After 15 years of hit records and touring, Casting Crowns is still “keeping the main thing the main thing,” says founder Mark Hall. Sunday through Wednesday the group works in youth ministry at Eagles Landing First Baptist Church outside Atlanta, and Thursday through Saturday they go out on tour.
“I think people listen to Crowns more because of what we say, as opposed to just liking the music,” says Hall.
“People who come to our concerts come to be reminded of the things we’ve taught more than how we sing them.”
Jen Ledger, drummer and vocalist of multi-platinum selling rock band Skillet, has signed a solo deal with Atlantic Records and Hear It Loud, the imprint encompassing the creative team of Skillet’s John & Korey Cooper and longtime manager, Zachary Kelm.
Her self-titled debut EP, LEDGER is set to release April 13. Ledger’s unique vocals and powerful stage presence have given her a distinct role in Skillet since joining the band when she was just 18. She has been collaborating with Korey Cooper and Nashville-based producer Seth Moseley, whose credits include For King & Country and Francesca Battistelli.
“It’s so surreal that I will be releasing my first EP in just a few weeks!,” said Ledger. “The writing and recording process with Korey Cooper, John Cooper, Seth Mosley and many others has been so much fun and I’ve loved every second of it! Learning, growing, and creating with these ridiculously talented people has been one of the most rewarding seasons of my life. We’ve created something fresh that feels unique to me. I can’t wait to share these songs with everyone; it feels like I’m getting to share a new side of myself!”
Singer-songwriter Chris Tomlin launched is own imprint record label, Bowyer & Bow, in partnership with Capitol Christian Music Group. Singer-songwriter and worship leader Pat Barrett is the first artist to sign with the new imprint.
Barrett’s self-titled debut EP is available now and will be followed by a full-length album to release later this year.
Walmart has refused to carry the new album by pioneering Christian rock band Stryper, over concerns about the title. Voicing disappointment, frontman Michael Sweet said that God Damn Evil was “a statement that’s needed in our society.
We’ve seen evil rise to new levels and this title is simply a prayer request asking God to damn or condemn all the evil around us… it’s frustrating to see something that’s meant for good get misinterpreted and misunderstood.”
The Winter Jam 2018 Tour Spectacular was the top music tour of the first quarter, according to Pollstar. The 46-date tour was second only to Disney On Ice, beating out artists like Bruno Mars and Blake Shelton. “I’m so grateful for the opportunity God has given us with Winter Jam; we give our all to this tour every year,” says creator and NewSong co-founder Eddie Carswell. “It’s still unbelievable to me that I get to be a part of it.”