When Evan Almighty (starring Steve Carell and Morgan Freeman) hits theaters this June, artists Switchfoot, Jeremy Camp, Relient K and DecembeRadio will be on hand for premiere. The bands will be part of the Rock the Boat concert event June 11, at 7 p.m., at Universal's Gibson Amphitheater in Universal City. The event benefits Habitat for Humanity. Newcomer DecembeRadio has had a whirlwind debut year, balancing touring, radio hits, and a Dove nomination for Song of the Year and a Dove Award for Rock Album of the Year. Now they find themselves at a Hollywood premiere alongside some of Christian music's top names. "We've been so involved with the day-to-day commitments over the past year or so, we don't always see the progression as it happens," said DecembeRadio guitarist and vocalist Eric Miker. "We get a day off now and then and we look at the calendar, realize where we've been and think, 'Wow! We did this or that!' We just know there's no way we could have done it on our own. We are thankful for God's hand in our lives and for the doors that have opened for us."
Whether it's raising money or swinging hammers, Christian music artists are dedicated to the work of Habit for Humanity. During Gospel Music Week in April, Word recording artists BarlowGirl, Jackson Waters, Mark Schultz, Big Daddy Weave, David Phelps, Group 1 Crew, Mark Roach, Building 429, Stellar Kart, Pocket Full of Rocks, Point of Grace and pureNRG came together with Habitat for Humanity to build, bless and dedicate a new home for a local Nashville family. On April 24 Word artists and employees, Habitat for Humanity representatives, and GMA leaders joined new home-owner LaTashia Anderson for a special dedication ceremony. Appropriately, Building 429 performed at the event and was later joined by more Word artists to present the home, along with a special signed guitar, to Anderson and her two sons.
Rock band Kutless will "audition" guitar players this summer as part of an innovative new promotional partnership with PRS Guitars. While Kutless won't be offering a permanent spot in the band, they will give six aspiring guitarists the opportunity to play live with them at one of six summer music festivals. The grand-prize winner receives an autographed custom PRS Guitar. The promotion includes a two-round online battle of the band's style competition, with PRS Guitars and Kutless choosing the semi-finalists from self-produced videos submitted via YouTube.com. The grand-prize winner will be determined from an online fan vote. For more information, visit myspace.com/kutlessprscontest.
Beatmart artist Willie Will is releasing a devotional video series titled "The Reflection Devotionals," featuring 14 episodes that share the biblical inspirations behind each track on his upcoming album, Reflection. For example, explains Will, "Shine," the first single from the album, "is a mandate to God's people to fulfill the mission that he's given us; to be a light to the world. I wrote this to somewhat eradicate the notion that each individual has to 'save' the world for God. If they'd just be a light to those that are around them, God would be pleased."
There's more to love about Sanctus Real than just their string of No. 1 hits. Last year, the band partnered with African Leadership to support charitable work in Africa through the Mocha Club, where club members provide money for relief projects in Africa by donating the cost of a couple of cups of coffee. Seven dollars, for example, can buy two mochas in the U.S., but in Kenya, $7 pays for three meals in a day for nine orphans. In Bulawayo, Zimbabwe, $7 pays for one school term for two children, and in all of Africa, $7 provides clean water for seven Africans for one year. Sanctus Real's Mocha Club, comprised of their fans and supporters, recently helped send seven tons of relief supplies to Darfur, Sudan. To see video footage of the delivery, go to africanleadership.org/darfur/video. Visit mochaclub.org for more information on how to join Sanctus Real and other music artists in providing relief to Africa through a variety of projects.
Gospel Music Channel has launched a nationwide search for music videos from undiscovered and unsigned talent across all genres of Gospel and Christian music. "Gospel and Christian music cuts across all musical genres: Soul, Country, Rock, Hip-Hop, Pop, Traditional and Praise & Worship," said Gospel Music Channel Vice President of Production Rex Humbard. "We want them all; if there's Polka Gospel, we want to see it!" Take note: this is not a contest. This is a bona fide chance for indie artist videos to be showcased on line, on demand locally or nationally, or on the network's new "The Kitchen Sink" show, which premieres in August and airs Saturdays at 8 p.m. ET/PT. Videos that appear on the show will then run as stand-alone "Hometown Gospel" segments throughout the network's schedule. For more information about how to submit your video, visit gospelmusicchannel.com.
Crabb Family guitarist Zachery Smith and TK & McRae vocalist Amanda Till recently announced their engagement. The wedding is planned for November in Nashville, Tenn.
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