Rarely has a new band delivered an album with more emotional punch than Tenth Avenue Northâ€™s 2008 debut Over and Underneath. Musically inventive and lyrically compelling, the song collection helped earn the band its prestigious New Artist of the Year accolade at the 40th Annual GMA Dove Awards, one element that propelled the band to headliner status for the all of 2009. As evidenced by immediate impact at radio and at iTunes this week, Tenth Avenue Northâ€™s follow up The Light Meets the Dark is proving to be one of the most highly anticipated albums of 2010.
With one listen to The Light Meets the Dark, it is obvious Mike Donehey, (lead vocals/acoustic guitar), Jason Jamison (drummer) and Jeff Owen (electric guitar/background vocals), are taking a bold step forward on their musical journey. Once again their songs are poignant and powerful, and the band brings a seasoned level of musicianship and intensity, honed from two years of relentless touring.
Produced by Jason Ingram, Rusty Varenkamp and Phillip LaRue, The Light Meets the Dark has delivered an impressive first single â€œHealing Beginsâ€ (released to radio on March 5). The song garnered 43 first-week adds among AC and CHR stations nationwide.
â€œTenth Avenue North has worked well for us right from the start,â€ says Keith Stevens of New York Cityâ€™s STAR 99.1. â€œAs APD/MD, I’m always looking for songs that connect with our listeners. â€˜Healing Beginsâ€™ connects right out of the gate.â€
Another indication of the songâ€™s incredible positive momentum is its position in the top of iTunesâ€™ Christian and Gospel Songs chart, reaching No. 2, and selling more than 4,800 downloads its first two weeks of availability.
Like â€œHealing Begins,â€ all of the songs on the bandâ€™s sophomore release are authentic, heartfelt and confessional. â€œOn this record I really tried to be honest about how messed up I am,â€ Donehey says. â€œWe wanted it to be a collision between our hearts and Godâ€™s truth. His grace collides with the dark inside of us. His blood can cover us and Iâ€™m trying to call people out and say â€˜Look, please do not hide your darkness. Expose that to the light.â€™ I know thatâ€™s the scariest thought, but its where freedom and healing starts to take place. Itâ€™s where it all starts to happen.â€
While Over and Underneath quickly established Tenth Avenue North as one of the Christian music communityâ€™s most talented bands, lead vocalist/principal songwriter Donehey began drawing comparisons to such visionary leaders as Casting Crownsâ€™ Mark Hall, Third Dayâ€™s Mac Powell and Jars of Clayâ€™s Dan Haseltine.
For many young musicians, such early success may have proved paralyzing, but not for Tenth Avenue North. Music for them has never been about awards and CD sales, but about the chance to impact lives.
â€œItâ€™s been kind of crazy I guess when you think about it,â€ Donehey says with a smile. â€œIn a lot of ways, we donâ€™t feel like anything has changed. When we get up on a stage, more people are there to see us play and more people are familiar with the songs, but the objective really hasnâ€™t changed. The objective is for people to encounter truth and be changed.â€ Tenth Avenue North meets that objective head on with the music on The Light Meets the Dark.
That ability to challenge audiences to a deeper walk of faith while simultaneously encouraging them with the truth of Godâ€™s grace has propelled Tenth Avenue North to the forefront of the Christian music industry. The bandâ€™s debut disc placed tenth on Billboard Magazineâ€™s list of Top Christian Albums for 2009. The group placed two songs on the Hot Christian Songs chart, including the No. 1 radio single, â€œBy Your Sideâ€ at No. 2 and â€œHold My Heartâ€ at No. 13. The most impressive is the fact that Tenth Avenue North, still on its first album, had â€œBy Your Sideâ€ place No. 3 on Billboardâ€™s overall decade ranking of Christian Songs.
2010 has already reflected notable successes for the band, as it picked up two key nominations for the 41st Annual GMA Dove Awards. The band was honored with nods in two of the prestigious general categories for the Doves, notching a Song of the Year mention for â€œBy Your Sideâ€ from Over and Underneath, as well as a nomination for Group of the Year.
Tenth Avenue North saw its live performance profile take off in 2009, with its â€œInside and In Betweenâ€ Tour (its first as headliners) seeing sell-out shows in more than half the markets it visited.
Currently a closing artist on the Winter Jam tour, Tenth Avenue North will hit the road with Casting Crowns on its â€œUntil The Whole World Hearsâ€ tour April 1 in Dayton, Ohio. Its summer is booked with festivals and a second headlining tour plus a major fall tour, spanning 40 cities, will be officially announced in mid April, and goes on sale May 1st.
About Tenth Avenue North:
Named GMA Dove Awards New Artist of the Year at the 40th Annual GMA Dove Awards, Tenth Avenue North first impacted the music community as the best-selling and most played new Christian artist of 2008, scoring three No. 1s at radio (â€œBy Your Sideâ€ finished the year at No. 2 on the Hot Christian Songs chart, and at No. 3 overall for the decade on said chart) and saw its national debut Over and Underneath (5/20/08) cross the 100,000 unit sales mark in less than seven months.
To date, Over and Underneath has surpassed the 250,000 mark in total album sales.
Tenth Avenue North, made up of members Mike Donehey (lead vocals/acoustic guitar), Jason Jamison (drummer) and Jeff Owen (electric guitar/background vocals), is one of the few debut bands that has experienced enough momentum to headline its own tour â€“ the â€œInside and In Betweenâ€ Tour — with only one album under its belt. The band is currently on the Winter Jam tour as a closing artist, it will open for Casting Crowns this spring and embark on its second headlining tour this fall. This breakthrough band received 2 nominations for the 41st Annual GMA Dove Awards in the Group of the Year and Song of the Year categories. For up-to-date information on Avenue North please visit www.tenthavenuenorth.com or www.providentpress.com.
Find out more at:Casting Crowns receives three 2010 Dove Award nominations, Mark Hall also nominated for a Dove
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