Christian Music Monthly: June

Lead Story: What’s Up With: Matthew West
Brief Bits

*Nashville-based Christian music distributor TAG Artist Group has
added six-time Dove Award winner Phil Keaggy to its roster of
artists. His new CD, “Freehand: Acoustic Sketches 2,” which includes
classic hits such as “What a Day,” “Your Love Broke Through”
and “Salvation Army Band,” will be released to Christian retail in
July, along with a new live DVD titled “Philly Live.”
*As he continues work on his upcoming summer new release, platinum-
selling artist Kirk Franklin has added yet another duty to his
already full plate of activities: blogging. Franklin plans to use
his blog, located at his website, to communicate
with his fans and share about his personal, professional and
spiritual experiences. Franklin will soon be hitting the road in
support of the forthcoming release, with upcoming key performances at
the Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship International Conference,
July 14-15, and T.D. Jakes’ Mega Fest in Atlanta, August 3-5, where
Franklin will headline the kick-off concert at Phillips Arena.
*The national release date for “Uncommon Days,” the debut from
Circleslide, has been postponed due to some exciting new developments
taking place with their distribution. Because of the
remarkable “buzz” surrounding the band and its debut album,
Centricity Records has made the decision to delay the June 21st
release date, in order to maximize significant new opportunities that
will necessitate this change. Additional information on Circleslide
can be found at or
*Nebraska-based rock band Casting Pearls has joined Inpop Records’
roster and will release its self-titled label debut on August 16th.
Releasing with a limited edition CD/DVD package, the CD will feature
10 new studio cuts. The DVD, a full-length concert taped live in
front of a sold-out crowd, showcases Casting Pearls electrifying
stage show. The band is fronted by newsboys guitarist Bryan Olesen
and will open for the newsboys on select dates this summer and fall.
*Worship leader and prolific songwriter Kate Miner has a new CD on
Floodgate Records called “Prodigal Martha.” Produced by David Miner
(Elvis Costello, T-Bone Burnett), the new album was recorded in early
2005 in Nashville. A host of amazing players participated in the
recording of the project, including Phil Keaggy, Ramy Antoun (Seal),
Gary Burnette (John Wesley Harding), and Steve Hindalong (God of
Wonders, City on a Hill). “While doing this record, the Lord showed
me that all the good I was doing was actually pulling me from Him,”
says Miner. I was more concerned with doing the right things instead
of building that relationship. And the beauty of worship music is
that no matter where you go, someone gets free. Too often, it’s the
only part of the day that is just about God. But amazing things
happen when people get together and are ready for worship.”
*Beatmart Recordings’ “Best of the Submissions” is back with the
latest offering of the hottest hip-hop tracks around. “Best of the
Submissions Vol. 2” offers a 25-song sampling from some of the best
signed and unsigned emcees in the biz, including Bobby Bishop, Rob
Hodge and Fresh Digress. The project also includes the top three
songs that were submitted to and voted on by fans in
2004. Like its predecessor, “Vol. 2” includes a special feature that
grants access to a secret section of, allowing aspiring
artists to post their original music for a chance to be chosen by
fans for the next mixtape.
*Jive/Verity Records recording artist Tonex has shocked many again
with a stunning performance of “Alive 2” on the 36th Annual GMA Music
Awards. The show is being televised throughout June and July 2005.
Check your local TV listings for upcoming dates and times, and tune
in to see the outrageous clothing he’s wearing—a long fur coat with a
light brown razor-cut wig topped with a three-tier diamond choker.
Pimped out if you ask me! About his image, Tonex said, “What you wear
on the outside does not dictate who you are on the inside. Do not
judge a book by its cover. God looks at the heart and man only looks
at the outside.”
If you want to know why the title of Disciple’s new gospel hip-hop
CD is “Engraved 4-9-1-6,” find out more about this talented guy at
Laura Agee Interviews…North of OK
GospelMusicForum.Com is the place for music fans, musicians,
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opinions, news and more. Become a member for free at
People Are Noticing: Brian Welch
Ex-Korn Guitarist Brian “Head” Welch, known for his recent conversion
to Christianity, has been actively working on his record. When he’s
not recording, Welch is spending time helping get kids off the
streets via HEAD HOME projects designed to help and call attention to
impoverished youth.
“Throughout all of my life I have always had a heart for people that
are hurting, especially those that have no one to help them. My eyes
have been opened to children on the street and I feel like, for me,
they are the ones I want and need to help,” he says.
Welch has linked up with new manager Steve Delaportas, of Fortitude
Films, to develop his musical career, launch his upcoming documentary
on his life, and partner with him on his HEAD HOME projects.
Delaportas has provided funding and assistance to successfully help
orphans countrywide in India. More than 1000 children are already
being housed, trained and educated. With Delaportas’ track record of
success in India, Welch will focus HEAD HOME on helping introduce
leper children, as well as those sold into brothels, back into the
community there.
Welch and Delaportas, as well as Welch’s documentary crew, will be
traveling to cities in India, like Bombay, Kolkata, Balasore, and
Kurseong. Updates of their journey can be viewed at Welch’s
If you like the sweet harmonies of Boyz II Men and Take 6, then
you will definitely want to add Acappella’s latest offering, “Heaven
And Earth,” to your CD collection. Visit today if
you appreciate extraordinary singing!
Encounter Ontario Debuts
Remember when everyone rocked a WWJD? bracelet…well now it’s time
for “Jesus Rocks” gear and items, including shirts for humans, a
shirt for dogs, a pillow, a teddy bear and a clock that lets the
world know you think “Jesus Rocks.” Available exclusively
What’s Up With: David Phelps


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