting Crowns, Natalie Grant with Kari Jobe, Audio Adrenaline, Newsboys, Matt Maher with Brandon Heath and Bart Millard of MercyMe, Francesca Battistelli, and so much more. Special Q&A's were held throughout the evening with sports figures, including Mike Fisher, Hugh Freeze, Alfred Morris, Barrett Jones and Jason Hanson.
"The hope of the K-LOVE Fan Awards was to have the fans acknowledge members of the Christian community for their impact of serving the Kingdom through their lives," shares Mike Novak, K-LOVE's President & CEO. "By all measure, it was a huge success!"
K-LOVE’s Chief Creative Officer David Pierce adds, "It was awesome to see the creative and sports communities come together and celebrate excellence that impacts our culture for Christ. Each of our nominees and performers brought their incredible God given talents while connecting with our amazing fans!"
The K-LOVE Fan Awards mission was to create a fan experience that celebrates and promotes artists, athletes, authors and entertainers who, with excellence, engage and impact popular culture for Jesus Christ. Surrounding the K-LOVE Fan Awards was the Ultimate Fan Experience, with Nashville’s famed Gaylord Opryland Hotel & Resort as the home base. The fans who joined this experience received tickets to the Awards show, a two-night stay at Opryland, dinner with the K-LOVE staff and friends, a weekend kick-off concert, an exclusive meet & greet, and much more.
The 2013 K-LOVE Fan Awards and Ultimate Fan Experience was a John Sanders LLC/World Hope Event and was presented by Pepsi along with World Vision. The 2nd Annual K-LOVE Fan Awards is slated for June 1, 2014. For more information, please visit KLOVEFanAwards.com.
ABOUT K-LOVE K-LOVE plays positive, encouraging contemporary Christian music with a message designed to draw people toward an authentic relationship with God while living out real life in the real world. The radio network has 446 signals in 47 states with an estimated weekly audience of 14 million. Now with their first-ever Fan Awards, their mission is to create a unique and fun fan experience that celebrates and promotes artists, athletes, authors and entertainers, who, with excellence, engage and impact popular culture for Jesus Christ.