Contemporary Christian Music Watch
By Jim Galipeau

You can tell it's finally here! Unpredictable thunderstorms, warm sunny afternoons and chilly evenings. It's spring ... the only thing missing is the excitement of the first few weeks of major league baseball, but at least we can enjoy the Louisville Redbirds.

April also means the Dove Award ceremonies are right around the comer. Target stores will once again be lead national sponsors for the awards show broadcast on the Family Channel April 27. Other sponsors include the Parable Group, K-Tel/Arrival and Columbia House. The hosts this year include Gary Chapman, Steven Curtis Chapman, Twila Paris and CeCe Winans.

Last month the 37th Annual Grammy Awards were held and Petra took home their third Grammy for Best Rock Gospel Album category for Wake Up Call. Andrae Crouch won his seventh Grammy for Mercy in the Best Pop/Contemporary Album category. The Best Contemporary Soul Gospel Album went to Take 6 for Join the Band. Alison Krauss and the Cox Family's I Know Who Holds Tomorrow won Best Southern Gospel, Country Gospel or Bluegrass Gospel Album. The Best Traditional Soul Gospel Album was awarded to Songs of the Church—Live in Memphis by Albertina Walker. Finally two albums won Best Gospel Album by a Choir or Chorus: Through God s Eyes, The Thompson Community Singers; and Live in Atlanta at Morehouse College, Hezekiah Walker, Choir Director.

Other awards went out recently from American Songwriter magazine. The publication named Twila Paris Christian Songwriter and Christian Artist of the Year.

Twila's song "God is in Control" was also chosen for Song of the Year. Paris' label tied with Sparrow for Christian Label of the Year, while Sparrow's Charlie Peacock won the honor of Producer of the Year.

Wayne Watson, who has been a mainstay at Word Records for years, cranking out tons of hits and writing some great tunes for himself and others, will be leaving the label for a new opportunity. Warner Alliance announced that Watson has signed a longterm recording and artist development contract. Watson will, of course, write and produce his own album plus get the chance to develop and find new talent for Warner Alliance. Wayne says that after ten years at Word it was a very difficult decision to leave, but he says there was no falling-out with his former record company.

Gary Chapman and wife Amy Grant were in Phoenix recently on their House of Love Tour. While visiting the Arizona city, Gary was asked by Suns star A. C. Green to come to the game and Sing the National Anthem. During the game, A. C. fell into the sidelines, breaking one of Chapman's facial bones. We're not sure if Amy was able to give Gary a helping hand.

ForeFront Records is getting ready to honor one of Contemporary Christian Music's legends with a compilation record of Larry Norman's music. Eddie DeGarmo and Dan R. Brock will produce the 14-song project utilizing 13 different artists. Some of the performers on One Way: The Songs of Larry Norman are DC Talk, Audio Adrenaline, Geoff Moore and the Distance, Rebecca St. James, Dana Key and a surprise guest. You think it could be Larry himself?

Finally, it's been 17 years since a couple of rockers, Eddie DeGarmo and Dana Key, got together to form DeGarmo & Key. Eddie and Dana announced that the band's To Extremes album was their last together.

Dana, who is co-owner of ForeFront Communications, says he wants to dedicate more time to the record company business and Key says he wants to do something other than classic rock. By the way, Dana Key is in the studio working on a solo project scheduled for a fall release on his buddy's label.

WJIE Pics

When I'm With You Newsong

The Rest of My Life Bob Carlisle

The Savior's Hand Lenny LeBlanc

Shadow and Light Bruce Carroll

Color Outside the Lines Glad

United We Stand Bryan Duncan

Everlasting Love Chris Eaton

Find It on the Wings Sandi Patty

The Great Divide Point of Grace

Real Thing 4 HIM