There were 41 categories of all styles of Christian/gospel music recognized at the ceremonies, co-hosted by Erica Campbell and Sadie Robertson. The festivities will air at 10 p.m. Sunday Oct. 18 on the TBN network (WTLJ-TV channel 54 in West Michigan).
Several of the artists are coming here on the concert trail. Singer-songwriter Matt Maher, who won several awards, is coming to Sunshine Community Church, 3300 E. Beltline on Dec. 6, with special guests I Am They. Tickets range from $16 to $25 and are available online.
Maher took home a Dove as Songwriter of the Year. And a song he co-wrote and recorded – "Because He Lives (Amen)" – won a Dove as the year's top worship song. Maher performed the song during the award ceremonies with veteran Bill Gaither, who decades ago co-wrote a song "Because He Lives" from which the newer song borrows.
"So many of the songs the Church is singing these days is a result of collaboration from many talented writers who all believe we are in a season of unprecedented unity in serving God and His Church," said Maher upon receiving the award. Watch an acoustic version online.
OTHER WINNERS ON THE WAY
Incidentally, veteran songwriter/worship leader Chris Tomlin was a co-writer with Maher on
"Because He Lives (Amen)" and also received an Dove. Tomlin and his band are coming to Van Andel Arena on Sat. Nov. 7. Special guest is Rend Collective. Tickets range from $42.50 to $16 and are available via www.ticketmaster.com
Also coming to Van Andel is Israel Houghton, who is part of the multi-artist Festival of Praise tour. Also on the bill are Fred Hammond, Donnie McClurkin, Kim Burrell and others Tickets available online. Houghton won a Dove award in the traditional gospel category for his song "How Awesome Is Our God." He also performed on the awards telecast.
The Dove Awards program offered star-studded performances – a diverse artist list including Building 429, Kirk Franklin, Derek Minor, Casting Crowns, Southern gospel's Karen Peck Gooch, and rappers Tedashi and KB all contributed songs.
Two of the most honored talents were newcomer Lauren Daigle and rap/hip-hop stylist Lecrae.
Daigle won three awards – two for her ballad "How Can It Be"?" and another as New Artist of the Year.
Lecrae (who could not attend the ceremonies) won Doves as overall Artist of the Year as well as for his album ("Anomoly") and song ("All I Need Is You").
A Michigan native came up short of the winners circle. Hip-hop performer NF (Nate Feuerstein) had been nominated as top new artist as well as for his CD "Mansion" and its title song. But his talent was showcased during his live performance, providing a wonderful opportunity for the 2009 graduate of Gladwin, Mich. High School.
Nate returns to the area on Nov. 11 to The Intersection in downtown Grand Rapids on a bill with Capital Kings and DJ Promote. Tickets are $20 advance, $25 day of show. Online.
And with a nod to the holiday season, veteran artist Michael W. Smith won a Dove for Christmas Album of the Year. Honored was "The Spirit of Christmas," a project recorded with a variety of guest artists. Several of the songs will be featured in his concert with the Grand Rapids Symphony on Dec. 8 at Resurrection Life Church, 5100 Ivanrest Ave. SW.
Tickets range from $25 to $60 and are available at the church book store, Ticketmaster outlets or online.
For a complete list of Dove Award winners, visit online.
Meanwhile, there's yet another music honor on the horizon. The American Music Awards ceremonies are scheduled for Nov. 22 and will be broadcast on ABC-TV. Nominated in the contemporary-inspirational category are Casting Crowns, Mercy Me, and Hillsong United. This is an award based on balloting by fans and voters can cast votes in a select category at http://ama.votenow.tv/