TOBY MCEEHAN, MICHAEL W. SMITH, KIRK FRANKLIN LEAD NOMINATIONS FOR DOVES

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (EP) - Veteran Christian music artists Toby McKeehan, Michael W. Smith, and Kirk Franklin led the nominations for the 34th Annual Dove Awards announced Jan. 14. McKeehan, who also performs as tobyMac, and Smith each took nine nominations, while Franklin received eight. Several other artists garnered multiple nominations, including Nichole Nordeman (seven), Bebo Norman (seven), and the group Third Day (five). The Dove Awards will be presented at Nashville's Gaylord Entertainment Center on Thursday, April 10.

"Toby, Michael, and Kirk truly represent the depth and breadth of Christian and gospel music today," said Frank Breeden, who is stepping down as president of the Gospel Music Association (GMA). "Their music, as does our industry, spans the musical spectrum from worship to rap/hip hop and urban gospel with many more styles in between. It's a strength that I'm glad is reflected in this year's nominations."

The five artists nominated for Artist of the Year are Steven Curtis Chapman, MercyMe, tobyMac, Michael W. Smith, and Third Day. Smith, who took the honor last year, is also up for Male Vocalist of the Year, along with Chapman, Bebo Norman, Mark Schultz, and Mac Powell.

Third Day was also nominated for Group of the Year, along with Sixpence None the Richer, Selah, Audio Adrenaline, and MercyMe.

Nominees for Female Vocalist of the Year include last year's winner Nicole C. Mullen, along with Nichole Nordeman, Rebecca St. James, Natalie Grant, and Joy Williams.

A tie in the New Artist category resulted in six nominees, which are Big Daddy Weave, Jeff Deyo, Paul Colman Trio, Souljahz, Daily Planet, and the Rock 'N Roll Worship Circus.

Because of a tie, 11 songs were nominated for the Song of the Year honor. They are "Above All," "Back in His Arms Again," "Breathe," "Come Unto Me," "Great Light of the World," "Here I Am to Worship," "Holy," "Ocean Floor," "Spoken For," "Yes, I Believe," and "Youth of the Nation."

The Gospel Music Association, which produces the Dove awards, was founded in 1964 and is dedicated to educating the public and the music industry concerning the mission and role of gospel music in today's culture. The Dove Awards presentation recognizes achievement in all genres of gospel music and is the premiere television awards show for the contemporary Christian and gospel music industry.

The nominees for the 34th annual Dove Awards include:

Song of the Year

"Above All," by Lenny LeBlanc and Paul Baloche; "Back in His Arms Again," by Mark Schultz; "Breathe," by Marie Barnett; "Come Unto Me," by Nicole C. Mullen; "Great Light of the World," by Bebo Norman; "Here I Am to Worship," by Tim Hughes; "Holy," by Nichole Nordeman and Mark Hammond; "Ocean Floor," by Mark Stuart, Bob Herdman, Tyler Burkum, Will McGinnis, and Ben Cissell; "Spoken For," by Bart Millard, Nathan Cochran, Mike Scheuchzer, Robby Shaffer, Jim Bryson, and Peter Kipley; "Yes, I Believe," by Joel Lindsey and Tony Wood; and "Youth of the Nation," by Paul Sandoval, Marco Curiel, Mark Traa, and Noah Bernardo.

Male Vocalist of the Year

Bebo Norman, Mac Powell, Mark Schultz, Michael W. Smith, and Steven Curtis Chapman.

Female Vocalist of the Year

Joy Williams, Natalie Grant, Nichole Nordeman, Nicole C. Mullen, and Rebecca St. James.

Group of the Year

Audio Adrenaline, MercyMe, Selah, Sixpence None the Richer, and Third Day.

Artist of the Year

MercyMe, Michael W. Smith, Steven Curtis Chapman, Third Day, and tobyMac.

New Artist of the Year

Big Daddy Weave, Daily Planet, Jeff Deyo, Paul Colman Trio, Souljahz, and the Rock 'n Roll Worship Circus.

Producer of the Year

Brown Bannister, Charlie Peacock, Monroe Jones, Nathan Nockels, and Steve Hindalong.

Rap/Hip Hop/ Dance Recorded Song of the Year

"All Around the World," from Fault Is History, by Souljahz; "Amazing," from Exodus, by Andy Hunter; "Here We Go," from The Art of Translation, by GRITS; "Irene," from Momentum, by tobyMac; and "J-Train," from Momentum, by tobyMac with Kirk Franklin.

Modern Rock/Alternative Recorded Song of the Year

"Blood Of Jesus," from Welcome to the Rock 'n Roll Worship Circus, by Rock 'n Roll Worship Circus; "Breathe Your Name," from Divine Discontent, by Sixpence None the Richer; "Get This Party Started," from Momentum, by tobyMac; "Our Love Is Loud," from Can You Hear Us? by David Crowder Band; "Revolution," from The Eleventh Hour, by Jars Of Clay; and "Spin," from Stanley Climbfall, by Lifehouse.

Hard Music Recorded Song of the Year

"Boom," from Satellite, by P.O.D.; "Electric," from Out of My Mind, by GS Megaphone; "Fireproof," from Fireproof, by Pillar; "Symbiotic," from Conceived in Fire, by Living Sacrifice; "Tonight," from Engage, by PAX 217; and "Vapor," from Alien Youth, by Skillet.

Rock Recorded Song of the Year

"40 Days," from Come Together, by Third Day; "Broken," from 12 Stones, by 12 Stones; "Get On," from Come Together, by Third Day; "Speaking in Tongues," from Truth, Soul, Rock & Roll, by the Elms; and "Tangled Web," from Hero, by Daily Planet.

Pop/Contemporary Recorded Song of the Year

"Back in His Arms Again," from Song Cinema, by Mark Schultz; "Great Light of the World," from Myself When I Am Real, by Bebo Norman; "Holy," from Woven & Spun, by Nichole Nordeman; "Love Someone Like Me," from Love Someone Like Me, by Patty Cabrera; and "Ocean Floor," from Lift, by Audio Adrenaline.

Inspirational Recorded Song of the Year

"Before It Was Said," from Have I Ever Told You, by FFH; "Come Unto Me," from Talk About It, by Nicole C. Mullen; "Here I Am to Worship," from Here I Am To Worship, by Tim Hughes; "Purified," from Worship, by Michael W. Smith; and "Who You Are," from Walk On, by 4Him.

Southern Gospel Recorded Song of the Year

"Don't You Wanna Go?" from A Crabb Collection, by the Crabb Family; "I Rest My Case at the Cross," from Changed Forever, by the Perrys; "I Wanna Know How It Feels," from Triumph, by Karen Peck and New River; "I'm Gonna Sing," from Everything Good, by the Gaither Vocal Band; and "More Than Ever," from I Do Believe, by the Gaither Vocal Band.

Country Recorded Song of the Year

"God Is Good All The Time," from Blinded, by Dave Moody; "Leave Here Empty Handed," from Safe Thus Far, by the Hoskins Family; "Standing on the Promises," from Glorify Edify Testify, by the Martins; and "The Most Inconvenient Christmas," from An Inconvenient Christmas, by the Oak Ridge Boys.

Contemporary Gospel Recorded Song of the Year

"Brighter Day," from The Rebirth of Kirk Franklin, by Kirk Franklin; "For Love Alone," from CeCe Winans, by CeCe Winans; "Hosanna," from The Rebirth of Kirk Franklin, by Kirk Franklin; "In the Morning," from Incredible, by Mary Mary; and "The Best Is Yet to Come," from Go Get Your Life Back, by Donald Lawrence and The Tri-City Singers.

Rap/Hip Hop/Dance Album of the Year Beautiful, by Brent Jones and the T.P. Mobb; Collaborations, by KJ-52; Exodus, by Andy Hunter; Hindsight, by John Reuben; and The Art of Translation, by GRITS.

Modern Rock/Alternative Album of the Year

Contact, by the Benjamin Gate; Divine Discontent, by Sixpence None the Richer; The Eleventh Hour, by Jars of Clay; The Way I Am, by Jennifer Knapp; and Welcome to the Rock 'n Roll Worship Circus, by Rock 'n' Roll Worship Circus.

Hard Music Album of the Year

Conceived in Fire, by Living Sacrifice; Demon Hunter, by Demon Hunter; Fireproof, by Pillar; Parade of Chaos, by ZAO; and Truthless Heroes, by Project 86.

Rock Album of the Year

12 Stones, by 12 Stones; Kutless, by Kutless; Lift, by Audio Adrenaline; Truth, Soul, Rock and Roll, by The Elms; and The Tides, by 38th Parallel.

Pop/Contemporary Album of the Year

By Surprise, by Joy Williams; Myself When I Am Real, by Bebo Norman; New Map of the World, by Paul Colman Trio; Spoken For, by MercyMe; and Woven and Spun, by Nichole Nordeman.

Inspirational Album of the Year

Be Glad, by The Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir; Ronnie Freeman, by Ronnie Freeman; Storm, by Fernando Ortega; and Woven In Time, by Steve Green.

Southern Gospel Album of the Year

A Crabb Collection, by The Crabb Family; Gold City Camp Meetin', by Gold City; Live at First Baptist Atlanta, by Greater Vision; Safe Thus Far, by the Hoskins Family; and Triumph, by Karen Peck and New River.

Country Album of the Year

An Inconvenient Christmas, by the Oak Ridge Boys; Everything Good, by Gaither Vocal Band; How Sweet the Sound, by the Charlie Daniels Band; My, Oh My!, by Jeff and Sheri Easter; and Rise and Shine, by Randy Travis.

Contemporary Gospel Album of the Year

Beautiful World, by Take 6; I Need You Now, by Smokie Norful; Real, by Israel; Speak Those Things: POL Chapter 3, by Fred Hammond; and The Rebirth of Kirk Franklin, by Kirk Franklin.

Praise and Worship Album of the Year

Blessed, by Darlene Zschech; Lifestyle, by the Katinas; Not to Us, by Chris Tomlin; Worship Again, by Michael W. Smith; and Worship God, by Rebecca St. James.

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